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Xinjiang's ethnic sports very much alive

Adili Wuhyuer, dubbed "The Prince of Tightrope Walking", edges along a 350-meter-high wire without any safety device in Xiangxi Tujia and Miao autonomous prefecture in Central China's Hunan province, Sept 15, 2012. [Photo/Asianewsphoto]

Residents from Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region shared their personal experiences participating in traditional sports and games of the different ethnic groups at a press conference held on Friday.

Adili Wuhyuer, 50, heir to the national intangible cultural heritage Darwaz, an acrobatics show of high-wire walking, is from Yingjisha county, Kashgar prefecture. He told his story of how he learned the Uygur tightrope walking from a very young age and gradually became an outstanding Darwaz performer.

"My father is a Darwaz performer who can do difficult acts and movements on a 21-meter-high tightrope, which I really admired. I wanted to follow in his footsteps," said Adili.

In 1986, Adili won the top prize at a traditional Uygur sports meet held in Urumqi and earned his spurs in the field. After that, he began to tour across the country, presenting Darwaz shows to a larger audience.

In 2010, with the support of the local government, Adili managed to set up a school in Yingjisha where he trains and educates interested Darwaz performers.

"A total of 13.6 million yuan (around $2.1 million) was invested to build a Darwaz art center with a tourist reception to further spread the Uygur folk art," said Adili.

Local practitioners of wrestling, lamb grabbing, horse riding and other traditional sports popular among people from different ethnic groups also came to share their stories, debunking the lies fabricated by the United States and other anti-China forces about Xinjiang practising "cultural genocide".