Some girls playing Kabaddi.

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Chapter 10
Hu-Tu-Tu, Hu-Tu-Tu

Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu,
Out, out (all the girls on one side shouted loudly).
Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu (hold from here)
Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu (hold from the leg, the leg, the leg – hold her leg).
Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu (Vasudha, you come here, you hold her from here).
Hey! Make sure that Shyamala’s hand does not touch the line. Hold her hand.
Hu-tu-tu, Hu-tu-tu – Oh! She has touched. She has touched it.
Out, out, out. All out. Ho, ho, ho
Your team is all out!

Three girls holding a girl tightly down to the floor.

What are these girls doing? They are shouting ‘out’,‘out’,‘out’, it is clear that they are playing a game.

What do you call this game? Chedduguddu, Hu-tu-tu, Choo Kit Kit, Ha-du-du or Kabaddi or something else?

When six girls surrounded Shyamala and caught her, everyone thought that she was ‘out’. Somebody caught her legs, and somebody her arms, while one girl caught her by the waist. But Shyamala was not the one to give up. She dragged herself and managed to touch the line in the centre.

When Shyamala touched the line, all the girls of the opposite team were holding her. So all of them got ‘out’. But Rosy argued that Shyamala had taken a breath in between, so the team was not ‘out’. Shyamala insisted that this was not true. She said that if she had taken a breath, why did the girls keep holding her? There was a big argument. Finally Shyamala won.

For the teacher: Using this game, bring children’s attention to this point that we make rules in our lives the way we do in games, so that things can be done in a proper manner. We have differences and fights among ourselves and we do resolve them.

  • When you play Kabaddi, how many players do you have in a team?

  • How many players got out when Shyamala touched the line?

  • Do you have ways to resolve disputes in games?

The Game of Kabaddi

So, this is what a game of Kabaddi is like. Pushing and pulling, screaming and shouting, dragging and falling on the ground. It is a rough game, yet it has many rules.

It is lots of fun, and lots of exercise. Holding your breath while running and continuously saying Kabaddi-Kabaddi and also trying to touch the players of the opposite team. So many things to do in Kabaddi. You can do this as long as you can hold your breath.

You need to use both your body and mind in this game. You have to use your strength to pull or stop the players. At the same time, you have to think about how to enter the other side. You have to decide whom to touch quickly and come back. If you get caught, then how do you reach the line in the centre.

For the teacher: You can organise a discussion on the topic that in games also, many a times the children experience discrimination on the basis of gender, caste and class.

  • Try to hold your breath and keep saying Kabaddi- Kabaddi. How many times could you say it?

  • How many times can you say it, while you are playing Kabaddi? Is there any difference?

Next time when you play Kabaddi, focus your attention on your legs, arms and eyes. You will notice that good coordination is required between eyes, legs and arms.

  • Make a picture in your notebook to show how Shyamala managed to get the entire opposing team ‘out’ in one go.

  • What does it mean to be out in games? When does one gets ‘out’ in Kabaddi?

  • In some games it is very important to touch the player. For example in the game of Kho-Kho, you get ‘out’ when someone touches you. You also get your turn by someone’s touch. Name some games in which it is very important to touch the players?

  • In Kabaddi, the entire team was ‘out’, because Shyamala had touched the line. What are some other games in which, the central line is very important?

  • What are the games in which, besides the players, you have to touch some things or colours?

For the teacher: The activity given above in the box should be done only under the teacher’s or elder’s supervision.

Do you play Kabaddi? Is there a girls’ Kabaddi team in your school? Do you think that your grandmother played Kabaddi when they were your age? Ask them.

Do girls in your area play Kabaddi or any other outdoor game? If there are girls who do not play, then what are the reasons for them not playing? Discuss.

Indian weight lifter Karnam Malleshwari raising a bouquet in her hand.

Karnam Malleshwari

Have you seen or read about her in the newspapers? Karnam Malleshwari is a weight lifter. She lives in Andhra Pradesh. Her father is a police constable. Malleshwari started lifting weights when she was 12 years old. Now she can lift a weight of 130 kilograms.

Karnam has won 29 medals in international events. Her four sisters also practise weight lifting.

A Story of Three Sisters

Look at this photograph. Don’t they look like simple grandmothers? But they are different.

Few aged females standing and smiling.

The picture is of the three sisters – Jwala, Leela and Heera. They live in Mumbai. All three of them played Kabaddi, and taught the game to others. Jwala tells, “When we were young, girls were not allowed to play this game. People thought that if girls played such rough games, nobody would marry them.” They also said that the girls had to wear boys’ clothes to play Kabaddi. That is why they stopped girls from playing.

For the teacher: Help children find out the sportspersons who won medals in Olympic games.

The sisters were young when their father died. Their mother and mamas (maternal uncles) brought them up. Both uncles used to play Kabaddi and Kho-Kho. They encouraged the three girls to play Kabaddi.

Jwala and Leela talk about their experiences. “Almost fifty years ago when we started to play Kabaddi, girls never got a chance to play this game. Parents did not let them play the game. But we always felt that we should play and my uncles and mother supported us. We three learnt the game and some other girls also joined us. We formed a Kabaddi Club, which is active even today.”

Remembering Those Days!

Leela and Heera still get very excited when they talk about their matches. They tell how they won some matches which they were about to lose. This was possible because of their strong will. During those matches, some very interesting things happened. Once they had to go to a different town for a big match. Leela tells, “The match had to start at 6.30 in the evening. We went to see a movie from 3 to 6 o’clock. We thought we would be back in time for the match. As soon as the movie started, we noticed some noise and disturbance. It was created by our mama, who was looking for us in the hall with a torch. When he found us, he gave a big scolding right there in the cinema hall.”

For the teacher: Use these examples to draw children’s attention to the reality that many times girls do not get equal opportunities in games. Ask children what they call their ‘maternal uncle’.

The sisters had to face many difficulties because of Kabaddi but that did not reduce their fun. Heera, the youngest sister, became a Kabaddi coach. She wishes that children like you should enjoy and play many games, especially Kabaddi.

  • Have you learnt any game from a coach? Which one?

  • Do you know of anyone who has learnt any game from a coach?


  • How does a coach teach? How does a coach make a player practice? How hard do you think the players have to work?

  • Have you ever thought of making a club for your favourite game?

  • Imagine that there are 15 children to play Kho-Kho. They must form two teams with equal numbers (7 each). Then one player will be left. What will you do if this happens? Have you ever become the ‘extra person’ in the middle? Write about this.

  • Every game has some rules. The game is played according to those rules. Let us see what happens if the rules are changed. For example – In cricket, a batsman gets ‘out’, if the bails fall off the stumps. Imagine if there is a rule that the entire team will be ‘out’, if all the three stumps fall. Would it be fun!

  • Try and play the game with this rule. Similarly, make some rules for other games and play.