“ Khusti ”( Mud wrestling ) is one of the aged sport in Asia. In India, Khusti is marked as an ancient sport which has consumed a major part of the “ Pahelwaan’s ” ( a wrestler ) life. Their dedication towards the sport is highly laudable. Mundane routine of a Pahelwaan consists of regimented meals, workouts, prayers and worship and military standard discipline. The sport is very rugged for a very strong physic person as is apparent from the images.
The nature of the sport is to grab the opponent’s “ Kaccha ” ( a cloth wrapped around the groin ) and pin him down to the ground. There’s a process of oiling and smearing their body in the sand which helps in reducing the friction between the two players resulting in higher difficulty level for the opponent to pin you down. Due to the constant contact between the opponents and the eternal prevailing speculation in the society, might just arouse a section 377 situation.
Drinking, smoking and even sexuality are off limits. The focus is on living a pure life, building strength and honing their wrestling skills. The impressive part about this is the Pahelwaans are of minimum educational qualifications, endure the faith and revere the traditions and values it bestows. They are supervised by their peers and they supervise the newer and amateur Pahelwaans. Many “ Akhara’s ”( a place where the sport is played ) allow wrestlers to participate and exercise with a negligible sum of money just to promote and keep the sport alive. Pahelwaans do not always have the capacity to match the monetary requirements necessary to keep them involved in the sport. Their aim is to excel at the various “ Dangals “ ( wrestling competitions ) conducted by the wrestling associations and other bodies.
Inspite of all this, in many rural towns and villages parents continue to institutionalize their wards to exercise with the Pahelwaans and with a hope to make a name in the sport. Not many sports in India demands such unaltered values, self-discipline, endurance and humility.