The revival of traditional sports can help efforts to save cultures and identities, the head of the World Ethnosport Confederation (WEC) said Sunday at the closing ceremony of the 3rd International Ethnosport Forum.
“Encouraging children to participate in traditional sports, and nurturing their interest in them, is of crucial importance,” said Bilal Erdogan, the head of WEC, during the annual event over the weekend in Turkey’s Mediterranean resort city of Antalya.
He said a strong sense of identity increases any society’s value and strength.
“Traditional sports are a part of our culture and identity. If we keep them alive and make sure our future generations take an interest, we can protect and preserve our national values,” said Erdogan.
He added that traditional sports also promote mutual respect for different cultures of various societies.
“These sports are a great way of encouraging solidarity between nations and cultures. This forum is an example. So many of us came together here for a common cause.
“We took this chance to discuss all aspects, including political ones, of the existing problems. The network that we have managed to build here is extremely valuable and, for that, I thank you all," he also said.
Hakan Kazanci, the deputy head of WEC, said passing traditional sports down to future generations is a priority for the organization.
"We are trying to create an environment where children can learn our values and develop a love for our cultures. Traditional sports have great importance in that respect,” Kazanci, also the president of the Turkish Traditional Sport Branches Federation, told Anadolu Agency.
“We will continue to work with full force to transfer traditional sports and the cultures of all nations to our future generations.”
*Writing By Emre AsikciAnadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.