Brave Heart: The Pehlivan (Wrestler)
Hamza nib is our father, Kel Alico, Koca Yusuf,
Kurtdereli and Adali Halil are our masters, Kirkpinar is
our field of contest for brave men. We do not worry about
being under; we do not feel happy for being on top; our
aim is to become the wrestling champion well deservedly
The word Pehlivan
is in Persian language. Although its real meanings are
courageous, bold and brave, officer, governor, big and heavy
and honest people are called as Pehlivan, too.
During the times of Seljuk, the warriors who showed heroism,
the wrestlers and the shooters who went big were called as
Pehlivan and also this name was used for only sportsmen at
the beginning of the 16th century. This usage of the word
Pehlivan continued until the end of the era of Sultan Mahmut
The wrestlers who attend the greased wrestling contests
wrestle in these categories according to their height and
A) Little is divided into two according to its weight and
1- Little (between 8 10 ages)
2- Little (between 10 12 ages)
12 14 ages
C) Very Windy (Tozkoparan)
14 16 ages
D) Deck Small
1- 16 18 ages
2- Maximum 2 years experienced in wrestling
3- Maximum 70 kg
E) Deck Medium
1- 18 19 ages
2- Maximum 80 kg
F) Deck Big
1- 19 21 ages
2- Maximum 90 kg
G) For Small Medium Small, Small Medium Big, Big Medium,
Steerage, Head, if the wrestlers above 21 are less than 65
kg; with the decision of the referee committee they can only
wrestle in deck big.
The award which is given to the winner in the categories
except head and to the wrestlers placed is an encouraging
one. The wrestlers award may be money or horse, ox, calf or
ram. In old times, the champion wrestler was given a camel;
the steerage wrestler was given a bull; big-medium was given
a mare and the others were given similar things.
In historical Kirkpinar wrestling, the winners in steerage
ascend to champion. The winners and seconds of the others
wrestle in an upper category in the historical Kirkpinar
Attending to Kirkpinar, the heart of the Turkish
wrestling, fore playing on the field of contest
for brave men and wrestling are the reasons of
feeling proud for all the wrestlers. The most
exciting wrestling is done during head wrestling.
The first aim of the wrestlers who will wrestle
for the championship is to become the champion
wrestler in Kirkpinar. But the other aim of
the champion wrestler is to have the Gold Belt
forever by winning the wrestling 3 years
Before the Republic, the most important famous
Champion Wrestlers were Kel Alico, Koca Yusuf,
Kurtdereli Mehmet, Adali Halil.
During the time
of Republic, Ali Acar in Bandirma, Hüseyin Alkaya in
Tekirdag, ibrahim Karabacak in Samsun, Aydin Demir in
Karamürsel, Hüseyin Cokal in Denizli, Ahmet Tasci in
Karamürsel stand out.
wrestlers who are invited and who are the winners in
steerage category, the wrestlers who can cover the
requirements below can attend the contests in Kirkpinar.
National wrestlers in freestyle and Greco-roman
categories who can attend Kirkpinar:
- The winners of European championships in freestyle and
Greco-roman style in adult wrestling as 96 kg and 120 kg.
- People who are among the first three in the world
championships and the Olympics.
- The winners of the World and European championships in
young freestyle as 120 kg.
The sportsmen who are allowed by the Federation Technical
Committee to join the national team wrestle for the
championship provided that they get permission from the
Before and after the Republic, the Champion Wrestlers in
Kirkpinar year by year are these.
Recap Kara from Ünye, Ordu, who won the 643rd historical
Kirkpinar championship in 2004 when he was 22, is the
youngest champion wrestler in the history of Republic.