Nagoya Sumo Grand Tournament

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Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium, Nagoya, Japan

Nagoya Sumo Grand Tournament Reviews

ys484 ys484
178 reviews
July Grand Sumo Tournament Jul 08, 2013
Since I read some TB's reviews and blogs on Grand Sumo Tournament, I had wanted to go to see Sumo. I've seen several low-ranking Sumo wrestlers in my town every July. During the Nagoya tournament period, they have to go to the supermarket to buy food daily necessities. And they have to commute to the gymnasium by themselves. But when a wrestler is promoted, he will be courteously treated. Sumo is a strict hierarchical society. Sumo tournaments are relayed at NHK, so I was impressed to hear the familiar announcement. Not only adults but also children cheered for their favorite wrestlers. Child fee is only 200 yen. I think sumo is easy to understand. Their movements is a kind of graceful behaviour. If you come to Japan during sumo tournament period, please try to watch it.
a low-ranking Sumo wrestler is wal…
a watchtower
There were plenty of vacant seats …
7 / 7 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
ys484 says:
I could get the ticket on that day. It was the second day of the tournament, Monday. You can get a ticket by online too. Please go and enjoy watching sumo!
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013
Taigaa001 says:
Is Nagoya tournament easier to find tickets than in Tokyo? If so I will try next Nagoya tournament.
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013
mosted says:
Really cool, I've been to the Natsu-Basho in Tokyo this year, was amazing!
Posted on: Jul 08, 2013
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tj1777 tj1777
379 reviews
Nagoya Sumo Grand Tournament Jul 15, 2009
One of the most traditional things you can do in Japan is going for one of the six annual grand sumo tournaments. They are held every two month and last for 15 days each. Hence anybody going to Japan for an extended period of time will have a good chance of visiting one of the tournaments. Three of the tournaments are held in Tokyo every four month and the last three tournaments are held in Fukoate, Osaka and Nagoya - the last place were where I went for the tournament.

You can get same day tickets for unreserved seats fairly cheaply at 2.700 yen. If you go on a ordinary weekday you don’t need to show up too early to get the tickets - but if you go in the weekend - especially for the final on the last Sunday of the tournament you’ll need to get there really early because a lot of people wants those tickets for the last and deciding day of the tournament.

The tournament starts early in the morning with the lower ranked wrestlers. The doors to the gymnasium will be opened at 8.15 and the first matches starts at 8.45. These early matches involve wrestlers at the lowest level within sumo but it is an interesting introduction if this is your first time to go for a sumo tournament. The first matches don’t involve the traditional preparation for a sumo match with throwing of salt and repeated restarts of the initial position for the start of the match. Hence you’ll have the option to watch many matches in a short period of time and get a feel for how sumo wrestlers conduct a match. You don’t have to stay all day the entrance to the tournament hall allows one reentry hence it is possible to go outside and explore the local area or go further afield if you would like to do so - and you can get lunch outside if you don’t want what they are selling inside the gymnasium.

The bigger matches start at 14.50 with the juryo division making their entrance to the gymnasium - the entrance of the top level wrestlers are a quite impressive event with the giant wrestlers wearing aprons delicately made costing upwards of ½ million yen each (a bit over 5.000$). The wrestlers form a circle and then the matches of these wrestlers will start. This is high level sumo with only 28 wrestlers participating - and now you will get a change to look at the full ritual leading up to every sumo match. The wrestlers will be blessing the ring by throwing salt into it - and they will go to starting position several times before the match will begin. The match will then finally start after the tension has been built up for the match - and then the match will finally begin - and most of the matches is over in less than ½ a minute - much less time than the built up of the tension. But it is the building up of the tension the repeated rituals and the old fashion dress code used by the judges which make the whole tournament interesting.

After the juryo division has finished its matches of the day the highlight will start. It will be time for the top division of fighters - the makuuchi division. These wrestlers are all huge men but watching them you can’t avoid being impressed with the speed they can move with and the general abilities they display during the matches. It is indeed great sportsmen and not just oversized super obese men. When the top wrestlers enter they will form a circle in the middle of the ring going into the ring one by one with the top ranked wrestlers going up as the last one. Then after this introduction it is time for the entrance dance of the yokozunas - the grand champion of sumo. There are currently only 2 in the world of sumo and through the history of sumo there have been a total of 69 wrestlers obtaining this title since the introduction 300 years ago. The dance is one of the main highlights of the entire tournament and can under no circumstances be ignored. Then it is time for the big boys to start wrestling and they will go on like clockwork until a little before 6 when the two yokozunas will get involved in the two last fights of the day. After these two fights it is time for the closing ceremony of the entire day - the bow dance where a specially selected wrestler perform a dance with a bow and then it is all over. At 6 exactly the whole show is over and people rush out of the gymnasium and they will prepare for the next day.

Going to a sumo tournament is one of the superb highlights of Japanese culture and is highly recommend even if you have no interest in the matches the rituals surrounding them is Japanese tradition at its best.
Yokozuna doing the
The dohyo
The makuuchi division sumo's enter…
The makuuchi division sumo's enter…
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy

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