The six annual Grand Tournaments aren’t the only place to see sumo. Come to a sumo stable and watch the wrestlers up-close as they participate in their morning training! Plus a guide to explain the details and take a commemorative photo at the end!
Please note that a sumo stable is not a tourist facility. Sumo training is a serious and traditional practice. It is opened especially for sumo fans on the understanding that strict rules will be followed. Please show your respect to the stable master and wrestlers. Failure to follow proper etiquette may result in being asked to leave the stable without re-entry or refund. By booking this experience, you agree to the following rules: 1. Children aged 0–2 are not allowed inside the sumo stable, and children aged 3–17 are only admitted under adult supervision – parents will be responsible for their children’s behavior at all times, and children who do not observe the rules and etiquette of the stable will be asked to leave 2. Please watch the practice quietly and do not move around in the stable – sumo fans are expected to be as still as possible during the practice of around 1–2 hours 3. Do not speak in the stable – even your whispering voice may disturb the wrestlers 4. Do not stand in the ring or on the sandy ground – the ring is a sacred place for the wrestlers only 5. Take off your shoes at the stable entrance, before stepping on the tatami floor 6. Take off hats and sunglasses, and switch off mobile phones inside the stable 7. Cross your legs when sitting on the tatami floor – do not stretch your legs toward the ring as it is impolite to show the soles of your feet to the wrestlers 8. Do not eat, drink, or smoke inside the stable (on hot days you may be allowed to drink water, tea or sports drinks) 9. Ask for permission before taking any photos during the practice. Please never use flashes, loud shutter sounds, or take videos while training is ongoing – permission to take photos during the practice is up to the sumo stable on the day, and you may need to wait until after practice is finished. Please do not share photos of sumo wrestlers on websites or social media as it could cause portrait rights issues. 10. Do not leave the stable during the session – once you start watching the practice you are expected to stay until the end 11. Do not bring large bags or luggage to the stable, since space is usually very limited 12. Cover up any visible tattoos as much as possible – tattoos are not widely accepted in Japanese society, particularly in traditional spaces such as sumo stables The stable, meeting time and location may not be confirmed until the day before the tour. Please watch out for emails from your guide. Disclaimers – by placing a booking you agree to the following disclaimers as well as the Activity Rules 1. By booking this experience you accept that the exact time, place, and duration can change without prior notice. 2. Guests should be aware they will have to sit still on the tatami floor for most of the session – chairs can be requested only in circumstances that prevent sitting cross-legged (e.g. due to infirmity or injury) but cannot be guaranteed. The availability of chairs might not be confirmed until a few days before the tour. A lack of seating will not be grounds for refund or cancellation. 3. The sumo stable has the right to refuse guests who are unable to observe the rules and etiquette of the stable, and anyone asked to leave will be unable to re-enter and ineligible for any refund. 4. Be aware that during busy periods this may be a large group tour, and for large bookings, your group may have to be split between two different stables. 5. In the unlikely event that the sumo wrestlers are unwell, and in other unforeseen circumstances, the practice and tour may be shortened. 6. Note that the stables are living quarters for the wrestlers and stable masters who oversee them, and guests should follow the house rules. Stable masters are not prohibited from smoking in or around the stable, therefore a non-smoking environment cannot be guaranteed. 7. Please wear a mask to avoid contagious disease if you join the tour in February and March.
See Japan’s national sport in a whole new light. Whether you missed the chance to attend a tournament or loved it so much you want more, a morning training tour at a Tokyo sumo stable is a unique insight into a world-famous practice. You’ll meet your professional guide, who’ll take you to the stable (called a “heya”) in the Ryogoku neighborhood of Tokyo. This area is home to many of the most prestigious heya in Japan. There, you’ll watch “asa-geiko,” morning training. In a ring marked as holy ground, these imposing athletes undergo a strenuous regime that’s tightly bound in tradition and ritual. Your guide will explain the intricacies of sumo, including its centuries-worth of history and deep connections with the Shinto religion. You’ll also be instructed on how to behave in accordance with these traditions, and the etiquette involved with watching and practicing sumo. When training is over, you’ll get a chance to take photos with the wrestlers themselves – far cry from watching a tournament through binoculars!
- After your booking is confirmed, we will connect you with your guide. Please wait for your guide to confirm the exact time and meeting place, which will not be fixed until shortly before the tour. Since a sumo stable is not a sightseeing attraction, the best time and place to visit can change without prior notice. The usual start time is between 7:00–9:00 am. - You’ll meet your guide at the station nearest to the scheduled stable, and from there walk to the sumo stable. There are usually no restrooms available at the sumo stable. - The training session duration can range from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on the wrestlers’ physical condition and various other factors. - After arriving, all visitors must observe the rules of the sumo stable visit. The stable has the right to refuse guests who are unable to observe the house rules, and anyone asked to leave the stable will not be able to re-enter. - Visitors are expected to stay for the entire duration of the practice. After the training session is over, you will have a photo opportunity with the sumo wrestlers. Please do not share photos of sumo wrestlers on websites or social media as it could cause portrait rights issues.