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Gaijingai

Obesity Deaths

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51 minutes ago, Gaijingai said:

Interesting read. While the long-term effects of what rikishi put their body through is certainly an issues that could use some management, I think John's hit the nail on the head in the end. Rikishi who are almost entirely blubber with limited muscle shouldn't be surprised that their health will suffer.

Looking at the body types of most (not all) in the top-division and you see more of the physique on offer in other strength-dominant sports such as strongman and powerlifting. The nature of the sport requires bulk. Should all heya/rikishi have access to nutrition and exercise professionals? In an ideal world, absolutely. But it will still come down to the individual and their personal discipline.

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The cigarette culture is something that could theoretically be addressed without negatively impacting rikishi performance, the way body weight might.

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56 minutes ago, yohcun said:

The cigarette culture is something that could theoretically be addressed without negatively impacting rikishi performance, the way body weight might.

For sure, to pin recent deaths as entirely to do with the weight of rikishi is ludicrous.

That said, things like proper nutritional and exercise advice for active and retired rikishi would go a long way. I hate seeing the aged oyakata who still carry all that weight, that's undeniably a bad thing. Again though, comes down to the individual. 

Also in case anyone thinks I'm shaming, I'm absolutely a man of advanced girth (Laughing...).

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This is the second article I've read that cites Orora as if he were typical. If anything, he's an expert at sabotaging himself by blowing up to a size his body couldn't manage to do much with. At least this article had John Gunning clarifying that at the end.

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It's obviously a sport that's very hard on one's body (as if that weren't obvious),  and even most of the smaller sekitori are morbidly obese. Hauling that type of weight around is extremely unhealthy and the detriments can be felt in many ways. If your goal were to live a long time, and with minimal health issues,  becoming a rikishi and embracing the ozumo lifestyle wouldn't be the route to go.

But that article mentions 4 rikishi and 3 of them were at least 200kg; these are cases going far beyond the sumo norm and there are clearly personal factors at play, as there are with the lightweights at the other end of the spectrum. Just look at all the rikishi who are around Orora's height but have never come close to his weight. John Gunning is right to call him out on the comments he made which discount the role of the individual.

Aside from just the pounds, it does seem like many rikishi have other unhealthy habits - like smoking as mentioned above.

Edited by Katooshu

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Getting the weight off after retirement seems to be key.  And if you look for the best rikishi instead of the fattest, you find only three Yokozuna born in the last century that come in around 200: Onokuni (Shibatayama) and the two Pacific Islanders.  I don't know whether rikishi in general lifted weights back in the day (I doubt it), but they apparently lifted the bottle often -- a problem that apparently has not completely disappeared today

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10 hours ago, Katooshu said:

Aside from just the pounds, it does seem like many rikishi have other unhealthy habits - like smoking as mentioned above.

Still learning about the sumo world, is smoking really a problem with the rikishi? You would think they would avoid damaging their lungs since stamina is already going to be an issue while trying to haul around a massive frame. 

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11 hours ago, Churaumi said:

This is the second article I've read that cites Orora as if he were typical. If anything, he's an expert at sabotaging himself by blowing up to a size his body couldn't manage to do much with. At least this article had John Gunning clarifying that at the end.

Exactly. Orora had to crawl onto the dohyo at the end of his career because he got so big. He's far from the norm, thank goodness.

Good on him for working to get the weight off though.

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1 hour ago, nelimw said:
11 hours ago, Katooshu said:

Aside from just the pounds, it does seem like many rikishi have other unhealthy habits - like smoking as mentioned above.

Still learning about the sumo world, is smoking really a problem with the rikishi? You would think they would avoid damaging their lungs since stamina is already going to be an issue while trying to haul around a massive frame. 

Physiology being the funny and adaptable thing it is, some rikishi can smoke and still have enough stamina to fight and train. There's no doubt it's going to murder you at the very end, but as there exist other personal idiosyncrasies like skill and genetics, smoking might not have an obvious detrimental effect on a rikishi especially as they're slowly adapted to it. You'd be surprised, but some of the best runners I met in the army were smokers - it helps that we're talking about people in generally decent conditioning and at their physical prime age-wise.

That being said, Takanohana I and Chiyonofuji most famously experimented with giving up smoking to gain more weight. I don't know for sure whether Takanohana I made it, but he told Chiyonofuji about it, and Chiyonofuji certainly did.

Edited by Seiyashi

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13 hours ago, Yamanashi said:

And if you look for the best rikishi instead of the fattest, you find only three Yokozuna born in the last century that come in around 200: Onokuni (Shibatayama) and the two Pacific Islanders.

If you measure 'fattest' by weight, the two biggest are actually pretty lean right now.

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10 hours ago, just_some_guy said:

Exactly. Orora had to crawl onto the dohyo at the end of his career because he got so big. He's far from the norm, thank goodness.

Good on him for working to get the weight off though.

I've followed his Twitter since he left Japan, and have to admit I've enjoyed watching his adventures at Lake Baikal and watching him slowly melting back into a more recognizable human shape. Have to respect the drive, not many folk in my part of the US do that. It's basically Golden Corral until death after someone hits 300 pounds in Oklahoma.

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12 hours ago, Churaumi said:

I've followed his Twitter since he left Japan, and have to admit I've enjoyed watching his adventures at Lake Baikal and watching him slowly melting back into a more recognizable human shape. Have to respect the drive, not many folk in my part of the US do that. It's basically Golden Corral until death after someone hits 300 pounds in Oklahoma.

Golden Corral, now that brings back some memories.  There's one in my city, still advertising the fountain of chocolate (warning: may be unavailable due to COVID).  I see there are seven in OK, including 3 in OKC (for the smart set).

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14 hours ago, Churaumi said:

I've followed his Twitter since he left Japan, and have to admit I've enjoyed watching his adventures at Lake Baikal and watching him slowly melting back into a more recognizable human shape. Have to respect the drive, not many folk in my part of the US do that. It's basically Golden Corral until death after someone hits 300 pounds in Oklahoma.

I'm one state over and am all too familiar with this.

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7 hours ago, Yamanashi said:

Golden Corral, now that brings back some memories.  There's one in my city, still advertising the fountain of chocolate (warning: may be unavailable due to COVID).  I see there are seven in OK, including 3 in OKC (for the smart set).

 

5 hours ago, just_some_guy said:

I'm one state over and am all too familiar with this.

Family and friend commitments force me into one of those every few years, and something I noticed is every one of those has an out-of-the-way corner with a pile of broken chairs.

Not fat shaming...I'm weak chair shaming? If there is any fandom to be part of that proves I'm indifferent to body shape, it's sumo.

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18 hours ago, just_some_guy said:

I'm one state over and am all too familiar with this.

I'm one continent over and I had to Google it :-)

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3 hours ago, Yaochozuna said:

I'm one continent over and I had to Google it :-)

Since it's meant to bring up images of the cowboy culture of the American West, it's a weird name to translate, too, I'll bet.  Would you even have a phrase like "zlatá ohrada"?

(Sorry, drifting off topic.)

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On 05/12/2021 at 16:25, Yamanashi said:

Since it's meant to bring up images of the cowboy culture of the American West, it's a weird name to translate, too, I'll bet.  Would you even have a phrase like "zlatá ohrada"?

(Sorry, drifting off topic.)

Nope, we wouldn't :-) But truth be said, it's a cultural thing, not just vocabulary. In my understanding od (American) English, corral does have Wild West connotations (Gunfight at the O.K. Corral and such). Czech word ohrada has none. But it works the other way round, too. Would you call a hotel Mace in English? And yet, there is this hotel Palcát in Tábor in South Bohemia, even with a monstrous phallic depiction of the said weapon next to it. Refers to the Hussite Wars and their role in the heavily romanticised version of our national story. Jan Žižka had one, you know :-)

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12 minutes ago, Yaochozuna said:

Nope, we wouldn't :-) But truth be said, it's a cultural thing, not just vocabulary. In my understanding od (American) English, corral does have Wild West connotations (Gunfight at the O.K. Corral and such). Czech word ohrada has none. But it works the other way round, too. Would you call a hotel Mace in English? And yet, there is this hotel Palcát in Tábor in South Bohemia, even with a monstrous phallic depiction of the said weapon next to it. Refers to the Hussite Wars and their role in the heavily romanticised version of our national story. Jan Žižka had one, you know :-)

Out of reactions (again), but thanks for the informative post.  Now I have some reading to do!

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11 hours ago, Yamanashi said:

Out of reactions (again), but thanks for the informative post.  Now I have some reading to do!

My pleasure :-)

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https://www.channelnewsasia.com/sport/japanese-boy-sumo-wrestlers-chase-dreams-fame-and-fortune-2365956

A Reuters piece on wanpaku sumo that contains some comments on weight gain. I wonder whether it makes a difference, not just whether rikishi shed weight after retirement, but how early they begin packing it on (e.g. Takakeisho vs Hakuho/Kakuryu at 16).

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One thing that's become clear over the years is that the heaviest primary school kids, who are often the dominant rikishi in that age range, rarely have serious success in high school and beyond. I think that's largely from the lack of developing their technique (due to focusing on overwhelming opponents with size) rather than health issues already flaring up that early, although unsurprisingly the bigger kids have more injuries too.

Edited by Katooshu
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