Khridoli is one of the oldest types of Georgian martial arts, with its roots going back several millennia. The word "khridoli" comes from the word “khrikhi,” meaning to trick someone. Accordingly, fighting in this discipline meant defeating the opponent with intelligence, wisdom, and skill. At the same time, being victorious in this particular martial art meant one had generally mastered martial arts. In modern khridoli, tricks or moves that may put the opponent's life in danger are no longer allowed. The types of martial arts that make up khridoli are ancient, and when the restoration of Georgian martial arts began in 1997, the Georgian Martial Arts Federation united five other areas of Georgian martial arts in khridoli: wrestling, rkena (battling), fencing, archery, and boxing.


Georgian wrestling rules are distinctive and sophisticated, and it is considered one of the most beautiful types of wrestling. Contests take place only when both competitors are standing. It is forbidden to compete in a squat position, as well as to hold the lower limbs of the opponent, or to use painful techniques such as “choking.”


Rkena (Khevsurian wrestling) is quite different from traditional Georgian wrestling with its own peculiar rules. Any tricks or moves are allowed. According to the traditions preserved in Khevsureti, you are allowed to put your hand around the "mukasari" (trouser legs).


In Khevsurian fencing, opponents fight using a sword and a small circular shield. During sports competitions, khridoli fighters use a wooden shield and sword. It is forbidden to swing the sword at the opponent from the side, a rule which comes from an old Georgian custom, according to which unless you are fighting a sworn enemy, you should twist the sword from the wrist and inflict only a light wound.


Georgian archery uses specially-made wooden bows. It is also permissible to use a bow made of an animal’s horn. Competing with modern sports bows is prohibited. The size of the bow is not specified, and depends on the participants’ preference.


In Georgian boxing, fights take place using the khridoli choke technique. In ancient times, Georgians fought with their bare hands, but now they fight with special gloves. It is permitted to use common wrestling techniques, to strike with a fist, foot, head, knee, or elbow on almost all parts of the body. Elbowing, kneeing, and hitting the head or the face are however prohibited during competitions.

Khridoli Combat Chokha

Khridoli competition clothes include traditional Georgian wrestling robes, used in the country up until the 1930s. The fighting style changed at that point, due to which some techniques were outlawed and the wrestling took a different turn. Use of the combat chokha robe was restored in 1997 however, during the establishment of the khridoli combat system. Today, it is the official uniform of all five fighting styles that make up khridoli.

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