Tug of War vs Kabaddi: Difference and Comparison

There are many sports which are played in today’s time. Games have been played since the time humans have existed on this planet. They are fun and pleasing, and everyone loves playing games.

Tug of War and kabaddi are two such games that are quite popular and can be played by adults and children as well.

Key Takeaways

  1. Tug of War is a team sport where players pull a rope in opposite directions, while Kabaddi is an Indian contact sport where teams take turns raiding and defending.
  2. Tug of War requires physical strength and endurance, while Kabaddi demands agility, strategy, and teamwork.
  3. Both sports are played internationally, but Kabaddi is more popular in South Asia.

Tug of War vs Kabaddi

In the tug of war, two teams have to pull the rope towards each other so that one team falls towards the other by crossing the central line to win the game. In kabaddi, one player needs to go to the opposite side, tag as many players as possible, and then return to their team.

Tug of War vs Kabaddi

Tug of War is one of the simplest types of game with few rules, regulations, and complexities. The game was included in the Olympics as part of the summer program for 20 years, that is, from 1900 to 1920.

Apart from that, tug of War has also been a part of world games since the year 1981.

The game of kabaddi is very popular, especially in South Asian countries. The game was a part of the Olympics as a part of demonstration sport in the year 1936.

Depending upon the region, the name of the game also varies. Other kabaddi names are Chengdu, kaudi, bhavatik, himoshika, pakaada, and more.

Comparison Table

Parameters of comparisonTug of warKabaddi
Method of playingIn the tug of war, two teams hold each end of a rope, and then the teams pull the rope in such a way that they drag the opposite team across the central line. In kabaddi, a team player reaches the play area of the opposite team, tags the players of that team, and then reaches back to the home play area.
Highest governing bodyThe highest governing body for the game of tug of war is known as the tug of war international federation (TOW). The highest governing body for the game of kabaddi is known as the International kabaddi federation.
Type of gameTug of way is a non-contact type of game. Kabaddi is a full-contact game.
Equipment requiredThe major equipment used in the game of tug of war is a rope and boots. There is no special equipment required in the game of kabaddi, except safety instruments.
Players in each teamA team in the game of tug of war can have a minimum of 8 or more players in it. A team in the game of kabaddi has a total of seven players.

What is Tug of War?

Tug of war was invented in ancient times. Though there is not much clarity about the place where the game originated, it is believed that it was played in the regions of Egypt, China, India, Greece, and Cambodia.

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Many histologists claim that the game was earlier known as hook pulling.

Since then, tug of war has been quite a popular game which is played in several different countries at a very huge level. The highest governing body for tug of war, that is, the Tug of war international federation, organizes the world championship for tug of war. 

There are two teams of about 8 players or more in the game, and there is a rope. Each team holds one end of the rope, and there is a central side. There is one team on both sides of the central line, and they need to pull the rope after the start signal.

The team’s objective is to keep pulling the rope such that they pull the opposite team across the line and reach the other side of the central line.

tug of war

What is Kabaddi?

It is believed that the game of kabaddi was originated in India. However, many people argue that kabaddi was originated in Iran. Kabaddi is played in several different parts of India, such as Haryana, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Maharashtra, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and more.

Kabaddi is of two different types: circle kabaddi and standard kabaddi. The major difference between these two types of kabaddi lies in the type of court on which the game is played.

In the case of the circle kabaddi, as the name suggests, the shape of the playing court is in the form of a circle. Circle kabaddi is also known as Punjabi kabaddi.

On the other hand, in the case of the second type of kabaddi, which is known as standard kabaddi, the shape of the court is in the form of a rectangle.

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In the game, there are two teams of 7 players each. Each team has a playing area on the court. One player of the attacking team goes to the playing area of the opposite team, and the objective of that player is to tag the players of the opposite team while speaking the word ‘kabaddi’.

The attacking player can tag as many players as possible while the defence team tries to get hold of the attacking player. The attacking player has to tag the opposite team’s players and then reach back to his or her playing area.


Main Differences Between Tug of War and Kabaddi

  1. A match of tug of war can be played with mixed gender. On the other hand, separate matches of kabaddi are played for different genders. 
  2. Tug of war is not a national sport for any country, whereas kabaddi is the national sport of Bangladesh.
  3. Tug of war can be played both indoors and outdoors, whereas kabaddi is majorly played indoors.
  4. Tug of War may or may not have a playing court. On the contrary, kabaddi is always played on a playing court.
  5. Tug of war has regional variations, whereas kabaddi has two official variations.
  1. https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/27/4/237.short
  2. https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/16/1/33.short

Last Updated : 27 July, 2023

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