Global popular sports originated from India (Part 4)

Martial arts

Martial arts, like one of the components of wrestling, is also a sport of diverse origins. But the foundations of modern martial arts are likely to lie in the mix of Indian and Chinese martial arts styles. To achieve that effect, martial arts is another sport of Indian origin popular throughout the world. A variety of sports including different types of arts, martial arts are widely practiced not only fighting with defensive techniques but also for their many benefits to health and fitness.

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One of the oldest Indian martial arts, in fact among the oldest surviving forms, is Kalar Touchattu or Kalari of Kerala. The mother of all martial arts, Kalari’s use of weapons and combat techniques originated in India. There are also plenty of other Indian martial arts that are widely loved even today. Be it striking martial arts styles such as archery or wrestling, India originated from a series of them.


One of the few Indian sports that originated in modern times is handball. Originating in this country as a sport for women in the 1940s, handball however was a popular recreational sport for women in England and Australia in the 1930s. In the 20th century, this game was played by both men and women on the Indian subcontinent.

Handball in Norway

While handball is almost identical to volleyball in some respects, each one of the games is governed by its own set of rules. Two teams of nine or seven active players, each of whom must throw the ball to the opposition on the net, who must in turn catch it and throw it back immediately, exactly three seconds. A very dynamic and engaging sport, this is a contactless ball game that is still mostly popular in Asia while gradually becoming an emerging sport elsewhere in the world.