Mud Battle In Japan!

It’s a mud battle in Japan! Actually, its a Shinto ritual called “Taketori Shinji” and its part of Otaue Matsuri festival at the Izawanomiya shrine in Shima, Mie Prefecture.

Mud runners

About 40 men, in nothing but loin cloths or shorts, jump into a mud pit to wrestle for a 15-meter piece of bamboo that has a large round fan. The purpose of this mud battle–aside from getting face deep in some cool mud–is to help pray for a bountiful harvest and to catch many fish.

Mud runners pole 2

After the battle, local children and adults dressed in traditional clothes plant seeds and dance.

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