Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Mallakhamb Mean?

Mallakhamb is a traditional Indian sport and training system in which the practitioner performs gymnastic aerial yoga postures and wrestling grips on a standing or hanging wooden pole or cane. It can also be performed on a hanging rope. Modern-day pole dancing or Pole yoga is thought to have its roots in mallakhamb.

The name comes from malla, which means "wrestler," and khamb, which means "pole," so it can be literally translated as “wrestling pole.” As such, the word, mallakhamb, can also refer to the pole itself.


Yogapedia Explains Mallakhamb

Mallakhamb is an historical sport in India, and references to it date back as far as the 12th century. In more recent times, it has been chosen as the state sport by more than 20 states in India. It is considered to be an art form as well as a sport.

The benefits of mallakhamb are that it strengthens the muscles and keeps the body lean. Some of the postures are considered to be clear imitations of yoga postures. It is said that practicing mallakhamb can support with developing a stronger yoga practice as it teaches how to move from the core and engage muscle groups that may otherwise remain dormant.

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