Nguni stick fighting


Nguni stick fighting
Nguni Stick Fighting
Also known as Zulu Stick Fighting
Focus Weaponry
Country of origin South Africa
Creator Various
Famous practitioners Shaka Zulu
Olympic sport No

Nguni stick fighting (also known as donga, or dlala 'nduku, which literally translates as playing sticks) is a martial art traditionally practiced by teenage Nguni herdboys in South Africa. Each combatant is armed with two long sticks, one of which is used for defense and the other for offense. Little armor is used.

Although Nguni/ Xhosa styles of fighting may use only two sticks, variations of Bantu /Nguni stick fighting throughout Southern Africa incorporate shields as part of the stick fighting weaponry. Zulu stick fighting uses an "Isiquili" or attacking stick, an "Uboko" or defending stick and an "izoliHauw" or defending shield.

The object is for two opposing warriors to fight each other to establish which of them is the strongest or the "Bull" (Inkunzi). In modern times this usually occurs as part of the wedding ceremony where warriors from the bridegroom's household and area welcome warriors from the bride's household and area to meet to "get to know each other", other groups of warriors may also be welcome to join in. Warriors do this by engaging in combat with one another. An "induna" or War Captain / Referee from each group of warriors keeps his crew in check and keeps order between fighters.

This tradition is one which arguably developed in societies, cultures and civilisations that used herding as part of their systems of survival, where there are cows, there are stick fighters. The old regimental structures of the great uShaka KaSenzangakhona KaJama dominate current modern zulu stickfighting.

Film maker SiyaBonga Makhathini has directed the film "We Still are Wariors" which captures the essence of the Modern day Zulu Stick fighter, descendant of the kings of old.

Nelson Mandela practiced Nguni stick fighting as a child,[citation needed] and it was featured on the Discovery and BBC reality TV show Last Man Standing.

Further reading



Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Stick fighting — is a generic term for martial arts which utilize simple long slender, blunt, hand held, generally wooden sticks for fighting such as a staff, cane, walking stick, baton or similar. Some techniques can also be used with a sturdy umbrella or even a …   Wikipedia

  • Kalarippayattu stick fighting — Stick fighting as practiced in Kalarippayattu: Kurunthadi (also spelled cheruvadi, kuruvadi) or muchan is the name for a wooden stick. It derived its name from its length of three chans. Its length is equal to two and half feet (76 cm). It… …   Wikipedia

  • Egyptian stick fencing — (Egyptian Arabic: تحطيب ṭaḥṭīb ) is an ancient martial arts dance. It is practiced during religious ceremonies, processions, and as sport or game, dating back to ancient Egypt. It is also one of the oldest forms of martial arts in the world and… …   Wikipedia

  • Zulu — Infobox Ethnic group group = Zulus pop = 10,659,309 (2001 census) [http://www.southafrica.info/ess info/sa glance/demographics/census main.htm South Africa grows to 44.8 million] , on the site [http://www.southafrica.info southafrica.info]… …   Wikipedia

  • List of martial arts — There are a large number of distinct styles and schools of martial arts. Sometimes, schools or styles are introduced by individual teachers or masters, or as a brand name by a specific gym. Martial arts can be grouped by type or focus, or… …   Wikipedia

  • Rough and tumble — The first use of the term rough and tumble for fighting dates back to the early 1700s in the North American frontier. [http://ejmas.com/jmanly/articles/2001/jmanlyart gorn 0401.htm] Rough and tumble fighting was the original American no holds… …   Wikipedia

  • List of South Africa-related topics — The following is a partial list of South Africa related topics. Those interested in the subject can monitor changes to the pages by clicking on Related changes in the sidebar.History*History of South AfricaEvents*Jan van Riebeeck *History of Cape …   Wikipedia

  • Artes marciales de África — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Probablemente como causa de la ausencia de sistemas de escritura, así como por la aculturación producida por el colonialismo, no hay demasiados registros del cultivo de artes marciales en África. Existen, sí,… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Kbach kun dambong veng — (Khmer: ក្បាច់គុណដំបងវែង) is the term for a Cambodian martial art based on the long staff. The term dambong means staff in the Khmer language and the term veng means long . Translated literally it means the art/martial skill of the long staff.… …   Wikipedia