Traditional Indian Games


In the olden days, children did not have video games to pass their time with. Instead they played games that involved physical activities. These traditional games also developed various faculties be they mental, physical, emotional or spiritual. You can play these games with your friends at school or in your building



Two teams create a small wooden peg of four to five inches in length. This is balanced over a slightly elongated hole in the ground. The peg (gilli) is thicker in the centre and sharpened on the two edges. A bigger stick is carved out to hit the peg out of the hole to a large area like a golf ball is hit. The peg has to land at a pre-determined area. In case it lands anywhere else it has to be hit again till it reaches the end point. Throughout the game, one’s hands cannot be used to touch the peg. It has to be manoeuvred using the big stick only, very much like golf. The team that manages to reach the pre-determined places in the shortest number of hits is the winner. (Develops focus, speed, strength and concentration.)



India is the birthplace of kabaddi, a popular sport requiring one to hold one's breath during the span of play. Kabaddi is said to have originated in Punjab. Kabaddi finds a mention in the Mahabharat too. The game requires team spirit. It includes two teams of 12 players each (seven on court and five as reserve). The duration is two 20 minute halves with a break of five minutes when players change sides. The game is to dodge and try and capture members of the opposite team while saying 'hututu' or 'kabaddi' continuously in a single long breath. Once you lose your breath, you have to give the opponent a chance to do the same.



The game is similar to mini golf except that here you use your fingers instead of a golf club to hit the marble into a man-made hole where a bigger marble is placed. The thumb is placed as grounding and the index or middle finger is stretched with a smaller marble on it to strike the bigger marble. The aim of the game is to pocket the marble. (Develops accuracy, concentration and motor skills.)



This game is played with the help of five tamarind seeds, shells or flat light stones. The seeds are placed on the palms, flung in the air and splattered on the ground. Step two requires you to pick up one seed, fling it in the air and attempt to pick up the remaining seeds on the ground. The aim is to pick up the rest of the seeds one by one before you catch the seed that's been flung in the air. (Develops motor skills, agility, concentration and number counting skills.)



A small wooden eggshaped toy of two to five inches in length is wound with a 1mm thick rope and pulled strongly so that the top spins on the ground or the palm. The new age bey-blades are a take-off on this game. Develops concentration, rapidity, balance, agility and speed.