Senegalese Wrestling (Laamb)

Wrestling is a popular sport in Senegal. It is often considered a way to resolve disputes, and wrestlers are held in high esteem. There are several different styles of wrestling practiced in Senegal, including Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, and catch wrestling.

The most popular form of wrestling in Senegal, however, is traditional Senegalese wrestling, called Laamb. In this post, we will take a closer look at traditional Senegalese wrestling. Let’s start.

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senegalese wrestling

What Is Senegalese Wrestling?

Senegalese wrestling, also known as Laamb, is a form of African wrestling practiced in Senegal. It has been practiced for centuries and is considered a national sport. Laamb is a combination of traditional wrestling moves and techniques from other African countries.

The sport involves two opponents fighting in a circular ring, as the goal is to force the opponent to touch the ground with any part of their body other than their feet. The match is won by either forcing the opponent to submit or making them touch the ground with any part of their body other than their feet.

Senegalese Wrestling History in a Nutshell

Senegalese wrestling has been practiced for centuries and is a deeply-rooted part of Senegalese culture. The sport is believed to have originated from the Fula people, who live in the Sahel region of Africa. It was introduced to the Wolof people by the Fula in the 17th century and has been practiced ever since.

How Is Senegalese Wrestling Different From Other Forms of Wrestling?

Senegalese wrestling is different from other forms of wrestling in a few ways. Firstly, the fighters are allowed to use their hands and feet to attack their opponent.

Secondly, the matches are typically fought in a circular ring, as opposed to a square or rectangular ring. Lastly, traditional Senegalese wrestling is considered a contact sport, whereas other forms of wrestling are not.

What Are the Rules of Senegalese Wrestling?

The rules of Senegalese wrestling are quite simple. The two opponents are allowed to use their hands and feet to attack each other. The match is won by either forcing the opponent to submit or making them touch the ground with any part of their body other than their feet.

How Long Does a Traditional Wrestling Match Last in Senegal? 

A traditional wrestling match in Senegal typically lasts for about 10 minutes. However, there is no set time limit and the match can continue until one of the fighters is either forced to submit or makes contact with the ground other than their feet.

What Are the Benefits of Senegalese Wrestling?

Senegalese wrestling is a physically demanding sport that requires a lot of discipline and training. It can help improve strength, speed, agility, and overall fitness. The sport is also a great way to build teamwork and camaraderie. Additionally, wrestlers are held in high esteem in Senegalese society and are often considered role models.

Is Senegalese Wrestling Good for MMA?

Senegalese wrestling is a popular sport in Senegal, and many wrestlers have gone on to compete in MMA. Some of the most notable Senegalese MMA fighters include Oumar Kane, Moussa Diop, Abdou Ba, and Demba Seck.

There is no doubt that a background in Senegalese wrestling can definitely help in MMA as it is a significant advantage. However, to specialize in MMA, incorporating other martial arts is recommended like BJJ, Sambo, Muay Thai, Boxing, etc.

Senegalese Wrestling Training

As with any type of wrestling, Senegalese wrestling training includes various variations. Strength training consists of a lot of work on strengthening the abdominal muscles, working out in the gym to strengthen the upper body and legs, running, squat exercises and some even combine pool exercises or climbing training to strengthen the fingers and wrists.

If you do not live in Senegal and are interested in practicing Senegalese wrestling, it is important that you know that Senegalese wrestling is not as popular in the West, so finding a training partner can be difficult.

Secondly, the training is quite rigorous and requires a lot of dedication. Lastly, training typically takes place in a circular ring, so you’ll need to find a gym that has one.

Senegalese Wrestling Techniques

There are a number of techniques used in Senegalese wrestling. The most common techniques are the punch, the kick, the headbutt, the elbow, and the knee. All of these techniques can be used to either attack or defend against an opponent.

One of the most important things to remember when learning Senegalese wrestling is to stay calm and composed and don’t get caught up in the moment and start throwing wild punches and kicks. Try to wait for your opponent to make a mistake and then capitalize on it.

Remember, the goal is to knock the opponent down, not to subdue or knock him out (though that is also possible).

Is Senegalese Wrestling Popular?

Senegalese wrestling is not as popular in the West as it is in Senegal. However, with the rise of MMA and the success of impressive fighters like Oumar Kane, there is a growing interest in its popularity and the desire to learn Senegalese wrestling.

Is Senegalese Wrestling Good for Self Defense?

Senegalese wrestling is not typically used for self-defense, but it can be. The techniques learned are not relevant against “classic street attacks” with a knife, a bat, a broken bottle, and the like, but there is no doubt that a person skilled in Senegalese wrestling has a significant advantage in these situations over a person who is not skilled at all, due to his physical strength, agility and attack techniques learned in this type of wrestling.

It is important to remember that Senegalese wrestling, unlike other types of wrestling, such as folkstyle, involves a combination of punches, elbows, and other strikes, therefore more effective for self-defense than other wrestling types, although it’s not recommended for self-defense in comparison to Krav Maga, BJJ, Jiu-Jitsu, etc.

Is Senegalese Wrestling Dangerous?

Senegalese wrestling can be dangerous if we are not careful. The techniques involved can cause serious injuries if not used properly.

It is important to learn the techniques from a certified instructor and always practice carefully, preferably on a soft surface like a mat, or sand, as practiced in Senegal. Remember, the goal is to knock down your opponent, not to injure him or yourself of course.

What Do Senegalese Wrestlers Eat?

Senegalese wrestlers typically eat a balanced diet that is high in protein and carbohydrates. They also make sure to drink plenty of water and juice to stay hydrated.

Wrestlers typically avoid eating heavy, fatty foods that can slow them down and make them feel sluggish. Their menu includes meat, eggs, fish, vegetables, and fruits and less fried or processed foods.

In Which Country Is Senegalese Wrestling a National Sport?

Senegalese wrestling is the national sport of Senegal. It is a popular sport in the country and is taught in schools. There are also a number of wrestling clubs throughout the country where people can learn and practice the sport.

How Big Are Senegalese Wrestlers?

Senegalese wrestlers are typically quite large and muscular. They often weigh in at around 200 pounds and are very strong. This size and strength can be a significant advantage in Laamb and also in MMA for those who want to try to compete there.