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Rikishi smoking

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Harumafuji birthday cake from his blog:

cd8768d09b8a328ee2a4b8a919b3b8bd.jpg

When I saw this picture I wondered if he was going to use all those cigarettes as candles on the cake.... ;-)

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Harumafuji birthday cake from his blog:

cd8768d09b8a328ee2a4b8a919b3b8bd.jpg

When I saw this picture I wondered if he was going to use all those cigarettes as candles on the cake.... (In a state of confusion...)

aw are rikishi allowed to smoke??

harumafuji really shouldnt do that its so bad for his skin! i hope one day his skin improves so that in

the sumo cartoons they would stop drawing pimples all over his face. :-) he would look quite good with hakuho skin!

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aw are rikishi allowed to smoke??

Glad to see that they are.

Down with health fascism!

(In a state of confusion...)

Yeah. Why should professional athletes be careful about respiratory health? It's not as if it's going to affect their performance or anything... :-)

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Yeah. Why should professional athletes be careful about respiratory health? It's not as if it's going to affect their performance or anything... (In a state of confusion...)

There's a wee bit of a difference between "is this a good idea?" and "why is this allowed?", no?

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Yeah. Why should professional athletes be careful about respiratory health? It's not as if it's going to affect their performance or anything... (In a state of confusion...)

There's a wee bit of a difference between "is this a good idea?" and "why is this allowed?", no?

Given the ozumo lifestyle?

Actually, no.

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Given the ozumo lifestyle?

Actually, no.

[brennan]I don't know what that means.[/brennan]

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I personally see no problem at all with rikishi smoking. I don't believe that their eventually decreased aerobic abilities will affect their performance that much. So I see no reason why not allowing to do whatever they decide with their bodies, like all the other people.

(This all being said by an ex-smoker, who (like every real ex-smoker) gets vigorously annoyed by cigarette smoke around me)

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FWIW ... Kaio used to smoke a lot in the past and still inhales wads of smoke from Tomozuna Oyakata during keiko. He is coughing on the dohyo before every bout, but I guess this is some kind of a nervous habit.

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I think it is a shame but so many of the rikishi smoke... (Shaking head...)

Young and old alike!!

I remember years ago the first time I met Akebono and he was smoking, I was shocked....

Still every time I see a rikishi smoking or carrying cigarettes I'm a bit disappointed! It isn't good for them...

Not only the rikishi but so man yobidashi and gyoji are all smoking!!! Some yobidashi with beautiful voices who don't smoke told me the other guys who smoke says it affects their voices but yet they still do it... (Shaking head...)

Harumafuji smokes just outside the keikoba until the oyakata comes downstairs... just before training! I just don't get it!

Some other rikishi told me that the guys (all ranks) are often sneaking smoking in the shower in the shitakubeya! :-S

*I've never smoked, never had to quit, but almost all my family smoked at some time. I do know it is hard to quit. I just don't think any athlete should smoke...

just my 2 cents...

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I think it is a shame but so many of the rikishi smoke... (Shaking head...)

Young and old alike!!

I remember years ago the first time I met Akebono and he was smoking, I was shocked....

Still every time I see a rikishi smoking or carrying cigarettes I'm a bit disappointed! It isn't good for them...

Not only the rikishi but so man yobidashi and gyoji are all smoking!!! Some yobidashi with beautiful voices who don't smoke told me the other guys who smoke says it affects their voices but yet they still do it... (Shaking head...)

Harumafuji smokes just outside the keikoba until the oyakata comes downstairs... just before training! I just don't get it!

Some other rikishi told me that the guys (all ranks) are often sneaking smoking in the shower in the shitakubeya! :-S

*I've never smoked, never had to quit, but almost all my family smoked at some time. I do know it is hard to quit. I just don't think any athlete should smoke...

just my 2 cents...

It sounds from what you're saying that smoking is very much a part of the 'macho' culture of Sumo (indeed, isn't this true of masculinity in Japan more generally?). Its therefore unlikely to be cracked down upon, even for health reasons. After all, if we're talking from a health/performance point of view, there are probably many things that could be improved (increased use of modern sports science etc.), but aren't due to the construction of sumo culture. Even if smoking becomes more unpopular in wider Japanese culture, it will likely remain in Sumo, which tends to promote a more old-fashioned view of manliness.

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I think it is a shame but so many of the rikishi smoke... (Shaking head...)

Young and old alike!!

I remember years ago the first time I met Akebono and he was smoking, I was shocked....

Still every time I see a rikishi smoking or carrying cigarettes I'm a bit disappointed! It isn't good for them...

Not only the rikishi but so man yobidashi and gyoji are all smoking!!! Some yobidashi with beautiful voices who don't smoke told me the other guys who smoke says it affects their voices but yet they still do it... (Shaking head...)

Harumafuji smokes just outside the keikoba until the oyakata comes downstairs... just before training! I just don't get it!

Some other rikishi told me that the guys (all ranks) are often sneaking smoking in the shower in the shitakubeya! :-S

*I've never smoked, never had to quit, but almost all my family smoked at some time. I do know it is hard to quit. I just don't think any athlete should smoke...

just my 2 cents...

It sounds from what you're saying that smoking is very much a part of the 'macho' culture of Sumo (indeed, isn't this true of masculinity in Japan more generally?). Its therefore unlikely to be cracked down upon, even for health reasons. After all, if we're talking from a health/performance point of view, there are probably many things that could be improved (increased use of modern sports science etc.), but aren't due to the construction of sumo culture. Even if smoking becomes more unpopular in wider Japanese culture, it will likely remain in Sumo, which tends to promote a more old-fashioned view of manliness.

I'm not sure it is really manliness as much as it is "Japanese" in general. I would guess that in my university classes which are international that 90% of the Japanese students boys and girls are smoking as opposed to the Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean, etc.. where many of the boys smoke but most girls don't.

In 22 years in Japan I am so happy that there are now "no smoking" sections and restaurants that make "no smoking" for lunch time, etc.. but nothing compares to the regulation in the US. Living in Japan I've had to really "get re-used to" smoking around me...

As for sumo the boys tell me it is for stress... which means that Kasugano Oyakata must be the most stressed person around. I don't go to keiko there anymore because he can smoke a whole factory of cigarettes between 0630-1030.

Before I knew how many rikishi smoked I always used to complain that the smoking area at the kokugikan is where the rikishi have to enter. So they are walking through all the smoking every time.. but now that I know I guess it is not a problem for them!

On another note Hakkaku beya is a no-smoking heya. The rikishi are not allowed to smoke. I heard that if they are caught smoking they will be kicked out.

I think you are right, even as smoking may get less popular in Japan overall I'm afraid it will remain in Sumo just as old-fashioned culture in general... that's tooooo bad!! (Shaking head...)

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I found it odd going to Japan and Europe that so many people still smoke. I used to smoke myself, quit 14 years ago (took 8 tries). I used to hate the smell of it but now I don't mind it. It is nasty stuff, some days I still feel like a cig 14 years later, that's how much it got into my brain.

Still it was a bit much in Japan, crazy to be enjoying a nice meal and to have the guy beside me light up while I was still eating! Often it was my friend or coworker so I didn't ask them not to. It felt like the '70s or '80s some places in Japan, seemed like I'd been transported back in time as far as attitudes were concerned. Back to the time when men were men, women were women and you did what you liked for the most part, no one told you not to smoke or anything.

Craziest stuff I saw regularly was people in Japan riding their bicycles and smoking at the same time...

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I found it odd going to Japan and Europe that so many people still smoke. I used to smoke myself, quit 14 years ago (took 8 tries). I used to hate the smell of it but now I don't mind it. It is nasty stuff, some days I still feel like a cig 14 years later, that's how much it got into my brain.

Still it was a bit much in Japan, crazy to be enjoying a nice meal and to have the guy beside me light up while I was still eating! Often it was my friend or coworker so I didn't ask them not to. It felt like the '70s or '80s some places in Japan, seemed like I'd been transported back in time as far as attitudes were concerned. Back to the time when men were men, women were women and you did what you liked for the most part, no one told you not to smoke or anything.

Craziest stuff I saw regularly was people in Japan riding their bicycles and smoking at the same time...

I've got to admit, as a smoker this is something I really LIKED about Japan. Can smoke wherever I want... :-S

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I found it odd going to Japan and Europe that so many people still smoke. I used to smoke myself, quit 14 years ago (took 8 tries). I used to hate the smell of it but now I don't mind it. It is nasty stuff, some days I still feel like a cig 14 years later, that's how much it got into my brain.

Still it was a bit much in Japan, crazy to be enjoying a nice meal and to have the guy beside me light up while I was still eating! Often it was my friend or coworker so I didn't ask them not to. It felt like the '70s or '80s some places in Japan, seemed like I'd been transported back in time as far as attitudes were concerned. Back to the time when men were men, women were women and you did what you liked for the most part, no one told you not to smoke or anything.

Craziest stuff I saw regularly was people in Japan riding their bicycles and smoking at the same time...

Crazier than bicycles are people on motorcycles smoking and riding :-S

I know how you felt Harry about not wanting to say something to your co-worker or whatever. Though I've gotten more bold with some people and say "no smoking area" and ask them to go elsewhere!!!

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I found it odd going to Japan and Europe that so many people still smoke. I used to smoke myself, quit 14 years ago (took 8 tries). I used to hate the smell of it but now I don't mind it. It is nasty stuff, some days I still feel like a cig 14 years later, that's how much it got into my brain.

Still it was a bit much in Japan, crazy to be enjoying a nice meal and to have the guy beside me light up while I was still eating! Often it was my friend or coworker so I didn't ask them not to. It felt like the '70s or '80s some places in Japan, seemed like I'd been transported back in time as far as attitudes were concerned. Back to the time when men were men, women were women and you did what you liked for the most part, no one told you not to smoke or anything.

Craziest stuff I saw regularly was people in Japan riding their bicycles and smoking at the same time...

Crazier than bicycles are people on motorcycles smoking and riding :-S

I know how you felt Harry about not wanting to say something to your co-worker or whatever. Though I've gotten more bold with some people and say "no smoking area" and ask them to go elsewhere!!!

Haha, off topic, but I'll one-up you guys. I've seen people eating instant noodles and riding a motorbike at the same time. I dunno how they manage (Shaking head...) .

As for rikishi smoking, I feel like it's their own choice, as I doubt it has much effect on their ability on the dohyo. As a brass player, I just look at Louis Armstrong; the dude smoked tons (weed too!), but he still had the lungs to wail on the trumpet cause of his years of practice and playing. (Shaking head...)

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As for rikishi smoking, I feel like it's their own choice, as I doubt it has much effect on their ability on the dohyo. As a brass player, I just look at Louis Armstrong; the dude smoked tons (weed too!), but he still had the lungs to wail on the trumpet cause of his years of practice and playing. :-S

I know what you're saying. I come from a theatrical background, and no more than a few professional singers who maintain incredibly powerful voices despite smoking. However, I'm guessing what irritates people is the thought that even if they can smoke and still be this good, if they gave up could they not be even better?

After all, especially at elite level sports, a few of those small edges quickly add up.

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aw are rikishi allowed to smoke??

Glad to see that they are.

Down with health fascism!

:-S

This is a clear proof how smoking atomises brains. (Shaking head...)

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I found it odd going to Japan and Europe that so many people still smoke. I used to smoke myself, quit 14 years ago (took 8 tries). I used to hate the smell of it but now I don't mind it. It is nasty stuff, some days I still feel like a cig 14 years later, that's how much it got into my brain.

Still it was a bit much in Japan, crazy to be enjoying a nice meal and to have the guy beside me light up while I was still eating! Often it was my friend or coworker so I didn't ask them not to. It felt like the '70s or '80s some places in Japan, seemed like I'd been transported back in time as far as attitudes were concerned. Back to the time when men were men, women were women and you did what you liked for the most part, no one told you not to smoke or anything.

Craziest stuff I saw regularly was people in Japan riding their bicycles and smoking at the same time...

Crazier than bicycles are people on motorcycles smoking and riding :-S

I know how you felt Harry about not wanting to say something to your co-worker or whatever. Though I've gotten more bold with some people and say "no smoking area" and ask them to go elsewhere!!!

Haha, off topic, but I'll one-up you guys. I've seen people eating instant noodles and riding a motorbike at the same time. I dunno how they manage (Shaking head...) .

As for rikishi smoking, I feel like it's their own choice, as I doubt it has much effect on their ability on the dohyo. As a brass player, I just look at Louis Armstrong; the dude smoked tons (weed too!), but he still had the lungs to wail on the trumpet cause of his years of practice and playing. (Shaking head...)

Yeah. Then he dropped dead at age 69 of a heart attack.

And then there's my godfather, who once sang bass for the Don Cossack Choir until the cancer that developed in his larynx from his smoking destroyed his voice. The same thing happened to my father, whose voice was only slightly less magnificent at one time. At least they caught his cancer early, and had developed laser surgery in the meantime, so he's not as raspy as my godfather was.

Things like this aren't necessarily predictive for any one individual. It's that on average, a smoker will be less healthy, be more likely to develop cancers and cardiopulmonary diseases, and die sooner than a non-smoker. Quitting smoking can only help, even if for any one person selected at random it doesn't appear to make much of a difference.

I'm rather surprised that some here feel this is outside the purview of a shisho to regulate. Rikishi can't drive, can't live on their own unless they're sekitori -- they can't even marry without permission, for God's sake! Relatively speaking, this is nothing.

Edited by Kuroyama

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aw are rikishi allowed to smoke??

Glad to see that they are.

Down with health fascism!

:-S

This is a clear proof how smoking atomises brains. (Shaking head...)

Make sure to flush your eyes with disinfectant after reading and quoting my post.

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Didn't Yokozuna Takanohana and Yokozuna Wakanohana's father, Ozeki Takanohana, die of throat/mouth cancer because of smoking? I don't think he was that old.

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I'm rather surprised that some here feel this is outside the purview of a shisho to regulate. Rikishi can't drive, can't live on their own unless they're sekitori -- they can't even marry without permission, for God's sake! Relatively speaking, this is nothing.

I'm fairly sure (most of) the people who voiced that opinion were speaking against the notion that it should be banned by the Kyokai - at least that's the position the initial "rikishi are allowed to smoke?" question and your approving follow-ups insinuated to me. Given that all the other regulations you mentioned for comparison are also fixed at the Kyokai level, I seem to sense a little goalpost-shifting going on in the above statement. (Also, even a couple of days later I'm still staring blankly at how "the ozumo lifestyle" of all things was supposed to justify the idea of a ban on smoking. If anything it does the exact opposite as several subsequent posts have demonstrated.)

Not that it matters, but the number of cigarettes I've touched in my life is exactly zero, and nobody in my immediate family smokes either (which I'm quite glad for). I'm still happy to co-sign YBF's "down with health fascism" statement in regards to the issue of smoking.

Edited by Asashosakari

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Didn't Yokozuna Takanohana and Yokozuna Wakanohana's father, Ozeki Takanohana, die of throat/mouth cancer because of smoking? I don't think he was that old.

Yep - he was addicted to Mild Seven cigarettes for most of his life, and paid the price. Died of mouth cancer aged 55.

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I don't think it's health fascism - I think it's consideration of the health of other people. Why should non-smoking rikishi and others in the heya have to be put at risk from the effects of passive smoking?

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I don't think it's health fascism - I think it's consideration of the health of other people. Why should non-smoking rikishi and others in the heya have to be put at risk from the effects of passive smoking?

I fully agree that that should be considered (I don't like staying in smoky environments either), but that hardly requires a wholesale ban. And we're not talking about a random assembly of people here - surely the members of a stable could make arrangements as part of their communal living that will satisfy everyone. The exception here may be the oyakata due to their position of power...I wouldn't have much of a problem with a Kyokai edict that bans oyakata from smoking in the keikoba and other communal spaces, but that's probably unlikely to happen barring a major shift in attitude towards smoking in Japan. I'd hope that most oyakata are considerate enough anyway. (Add that to the list of factors that can help or hinder recruiting, I guess.)

Edited by Asashosakari

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