Native Games at UAF

This Fall semester at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, I signed up to be a part of Native Games; Native Games is one of many student clubs here on campus. In Native Games, students practice and learn how to perform Alaska Native sports and activities. I am Inupiaq Eskimo, and in my culture, my ancestors performed these games to become individually stronger, improve their skills, and also to work together for a common goal. For example, The One-Foot High Kick signified a successful hunt. 

The Seal Hop is used traditionally for endurance and stamina, to help sneak up to a seal. It is called seal hop because it mimics the animals movements on top of the ice.
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 To me, I really like practicing seal hop and wrist carry. If you want to learn how to seal hop or how a seal hop is performed, then keep on reading. 

For females they get into a pushup position with their arms straight and the palms of their hands are on the floor. For men, they must get into a low pushup position, with their elbows bent and their hands curled and knuckles on the floor. When ready, both hop while still maintaining their stances, and try to go as far as they can possibly go, and then make a 180 degree turn and hop back to the starting line. The participants must stop the seal hop if their belly touches the floor or if they stop and restart. The seal hop is possibly the most enduring and requires a lot of mental and physical capacity out of all the native games.
   
 Native games is not only practiced here on campus at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. There is also Native Youth Olympics, World Eskimo-Indian Olympics, and Arctic Winter Games. All these programs and organizations are great for students and participants because it keeps our traditions alive and teaches our children and students how our ancestors used to live.

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