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Old 07-18-2007, 02:02 PM   #2
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Default Re: Western Europe and martial arts

You could really start to go back to your roots if you wanted to.

Germany has a native style of wrestling that seems to have gone out of fashion in the late 1800's (think Greco-Roman, but even more restrictive). France has savate, though it requires shoes to work effectively. Britain is the birthplace of boxing, and has several traditions of native wrestling (Cumberland/Westmoreland, Lancashire catch, Cornwall/Devon) that have been neglected in recent many types of pugilism that are better suited for the tiny gloves, if only the British could revive these sports again. Ireland used to have an extensive collar-and-elbow wrestling culture, the Scots still practice backhold wrestling from time to time. The Swiss used to practice Swingen wrestling, and the Austrians had their own (very strange) Styrian variety. Italy and Spain, though, I have no idea about.

Ideally, governments would fund some revivals of these sports, with a bit of television coverage now and again, as part of a "cultural preservation".
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