Yamanashi

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About Yamanashi

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  1. Yamanashi

    soap on a rope

    Wow! That is wild. I haven't seen SOAR in America for years (though maybe that's just old fuddy-duddy me). This one is rendered so well that I'd feel terrible wearing it down; maybe just keep it as a display.
  2. Yamanashi

    Would This Work In Suno?

    Please, Mods, fix the spelling in the thread title.
  3. Yamanashi

    Would This Work In Suno?

    By Na-Young Kim Dec. 1, 2019 1:10 pm ET SEOUL—In a new sports ad, a brawny South Korean man stands shirtless in a pair of shorts. The camera pans six-pack abs and a chiseled jawline. “It’s pleasurable, excitable, your heart rate quickens,” the ad’s voiceover says. “Wanna play?”It’s not a promotion for boxing or mixed-martial arts. It’s an attempt to rebrand South Korea’s centuries-old take on sumo wrestling. Lean and mean. Called ssireum (pronounced “sheed-um”), Korea’s traditional wrestling has fallen on hard times. Many saw the sport as unathletic, and had little desire to watch beefy men toss each other to the ground. Once a national pastime that drew two-thirds of Korean households, TV ratings slid under 1% last year, according to the Korean Broadcasting System’s sports channel. Ssireum’s organizers believe they have found a way to pick the sport back up off the mat: a sexy makeover. “Drooping flesh, cellulite and sweat makes female viewers want to turn the camera away,” said Lee Seung-sam, secretary general of the Korea Ssireum Association. “If more players build their bodies like Hercules, I believe the popularity will go up,” he said. Attendance at ssireum events this year has grown fivefold, driven by a surge in female fans, according to the association. In November, South Korea’s largest television network introduced a reality show featuring 16 super-fit wrestlers called “Excitement of Ssireum.” Heo Sun-haeng, a TV show participant who also appeared in the ssireum promotional ad, admits he now does much more than stretch before a wrestling match. “I try to tidy up my hair more these days because I know people are taking pictures,” says Mr. Heo, 20, who stands about 6-feet-tall and weighs about 185 pounds. More widely known ssireum players are around 300 pounds. Ssireum claims to be at least 2,000 years old and predate Japanese sumo wrestling. The two sports overlap in aesthetics but differ by the rules of victory. Sumo wrestlers win by shoving an opponent outside the field of play. In ssireum, players lose when any part of their body above the knee touches the ground. It’s generally a best-of-three match. Ssireum’s rebranding requires a role reversal among the sport’s traditional hierarchy. Typically the heftiest competitors, usually 300 pounds or more, collect all the trophies and seize the glory at the sport’s national championships—where players of all sizes compete against one another. But now, the sport is championing the literal pushovers. The Korea Ssireum Association wants to tilt the scales even more. It has already dropped the maximum allowed weight by more than 20 pounds, to about 308 pounds. In future years it plans to reduce the limit even more, allowing fitter athletes to better compete with the big guys. The recent shift isn’t sitting so pretty with competitors shaped more like the traditional greats. “Big players have their charms as well,” says Park Jeong-suk, 31, a 2018 national champion, whose current size of 315 pounds means he will have to retire early, or lose weight, once all the restrictions take hold. It is a risky strategy to give just a handful of ssireum’s 1,700 athletes all the attention, says Lee Dong-hyuk, a college competitor, who weighs about 305 pounds. “I’m kind of scared this spotlight will disappear,” Mr. Lee says. “The focus is still all on the few handsome players.” That also applies to the more compact competitors. Nicknamed the “short giant,” Yun Pil-jae, 25, stands about 5-feet-5 and weighs 187 pounds. His quick moves have won him lower-level titles. But they have yet to win him fans. “To be frank, I feel disappointed because I’m not getting much attention,” Mr. Yun says. The rejuvenation of South Korea’s traditional wrestling began in a near-empty arena last year. It was just like every other match—except the two baby-faced wrestlers happened to be handsome young men, who are among the slimmest ssireum competitors. The match, uploaded online, quickly drew millions of views and attracted new fans like 25-year-old Kim Ara. “I didn’t know ssireum players would be good looking—in fact, I didn’t know anything about the sport,” says Ms. Kim, an office worker in Seoul, who brings a professional-grade camera to matches. The unexpected success from the viral video took ssireum organizers—and even the players involved—by surprise. Hwang Chang-sub, one of the video’s wrestlers, could only count his friends and family as fans for much of his athletic life. Now female fans chant his name at matches. “It’s all a bit awkward because I’ve never experienced this before,” says Mr. Hwang, 22, who weighs 176 pounds. Demand for the most attractive ssireum players has gotten so high that the sport’s organizers are now turning down the many offers from TV talk shows. Shifting to smaller players will usher in a return to skilled tacticians rather than rewarding bulk, making the sport faster and more exciting, the association says. There are plans to bring back a ssireum professional league for the first time in more than a decade. The glamour grab is already remaking the sport. At the national tournament in November, some of the most popular ssireum competitors skipped the event. The reason: to focus on the coming TV show where the prize money is five times larger. At the tournament, the section of raucous young fans, many of them women, toting cameras and presents, rubbed some old-time fans the wrong way. “They’re just too noisy,” says Lee Hak-seung, 67, staring at the sign-holding cheer section. One sign, in support of a contestant, read: “He is gorgeous young rich tall and handsome.”
  4. Yamanashi

    Greetings from Fukuoka

    Welcome aboard! Plenty of knowledgeable and helpful people here. Don't be afraid to post.
  5. Yamanashi

    Happy Thanksgiving 2019

    Cooking, cooking, cleaning, cooking ...
  6. Yamanashi

    Kimarite Map!

    On that point, I witnessed a sokubiotoshi this basho in Makuuchi (was it by Tamawashi?) and I had to replay it several times before I saw the "chop" instead of a slap.
  7. Yamanashi

    Greetings from Texas, USA

    Greetings! We expect some great insights from you. This is a very informative forum, and you will be hooked in no time.
  8. Yamanashi

    Kimarite Map!

    Wow, it's too much for me to process yet. One question, though: what are the x- and y- variables?
  9. Yamanashi

    Promotion/Demotion and Yusho discussion Kyushu 2019

    I want to point out that Asashosakari's promo/demo posts embiggen everyone who reads them.
  10. Hoshitango Moriurara Thanks, John!
  11. Yamanashi

    Have a go at a Haiku!

    Kyushu basho done Winter jungyo not so cold -- Okinawan warmth
  12. Yamanashi

    "Watching Film" on sumo rivals

    [I'm out of tags] I wonder, too. I know Wakaichiro is hip to the SumoForum/Tachiai Blog world, but I wonder how many of the Japanese rikishi know of this resource (esp. the Sumo db).
  13. Yamanashi

    2019 Kyushu Basho Discussion (spoiler alert)

    To be fair, the bouts only take a few seconds. It's the three minutes of stamping 'n' throwing 'n' glaring that would make short-attention-span viewers go numb. In that respect, Sumo is very much like baseball: a lot of ritualized behavior punctuated by intense action. Also, they both do a lot of grabbing and adjusting in the crotchal region [no wime sayin?]
  14. As always, pardon me if this topic has already been hashed over: I haven't found it in the last few years' search contents. Do rikishi or heya commonly "watch film" on likely match foes in the upcoming basho? When it was reported that Araiso (Kisenosato) was going to learn NFL training practices, I thought "well, he'll see some eye-opening training philosophy, but he'll be surprised that NFL players spend about 1/3 of their time watching film of plays and individual players." It seems to me that of all the individual martial arts, sumo would give the best reward for watching an opponent's tendencies and trying to "game-plan" from that. If we mawashiheads can get several basho's worth of tape on each rikishi in the upper divisions, heyas must have at least that much info. So, 1) do the sages on this site think that watching film would be a useful edge, and 2) does everybody (or anybody) do it now?
  15. Yamanashi

    2019 Kyushu Basho Discussion (spoiler alert)

    I don't think all three of those guys have a chance to move up to Juryo.