More Insane Tribal Sports You May Want To Try

Back in November 2009, we gave you a rundown of four tribal sports that we’d thought you may want to get out and give a go. Now that you’ve been freed on bail or released from hospital with a colostomy bag slopping around next to you, we’d thought you would like a few more tribal sports to get your teeth around… or lose your bollocks to.

Xavante Log Running

We live in a world where you can get so frustrated by an eleven-year-old blasting away at you on an online game, that you’ll literally clear your schedule for weeks on end, training those finger muscles just so you can have revenge on that pre-pubescent, high-pitched wailer on the other end of the globe. So when you take away the actual competition from something and instead opt to support all rival teams just as much as your own what happens?

The Xavante people, situated in Central Brazil do just that. There are no flock of horny-fied women itching for you to lube them up with cinnamon and banana (Gunaxin personal preference), no low-life mortals rushing to tell you just how great you are so your ego starts to actually make you believe you are the second coming. No, instead you all applaud each other.

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You dropped a bit...

The event is essentially a huge relay race, designed to test stamina, strength and companionship, it is ran with opposing clans. Each clan gets their own log of which the weight of the thing will probably make you want to pass your own little log, as much as 80 kg, which is a bit heavier than carrying your weekly shop. One team member picks up and places the log on their shoulders and begins running as their team mates, yell, whoop and root for them (lovely pun).

“The baton” as it is referred to in the video is switched amongst team members when the current carrier gets stumped (too much?). A change over need to be quick to avoid teams dropping back too far, so these guys have definitely been studying some 4×100 meter relay events. The heat is relentless, meaning that even without the log you are still up against it. If you do take part in this sport, carrying the log on your shoulder will slowly tear at your skin, so be sure to put some ointment on that white bony thing sticking out of your shoulder at the end of the race other wise you will end up shaving so much skin off you’re look like you have an eating disorder.

The race is run more for pride of completion rather than victory and if that wasn’t enough than the idea that your clans women are strictly out of bounds could be sufficient to send you over the edge. Men and women of the same clan are not allowed to marry; rather you are to pick the best of the bunch from the other clan, which is like asking Nicolas Sarkozy to do a wife swap with Tony Blair.

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Take her!

Trobriand Cricket

Cricket is not usually the most glitzy, mini-orgasm inducing sport, rather it is usually associated with slow-play and the occasional great catch, with audiences choosing to drink every alcoholic beverage they can to try to speed the sport up. Cricket was introduced to Trobriand Islanders by Methodist missionaries in the early 20th century. It was implemented as a means to cease warring on the Trobriand Islands, which are situated just off Papua New Guinea. This initial plan was probably to bore them to the point of exhaustion with the sport so they would not think about fighting amongst themselves again, but the Islanders had other plans.

The sport was adapted by the Islanders, adding their own flamboyancy and culture to the game. The first big change they made was they incorporated far more players per team than original cricket. The numbers on each side can total sixty or higher and the only rule is that as long as each side is roughly equal it’s fine. Meaning if you are the kind of guy who begins finger counting half way through just to point out the other team has one extra player, you need to shut up.

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Afro combs have really taken off over there...

With so many fielders gathered around the batsman’s vicinity, the only real way to score without smashing someone in the face with your ball is to blast it into the jungle. Losing a ball or hitting a surrounding tree scores you six runs which lead us to believe that whoever manufactures the balls, suffers from severe hand cramp as they put the final touches to the six-thousandth ball of the week only for it to be lost in the Pit of Sarlacc the next day.

The usual tribe practices are all on display here, the local spiritual leader is on hand to bless the equipment and also work on maintaining good weather, which must be an extremely taxing job during the wet season. The equipment itself is rather unusual with the bat and balls having been modified from their original forms.

When a batsman is skilfully caught or bowled out an enormous choreographed dance occurs. The dance naturally is commenting on how amazingly superior they are to the other team as well as mocking the ousted batsman. To finish the dance off, they throw in a few sexual innuendo thrusts and jives that would make Beyonce even blush. This is all directed at the female spectators in what is slowly appearing to be a very male bravado sport; you smack a ball to oblivion, do a flying catch and then gyrate your hips to send your woman’s eyes into a hypnotic swirl.



In fact most of the sport is taken up by the ritualized dances, as the teams also perform powerful dance moves when they enter and exit the field.

Trobriand cricket also takes away the ability for the away team to win. Yes, you heard right. Sound unfair? Go home. So regardless of how well the visiting team does, they lose. No matter how much deforestation the away team cause with their ball-spanking brilliance, the home team will be declared victorious. In our mind this must make away team-talks for the manager incredibly tough, as it would be hard to motivate your players when all you’re staring at is defeat. The question, “How did you do?” must not be commonly used when the away team return to their village.

We here at Gunaxin are ever competitive, so we thought wouldn’t it be the right idea to just insist on hosting the matches every time, therefore guaranteeing a seemingly endless string of victories? Then we found out that the home team has to always prepare a huge feast. Realizing cooking was involved; we opted out of the idea.

Mongolian Bökh Wrestling

Wrestling is listed as one of the three sports that Mongolian’s consider “Manly Skills”, the others being horsemanship and archery. “Bökh” wrestling is a sport steeped with history, going back approximately 2,000 years. Back then, the Mongolians used the wrestling to decide which candidates were to rise up in rankings, a bit like school exams, but, this time to get your “A” in Math you are instead told to beat on your school friend and remove their scrotum…with a protractor.

The rules of “Bökh” wrestling are quite simple; you have a limitless amount of time, you can weigh however much you want meaning that fast food diet of “cows in a bun” you’ve wanted to try applies here. All you have to do is get a part of your opponent’s body above his knees to touch the ground. This of course is harder than simply saying to him “Oh, what’s that on the floor?” and tricking him into kneeling down to have a look while you get ready to “People’s Elbow” him into the dog turd you had your Spanish Labrador squeeze out earlier. There is a lot of skill required, though little clothing…

Firstly we would like to apologize, as from the off-set it does look like we’re making you watch some kind of perverse male-on-male group skipping off to the fields to spank each other while they wait for the horses to arrive. But as already said, Bökh wrestling requires this dress and however much you think the men on that video are being groomed for some kind of male beauty pageant, they aren’t, honestly, they are there to wrestle. Their dressing methods perhaps need to change, possibly allowing the competitors to pull their pants up themselves to avoid the rather distasteful bouncing motion featured in the video.

With the outfit in place competitors are then ready to fight and they have to somehow channel whatever spot of testosterone or blood-craving they have left to try and act tough. Because as the match begins, wrestlers will dance into the fighting grounds resembling all kinds of destructive creatures such as lions and eagles. We can only imagine that this looks like some kind of miscast role-playing society with the scantily clad damsel in distress rampaging onto the scene pretending to have the claws of a lion.

Tournaments are held regularly and it requires a great amount of skill to work your way up to the final as the onlookers not only expect to see you finish your opponent off, but they want to see it done in style.

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Oh...that move again...

Sepik Canoe Racing

The Sepik River can be found flowing through Papua New Guinea for all of 1,100 kilometers meaning there are plenty of things in there that can kill you, so a Sponge Bob inflatable party is definitely out of the question. Instead of paddling in the treacherous water the few tribes that live on the River’s edge use extremely narrow standing canoes to get around. Being brought up by the River means that the young ones have had to learn to manoeuvre the canoes from an early age, which is kind of the same as us learning to ride a bike just with a couple of crocodiles with a tooth ache that can only be cured by crushing your bone and sinew, and without some stabilizers. To master the constantly tilting canoe is nothing short of impossible and there is no doubt that if this mode of transport was used in the Western world there would be a driving license to be required, with the emergency stop proving the hardest of all the skills.

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Don’t expect your daddy to come in and save you if you fall out...

The race between the canoeists takes place over two days, but fear not, they don’t do the whole 1,100 kilometers, because that would be bat-shit insane.

Tribes need to have excellent balance and a real control of their speed in order to compete as the pace that they race at is so aggressive that they most likely could rip a hole in a man’s gondola, snatch away the gondolier’s hat and singing voice, before leaving him with a bout of severe angina.

Their canoes are called dugout canoes and newly-built ones can last up to twelve years which is longer than most dogs (impressed? Didn’t think so). In some villages during flooding the only way to get around is dunking your oar in and gliding down the River.

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Don't drink and dunk...

With so many competitors heading down the river, the start is fierce as each canoe tries to find its place in the pack without tipping or knocking into another canoe. The tribes along the Sepik are so skilled that this hardly ever occurs, but if they start poorly they can find themselves blocked in and lose a lot of ground on the leaders. After the start, stamina then becomes vital as the blistering heat, (damn all those spiritual tribesmen for maintaining good weather) pours down on you. This is a long race and unlike our modern day marathons there aren’t water stops every five minutes to wet your pallet, instead the best you will get is a couple of pulsating grubs from the jungle and some River water that has traces of human liquids, possible from people peeing themselves when a crocodile realizes that your name is not Dundee.