Q: How large is the ring?
A: The ring in the middle has a diameter of 4.55 meters.
In the centre of the ring there are two white "face-off lines" of white enamel paint.
They are with 70cm between them.
Q: When is the Kokugikan ring made?
A: All "yobidashi" (ushers) assemble to make the ring.
The project takes 3days. Only the top 20cm of dirt is replaced.
The yobidashi use a number of special tools for the job, but no machinery.
Q: Are women allowed in the ring?
A: No. According to custom, the ring is sacred, and no women are allowed in it.
Q: Why do "rikishi" (sumo wrestler) wear a topknot?
A: In 1871, all men were required to cut off their topknots, but the sumo world was exempted,
and rikishi were allowed to retain the ancient hairstyle.
Q: When do rikishi wash their hair?
A: There are no rules, but they rarely wash it daily.
Q: Can rikishi compete even if they do not have enough hair for a topknot?
A: A rikishi would probably retire if he were no longer capable of achieving topknots.
No rikishi has ever listed this as a reason for retiring, but there have been rumors.
Q: Do rikishi wear anything under their belts?
A: No, they don't. They are not allowed to wear anything under their belts.
Q: What is strength water?
A: Water symbolizes purification.
Rikishi must rinse out their mouths to purify themselves before stepping into the sacred ring.
Q: What is the meaning of the salt?
A: It is a prayer to the gods to purify the ring from evil sprits and protect the rikishi from injury.
it also disinfects cuts. It is used 45kg a day.
Q: How much are bout incentive prizes worth?
A: Each sponsor pays 60,000 yen. The JSA deducts 5,000 yen for handling and 25,000 yen for income tax.
The winner receives the remaining 30,000 yen.
Q: Are there any foreign sumo wrestlers?
A: As of August 2010, there are 56 foreign wrestlers from 11 countries registered in Japan.
Mongolia(33), China(7), Russia(3), Georgia(3), Brazil(2), South Korea(2), Bulgaria(2), Czech(1),
Kazakhstan(1), Estonia(1), Hungary(1)
(reference: Sumo 258 key questions & Official Grand Sumo Homepage)