National Style of Kabaddi
National Style Kabaddi
This is the oldest from of Kabaddi. It is widely played in India and many other countries.
It is a game of a minimum of ten and maximum twelve players. 7 players take ground at a time, while others are substitutes. It is played on a level soft/mat surface in a rectangular field measuring 13 X 10 meters for men and 12 X 8 meters for women.
Kabaddi matches are played over forty minutes with a five minute interval after twenty minutes of play.
Each team tries to score points in two ways:
- By conducting raids into opponent’s court, and
- By preventing the opponent’s raider from returning to his/her home court.
A team with higher points wins the Kabaddi match.
History of National Style Kabaddi
National Style is the most ancient form of Kabaddi. This game can definitely be traced back to 20th BC. However, it has only been a speculation and no evidence of the existence of Kabadi in 20th BC.
There are many theories on the creation of Kabbadi however, the most popular relates to Hindi epic hero, Abhimanyu. Legend has it that he broke through the Chakravyuha formed by Cauravas during the Mahabharta but was killed during the battle on his way out.
Kabaddi game is believed to be created in remembrance of Abhimanyu, his courage and gallant.
It is also believed that this game was invented to establish techniques of defense in an individual against group attacks and to co-ordinate group’s response to individual attacks.
Gauging the popularity of this game, Kabaddi was accorded Indian National status in 1918. This proved to be a trigger for further spread of this game.
Kabaddi was part of the Berlin Olympic Games in 1936 as a demonstration game. However there is no evidence of the fact that the demonstration game was played in National Style.
On a national platform, National Style Kabaddi received its first major exposure in 1938 when it was included in the Indian Olympic Games.
All India Kabaddi Federation
Until 1950, there was no formal governing body of Kabadi. The game underwent major transformation when All India Kabaddi Federation was formed. Formal rules and regulations were laid down which standardized the game play. Kabaddi rules have undergone numerous changes since then.
To further promote this game, Kabbadi was included in the curriculum of the Indian University Sports Control Board in 1961.
School game federation of India also included it in the school games in 1962 and has been organizing state and national level Kabaddi tournaments and championships since then.
Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India
At this point in time, it was important to popularize Kabaddi in other countries. Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India (AKFI) was formed in 1972 to bring this into reality. The chief objective of this new organization was to organize men and women Kabaddi tournaments not only in India, but in neighboring countries as well.
All great sportspersons have coaches. World Champions, Olympic champions and any other successful athletes get advice from someone. Even the greatest Kabaddi players such as Harjit Bajakhana, Kewal Sekha, Balwinder Singh Fidda, Rakesh Kumar refined their game under the watch of a coach.
Coaching makes a Kabaddi player better.
Due to the lack of quality Kabaddi coaches, the Indian National Institute of Sports included Kabbadi in the curriculum of regular diploma courses in 1971. It has been part of the curriculum since then and has helped create excellent Kabaddi coaches.
Asian Amateur Kabaddi Federation
Founded in 1978, Asian Amateur Kabaddi Federation has been instrumental in spreading the game of Kabadi in Asian countries. It was under the stewardship of this federation that first Asian Kabaddi championship was organized in Calcutta in 1980.
First time in the history of Kabaddi, matches were played that involved international Kabaddi teams. It was in 1981 when Indian men and women’s Kabaddi team toured Thailand, Malaysia and Japan.
National Style Kabbadi was included as a demonstration game in the IX Asian games in 1982. It was included in Asian games as a regular sports discipline in 1990 and has been since then.
Asian games are held every four years. Six Kabadi playing nations have been participating in the Asian games and Indian men’s Kabaddi team has been the winners since then.
Women’s Kabaddi was included in Asian games in 2010. Eight countries participated in this event. Indian Women’s Kabaddi remained unbeaten throughout and won gold. Thailand had to contend with silver.
South Asian Federation (SAF) Games
National Style Kabbadi was included in the SAF games in 1984. These games are held every two years. Since 1985, India has won gold medal all but one time.
Women’s Kabaddi was included in SAF games in 2010. Indian Women’s Kabaddi won the gold while Bangladesh was runners up in this tournament.
National Style Kabaddi was also included as a demonstration game in the Afro-Asian games held in Delhi in 2001.
National Style Kabaddi World Cup
National Style Kabaddi World Cup took place for the first time in November of 2004. It was held in Mumbai, India and was organized by the International Kabaddi Federation (IKF), Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India and South Kanara Sports Club.
This tournament was the first major Kabaddi event that saw twelve countries vying for top honors. A total of twenty three Kabaddi matches were played from November 21 to November 23, 2004.
India and Iran played the final and won the first Kabaddi World Cup with a difference of 28 points.
The Kabaddi World Cup 2007, the second Kabaddi cup was held in Panvel, Mumbai, India from January 24 to January 26.
This edition of the Kabbadi cup was expanded to include sixteen teams as compared to twelve in the Kabaddi World Cup of 2004. Afghanistan, Italy, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Turkmenistan were the new countries to participate. Germany and Canada were standbys for this tournament.
However, Kyrgyzstan dropped out of the tournament at the last moment and Pakistan Kabaddi team did not arrive to participate in the tournament.
Rules and Game Play/ How to play
The objective of each team is to score more points within the allotted time limit of forty minutes.
Kabaddi match is played in a rectangular field where two teams take turns in sending a raider to the opponent court. A raider scores a point if he or she returns successfully after tagging at least one player of the other team while chanting the word “Kabaddi” within thirty seconds.
On the other hand, ante or stoppers score a point if they are successful in holding back the raider in their own court.
Each team consists of ten to twelve Kabaddi players. Seven play at a time. A well balanced team usually has few specialist raiders and ante/stoppers. If a player gets injured or becomes ill during a Kabaddi match, a substitute is allowed instead.
Kabbadi is a sport that puts a great deal of focus on each individual player. While on the field, each Kabaddi player is under immense pressure. This applies even more for the raiders. When a raider goes for a raid, he/she is all alone in opponent’s court and must use solitary acts and tactics to return back successfully.
The other distinctive feature of Kabaddi is the play requirements. Except a whistle, no other equipment is required. A soft playing field of clay/sand/soil or mat is sufficient to hold a game of Kabadi.
National Kabaddi Teams
Although Kabbadi originated in Asia, today it is played all over the world. Popularity of this game can be attributed to many factors such as simple rules of play and number of physical benefits it provides.
Popularly called “game of the masses” Kabadi is played in more than forty countries. Please click here for a complete list of Kabaddi playing countries.