Traditional games of Southeast Asia

Pole climbing competition
November 13, 2007, 12:50 pm
Filed under: Philippines, Pole-climbing, Thailand


In Thailand, the game is known as Been sao nam-mun whereby it is normally played during occasions such as the Buffalo Racing Festival. Number of players: Individual or team game. Materials used: Long, greased pole and prize. How to play: An individual or a team has to climb up a long, greased pole, placed upright. Usually, money is involved whereby whoever manages to reach the top of the pole wins the prize money.   


The game, which is similar to the one played in Thailand is called Palo Sebo, played during celebrations and fiestas. It originates from a game played by the Visayas which requires men to climb up greased coconut trees. It is also similar ‘Pinang’, a game of Java, Indonesia. Number of players: Individual or team game, normally played by young men. 

Materials used: A long polish bamboo pole, greased with oil, to be planted on the ground. Prize is placed at the top end of the poles 

How to play:

An individual or team competes with the rest to climb the pole for the prize. Normally, the prize consists of cash, whose amount depends on the sponsor’s generosity.

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