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The heavy sumo wrestler diet, the eating habit secret behind powerful stamina

Updated on June 19, 2013

Typical Sumo Wrestler diet


Japanese Sumo Wrestling, a brief engaging overview

You may never believe that sumo wrestling games is probably the only sport in the world that has the strictest set of rules as directed by the Japanese sumo wrestling association.

They have to comply with certain ways of rigorous training method, a laborious life style, combined with unique culture that all sumo wrestlers must follow and endure during their entire career.

Should any of these Japanese sumo wrestlers violate this regulation or conceived to be off track in the way they have been standardized for centuries, it is the end of the line for them.

They will simply be banned, and disqualified from their dream job: “The rewarding high stature of professional sumo wrestlers”, those personalities who are widely honored and adored by people in Japan.

In reality there are some conceptions about this fascinating sport that combined with unique culture, we can learn so much from.

Fundamentally it is all about discipline, if someone determines to achieve something in life, sacrifice should taking place; this is how I perceive these facts.

For once, the rikishi or a sumo wrestler have to strongly identified themselves by appearance, they must grow long hair, construct a top knot and should wear traditional costume during a tournament or when in a public area.

The fabric has different style depending on the wrestler’s rank or degree of expertise, and people would instantly know the class of a Japanese sumo wrestler when they meet them anywhere, anytime, any places.

The wrestlers have to live and stay in a stable during their entire wrestling career; there are about 50 of them throughout Japan.

This place is where they spend most of their time to train, sleep, eating, and all the routines that has to be done under demanding guidance of the coach, known as stable master.

Despite of having to do heavy training during the day, rikishi is never been permitted to have breakfast, they eat only after the training session complete.


High calories sumo wrestler diet, the key to achieve the most ideal figure in this sport

Skipping breakfast is really important habit for a Japanese sumo wrestler to follow, sound logical and proven true.

Because when you pass over breakfast in the morning, the chance is you are going to eat in larger amount than you normally would later in the afternoon since you will get starve really bad.

So this is what happen, when a rikishi skip a breakfast and jump straight to heavy training regimen, how much they will eat later in the day?

Yes, you guess it, a massive 10 thousand calories of meal in the afternoon before taking a nap, and another 10 thousand calories in the evening before sleep, total of 20 thousand calories.

For a comparison, an average man would have daily calories intake of around 3500 to 4000 most. We are talking almost triple the normal person meal portion, unbelievable.

What make this fact more interesting is when you skip breakfast you will get your metabolism to drop, so this is what happen with sumo wrestlers they never have breakfast in the morning, metabolism is lowering, then eat huge amount of calories twice in a day.

The result is calories will stacking up in their body especially when followed by sleeping, storing the energy in form of fat, gaining much more weight with unnatural fashion.

The rikishi diet routine is the fundamental element to achieve the heaviest weight they can get, the more heavy they are the hardest to defeat them in the tournament, so weight is one of the key element to success.

The favorite dish that sumo wrestlers are so much in love with is the Chanko-nabe, containing big amount quantity of white meat such as chicken, fish, and other sources of protein like tofu combine with vegetables.

They would mix all ingredient and stew it all in a big pot boiling in chicken broth, and eat with rice. I think this dish similar to sukiyaki, but anyway it is a delicious high calories low-fat meal, that you can also try as some Japanese restaurant serves this Chanko-nabe dish.

The most celebrated Japanese sumo wrestling games, a combination of sport and culture the Japanese are highly proud of

Every tournament will take place on a ring namely dohyo. Prior to a game, the wrestlers name will be mentioned, and they will enter the dohyo, sprinkling salt, stomping their feet, as part of pre-fighting ritual.

They will wear a costume, a mawashi, and referee will wear a traditional costume that resemblance to what a samurai would wear in the old days. There always be 6 sumo tournaments celebrated in Japan every year.

The rule is quite simple but it is much harder than it looks since we are talking about pushing hundreds of kilogram body.

Only requires a highly trained, skillful and expert wrestler are able to do this. Basically you will win a sumo match by knocking your opponent down to the ground, or get him to step out of the dohyo arena.


Brief history of sumo

Sumo wrestling can be traced back in the 17th century of Edo period, the ancient times in Japan.

The sumo wrestlers would perform a match to give entertainment to Shinto Gods.

As you already know, Shinto is local religion in Japan, there are certain ceremonies and rituals have to be performed. Sumo was part of these practices.

You can witness some old fashion rituals from the Shinto religion in every sumo tournament today. The dish Chanko-nabe also been introduced in the Meiji era, at that time they were easy to cook and cost less in comparison to other type of dishes despite of the big amount of quantity per serving.

Sumo wrestlers may have undergone a life style which considered unhealthy to most people; however it is a choice of life.

Despite of shorter live span that a sumo wrestler may have, still there are quite a number of Japanese young generation who are dreaming to attend a famous stable to become a famous sumo wrestler one day. What a fascinating culture this nation of Japan has. What do you think about sumo?

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    • profile image


      3 years ago

      That's actually a relaly nice talk. It made me remember that movie, Gattacca (which was an excellent movie I might add), picturing a society which had everything predetermined by our genes and how one person managed to overcome that. Anyway, back to the point I was trying to make Yea While our genes are not our fate, they do give us advantages. I guess it's like poker starting off with a pair of aces. You might end up losing to someone who had low cards in the beginning, but that is unlikely (I know that was deep :p )

    • greeneryday profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Some tropical country

      Hello HawaiiHeart, good to hear that you actually visited sumo stables, must have been an amazing experience, thanks for sharing...

    • HawaiiHeart profile image


      6 years ago from Hawaii

      Very interesting! It's such an intriguing sport. We actually visted Sumo stables while in Japan and it was quite an experience. The amount they eat - OMG! It definitely is party of their lifestyle.


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