2013年06月24日

'Danpatsushiki' means a retirement ceremony performed by a retired sumo wrestler who gets his 'oichou' topknot cut in the sumo ring.

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Regardress of the rank of sumo wrestler, he performs danpatsushiki without exception, when retiring from active play. Only a higher-ranking wrestler, whose ex-rank was above 'sekitori', is alllowed to do so in the sumo ring of 'Ryogoku Kokugikan' sumo arena, Tokyo.
A retired wrestler, sitting on a chair in the ring, has his topknot cut inch by inch by his family members, patrons and friends. The topknot is finally cut off by his 'oyakata' stable master. As in the ring is traditionally off limits area for women, even the mother or wife of the retired wrestler can't cut the topknot in the ring.
Most wrestlers can't keep the tears from coming to their eyes on that occasion, in that this ceremony means the last of their long and hard sumo life.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

通訳案内士 高木聖久

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posted by masahisa at 14:04 | "Sumo" | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2013年06月11日

'Dohyoiri' is a kind of ritual or ceremony performed by sumo wrestlers in the 'dohyo' sumo ring, and is carried out everyday during the six official sumo tournaments.

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Dohyoiri is usually performed by 'yokozuna' grand champions, 'makuuchi' senior grade sumo wrestlers and 'juryo' junior-grade wrestlers respectively, before the bouts of each grade start. Juryo's dohyoiri starts at around 2:30pm, while makuuchi's and yokozuna's at 4:00pm, so these dohyoiri performances can be seen during six regular tournaments. As the number of wrestlers were even smaller than now, every wrestler performed dohyoiri as yokozuna did, however today's dohyoiri is reduced to a simpler form with the exception of yokozuna's performance.
The first picture shows yokozuna's dohyoiri with a sword bearer and herald, which features the formal beauty of two styles, 'unryu' and 'shiranui', having long been carried on. The many wrestlers with ceremonial apron in the second picture are performing makuuchi's dohyoiri. All senior-grade wrestlers get together in the ring to carry out the special movement such as clapping their hands, which is an abbreviation of traditional form from the 17th century. This performance has become a public appearance rather than a ritual or ceremony.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

通訳案内士 高木聖久

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posted by masahisa at 14:34 | "Sumo" | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2012年01月06日

The thirty-fifth 'yokozuna' sumo champion 'Futabayama', holding the record of a 69-bout winning streak, is the greatest sumo wrestler in history.

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'Futabayama', born in a family running a small shipping business in Usa, Oita Prefecture shown in the second picture, was not such a remarkable wrestler until he moved up to 'komusubi' the fourth highest rank sumo wrestler in 1935.
The pictures show him in a standing position and the house he was born.
He broke the record of 63 consecutive victories held by 'Tanikaze' after an interval of 150 years and finally got the new record of a 69 winning streak in 1939. Since then, this great record has not been beaten by any wrestlers.
Yokozuna Hakuho's 63 winning streak record in 2010 fell short of Futabayama's record by a narrow margin.
In this connection, the official sumo tournament in Futabayama's day was held two times a year, while today five times a year, that is, Futabayama had never lost for three years long. 
He retired from the ring in 1945, the year of the end of the second World War,to establish 'Tokitsukaze' sumo stable to train many promising wrestlers.
He devoted himself to the modernization of the sumo world as a chairperson of the Sumo Association.
He deserves to be called the pinnacle in the sumo wrestlers.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 14:15 | "Sumo" | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする