Aa: Sumida-area


Tokyo SKYTREE in Tokyo Japan

This tower is TOKYO SKYTREE.

It's a broadcasting tower with restaurants and observation decks in Sumida-ward Tokyo.

It's the tallest structure in Japan. It's 634 meters tall.

The height was decided on for two reasons.

First, it's the tallest free-standing tower in the world.

Second, "634" can be pronounced as "MUSASHI" in Japanese.

"MUSASHI" is an old name of Tokyo area.

It was completed in 2012.


They have two observatories.

The height of the first observation deck is about 350 meters. 

The second deck's height is 450 meters.

↓The view from the deck at 450 meters.


↑This photo was taken by my English teacher.

Thanks, Cindy!

You need to buy tickets to go these decks..

It's a very popular sightseeing spot,

so I recommend you to book the ticket on their website.

Tokyo SKYTREE website




Grand Sumo at Ryogoku kokugikan in Tokyo Japan ABOUT "DOHYO-IRI"

This is a scene of "DOHYO-IRI", it means "enter the ring".


They are high ranking wrestlers,

but Yokozuna wrestlers, highest ranking wrestlers, do "Yokozuna dohyo-iri",

so they don't join this ceremony.

The ceremony is done for purifying the area.


They put on beautiful aprons. It's called "Kesho Mawashi",

it means "an apron decorated beautifully".

They are made of silk and are very expensive.

It is said that the cost of an apron is over ten thousand dollars.

"Kesho mawashi" is usually given to wrestlers by sponsors.

Therefore the names of the wrestler and his sponsor are embroidered on the aprons.

photo: September 2013


Grand Sumo at Ryogoku kokugikan in Tokyo Japan ABOUT YUMITORISIKI

A sumo wrestler gives a performance with a long bow

after the last match of the day.


The performance used to be given by a champion wrestler of the grand sumo

tournament as "a winner's performance".


However, nowadays it is given by a wrestler who belongs to the sumo stable

which  has a Yokozuna rank wrestler.


In addition, it used to be performed at the end of the tournament,

but now it is performed after the last match of each day.


If the wrestler drops the bow in the performance, he needs to pick it up with his feet,

because  touching the ground with his hand means "defeat" in sumo rules.

Actually, however, performers are well trained, so I have never seen a wrestler drops

the bow in his performance.


This wrestler is SATONOFUJI. He belong to the sumo stable

which has a YOKOZUNA rank wrestler, "HARUMAFUJI".

He performed the with the bow very well.

photo: September 17


Grand Sumo at Ryogoku kokugikan in Tokyo Japan ABOUT SALT

Sumo wrestlers scatter salt before their matches.


They do it for purifying the sumo ring.

↓This wrestler scatters more salt than other wrestlers.


Each wrestler scatters salt by his own style.

Some of them scatters a lot salt in distinctive ways,

other wrestlers scatter a little salt quietly.


photo: September 2013


Grand Sumo at Ryogoku kokugikan in Tokyo Japan ABOUT SHIKO

Sumo wrestlers often do these movements.


Wrestlers open their legs and put their hands around their knees and lift up their leg, then stamp the ground with their feet strongly.


A series of these movements is called SHIKO.


Sumo is a part of a Shinto ritual.


Shiko is done for purifying the area and pouring gods' energy into the land.


In addition, Shiko is regarded as a basic training for Sumo wrestlers.


It doesn't look so hard, but actually the movements are very tough.

It helps strengthen the lower half of your body, if you keep on doing this exercise regularly.

photo: September 2013


Grand Sumo at Ryogoku kokugikan in Tokyo Japan ABOUT YOKOZUNA

↓He is HAKUHO, he has been a YOKOZUNA rank wrestler since 2007.

He is called the great YOKOZUNA in the HEISEI era.

The HEISEI era refers to the reign of the current emperor.


YOKOZUNA is the highest ranking at a grand sumo tournament.

YOKO means the horizontal, ZUNA means ropes.

YOKOZUNA was named after the ropes

which only YOKOZUNA wrestlers are permitted to tie at their waists.

(See picture above)


YOKOZUNA wrestlers need to have not only strength but also dignity.




He  also has been a YOKOZUNA rank wrestler since 2012.


These photos are scenes of YOKOZUNA DOHYOIRI.

SUMO is a part of a Shinto ritual,

the performance of DOHYOIRI is one of the  important ceremonies at the tournaments.

It is for soothing the regional gods, and praying for peace.


There are these two YOKOZUNA wrestlers now, September 2013.

They are both from Mongolia.

There have not been Japanese YOKOZUNA wrestlers for ten years.

Many sumo fans are wishing eagerly that

Japanese sumo wrestlers become stronger, gain dignity,

and are promoted to YOKOZUNA rank.

photo: September 2013


Grand Sumo at Ryogoku kokugikan in Tokyo Japan

Sumo is a national sport of Japan and one of the country's oldest professional sports.


They hold grand sumo 6 times a year.

We can see grand sumo in Tokyo in January, May and September.

They hold grand sumo in Osaka in March,

in Nagoya in July, and in Fukuoka in November.


I love watching sumo, because it's exciting and the rules are very simple.

The wrestler must force his opponent out of the ring

or to touch the ground with anything other than the soles of his feet.

When the wrestler is thrown down or pushed out of the ring,

the referee raises his fan to announce the winner.

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About me

  • Hi there! I'm Lala. I'm a Japanese living in Tokyo. I'm an English speaking licensed guide and authorized tour conductor. If you have questions, please leave comments on this blog or send me e-mails. lalalamumin☆yahoo.co.jp (please replace ☆ with @ when you send me e-mails)

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