Ryōgoku Kokugikan

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Ryōgoku Kokugikan
Ryōgoku Kokugikan, view from the West with the Edo-Tokyo Museum in the background
Location Japan Sumida, Tokyo, Japan
Coordinates 35°41′49″N 139°47′36″E / 35.69694°N 139.79333°E / 35.69694; 139.79333
Owner Japan Sumo Association
Capacity 13,000
Opened January, 1985

Ryōgoku Kokugikan (両国国技館 Ryōgoku Kokugi-kan?), also known as Ryougoku Sumo Hall, is an indoor sporting arena located in the Yokoami neighborhood (bordering to the Ryōgoku neighborhood) of Sumida, one of the 23 wards of Tokyo in Japan, next to the Edo-Tokyo Museum. It is the third building built in Tokyo associated with the name kokugikan. The current building was opened in 1985 and has a capacity of 13,000 people. It is mainly used for sumo wrestling tournaments (honbasho) and hosts the hatsu (new year) basho in January, the natsu (summer) basho in May, and the aki (autumn) basho in September. It also houses a museum about sumo.[1] The venue is also used for other indoor events, such as boxing, pro wrestling, and music concerts. In past years, it has hosted the finals of the G1 Climax, an annual tournament held by New Japan Pro Wrestling.

History[edit]

The growing popularity of Sumo during the Meiji period led to the building of the original Kokugikan in Ryōgoku in 1909. The Japanese army appropriated the facility in World War II, and some tournaments were held outdoors at a baseball stadium. During the occupation of Japan, SCAP saw sumo as less threatening than other martial arts, and allowed a tournament there in November 1945. The occupation forces subsequently took over the area, however, and turned it partially into a skating rink. One more tournament was held in November 1946, but tournaments were thereafter held on the grounds of the Meiji Shrine until 1954. Tournaments were subsequently held in the Kuramae Kokugikan, which opened in 1954, until it was replaced by the current Ryōgoku Kokugikan in Yokoami in 1985.[2] It will host the boxing competition at the 2020 Summer Olympics.[3]

Gallery[edit]


In other media[edit]

The Kokugikan in 1936

In the anime series Hajime no Ippo, some of the characters participate in boxing matches in Ryōgoku Kokugikan.

External links[edit]

35°41′49″N 139°47′36″E / 35.69694°N 139.79333°E / 35.69694; 139.79333

References[edit]

  1. ^ Japan, An Illustrated Encyclopedia (Hardcover). Tokyo, Japan: Kodansha. 1993. p. 817. ISBN 4-06-205938-X. 
  2. ^ With God on Their Side: Sport in the Service of Religion (Hardcover). London and New York: Routeledge. 2002. pp. 151–2. ISBN 0-415-25960-6. 
  3. ^ "Venue Plan". Tokyo 2020 Bid Committee. Retrieved 11 September 2013.