• Introduction to Commercial French

Gouren - Celtic Wrestling

This friday evening we explored more of Quimper's celtic culture with Gouren, or celtic wrestling. While I didn't participate because I twisted my ankle earlier in the day, everyone else participated. The beginning warm-up excersises gave me flashbacks to high-school gym classes on didge-ball days. But after running around and playing some combination of dodge-ball and stuck in the mud, the group moved on to learning about the actual rules and moves of the sport. The trick with this kind of wrestling is that you can only grab your opponent be the white, short-sleeve shirts that they wear. Shannon and Alex, and Emmie and Samantha weren't afraid to take each other down while Amanda and Andrea were timid, afraid of hurting one another. But, as one as one of the teachers said, it isn't about strength; it is about being well-positioned." While I was unable to join the rest in throwing one another about, I asked some questions and learned more about the sport and our teachers. Apparently one of our Gouren teachers is a European champian. This got me wondering about where in the world Gouren is played then in order to have international compititions. Outside of celtic regions like Brittany (where we are), Wales, Scottland, Ireland and northern Spain, Gouren is also practised in some eastern european countries, Argentina, and Canada. When I seemed surprised to hear about Argentina and Canada, Dr. Feat explained that this happened through the immagration of the French to Canada and the Spanish to Argentina. I didn't expect to find that it had reached so far across the world.