Last updated: Fri 26 Apr 2013

Tug-of-War Contest

A Tug-of-War contest will take place on Saturday 15 June from 2.30pm outside Nunney Village Hall.

Last year’s event was a huge success and the organisers hope that this year’s will be even better. This event is co-organised by the Nunney Community Association (NCA) and the Nunney Village Hall Committee.

Teams of 6 can enter for just £6 per team, with teams of children under 14 participating free of charge.

The public are encouraged to come along and show their support. There will be a bar and a hog roast.

Sponsors of this year’s event are Valley Sawmills, based on the edge of Nunney.

If you are planning to take part, the Tug of War Association website has lots of tactical tips.

There is no specific time and place to pinpoint the origin of tug of war. The contest of pulling a rope originates from ancient ceremonies and cults, which are found all over the world, such as in Egypt, Burma, India, Borneo, Japan, Korea, Hawaii and South America.

The ancient tug of war was performed in various styles. In Afghanistan, teams used a wooden stake instead of a rope to pull. In Korea, children clasped their arms around each other’s waists to form a living tug of war chain.

Tug of War was not only a team sport. In several countries a man to man version of tug of war existed.

The Canadian Eskimos still have a tug of war contest known as ‘arsaaraq’. It’s a tug of war contest with the pullers sitting on the ground, using a short rope. The one who pulls his opponent over from his seated position is the winner.

Later tug of war became a pure contest of physical strength. In Greece, the cradle of the ancient Olympic Games, tug of war sport around 500 BC was practised by athletes either as a competitive sport or as an exercise in the physical training for other sports.

In Western Europe evidence of tug of war is found in the year 1000 AD, in the stories of the heroic champions of Scandinavia and Germany, who participated in the so called ‘kräftige spiele’ (power games).

The tug of war sport featured at the courts of the Chinese Emperors, as well as in Mongolia and Turkey. In the 15th Century tug of war was a popular contest in tournaments in the French Chateaux and in competitions in the UK.

Tug of War was an official Olympic sport from 1900 till 1920. In 1920 the IOC (International Olympic Committee) took a decision to reduce the number of participants of the Olympic Games and for that reason deleted a number of team sports from the programme, sadly, including tug of war.

In 1999 the Tug of War International Federation (TWIF) of which the Tug of War Association is a founder member, received provisional IOC recognition again, which was confirmed in 2002 into formal recognition in accordance with rule 29 of the Olympic Charter.

Tug of war remains as a recognised sport by the IOC and the Tug of War International Federation (TWIF) is the recognised world governing body for the tug of war sport.

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