What Is the Main National Sport of Mongolia?

What Is the Main National Sport of Mongolia?

If you’re like most people, you may not know what the main national sport of Mongolia is. Is it wrestling? Archery? Or something else entirely? The proud country of Mongolia has been practising various sports for centuries and continues to do so today – each one with its own fascinating history and meaning.

In this article, we will explore the rules of the sport, where it originated, how it developed into what it is today, and why many people still consider it to be an important part of their culture.

What Is the Main National Sport of Mongolia?

Mongolian wrestling is the main national sport of Mongolia. It is one of the oldest forms of martial arts and people still do it today.

During competitions, opponents stand across from each other and try to throw the other person to the ground using different moves. The rules are easy – the first wrestler to throw their opponent down wins the match.

Mongolian wrestling competitions usually take place between two opponents, but occasionally four to five contestants will compete in a single match. Competitions involve headgear and brightly coloured sashes that represent different parts of Mongolia’s history and culture, rather than any national team or individual. [2]

In addition to wrestling, horse racing and archery are also popular sports in Mongolia. Horse racing is considered one of the oldest sporting events in Mongolia and dates back to the 13th century. Archery has been a part of Mongolian culture for centuries and continues to be practised today.

In Mongolia, people also like to play and watch other sports such as football (soccer), volleyball, basketball, and ice hockey.

Mongolian athletes have done well in international competitions such as the Olympic Games. They have won medals in lots of different sports.

Popular Sports of Mongolia

Traditional or Regional Sports

The most popular traditional sport in Mongolia is khuriltai, which literally translates to “throwing stones.” This is a game that is similar to horseshoes or quoits and involves throwing a stone at a target. It is usually played between two teams of five people each.

Shagai, meaning anklebone, is also a popular game in Mongolia. It involves throwing sheep anklebones, aiming to either hit a target or have the bones land as close as possible to it. The player with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Mongolian culture today still includes archery. Archery is a sport that people do for fun and also in competitions

In the past, archery was even more important than it is now. People used bows and arrows for hunting and in wars. So it makes sense that archery would still be a big part of Mongolian culture.

What is Mongolian Wrestling?

Mongolian wrestling is a sport that started in Mongolia. People still do it today. Two people stand across from each other during a competition. They try to throw the other person down using different moves. The wrestler who throws the other person down first wins the match.

The rules for Mongolian wrestling are simple. The wrestler must use only his arms and legs to throw their opponent down. There is no punching, kicking or any other type of physical contact allowed.

Competitions are seen as a way for people to show respect for each other, celebrate their heritage and pass down their traditional knowledge. It is also a way for people to stay fit and have fun.

Mongolian wrestling competitions take place between two opponents, but occasionally four to five contestants will compete in a single match. Competitors wear headgear and brightly coloured sashes that represent different parts of Mongolia’s history and culture, rather than any specific team or individual.

Mongolian wrestling is a fun and exciting sport to watch, and it is an important part of Mongolia’s cultural heritage. It is the main national sport of Mongolia, and people enjoy watching and participating in competitions all over the country. [1]

Where Did Mongolian Wrestling Come From?

Mongolian wrestling was originally developed in ancient Mongolia as a form of self-defense and training for the military. It is believed that Genghis Khan himself was an avid wrestler, which may be why it remains so popular in the country today.

The rules for wrestling have changed over time. People have created new moves and perfected them to make the sport more challenging. In Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, there are yearly wrestling tournaments that bring in a lot of spectators from different countries.

Who Can Compete?

Mongolian wrestling is a sport for everyone. Boys and girls, old and young people can all do it. Women have been able to do it since the sport started, but only in 2015 were they allowed to compete in official tournaments.

Mongolian wrestling is a great way for children to stay active and learn about their history and culture. Many schools in Mongolia have wrestling teams, and there are even some international tournaments for children that happen throughout the year.

Mongolian wrestling is a fun sport that anyone can participate in. It teaches important physical skills such as balance, agility and strength while also giving people an appreciation of their own culture. [1]

Who Can Compete?

How Is The Champion Determined?

The winner of a Mongolian wrestling match is usually determined by the best of three throws. The wrestler who wins two out of three matches is declared the winner. If both wrestlers win one throw each, then an extra round is held and the first person to win that round becomes the champion.

Mongolian wrestling tournaments are often divided into different weight classes and age groups. This helps to make sure that the competition is fair for everyone involved.

The champion of a Mongolian wrestling tournament receives a lot of honour and recognition in their community. They also receive prizes such as medals, money, and other valuable items.

Rituals and Ceremonies

Before Mongolian wrestling matches start, the wrestlers pray to the sky, the earth, and their ancestors. They do this to ask for strength and courage.

The wrestlers usually also perform a dance called “Shudan”, which symbolizes their strength and skill. At the end of a match, both wrestlers will often embrace each other to show respect for their opponent and honour the sport.

Mongolian wrestling is a big part of Mongolian culture. People have competitions all over the country to see who is the best. It is still popular today like it was long ago. If you want to watch some good matches or even compete, Mongolian wrestling is something you will enjoy and not forget. It is also a way for people to stay healthy, have fun, and learn about their culture all at the same time.

Clothing and Accessories

In Mongolian wrestling, the traditional clothing worn by wrestlers is called a “Degel”. This consists of a belt, shoulder guards and a cap. The wrestler must wear these during the match.

Belts that wrestlers wear are usually made of thick leather. They have metal decorations that are different sizes and shapes depending on the wrestler’s rank. Shoulder guards are also made of leather. They have metal plates to protect the wrestler’s shoulders.

The cap is the most important part of the outfit and it is usually decorated with precious metals or stones. It has a ring at the top and a tassel that hangs down near the wrestler’s forehead. This is used to make sure that the wrestler does not break any rules of the sport.

Mongolian wrestling is a great way to learn about Mongolian culture and have some fun. It is a sport for everyone, regardless of their age or gender.

People all over Mongolia take part in this traditional sport every year, and it continues to be popular. It is also a great way for children to stay active and learn about their culture.

Clothing and Accessories

Mongolian wrestlers use a variety of moves to try and defeat their opponent. Some of the most popular moves include:

  • Seciin magtaal (leg sweep) – The wrestler uses his arms to grab onto one of the opponents legs, then sweeps it in a circular motion while pushing up on the thigh, forcing the opponent to lose balance and fall.
  • Nugaarduulah (eagle grip) – The wrestler grabs the opponent’s arm and locks their elbow into an armbar, forcing them to the ground.
  • Arslan Khaavgaar (lion’s bite) – The wrestler uses his hands to grab the back of the opponent’s neck and bites down, forcing them to the ground.

These moves were developed by Mongolian wrestlers centuries ago and are still used today.

Mongolian wrestling is a sport that started a long time ago and is still popular today. People in Mongolia have been doing it for many years and it is part of their culture. Every year, there are national competitions where people from all over Mongolia come together to wrestle. It is a fun way to celebrate their culture.

Wrestling is seen as an important part of Mongolian identity. Many wrestlers wear traditional clothing during competitions and honour Genghis Khan by performing special rituals before each match.

By participating in the sport, people not only learn valuable skills but also get to take part in something that has been a part of Mongolia’s history for centuries.

Mongolian wrestling is the main national sport of Mongolia and it is still popular today. It has a rich history and vibrant culture. The rules are easy to learn, and the moves are sure to impress anyone who watches.

So if you ever get the chance to watch a Mongolian wrestling competition, don’t miss out – it’s an experience you won’t forget!

Other National Sports

Mongolia is home to many other sports that are popular throughout the country. Some of these include traditional Mongolian archery, khuresh (also known as freestyle wrestling), and horse racing. Horse racing competitions in Mongolia can attract large crowds and feature some of the most skilled riders from around the world.

In addition to these sports, Mongolia also has a thriving soccer scene. The country’s top-tier league is known as the Mongolian Premier League and includes teams from all over the country.

Mongolia has a lot of traditional sports that people still like to play. If you visit Mongolia, spend some time learning about the sports that are special to Mongolia. You might even find a new sport that you like!

Other National Sports

Athletes from Mongolia

Over the years, Mongolia has produced some great athletes. Here are a few of them:

  • Purevdorjiin Serdamba is one of the most successful Mongolian wrestlers in history. He won gold medals at the Asian Games and World Championships, as well as numerous other competitions.
  • Tsogtbayar Dorj is a judoka who won gold medals at the Asian Championships and World Championships.
  • Bolortuya Batbayar is an archer who won a silver medal at the 2012 London Olympics.
  • Tsogtbaatar Damdinsuren is a taekwondo athlete who won gold medals at the 2018 Asian Games and 2019 World Taekwondo Championships.

These athletes have all made incredible achievements and are proof of Mongolia’s sporting prowess. So if you’re ever in Mongolia, be sure to show your support for these amazing athletes!

Mongolia at Major Events

Mongolian athletes have been competing in international competitions since the 1950s. They first competed in the Summer Olympic Games at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics and have participated in every Olympics since then.

Mongolian athletes have also won medals at other major sporting events, such as the Asian Games and Commonwealth Games.

At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Mongolia won an impressive seven medals. This was their most successful Olympic performance to date and included gold medals in judo, taekwondo, and wrestling.

In recent years, Mongolia has seen a decline in its medal tally at major international events. However, the country is still producing some talented athletes who are making waves on the world stage.

Mongolia is an excellent country for sports. From their traditional sports to their international achievements, it’s clear that the people of Mongolia are passionate about sport.

So if you ever have the opportunity to experience Mongolian culture, make sure you check out some of their amazing sporting events – you won’t regret it.

Annual Sporting Events Held in Mongolia

Mongolia has many sports events during the year. This includes competitions between people from different countries and also within Mongolia.

The most popular event is Mongolian Wrestling, but there are also others, such as archery competitions and horse races. Sometimes, Mongolia also hosts international football tournaments.

The annual Naadam Festival is one of Mongolia’s biggest sporting events. It consists of three traditional Mongolian sports – archery, horse racing and wrestling. It’s held every July in the capital city Ulaanbaatar and attracts large crowds from all over the world.

The Naadam Festival is a great opportunity to experience Mongolian culture and learn more about their sports. The festival features traditional ceremonies, as well as some amazing competitions.

Annual Sporting Events Held in Mongolia


What are the three traditional sports of Mongolia?

The three traditional sports of Mongolia are archery, horse racing and Mongolian wrestling.

Mongolian wrestling is the most popular sport in Mongolia. It’s also the national sport of the country.

Are there any professional sports leagues in Mongolia?

Yes, there are several professional sports leagues in Mongolia, including the Mongolian Football League and the Mongolian Basketball League.

Yes, football is very popular in Mongolia. The Mongolian Football League was founded in 1948 and is the country’s oldest professional sports league.

Which country’s national game is cricket?

Cricket is the national game of England, India, Pakistan and other Commonwealth countries. It’s also a popular sport in Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and the West Indies.

Is Mongolia good at basketball?

Yes, Mongolia is very good at basketball. The Mongolian Basketball League was founded in 1997 and consists of eight teams from across the country.

Many Mongolian players have gone on to compete internationally, including Li Yuanzhe who played for the New York Knicks in 2017.

Why is Mongolia so famous?

Mongolia is known for its pretty landscapes and cool cities. People there do special sports like Mongolian wrestling and archery. Mongolia has done well in lots of international competitions like the Olympics, Asian Games and Commonwealth Games.

Mongolians have also made important contributions to art, literature and science throughout history. So Mongolia is a very important part of the world’s cultural heritage.

Why is Mongolia unique?

Mongolia is special because it has a lot of different cultures. It is the only country in central Asia that was never part of a bigger empire, so people there still live like they did long ago.

Mongolia also has some amazing landscapes, like the Gobi Desert and Lake Khövsgöl. And Mongolian sports like wrestling and archery are part of who they are as a country.

Useful Video: Top 5 Traditional Sports In Mongolia


We learned that in Mongolia, wrestling is the main national sport. It’s a great way to stay active and compete with others. Plus, Mongolia is a great place to learn about the culture and lifestyle of Mongolians.

If you’re curious to learn more, look into attending some of the world’s largest international tournaments or even make a trip out to Mongolia – you may just have a great time!

We hope this article was informative and that it inspired you to explore the many sports offered around the world! Thanks for reading and happy travels!


  1. https://silkroadmongolia.com/what-is-the-main-national-sport-in-mongolia/
  2. https://www.topendsports.com/world/countries/mongolia.htm