Games to include Vovinam martial art next year
QĐND – Wednesday, June 02, 2010, 21:31 (GMT+7)
Vovinam, the traditional Vietnamese martial art, will be featured at the 26th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Indonesia next year as a competitive sport for the first time, according to the SEA Sports Council.
Vovinam’s inclusion in the games will help promote the sport, which has gained recognition internationally in recent years, especially after the success of the first World Vovinam Championship in HCM City in July 2009 and at the third Asian Indoor Games last year, the Vietnam Vovinam Federation said.
“The presence of the sport in the SEA Games is a remarkable achievement by the Vietnam Olympics Committee and the Vietnam Vovinam Federation, which have trying to have the sport included in the games for years,” said Vo Danh Hai, World Vovinam Federation (WVVF)’s general secretary.
Next year’s SEA Games, martial artists will compete in 16 vovinam events –eight performance and eight combat events.
Vovinam is practised in six countries in the region aside from Vietnam , including Indonesia , Thailand , Singapore, the Philippines , Laos and Cambodia .
“The WVVF and the Vietnamese federation will send their coaches to train vovinam martial artists in countries that do not play the sport. Meanwhile, we will invite coaches and artists to practise in Vietnam,” he said.
“Hopefully, there will be at least nine delegations registering for this year’s SEA Games. It will be a great chance to promote Vietnam’s image to the world.”
Vovinam events will be held in Bali .
The martial art was founded in 1938 in Hanoi by late Grand Master Nguyen Loc.
It is practised in 40 countries and has more than 100,000 practitioners. It is popular in France , Italy and the US .
Cambodia will host the Southeast Asia Vovinam Federation meeting in July.