Martial Arts Gaining Popularity with Bhutanese Youth

The President of BIMA, Damber Singh Rai, said that the programme is aimed at engaging students during the winter break. “It is an exercise that focuses on the spirit of an individual and to improve one’s self-esteem and confidence. It can also help them overcome difficulties.”

Martial Arts Gaining Popularity with Bhutanese Youth. (Source:


The Bhutan Institute of Martial Arts (BIMA) is conducting a month-long coaching class that began on January 1. More than 60 students have attended the programme.

The President of BIMA, Damber Singh Rai, said that the programme is aimed at engaging students during the winter break.

“It is an exercise that focuses on the spirit of an individual and to improve one’s self-esteem and confidence. It can also help them overcome difficulties.”

He said that when an individual engages in martial arts, his energy level is renewed and he begins performing better in other fields.

Martial Arts skills learnt

Students learn Karate, Judo, Wingchung Kungfu, and the techniques of using oriental weapons.

Damber Singh Rai said that performances of the students depend on how the training is facilitated. “There has been positive response even from parents.”

Fifteen-year-old Tashi Phuntsho said that he did not want to miss the opportunity to learn martial arts. “It is also a way to prepare for the future as I want to serve in the armed force.”

He said that his favourite part of the course was the kata.

Martial Arts gaining popularity in Bhutan

Damber Singh Rai said that martial arts are becoming popular in the country. “They’re mostly picked up by students who are between the ages of eight to fifteen.”

He said that a team of 33 students brought home 26 medals last year.

The class is open to all students.

Jamyang Gyeltshen, who joined the class in 2015, helps one of the trainers, Dhanraj Rai, teach martial arts in the Changzamtog Lower Secondary School.

The 13-year-old said that his passion for martial arts brought him to the institute. “I want to learn martial arts and become one of the best martial arts teachers in the country.”

Kelden Deki Wangmo, 12, has taken up martial arts to stay healthy and fit. “I feel like I have become more confident. I really enjoy learning with friends.”

About 500 youth have registered with the institute so far.


(This article has been edited for the New Bhutan Times)

This article first appeared on Kuensel.

Related Posts

Stakeholders Discuss National Sports Policy

The Bhutan Olympic Committee submitted a proposal to the government for the development of the national sports policy....

Nov 23, 2017 07:35

U-16 Cricket Team Prepares for ACC Eastern Region Cup

“Looking at the other teams in our group, I think we can win matches. We are playing against China, Singapore and...

Dec 03, 2017 08:40

Bhutanese Footballers Can’t Be Underestimated

“Bhutanese footballers are underestimated. I was given less time to play when I played outside for the first time....

Dec 17, 2017 16:33

Bhutanese Bodybuilders Hope to Win Medals

The 9th World Bodybuilding and Physique Sports Championships is underway in Ulaanbaatar, the Capital of Mongolia. Four...

Oct 07, 2017 18:51

The Perils of Dha – Bhutan’s National Game

Dha (Archery), the national sport of Bhutan is a double edged sword – while it is entertaining, it can also be...

Sep 30, 2017 05:33

Promoting Cricket at Grassroot Level

The Bhutan Cricket Council Board (BCCB) has reached over 1,500 students as part of its grassroots programme which...

Oct 17, 2017 17:54



Bhutan Ranks 97th in World Happiness Report

The report, which is created by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, is based on factors like per capita GDP, social support,...

Mar 16, 2018 21:48

Bhutan reports outbreak of H5N1 bird flu at Samdrup Jongkhar: Report

The flu outbreak killed free-ranging birds reared within a temple complex in Samdrup Jongkhar.

Mar 15, 2018 09:32


Bhutanese Journal of Agriculture Launched

The journal is published by the Agriculture Research and Extension Division of the Department of Agriculture and will be now an annual...

Mar 18, 2018 22:31

Conserving Traditional Bhutanese Architecture

“The old buildings are important as a testimony of the past. It is not only important to preserve these houses, but also to encourage the...

Mar 15, 2018 11:47


Bhutan out of ASEAN Women’s T20 Open Tournament

Bhutan had the chance of finishing among the top three teams with a total of three points after playing four matches. At the finals,...

Mar 14, 2018 17:22

National Cricket Team Wins First International Title

The National cricket team defeated Thailand by three runs in the finals to win the championship. A total of four countries China, Bhutan,...

Mar 02, 2018 18:14


Bhutan National Start-Up Weekend Begins

The MoIC Minister DN Dhungyel said that there is a need to change the expectations of youth who thinks that the government is the main...

Mar 17, 2018 12:05

400 More Power Tillers to be Distributed

“The Agriculture Ministry not only procures the power tillers, but they follow-up by making sure that people are trained and machines are...

Mar 11, 2018 22:36


Nyungne - A Fascinating Winter Ritual

“Winters can get real desolate here and nyungne is the only festival that makes the place lively,” he said. “It was so good to see everyone...

Mar 10, 2018 21:25

Pilgrimage to Beyul Langdra - The Hidden Treasure of the Bull Cliff

It is believed that Guru Rinpoche had hidden more than 60 sacred treasures in and around the cliff to be discovered by prophesied treasure...

Feb 24, 2018 13:16


Singaporean director crowdfunds for documentary on uncovering Bhutan's 'secret to happiness'

Singaporean director Loretta Chen is looking to raise US$25,000 for a film project on Bhutan.

Mar 15, 2018 22:02

Prayer Rosaries of Bhutan

Rosaries are an important religious artefact in Bhutan. People spend large amounts of money to acquire good rosaries, and some rosaries are...

Mar 12, 2018 20:24

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!