Finger Jousting

Finger Jousting is a sport, similar to thumb war, where two people hold hands like they are arm wrestling. They extend their index fingers. The objective of the game is to try and poke the opponent while keeping their index finger locked under the other, not letting it go.

Although some historians believe that the sport was founded by the Israelites, who called it “Finger Spearing”. This was supported and written in the Book of Phalanges.

Nevertheless, many historians agreed that the sport took its modern form in the 1970s.

Julian Gluck founded the World Finger Jousting Federation (WFJF) in 2005.  He made a couple of rules to be official for finger jousting contests. 

Finger jousting is extremely popular in schools in Dallas and Huston, Texas.

Players mainly use their right hands instead of left. The contestants must keep their right hands locked in an arm wrestling fashion while not using their legs or left arm.

The match has three rounds with two-minute lengths. Time is paused when violations occur. The players will be given a sixty-second rest before the start of the next round.

When the game is about to start, the two competitors face each other and execute a gesture of good outlook. This could be a hand shake, a bow, a head nod or a man hug. The match will start after the mediator gives the signal.

During the game, jousters should try not to separate their hands. If this happens, the player will get a warning. During the second time of separation the player will either get another warning or minus points. In the third offense, the player will be disqualified. If both players separate no penalty will be issued and will start a new round.

There are four important elements in the basic skills of finger jousting – quickness, strength, technique and tradition. The Finger Jousting Codes of Conduct include respect (where contestants respect their competitors and others without intentionally injuring them), decorum (not using profane or lewd speeches during, before or after the match), indisturbance (avoiding jousts at inappropriate times or places) and manicure (caring for fingernails is a sign of respect for the opponent and by showing a healthy body).

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