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Mongolian Grappling Culture

Alex Crossland | Mongolia


Grappling is a close-quarters hand-to-hand combat contest, without the use of strikes or weapons, whereby opponents use a series of techniques to grip, takedown and control their opponent with the goal of either pinning their opponent, or submitting them by way of strangulation and/or joint-manipulation.

Grappling has introduced me to people I never anticipated crossing paths with and taken me places I never imagined I’d go. From the chaotic capital city of Ulaanbaatar, to the harsh nomadic realities of life along the Mongolian steppe, these images narrate the tradition, community, and deeply spiritual grappling culture amidst a rapidly developing country.

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