Naadam Festival is the biggest and most colorful event celebrated nation wide in 11-13 of July of every year. Originated as training for Mongolian cavalry in 13th century Chingis Khaan wanted to be his solders fit and ready for battle at all time. So he summoned everyone to participate for horse racingwrestling and archery. Now these three are the major event of the festival.
Mongolian tradional wrestling:
Wrestling tend to be most popular sport in Mongolia. Mongolian national wrestlers are respected and recognized among the nation as a celebrities status. Despite of its’ technique and way they wrestled their unique clothing and powerful eagle dances make Mongolian wrestling far more distinguished than any other related sports.We are proud that Mongolian four young wrestlers became professional Sumo wrestling champions in a row and has been occupying Japanese stage almost last decades.
Archery contests continue a tradition dating from the time of Genghis Khan when they were intended to sharpen military skills. Contestants use compound bows fashioned from sinew, wood, horn and bamboo, and strung with bull tendon. Men fire 40 arrows made from willow branches and griffin vulture feathers from a distance of 75 meters and women deliver 20 arrows from 60 meters at a target. In accordance with ancient custom, several men stand on either side of the target singing a folk song to cheer the contestants and then use hand signals to indicate the results.
Ankle bone shoots:
Another popular Naadam activity is the playing of games using shagai, sheep anklebones that serve as game pieces and tokens of both divination and friendship. In the larger Nadaam festivals, tournaments may take place in a separate venue.
Horse race takes place out of town for a straight line racing. There will be 6 different races depending on horse ages. Not only it’s distance (11-32km) but also hundreds horses in one race will make you really impressed. For the state Naadam Festival celebrated in Ulaanbaatar last year had 600-700 horses in each race. And you can imagine even more people with horses not participating actual race, which makes the site more than spectacular view.