Why is Kabaddi called that? What does it mean?

Kabaddi is not just a game; it’s a reflection of tradition, strength, and strategy. To truly understand its essence, we must explore its name, meaning, and historical context. In this article, we’ll take you on a journey through the world of Kabaddi, answering the burning question: “Why is Kabaddi called that? What does it mean?”.

The Origins of Kabaddi

Kabaddi, often referred to as the “game of the masses,” has a history dating back over four thousand years. Its roots can be traced to ancient India, where it was played for recreation, physical fitness, and combat training. The name “Kabaddi” is believed to have originated from the Tamil word “kai-pidi,” which means “holding hands.”

Significance of the Name

The name “Kabaddi” perfectly encapsulates the essence of the sport. In a game of Kabaddi, a raider ventures into the opponent’s territory, attempting to touch as many defenders as possible and return safely to his side while chanting the word “Kabaddi.” The word is chanted in one breath, showcasing the player’s stamina and agility.

Evolution and Variations

As Kabaddi spread across regions and cultures, it underwent various modifications, resulting in different versions of the game. Some of these variations include:

  • Sanjeevani Kabaddi: In this version, tagged players can be revived.
  • Gaminee Kabaddi: Players are required to continuously chant “Kabaddi” while raiding.
  • Beach Kabaddi: Played on the sandy shores, it adds an exciting twist to the game.

Kabaddi’s Cultural Impact

Kabaddi isn’t just a sport; it’s an integral part of South Asian culture. It has featured prominently in folk songs, dances, and even movies. The game embodies the spirit of unity, strength, and camaraderie.

FAQs About Kabaddi

How old is Kabaddi?

Kabaddi’s history dates back to ancient times, making it over four thousand years old.

Is Kabaddi an Olympic sport?

As of now, Kabaddi is not part of the Olympic Games, but it enjoys immense popularity in Asia.

What are the basic rules of Kabaddi?

The rules of Kabaddi include tagging opponents, crossing the midline, and returning to one’s side before being tackled.

Can women play Kabaddi?

Absolutely! Women actively participate in Kabaddi, and there are separate competitions for them.

Is Kabaddi dangerous?

While Kabaddi is a contact sport, it is played with rules and regulations to ensure the safety of players.

How can I watch Kabaddi matches?

You can catch Kabaddi matches on sports channels, streaming platforms, and during local tournaments.


In conclusion, Kabaddi’s name, “Why is Kabaddi called that? What does it mean?” embodies the sport’s essence, history, and cultural significance. This traditional game continues to capture the hearts of millions worldwide, symbolizing the spirit of unity and competition.

That’s all! You can also checkout: Why isn’t kabaddi the national sport of India? and How to watch Pro Kabaddi live for free?

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