Filmmaker: Isaac Carne
Indian wrestling, or Kushti, as it is called in India, is an ancient form of fighting which originated in Persia.
Wrestlers fight on the soil aiming to hold the opponent down against the floor. It is an ancient subculture where wrestlers live and train together and follow strict rules on everything from what they can eat to what they can do in their spare time.
The focus is on living a pure life, building strength and honing their wrestling skills.
The sport used to hold great importance in Indian societies of the past. Its popularity has dwindled over the years, but some dedicated people are working to keep this ancient part of Indian culture alive.
One fighter tells us about the beauty and discipline of the ancient tradition:
“Kushti has become an international sport. It’s getting more exposure and spreading beyond India again. It’s spread to Iran and Iraq. We are being recognised, which helps us find jobs. Even girls are playing Kushti now. It helps us to get a job in places like Western Railways, the air force or anywhere really …. We are sending out a message that Kushti has many benefits, like keeping yourself fit and you can even become more popular if you are a fitter person. There are so many advantages to it.”
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