Huyen Langlon is a kind of Indian martial art which hails from Manipur. According to Meitei language, Huyen means war, whereas Langlon means knowledge or art. There are two variants in this sport which is performed either by unarmed combat or armed fighting, known as sarit sarak and thang-ta, respectively.
In armed combat (thang-ta), the primary weapons used are the spear called ta, and thang, which is the sword. The Thang-ta aspect in Huyen Langlon includes three ways of practices - ritual, demonstration and combat. The ritual form usually includes a tantric practice.
It also involves various forms of war dance such as sword dance thangkairol and spear dance khosarol.
The training of Huyen Langlon begins with stepping patterns and then comes the sword strikes.
In sword strikes, the fighters usually use a sword in one hand while stretching one of their legs in the backward direction while the other is bent forward. The required feet position of the fighters should be 45 degrees during the duet combat.
Besides the sword strike technique, there is a spear technique which involves the lower body of any fighter as compared to the upper part. Generally, the spear technique is more complicated than the sword strike. Today, the competitions of Huyen Langlon are held annually at the school, district and state levels.
Huyen Langlon's origin can be known from various folktales, hymns and ancient stories. The first written record of Huyen Langlon is found in the Chainarol-Puya. The forefathers of the Meiteis recorded it. From 1891 to 1947, the Britisher colonists banned the martial arts and its active participation.
But in recent years, Huyen Langlon has again come into force and is well promoted all over India. In 2009, a leading Huyen Langlon guide and master Gurumayum Gourakishor Sharma was awarded the prestigious Padma Shri from the Government of India.
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