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Rural Sports

For many villages of Punjab, sheer necessity led to the growth of rural sports. Over the time, many sports became popular in the rural villages of Punjab like twisting hands, holding wrists, and weightlifting, jumping, running and wrestling. The rural sports emerged out of daily activities like joint defense against common enemies and also animals, the interdependence of people belonging to different community on each other and also the need for immense physical strength for cultivation on the fields.

Kabaddi is regarded as the mother of rural sports in Punjab. Tourists from nearby and distant places also come to Punjab to enjoy the fervor of these sports seen in villages. The people of Punjab are high spirited and they engage in rural sport as a means of expressing it. Many tourists visiting Punjab for vacations, also like to participate in rural sports which makes their trip an enthralling experience.

The local people of this region used to organize sports tournaments in ancient times. With time and practice, these games were developed it into a strong movement. The almost 7000 villages in Punjab have become a hub for organizing rural sports tournament every year, thus attracting tourists not only from neighboring areas but also from far off places. Rural folks arrange it in an organized fashion extending hospitality to both competitors and spectators of the event.

Significance of Rural Sports

Many years back, in the precincts of Village Quila Raipur, Grewal Sports Association held sports competitions at the village level. At Anandpur Sahib, different kinds of rural sports were organized during Diwali and Hola Mohalla festivals.

Some of the popular rural sports organized in this state include acrobatic displays, gymnastics, riding competitions and fencing, archery and also tent pegging competitions. There is a hoary and long history associated with the rural sports competition held in Punjab.

Rural sports organized in the village have also led to economic development of the region. Only after independence, the circle of rural sports got extended to different varieties of sports, which were earlier restricted to only wrestling and Kabaddi.
Another game called “Khido Khoondi” was a popular rustic game of the region and villagers mastered the game without any facilities. Later on, this game began to take the shape of hockey and villagers began to dominate the game.

It’s an interesting fact that almost 12 important players of the world belong to a small village of Jalandhar district called Sansarpur. As such, not only tourists who love to explore the culture of Punjab but also sports lovers like to come here and have the time of their life.

Date of Rural Sports

In the month of February every year in Quila Raipur, Rural Sports Olympics is held in Ludhiana in Punjab. People like Naib and Hakam Singh are known as sports icons in Punjab. They are regarded as two of the most passionate people in terms of sports and athletics in Punjab. They also secured first position during the Olympics of 2008.

Sports events are held during the rural sports festival in the month of February. Some popular games include weight lifting, wrestling and Kabaddi, to name a few. Another new trend has become a part of this rural sports festival. This is the inclusion of singing and dancing competitions, which makes the event doubly fun.

Animal races are also an important part of rural sports in villages. The use of horses and bulls is common to enjoy a good race. Participants have to size-up the power and skill of their animals to make the event a success. Bullock cart racing has become an important part of rural sports in Punjab and local people of the region are passionate about it.

Celebration of Rural Sports

Rural sports in Punjab are not only an event but it has become more like a festival which is organized in a grand and splendid manner. As hunting is banned, therefore fake hare is used as bait for hound races. Other types of animal fights include pigeon and cockfights, which is very amusing to watch for the oncoming tourists. City dwellers from the major cities of India find animal races and contests very amusing, as it is not a usual phenomenon in the cities.

The rustic stadium of Punjab filled with thousands of villagers caters to the senses of the spectators during the event. The Grewal Sports stadium comes alive each year during the month of February when it is flooded by thousands of spectators and participants from different parts of the world. Various interesting games are held including loading and unloading of tractor-trailers, as transportation is regarded as one of the most important industries of the region.

Rural Sports and Fairs

A huge ground spread over a vast area is used for sports and it is meant to accommodate a large number of participants while multiple events are going on. Singing and dancing competitions is an important feature of the sports festival making it a more joyous and entertaining for spectators and tourists of the region. Tourists carry back a very positive impression of the entire event, which is held with great sanctity and decorum. The cash prizes attached to the events make competitors strive harder for victory and they give cutthroat competition to one other and make it more interesting for tourists.

Cultural events during rural sports events include singers coming in to give their performances. Performers of dance forms like Bhangra and Giddha are also invited to the event. Dancers from Rajasthan also come to participate in the cultural events that take place along with the rural sports event.

The rural sports event of Punjab offers a unique blend of defeat and victory, action and boundless energy and also different sounds, colors and smells. All of these sports come together to create an intoxicating atmosphere. The sports event showcases passions and exhilarations of Punjabi people in the most extravagant manner. Tourists have a time of their life enjoying the culture, passion and energy of Punjab.

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