Kabaddi is a contact team and sport competed between two teams of seven players each. The goal of the game is for a single player on the attack, referred to as a “raider”, to run into the defending team’s half of a court, tag out as many of their defenders as feasible, and retreat to their own half of the court, all without being caught by the defenders, and in a single breath. Points are scored marked by the raider, while the defending team earns a point for stopping the raider. Players are taken out of the game if they are marked or tackled, but are returned back in for each point scored by their team from a tag or tackle.
It is widespread in South Asia and other neighboring Asian countries. Although descriptions of kabaddi appear in the histories of ancient India, the game was generalized as a competitive sport in the 20th century. It is the national sport of Bangladesh. It is the state game of the Indian states of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Uttar Pradesh.
There are two major orders of kabaddi: so-called Punjabi kabaddi also pointed to as circle style, comprises ancestral forms of the sport that are played on a circular field outdoors, while the regular style, played on a rectangular court indoors, is the system played in major licensed leagues and international competitions such as the Asian Games.
The game is known by various names in different parts of South Asia, such as kabaddi or chedugudu in Andhra Pradesh; kabaddi in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala and Telangana; kabadi or ha-du-du in Bangladesh; bhavatik in Maldives, kauddi or kabaddi in the Punjab region; hu-tu-tu in Western India, hu-do-do in Eastern India; chadakudu in South India; kapardi in Nepal; and kabadi or sadugudu in Tamil Nadu.
Origin of the game
Indian History confirms that kabaddi originated from the Golden Vedic period of ancient India around 4000 years ago. The game was said to have been prevalent among the Yadava people; an abhang by Tukaram stated that the god Krishna played the game in his youth, while the Mahabharata contains a tale of Arjuna being able to sneak into hostile areas also take out enemies unharmed, drawing parallels to the gameplay of kabaddi. There are stories of Gautama Buddha having played the game recreationally.
India has been credited with having helped to spread kabaddi as a competitive sport, with the first planned competitions occurring in the 1920s, their introduction to the program of the Indian Olympic Games in 1938, the establishment of the All-India Kabaddi Federation in 1950, and it is played as a demonstration sport at the inaugural 1951 Asian Games in New Delhi. These improvements helped to formalize the sport, which had traditionally been played in villages, for genuine international competition.
After being exhibited again at the 1982 Asian Games in Delhi, kabaddi was added to the Asian Games’ program beginning in 1990. Women’s kabaddi also got included in the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou.