World Ethnosport Confederation President Erdogan: We Care Very Much About Keeping Traditional Sports Alive.
Publish Date : 04/10/2019
"We Care Very Much About Keeping Traditional Sports Alive"

World Ethnosport Confederation (WEC) President Bilal Erdogan and vice president and president of the Federation of traditional sports branches of Turkey Hakan Kazancı answered Anatolia Agency (AA) Sports Desk's question in Fourth Ethnosport Culture Festival.

Erdogan and Kazancı's answers to the questions are as follows:

The fourth Ethnosport Cultural Festival is being held. What do our citizens encounter when they come here, what activities and innovations await them?

Bilal Erdogan: We are in a different place this year. We started in Küçükçekmece the first year, then; we realized the organization in Yenikapı. This year we are in the Atatürk Airport area. This is an area that has been declared to be a nation Garden in Istanbul after the construction of the new airport. It's a place where we see it's a suitable space to do events. In the future, we thought that we would contribute to the preservation of traditional sports during the design of the nation garden. Archery clubs in Istanbul do not have the space to meet the demand. When there is such a need, we care very much about keeping the traditional sports alive in the area that will be offered to the service of Istanbul. We invite guest countries and sports every year. Argentina's Pato sport is among us this year. Kirghiz and Kazakhs play a sport similar to the game of Kökbörü. The excitement and enthusiasm of the bleachers revealed how much acclaim we had for our work.

For the first time this year, we brought a horse-drawn archery simulator to the children's delight. Their first attempt will be made here; then, we'll move it to a permanent location. We will open an Ethnosport Experience Center in the Mustafa Kemal Cultural Center, and there will be this equestrian archery simulator. We're using the technology. When a child rides on a horse on a robotic arm, it will almost shoot an arrow on the horse. We had quite a lot of children's activities. There is a region of universal delicacies; we will ensure the meeting of the people of Istanbul with the cuisines of 16 countries. Our events will not be affected by rain. We made our preparations to welcome hundreds of thousands of Istanbulites at the weekend.

You conducted a feverish study. In serious preparation, many educational tools, materials, and objects were brought. What are your efforts for this great organization?

Hakan Kazancı: the works have started not only in the field but also in the office environment. What are our positive, negative, and missing sides? This year we brought our volunteer friends into the business. When you look at the number, we can see around 350 working friends. Our friends worked for 24 hours, not hours. Ultimately this area was built in a running time of 10-15 days. This work happened not only here, but off the field as well. We see his finale.

How is the interest in traditional sports in our country? Can you observe the increasing importance of young people?

Bilal Erdoğan: we did this with planning in spare time, at a time when people were low as morale motivation just after July 15. Then, when we saw the countenance of the people, we understood the truth of what we were doing. Every year since then, we have struggled to develop our strengths and weaknesses by identifying them. A mass has formed inside Istanbul that knows what ethnosport is. We see that we have laid solid foundations and started to fight.

Which did you like better in Radamel Falcao and Vedat Muric's arrow shot?

Bilal Erdogan: the possibility of a sterile shooting could not be caught. They could not move freely because of the excellent countenance of the children. A little bit of Vedat had the opportunity to shoot before Falcao arrived, he was training. He started one step ahead. It's not fair what we say. We thank them both so much for their contribution to traditional sports. There may even be people pulling this to different places, and it doesn't matter. They added a different kind of joy. Our former athletes have also come, and we thank them all.

Different ideas are being put forward about the date of the ethnosport Cultural Festival. Any thoughts about changing the time of the festival in the years to come?

Bilal Erdoğan: we had already decided that we would hold the festival in October this year. The whole of May coincided with the month of Ramadan. In April, we said the weather was not favorable, and we wanted to move the organization to the opening of schools and set this date. We'll have the festival this time next year. And from 2021, we'll be back in May. Then, if Allah permits, we will continue to organize the festival in May for 30 years or so.

This year, the festival's slogan was set as "Pilavdan dönenin kaşığı kırılsın(Never give-up)." What kind of process did you set the slogan on, and what is the message you want to live here?

Bilal Erdoğan: there is great teamwork here. The number of friends on the boards of our Confederacy is over 30. We have a group that has different specialties. Under these are professional employees. We also started a volunteering program. We have international students who support us and work as interns in our offices throughout the year. They research traditional sports in their language and give us information. Throughout the year, we present the slogan and concept proposals to the board under the leadership of our general artistic director. We decide after selecting the appropriate ones. We also did something like this. We also made 3 of our slogan" throw an arrow, catch a wrestle and ride a horse " and promised that we would have a special gift for everyone sharing our hashtag on social media.

Hakan Kazancı: there is perseverance, struggle, and determination in the slogan "Pilavdan dönenin kaşığı kırılsın(Never give-up)". Our traditional sports include these three elements. It all comes from phrases. Everything we do goes back to the past. We decided that these three elements are suitable for the environment we are in this year. We found it in place and set out for it. We also have three little slogans. "Ride a horse, throw an arrow, and hold wrestling." We've announced and set out assertively. The guests ride and shoot arrows if they wish. We also have friends who will do greasy and healthy wrestling.

The nomadic world Games will be held in Turkey next year. Any idea where to do it? What about the studies?

Bilal Erdogan: the Ministry of Youth and Sports will decide this. We presented candidate cities to the Ministry of Youth and Sports. We've been trying to identify possible locations and got advice so that the ministry will decide on one of these cities. It will be a place that is both easy to reach and has a reference and meaning to the history of civilization. We made sure it was geographically beautiful. It should be a permanent facility. The Kyrgyz built a kökbörü plant on the edge of Lake Issık. Kökbörü matches are played throughout the year, and we want to have a permanent facility. We want people to visit this facility throughout the year. We wish it were a living facility.

Once a year, the Ethnosport Cultural Festival is held. What do you plan to do to increase the number of organizations?

Hakan Kazancı: we have this kind of work. We built a facility in Ankara. Our guests will be able to observe and perform the traditional sports practiced here in that facility. There was no such facility in Turkey, and we did that. We have records, even if they haven't been officially opened yet. We, as Confederates, have a festival once a year, but we go to all our schools and teach Mangala. We present gifts to students. We also have Mas-Wrestling. It's quickly done in a school setting. We teach students to do this and give them mattresses and boards. We also make the Mangala an organization in our visually impaired schools. Events continue throughout the year. When we came into administration in 2016 as a Federation of traditional sports, the number of events was one, and today it was 300. So far, our number of incidents has increased. We have other activities in Kahramanmaraş, Gaziantep, Hatay, and many other cities. When I went to Kahramanmaraş, I saw wrestling. The audience's interest was also very much. By Allah's leave, there will be no house in Anatolia without traditional sports. Of course, we have to create spaces for them to be executed. We don't spend huge sums on building the facilities and reinforced concrete. Small places, financially and physically, are enough for us.

What's your favorite sport at the Ethnosport Cultural Festival?

Bilal Erdoğan: besides archery, the sport here has the highest pleasure of cruising. And the Paton has a great taste in cruising. Argentina also has famous athletes. They can make long passes, touchdown passes, shots. I've seen this in the Pato team here, they play with the big round, they move away very well, and they grab him when he's on the horse. Their target is also 1 meter in diameter, slightly larger than the basket pot. They're throwing a lot of good shots there. The audience loved it.

And oil wrestling... We've been to important races this summer, we've watched. There have been some perfect matches. Ismail Balaban and Orhan school had an excellent game. They played well last year; they did it in the rain. We had some suitable matches this year. Ali Gürbüz closed oil wrestling this summer, monopolized it, almost pulled out a jumpsuit. People come to watch oil wrestling from 9 am to 10 pm, and they give 50 or 60 pounds, and I'm very sorry they watch wrestling from 5 pm to 6 pm. It's about this much of this work, patients. We want this request to be seen by broadcasters, by decision-makers, by the administration. There is a huge demand. For the first time this summer, oil wrestling began to be broadcast on private channels. They saw it. There is a demand for the people, but there needs to be supplied in terms of facilities and facilities. As a federation and Confederation, we are working to create these opportunities in Turkey.

Hakan Kazancı: my javelin game (equestrian javelin) against separate love, I have an interest. The Javelin is our game. Like other traditional sports, it is not a sprawling sport, born in the Central Asian republics. It is a sport unique to Turkey. That's why I have my place.

Many are unaware of such activities. What do you tell families, young people, children?

Hakan Kazancı: we are in high demand. We have surveys, phone calls that we have done in this direction. Why so little? Won't it be a little longer? Do it a few times a year, like requests, questions happening. We are here because we have seen this demand, we are here, but every business has consistency. We have to keep it in a particular place.

To free children from tech bondage, we're going to offer young people, students some things so they can go that way. We give him the phone, the tablet when it's time. We encourage you to relax for 2 minutes. If we offer the same children and young people such opportunities, they will go that way. They're not like us; their blood is fast; they need to move.

There are so many parents, so many students, so many adults who come to festivals, shoot arrows, ride horses, looking for clubs, associations. My president said, Our Istanbul Archers Foundation can no longer meet this demand. We need to build new places, new facilities.

We have to offer such opportunities to young people so they can avoid the plague of technology. We are not against technology, X, Y, Z sports or football. We want them to know and live up to our values.This is a cultural festival. At the same time, the food of the countries is offered to visitors.

Based on your last three years, what was the traditional flavor left on your palate?

Bilal Erdoğan: what we call Uzbek pilaff, especially Bukhara rice, Samarkand rice, especially these rice, stole our hearts. For him, the leading food of the festival every year is Uzbek rice. It may not be that many people make Uzbek rice in their homes anymore, but it is also a popular dish. For me; It's Uzbek pilaff. There are cooks from 16 countries. They'll make their food. From Afghanistan to Ukraine to African countries, people who come here will have the opportunity to taste the diet of many different countries. And the lamb is our big wedding dinner. And I'll tell you; she's going to be served a lamb today. The food and drink areas are widespread, wealthy. It's where culture meets humanity most often, where it eats and drinks. The dishes you love are a cultural reference for you. I also love international cuisine. But our kitchen is the best. I wouldn't change anything.

Do you have a message for families, for young people to come to the festival?

Bilal Erdogan: Warnings are being made about it is rainy tomorrow, but we are prepared for any rain during the festival. People should not hesitate to come out saying there is rainfall. We planned that activities could continue despite the rain. Eating and drinking, children's play areas, many activity areas, our stage areas are closed. We have both indoor and outdoor arenas. Here 4-5 thousand people can follow the activities on stage in the indoor area. And our space is enormous. Just take a raincoat and an umbrella and come. Where are we taking the kids? How do we get the kids out? While Istanbul has such a unique issue, it should not go to waste when there is such an opportunity. People should take advantage of this place from past to present.

Source: AA