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Gran Canaria

Local Sports

Juego del Palo (Stick Fighting)

This recreational sports activity involves the execution of a series of movements with sticks in simulated combat between two participants. The aim is to "score" or simulate hits without there being any contact on the unprotected parts of the body.

The sport requires consummate skill and balance, as well as agility in the wrists, arms, hips and feet. Spectators are amazed by the spectacular tilted stances of the fighters, as well as the characteristic manner in which the sticks are held at one end and twirled in windmill-like movements.

Some of the characteristic techniques that are used in the sport are "cuadras", a term that refers to the stances that the contenders adopt, "atajes" and "parados", which refer to defensive blocking moves, as well as "mandados" and "tirados", which are techniques for attacking with the sticks. These techniques are classified according to the manner of execution as well as the part of the stick that is used for scoring or indicating the hit.

The sticks, which may differ in size, are chosen in accordance with certain criteria, whereafter they are prepared in a specific way to obtain strength and lightness.