Google Doodle Celebrates Gama Pehlwan Birth Anniversary
Google Doodle celebrates birth anniversary of India's Gama Pehlwan, the legendary undefeated wrestling champion
On Sunday, Google’s doodle showed a big man with a moustache and broad shoulders carrying a mace. On the 144th anniversary of his birth, it was a tribute to Ghulam Mohammad Baksh Butt, one of India’s best wrestlers. He was known as Gama Pehlwan or “The Great Gama.”
Gama Pehlwan was one of the best wrestlers of all time. People thought he couldn’t lose in the ring. During his career, “The Great Gama” never lost an international match. In 1927, when he won the World Wrestling Championship, he was given the nickname “Tiger.” He was actually called Ghulam Mohammad Baksh Butt, but most people call him Rustam-e-Hind.
The Google Doodle page says that the Doodle, which was made by guest artist Vrinda Zaveri, celebrates not only what Gama Pehlwan did in the ring, but also what he did for Indian culture and how he represented it.
Happy 144th birthday to one of the greatest wrestlers of all time, Gama Pehlwan (aka The Great Gama), who remained undefeated throughout decades of his career 🏆🏋🏽♂️
Learn more about his winning legacy in today’s #GoogleDoodle → https://t.co/9aJow6t32J pic.twitter.com/LiVtPok2wN
— Google Doodles (@GoogleDoodles) May 22, 2022
Gama Pehlwan : Everything You Need To Know About
In the early 20th century, traditional wrestling in Northern India began to emerge. Migrants from the lower and working classes competed in royal gymnasiums and gained national recognition when they won extravagant tournaments. During these competitions, spectators admired the physiques of the wrestlers and were inspired by their disciplined lifestyles.
At age 10, Gama’s workout routine included 500 lunges and 500 pushups. In 1888, he won a lunge competition against more than 400 wrestlers from across the country. His victory at the competition earned him recognition throughout India’s royal states. After reaching the age of 15, he began wrestling. In 1910, newspaper headlines in India hailed Gama as a national hero and world champion. Gama is also regarded as a hero for saving the lives of numerous Hindus during India’s partition in 1947. Until his death in 1960, he resided in Lahore, which later became a part of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
During his career, Gama won numerous titles, including the Indian versions of the World Heavyweight Championship (1910) and the World Wrestling Championship (1927), where he was awarded the nickname “Tiger” after the tournament. Prince of Wales presented him with a silver mace during his visit to India to honour the great wrestler. The legacy of Gama continues to inspire contemporary fighters. Bruce Lee is a well-known fan and incorporates Gama’s conditioning into his own training regimen.
10 Interesting Facts About Gama Pehlwan
Here are 10 important facts about the famous Gama Pehlwan:
This list comes from a number of different sources, since there isn’t much official information about Gama Pehlwan.
- He was only 5 feet and 7 inches tall, which was short for a pehelwan, but no one could match his strength. Every day, he supposedly did 5,000 squats and 3,000 push-ups.
- He ate 10 litres of milk, six chickens, and more than a pound of crushed almond paste every day. So, there you have it: the reason he is so strong.
- During his career, which lasted more than 50 years, he never lost a match. People think that none of his fights lasted more than a few minutes and that not even the world champion at the time could pose a threat. More to come on that…
- The strongman rose to prominence in his teenage years. When he fought Rustam-e-Hind (Indian champion) Raheem Baksh Sultaniwala, he was hailed as a legend. Gama was deemed to be no match for the seven-foot-tall Sultaniwala. Gama held him to a draw, which marked the beginning of his enchanting career.
- Gama Pehelawan was in his 20s in 1902 when he lifted a stone that weighed 1,200 kg. It took 25 people and a machine to move the stone, which is now on display at the Baroda museum.
- He didn’t have much or any competition in India. The wrestlers who tried to fight him were quickly beaten, and he flew overseas to find real opponents. He had to fight people like Stanislaus Zbyszko, Frank Gotch, and Benjamin Roller, all of whom he beat easily. They tried many times, and Zbyszko even asked for a rematch, but nothing changed. The end result was always going to be that Gama would win.
- He was so powerful that it became hard to find people who wanted to fight him. He then came up with a clever plan: he told his opponents that if they beat him, he’d give them the whole prize and go back to India. He did eventually go back to India, where he was still unbeaten.
- He was so well-known that when the Prince of Wales went to India in 1922, he insisted on meeting him. Then he would give him a silver mace. Gama was so well-known that Bruce Lee was said to have been influenced by him.
- In 1952, when he was 74 years old, he called it quits. He had to put away his gloves because he was getting older, not because he was getting weaker. He never lost any of his more than 5,000 fights.
- He left such a big mark that the National Institute of Sports (NIS) Museum in Patiala has a 100 kg doughnut-shaped exercise disc called Hasli that he used to do squats and pushups.
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