Kalarippayattu      IeIÄ
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Kalarippayattu is the traditional martial art of Kerala. It is believed to be the forerunner of all eastern martial arts.
It incorporates strikes, kicks, grappling, martial dances, weaponry as well as healing techniques. It has played a significant role in the technical development of all other performing arts in Kerala. Its roots can be traced back to the 12th century when skirmishes among the many feudal principalities were very common.
Kalarippayattu is still taught in Kerala.

Masters of Kalarippayattu are called Gurukkal/ Asan. Kalarippayattu is taught inside a special arena called Kalari, which is part school, part gymnasium and part temple.
A Kalari is constructed following traditional principles. Its rectangular design is always aligned in east-west direction. Hindu deities are represented at each corner.
Training in Kalarippayattu begins at a very young age.
Both girls and boys are taught. Learning requires ritual stretching and flexing exercises.To increase suppleness of limbs, a full body massage is given. During the course of training, various weapons like the sword and shield are introduced.

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