The Chinlon Waso festival

If there is one activity that brings people together, it is sport. Chinlon is a sporting activity considered to be the national sport of Burma. A large-scale event is dedicated to this legendary sport, occasionally bringing together a large part of the Burmese population. This is the Chinlon Waso festival. Taking place over several weeks, this festival is the ideal opportunity to attend demonstrations of this game, to mingle with the locals and to share moments of joy and festive atmosphere with them.

Chinlone Myanmar Burma

What is Chinlone?

Meaning “rounded basket” in French, Chinlon is a mix of sport and dance. It is also similar to football even though there is a very big difference between the two sports. Originally, it is played without an opposing team, therefore non-competitive. The objective is to simply admire the spectacle to which it provides. Positioning themselves around a circle approximately 7 meters in diameter, 6 players from the same team pass a woven log ball to each other, trying to keep it in the air for as long as possible. And as you would have understood, the ball must never touch the ground.

Furthermore, it is played with the feet, knees, shoulders, leg, head, all parts of the body except the hand, which leads foreign spectators to compare it to football. Indeed, Chinlon can be practiced in several ways. Some of these can involve some pretty spectacular acrobatic tricks and gestures. It should be remembered that it is a mixed sport practiced by both men and women.

The Chinlon Waso Festival

The Chinlon Waso Festival is a sporting event designed to celebrate Burma's national sport, Chinlon. Taking place every year from the month of June (Waso), the festival is held for almost six weeks during which we attend shows by the best players from both the country and neighboring countries such as Thailand and many others. others. For several weeks, Chinlon lovers gather at the Mahamuni Pagoda in Mandalay, Burma's second largest city, to enjoy the spectacle and support their favorite teams.

While the players express their talent by executing acrobatic postures, difficult and artistic touches of the ball, musical groups continually play to accompany them. The rhythm of the music is generally in line with the movements of the players, which conveys a festive and quite pleasant atmosphere.

If Chinlon is considered by the Burmese to be both a sport and an art, it is for many reasons. It involves artistic gestures and allows its practitioners to develop meditative skills. The Chinlon festival in Waso is the event that best pays homage to this sport. To discover this game in all its forms, the Mahamuni Pagoda in Mandalay is the best place where you can go, especially between June and July each year. Dexterity, talent, spectacle, joy, festive atmosphere are the words that sum up the Chinlon Waso festival.