Marcus "Buchecha" Almeida (R) (ONE Championship)

Different Unique Wrestling Disciplines from Around the World

Wrestling is the oldest combat sport in the world, dating back 15,000 years ago. The first depiction of wrestling comes in the form of cave paintings. Throughout the millennia, wrestling has been practiced in every part of the world, and different, unique disciplines of the sport have developed. In this article, we will take a look at a few wrestling disciplines from around the world.

The most popular wrestling discipline and one of the two Olympic wrestling disciplines (the other one being Freestyle wrestling), Greco-Roman wrestling, as the name suggests, originates from Ancient Greece and Rome.

In Greco-Roman wrestling, striking below the belt is forbidden, so wrestlers can’t grab opponents below the belt, or trip their opponent. For this reason, Greco-Roman wrestlers focus on throws, as they cannot grab an opponent’s leg to trip them or pin them.


Greco-Roman wrestling is the most popular form of wrestling, and is practiced internationally. When it comes to betting, Greco-Roman wrestling is one of the most popular disciplines of wrestling netting quite a large betting pool at online betting sites. The best sports betting sites at, for example, all cover wrestling as a betting option.

Sambo is a form of wrestling originating in the Soviet Union. Sambo is a recognized amateur wrestling discipline, and it is recognized by the United World Wrestling organization along with freestyle wrestling and Greco-Roman wrestling.

Sambo was developed in the early 1920s by the Red Army and the Soviet NKVD. The goal was to develop the unarmed fighting skills of soldiers and policemen, and also produce a martial art that will disarm and subdue a target without major injury.

Sambo was derived from Judo, and in fact, the creator of Sambo trained Judo from the creator of the martial art himself, Kano Jigoro. Today, Sambo is practiced internationally and is considered one of the most effective self-defense martial arts.

Sumo, which literally means “striking each other”, is a Japanese spin on full-contact wrestling. The goal of the sport is for the two wrestlers, or rikishi as they are called in Japan, to force each other out of the sumo ring, or into touching the ground with any part of the body (other than their feet).
The sport of sumo dates back to the 1000s, meaning it has been practiced in Japan for over a thousand years, and is still one of Japan’s favorite sports. Worldwide, sumo is most known for the unique build of the sumo wrestlers, who are usually tall, muscular, and rotund.

Historically, sumo wrestlers have been some of the most beloved and respected people in Japanese society, and they are still quite respected in Japan.

Originating from Ancient India, this unique form of wrestling incorporates all the typical grappling maneuvers that one would associate with the martial art, adding on top of that striking, biting, choking, punching, and joint-breaking. The sport has been around since Ancient India, with references to it being made in the Mahabharata. It is divided into four categories, all of which focus on different specialties, including technical superiority, grappling, strength, etc.

Malla-Yuddha has largely gone extinct in India. However, quite a handful of practitioners can still be found keeping the martial art alive.