Swiss wrestling and Pakistani wrestling are two distinct traditional wrestling styles originating from different regions and cultures. Here are some of the key differences between the two:
Origins and Cultural Background
Swiss Wrestling: Swiss wrestling, also known as Schwingen, is a traditional Swiss sport that dates back to the 13th century. It is deeply rooted in Swiss culture and is considered the national sport of Switzerland.
Pakistani Wrestling: Pakistani wrestling, commonly known as Pehlwani or Kushti, has its origins in the Indian subcontinent and is popular in Pakistan, India, and other neighboring countries. It has a rich history and is associated with the ancient sport of Malakhra.
Rules and Techniques
Swiss Wrestling: In Schwingen, the objective is to throw your opponent onto their back and maintain control while avoiding being thrown yourself. The wrestlers wear special breeches, called “Schwingerhosen,” which allow them to get a grip on each other. Techniques such as hip throws, leg trips, and lifts are commonly used.
Pakistani Wrestling: Pehlwani or Kushti follows a set of rules known as the “Akhara” tradition. It involves a combination of grappling, clinching, and submission holds. Pehlwani places a strong emphasis on physical strength, endurance, and technique. Wrestlers wear loincloths called “langots” during matches.
Cultural Significance and Events
Swiss Wrestling: Schwingen holds significant cultural importance in Switzerland. It is practiced at local, regional, and national levels, with the highlight being the Eidgenössisches Schwing- und Älplerfest (ESAF), which is the national festival of Swiss wrestling held every three years.
Pakistani Wrestling: Pehlwani has deep cultural and historical significance in the Indian subcontinent. It is associated with traditional festivals and celebrations, and wrestling events called “Dangals” are held where skilled wrestlers compete against each other.
Attire and Traditions
Swiss Wrestling: Swiss wrestlers wear the traditional Schwingerhosen, which are special wrestling breeches made of jute or canvas. Wrestlers also often wear a shirt called “Schwingerhemd.” The sport is associated with Alpine traditions, including yodeling, flag throwing, and traditional music.
Pakistani Wrestling: Pehlwani wrestlers wear langots, which are simple loincloths. They often cover themselves with oil to make it more difficult for their opponents to get a grip. Pehlwani is deeply intertwined with traditional South Asian culture, including music, poetry, and rituals.
It’s important to note that the above information provides a general overview of the two wrestling styles, and there may be variations and regional differences within each style. Both Swiss wrestling and Pakistani wrestling have their unique characteristics and contribute to the cultural heritage of their respective regions.