There’s One Key Reason Why Kabaddi Can’t Be an Olympic Sport – Yet


In the past, many people have wondered why, when sports like competitive climbing and even freestyle BMX riding, are set to be included as Olympic events, one of the most popular games in India is not.

After all, kabaddi has a long and noble tradition, is enjoyed by millions and is a fast-moving and exciting game to watch. Therefore, it must surely fulfill many of the criteria used by the International Olympic Committee for consideration for inclusion but, to date, it remains an outsider with seemingly few prospects of inclusion.

Many people are unaware of the fascinating history of the game. It is believed that its origins lay in the Vedic period of history and that it first became popular in Tamil Nadu. In fact the Tamil language has its own name for the game – soduku, not to be confused with the popular number puzzles that feature in many newspapers. There are tales that the god Krishna played the sport and even Gautama Buddha is said, perhaps in myth, to have enjoyed it as a pastime. So, in terms of heritage and cultural significance, kabaddi is definitely an important game.


Today its popularity cannot be underestimated with the VIVO Pro Kabaddi League being televised throughout India. It regularly attracts over 430 million viewers, making it a close rival to the IPL cricket tournament. Not only is it a fantastically popular spectator sport, but it’s also a big favorite for fans of sports betting who wager many rupees each week on how well their team will do.

There are a number of different bets that can be made and you can read more at BettingGuru.In about how to do it, as well as learning about all aspects of sports betting in India. This includes the sports that are most popular for betting, how to place bets and even how to choose the best sites.

In the past, kabaddi has been recognized as a sport by the Olympics committee and was played as a demonstration event in the controversial 1936 Berlin Olympics. In 1990 it also became an official sport in the Asian Games with India winning gold at every event up until 2018 when Iran surprised everyone by taking the title. So it’s not as if the game has not been given official status in the past.  The fact that players have to be fit, fast, skilful and athletic would also seem to fit perfectly into Olympic ideals. So, with all these facts in its favor, what is the reason that the sport doesn’t feature?

The answer, unfortunately, is that simply that too few countries play the game. There is an Olympic rule that, for inclusion, any sport must be played in at least 75 countries across the world. At present the numbers fall far short of this and considerable work will need to be done if this is to change.

But with an ever-smaller world thanks to globalization, and sports fans always eager for new experiences, who’s to say this will never happen  – and many, many Indians hope that it will.

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