Home Podcasts Japan Station My Sumo Academia: Talking About Sumo Today and in the Heian Period (Colton Runyan) | Japan Station 76

My Sumo Academia: Talking About Sumo Today and in the Heian Period (Colton Runyan) | Japan Station 76

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On this episode of the Japan Station podcast, Colton Runyan of the University of Cambridge talks to us about his experiences training and competing in sumo, as well asl his research on Heian era physical competitions.

About Colton Runyan

Colton Runyan is a Phd candidate at the University of Cambridge and a sumo wrestler who has competed in Japanese college sumo and as part of the US National team. His dissertation research focuses on sporting events of the Heian period.

Topics Discussed

  • How Colton Runyan first got into sumo
  • The charity sumo tournament in Akita Prefecture that Colton took part in during his time in the JET Programme
  • What Colton liked about sumo
  • Progressing and improving in sumo
  • Doing sumo training at Nihon University
  • Doing sumo training at a junior high school
  • Teaching, training and competing in sumo in US and other counties
  • Going back to Japan to receive proper sumo training
  • Meeting Konishiki
  • Competing in a college sumo tournament in Japan while a student at Saitama University
  • The different paths people take into professional sumo
  • The grueling nature of sumo training
  • The most frustrating aspect of sumo training for Colton
  • Deciding to go to Cambridge and doing research on sumo
  • Researching the social, political and economic importance of physical competitions (sumo, horseracing, archery) during the Heian period
  • Historical records from Japan’s Heian period that document sumo
  • A notable sumo tournament from 1013
  • Fujiwara no Michiga’s interest in horseracing
  • Archery in the Heian period
  • Historical misconceptions about sumo
  • The caring and fun nature of sumo wrestlers
  • And much more!

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Support on Patreon

If you enjoy Japan Station and want to ensure that we’re able to produce more episodes, then please consider becoming a patron on Patreon.com. For a minimum pledge of $1 a month you’ll get early access to all JapanKyo podcasts, bonus content, and more. And for $3 a month, you’ll get access to Japanese Plus Alpha, a podcast produced by me (Tony Vega) that focuses on the Japanese language and all of its fascinating quirks. Also, all pledges get a shout-out on the show and my undying gratitude. Thank you in advance!

Links, Videos, Etc.

To read the Japan Times article about Colton Runyan, use the link below.

To read the Wasabi article about Konishiki written by Tony Vega, use the link below.

To listen to the latest episode of the Transmissions from Hawaii podcast, use the link below.

Don’t forget to check out the latest episode of the Ichimon Japan podcast.

If you would like to support the show by picking up some merchandise, make sure to visit KimitoDesigns.com.

Special Thanks

Opening/Closing song: Oedo Controller (大江戸コントローラー) by Yunomi featuring Toriena (Used with permission from Yunomi) To listen to more of Yunomi’s music, check out his Soundcloud page or YouTube channel.

Japan Station cover art: Provided by Erik R.

Featured image: Courtesy of Colton Runyan

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Full Show Notes

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