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Arm wrestling is a high impact sport believe it or not and puts a ton of torque and pressure on each persons arm and body. Each participant in the arm wrestling match places either the right or the left arm on a flat surface and each participant’s elbow is bent, while touching the surface. With the two hands strategically aligned, each person has to grip the other person’s hand and pin it on the surface. The winner in an arm wrestling match is the person who pins the arm of the other first and the person whose hand is pinned loses the match.
Many factors play a role in determining how successful one can be in arm wrestling. The overall techniques used by the players along with the overall arm strength are two of the most crucial factors that contribute to one’s winning. However, there are other factors such as the wrestler’s arm length, reaction time and others that also determine the success of one arm wrestler over the other.
Professional arm wrestling matches take place in the form of a tournament and matches are divided into right hand and left hand divisions. Arm wrestling is universally governed by The World Armwrestling Federation and according to reports, 85 countries are active members of WAF.
History Of Arm Wrestling
- Arm wrestling matches started In Gilardi’s saloon located in Petaluma, CA back in 1952. The sport was founded by a young journalist named Bill Soberanes. Bill was the inspiration for first the yearly Petaluma, followed by Northern California and lastly the California arm wrestling championship. A decade after its first introduction, Bill joined hands with Dave Devoto to form the first Wristwrestling Championship in the World. Both Bill and Dave then took the arm wrestling championship to the largest auditoriums in Petaluma. The first wrist wrestling match was highly successful and the rest is history.
- By 1969, Dave Devoto signed a contract with the American Broadcasting Corporation. After the contract signing, World’s Wristwrestling Championship entered into a long relationship of 16 years with ABC’s Wide World of Sports. Majority of the people learned about Arm wrestling from ABC’s production of Wide World of Sports. ABC broadcasted arm wrestling championships on air from 1969 to 1984. By October 1995, Learning Channel started filming the arm wrestling event and broadcasted it four times all across the globe. Later on, other channels such as NBC also broadcasted arm wrestling from 1996, adding to the overall popularity of the game and making it a worldwide phenomenon.
Arm Wrestling Rules
- Arm wrestling requires power, strength but all arm wrestlers must confine themselves to the rules of the game. Arm wrestling has some very strict rules that must be followed by the players or they face immediate disqualification from the game. The arm wrestling rules are summarized below:
- Both players must be square to the arm wrestling table prior to the starting of a given match
- At the start of a game, both players’ shoulders should not be less than a fist distance apart from their hands
- Players must start after they hear ‘Ready and Go”
- In order to constitute a pin, you can touch any part of the other player’s fingers, forearm or wrist
- You cannot touch your body with any of your hands during a competition
- If you commit a foul three times, you will be disqualified from the match
- For whatever reason the grip falls apart, the grip is placed in its right alignment again
- If any of the player’s position is such that his arm his hurting, the referee can stop the match right away and rule it as a foul
- The arm wrestling match should be started with one feet on ground. Once you hear ‘go’, you can lift your feet from the ground
- If any of the player’s takes out his elbow from the pocket but no position is gained, and it the elbow goes back in the pocket, the match referee may issue an instant verbal warning
- For any un-sporty conduct, the referee can give a disciplinary foul
- If the competitor’s elbow is out of the pocket when he makes the pin, it is considered as a foul and the arm wrestling match will restart
- Both players must maintain full contact with the peg at the time of the pin
- False starting the match will result in a foul
- Before the ‘go’, you can only wrap 1 finger in the hand-grip
- All decision made by the referee are final