Kushti is an ancient and revered mud-wrestling sport that has captivated sports fans in India for over 2,500 years. Today, there are many young athletes who still willingly sacrifice personal comforts and family bonds in pursuit of mastery of this ancient sport . Athletes leave their hometowns as children to embark on arduous training at wrestling academies fueled by a deep respect for tradition and a desire to excel in this physically and mentally demanding sport. The rigorous lifestyle molds these athletes into formidable warriors, instilling in them discipline, resilience, and a sense of camaraderie that transcends ordinary relationships. It is not just the pursuit of victory that drives these athletes, but a profound reverence for the legacy of Kushti and the opportunity to carry on an age-old tradition that has become an integral part of their identity.
Top image: Kushti mud wrestlers. Source: Michal Svec / Flickr .
By Joanna Gillan