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Thang-Ta is most popular Meetei Martial arts in Manipur. The literal translation of Thang-ta in the Manipuri language is swords and spears.
Thang-Ta at present, is seen in most part of the world through demonstration in cultural programs. Fighting with the weapons including sword, spear and Axe. The history of Thang-ta and Sarit-Sarak can be traced to the 17th century. Thang-ta involves using a sword or spear against one or more opponents. Sarit-Sarak is the technique of fighting against armed or unarmed opponents, but on many occasions there is a combined approach to the training of these martial arts. These martial arts were used with great success by the Manipuri kings to fight against the British for a long time. With the British occupation of the region, martial arts were banned, but post – 1950s saw the resurgence of these arts.
Thang-ta is practiced in three different ways. The first way is absolutely ritual in nature, related to the tantric practices. The second way consists of a spectacular performance involving sword and spear dances. These dances can be converted into actual fighting practices. The third way is the actual fighting technique.