Sunday, December 10, 2023


Folk Drama & Entertainment

Games and Amusements

By nature Punjabis are sports-lovers. They have produced some world-famous sportsmen like Dara Singh, Milka Singh and Balbir Singh, who have made a name for themselves and for the country in wrestling, athletics and hockey.

There are all types of  games  suiting the age and stamina of all persons. While the young persons are engaged in Kabaddi and wrestling, the smaller ones play gullidanda, kokla chhapaki, khiddoo etc. Older persons have tahna and chopar to keep them occupied.

 Sports are a common phenomenon at fairs. The participants jump into the fields to play kabaddi, wrestling, gripping the wrist etc. Sometimes inter-village championships are held. 

Kabaddi is the most popular game of the Punjab and is played by people of different age-groups. This is one game in which the participant has to give a proper exhibition of his physical powers, ability, craft and practice to hold breath.

The players are divided into two groups. Both the teams stand facing each other and a line is drawn in the centre. One member of the team on one side of the line runs across to the other side, all the time shouting in one breath 'kabaddi, kabaddi'. His effort is to touch a member of the opposite team and run safely back to his side. If he succeeds the player of the opposite team thus touched is eliminated from the play. The team on the other side endeavours to ensure that the person touched should hold the attacker and keep him on their side of the line till his breath  breaks. If the attacker crosses the line back without losing his breath he is victorious, otherwise he is eliminated. This is how players are made to go out one by one till one of the teams is entirely eliminated and thus defeated.

Saunchi is a game very popular in Malwa, Ferozepur and Bhatinda. This is a kind of tag played by two men, the object being to strike the other person on the chest with the open hand, without being caught. Wrestling is another highly  popular sport in the Punjab. Almost in every fair wrestling is a must. Wrestling is a severe test for the stamina as also trick and ability. Out of the two competitors, he who succeeds in pinning the other flat, the shoulders touching the ground is declared the winner.