What is the Origin of the Sport that Started in Japan?

Japan is known for its rich culture and heritage, and it is no surprise that many unique sports have originated from this beautiful country. One such sport is karate, a martial art that has gained popularity worldwide. But did you know that karate is not the only sport that originated in Japan? In this article, we will explore the fascinating history of other sports that started in Japan and how they have become a significant part of the country’s cultural identity. From traditional sports like kendo and judo to modern sports like baseball and soccer, Japan has a lot to offer when it comes to sports and recreation. So, let’s dive in and discover the origin of these sports that started in Japan.

Quick Answer:
The sport that started in Japan is likely referring to martial arts, specifically Karate. The origin of Karate can be traced back to the Ryukyu Kingdom, which is now present-day Okinawa, Japan. It was developed as a form of self-defense by the Ryukyu Islanders, who had a unique blend of different cultures, including Japanese, Chinese, and indigenous Ryukyuan. Over time, Karate evolved into a formalized system of fighting and self-defense, and it eventually spread throughout Japan and then around the world. Today, Karate is an Olympic sport and is practiced by millions of people worldwide.

History of Sports in Japan

The Evolution of Sports in Japan

Japan has a long and rich history when it comes to sports. From ancient times, sports have played an important role in Japanese culture, with various games and activities being developed and practiced throughout the country’s history.

One of the earliest forms of sports in Japan was Kok-yô or “strength-going,” which involved various physical exercises and martial arts. This form of exercise was often practiced by samurai warriors as a way to maintain their physical fitness and prepare for battle.

As Japan began to open up to the outside world during the Edo period (1603-1868), sports from other countries were introduced to Japan, such as sumô (a traditional form of wrestling) and kendo (a martial art that involves the use of bamboo swords).

During the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Japan underwent a rapid modernization process, and this led to the development of modern sports in the country. Baseball, for example, was introduced to Japan in the late 19th century by American missionaries, and it quickly became one of the most popular sports in the country.

In the early 20th century, Japan hosted the Olympic Games in 1964, which helped to further popularize sports in the country. Japan has since become a major player in the world of sports, with successful teams and athletes in a wide range of sports, including soccer, basketball, tennis, and more.

Overall, the evolution of sports in Japan has been shaped by a combination of cultural, historical, and political factors, and it continues to be an important part of Japanese society today.

Traditional Japanese Sports

Traditional Japanese sports have a long and rich history, dating back thousands of years. Many of these sports have evolved over time, but they continue to play an important role in Japanese culture. Some of the most popular traditional Japanese sports include:

  • Kendo: Kendo is a martial art that involves the use of bamboo swords. It originated in Japan in the 17th century and is still practiced today. The sport is focused on the physical and mental development of the individual, as well as discipline and respect.
  • Sumo: Sumo is a traditional wrestling sport that has been practiced in Japan for centuries. It is a physical and mental battle between two wrestlers, with the aim of forcing the opponent out of the ring or onto their back. Sumo is a sport that requires great strength, agility, and technique.
  • Judo: Judo is a martial art and sport that originated in Japan in the late 19th century. It is based on the principles of using an opponent’s strength against them and is characterized by its throws and grappling techniques. Judo is a popular sport in Japan and is practiced by people of all ages and abilities.
  • Karate: Karate is a martial art that originated in Okinawa, but has been heavily influenced by Japanese culture. It involves the use of punches, kicks, and blocks to defend oneself. Karate is known for its emphasis on physical and mental discipline, as well as its focus on self-defense.
  • Archery: Archery has been practiced in Japan for centuries and is considered one of the traditional sports of the country. It is a sport that requires great precision and technique, as well as mental focus and concentration.

These are just a few examples of the many traditional Japanese sports that have evolved over time. Despite the popularity of modern sports in Japan, traditional sports continue to play an important role in Japanese culture and are enjoyed by people of all ages and abilities.

Martial Arts in Japan

Key takeaway: Sports have played an important role in Japanese culture for centuries, with various games and activities being developed and practiced throughout the country’s history. Traditional Japanese sports such as Kendo, Judo, and Karate have a long and rich history, while modern sports such as baseball, soccer, and tennis have become increasingly popular in recent years. Japan has also produced world-class athletes in a wide range of sports, and the country has become a major player in the world of sports.

The Origins of Martial Arts in Japan

Martial arts have a long and storied history in Japan, dating back over a thousand years. The origins of Japanese martial arts can be traced back to the 9th century, during the Heian period.

During this time, Japan was in a state of constant conflict, with feudal lords vying for power and influence. As a result, the need for a martial art that could be used for self-defense and battle became apparent.

One of the earliest known forms of Japanese martial arts was called “Kenjutsu,” which focused on the use of the sword. Kenjutsu was developed by the samurai, the warrior class of Japan, as a means of defense against their enemies.

Another early form of Japanese martial arts was “Sojo-ryu,” which was a system of unarmed combat that emphasized the use of grappling and throwing techniques. Sojo-ryu was developed by the monks of the Shaolin Temple in China, and was later introduced to Japan.

Over time, other forms of martial arts emerged in Japan, including “Jujutsu,” which focused on the use of leverage and balance to defeat an opponent, and “Aikido,” which emphasized the blending of forces with an opponent.

Despite the various forms of martial arts that developed in Japan, the underlying philosophy of these arts remained the same: to prepare the practitioner for self-defense and battle. The history of Japanese martial arts is rich and complex, and continues to influence the practice of martial arts around the world today.

Popular Martial Arts in Japan

Martial arts have been an integral part of Japanese culture for centuries. From ancient times, Japan has produced some of the most formidable warriors the world has ever seen. As a result, martial arts have been developed and refined over the years to create various forms of combat that are unique to Japan.

Here are some of the most popular martial arts in Japan:

  • Judo: Judo is a grappling martial art that was developed in Japan in the late 19th century. It is based on the principles of Jujutsu, which emphasizes the use of leverage and balance to overcome an opponent. Judo has become one of the most popular martial arts in the world, with millions of practitioners across the globe.
  • Karate: Karate is a striking martial art that originated in Okinawa, a small island south of Japan. It is based on the use of punches, kicks, and strikes to defeat an opponent. Karate has become one of the most popular martial arts in the world, with millions of practitioners across the globe.
  • Kendo: Kendo is a martial art that is based on the use of the Japanese sword. It involves the use of bamboo swords, known as “shinai,” to simulate real-life combat. Kendo emphasizes the development of physical and mental discipline, as well as the mastery of swordsmanship techniques.
  • Aikido: Aikido is a martial art that emphasizes the use of circular movements and the blending of forces to overcome an opponent. It was developed by Morihei Ueshiba, a Japanese martial artist who is considered one of the greatest martial artists of all time. Aikido is based on the principles of harmony and non-violence, and it emphasizes the development of physical and spiritual growth.
  • Sumo: Sumo is a traditional Japanese martial art that involves wrestling in a circular ring, known as a “dohyo.” Sumo wrestlers, known as “rikishi,” wear traditional mawashi, or loincloths, and use various techniques, such as pushing, pulling, and throwing, to defeat their opponents. Sumo is one of the oldest martial arts in Japan, and it remains one of the most popular today.

These are just a few examples of the many popular martial arts in Japan. Each of these martial arts has its own unique history, techniques, and philosophies, and they continue to be practiced and refined by millions of people around the world.

How Sports in Japan Evolved into Modern Day Competitions

The Role of International Sporting Events

International sporting events have played a significant role in the evolution of sports in Japan. These events have not only helped in the development of sports but have also served as a platform for Japanese athletes to showcase their skills and talents to the world. In this section, we will discuss the impact of international sporting events on the evolution of sports in Japan.

Introduction of New Sports and Technologies

International sporting events have introduced new sports and technologies to Japan. For instance, the FIFA World Cup has introduced football (soccer) to Japan, which has now become one of the most popular sports in the country. Similarly, the Olympic Games have introduced various sports such as basketball, volleyball, and athletics to Japan. These events have also brought new technologies and training methods to Japan, which have helped in the development of sports.

Increased Interest in Sports

International sporting events have increased the interest in sports among the Japanese population. The popularity of sports such as baseball, sumo, and golf has increased significantly due to international events. The Japanese government has also recognized the importance of sports in the country’s development and has invested heavily in sports infrastructure and programs.

Improved Performance of Japanese Athletes

International sporting events have also improved the performance of Japanese athletes. Japanese athletes have consistently performed well in international competitions, including the Olympics and the FIFA World Cup. This success has inspired the next generation of athletes and has led to an increase in the number of young people participating in sports.

Cultural Exchange

International sporting events have also facilitated cultural exchange between Japan and other countries. Japanese athletes have had the opportunity to learn from foreign athletes and coaches, while foreign athletes have had the opportunity to learn about Japanese culture. This cultural exchange has helped in the development of sports in Japan and has contributed to the country’s reputation as a sporting nation.

In conclusion, international sporting events have played a crucial role in the evolution of sports in Japan. These events have introduced new sports and technologies, increased the interest in sports, improved the performance of Japanese athletes, and facilitated cultural exchange. The impact of international sporting events on the development of sports in Japan is a testament to the power of sports in bringing people together and promoting international understanding.

The Impact of Modern Technology on Sports in Japan

The advancement of modern technology has greatly impacted the sports industry in Japan. From enhancing sports equipment to improving sports training and analysis, technology has revolutionized the way sports are played and viewed.

Improved Sports Equipment

One of the most significant ways technology has impacted sports in Japan is by improving sports equipment. With the use of advanced materials and computer-aided design, sports equipment has become lighter, stronger, and more durable. For example, tennis rackets are now made with carbon fiber, which makes them lighter and more powerful. Additionally, golf clubs are now made with materials such as titanium and graphite, which increase their strength and reduce their weight. These advancements in equipment have helped athletes to improve their performance and achieve greater success in their respective sports.

Enhanced Sports Training and Analysis

Another way technology has impacted sports in Japan is by enhancing sports training and analysis. With the use of motion capture technology, athletes can now have their movements analyzed in real-time, allowing coaches to identify areas for improvement. Additionally, virtual reality technology is used to create immersive training environments, which can help athletes to better prepare for competition. Furthermore, advanced statistical analysis tools are used to track and analyze player performance, providing valuable insights for coaches and athletes alike. These technologies have enabled athletes to train more effectively and efficiently, ultimately leading to improved performance on the field.

Increased Sports Viewership

Finally, technology has also impacted sports in Japan by increasing sports viewership. With the advent of streaming services and social media, sports fans can now access live sports events from anywhere in the world. Furthermore, virtual reality technology is being used to provide fans with an immersive viewing experience, allowing them to feel as if they are actually at the game. These technologies have made sports more accessible to a wider audience, increasing viewership and revenue for sports organizations.

In conclusion, the impact of modern technology on sports in Japan has been significant. From improving sports equipment to enhancing sports training and analysis, technology has revolutionized the way sports are played and viewed. As technology continues to advance, it is likely that its impact on sports will only continue to grow.

Famous Japanese Athletes and Sports

Tennis Player Naomi Osaka

Naomi Osaka is a renowned Japanese tennis player who has taken the world by storm with her exceptional skills and winning attitude. Born on October 16, 1997, in Chūō-ku, Osaka, Japan, Naomi started playing tennis at a young age and quickly rose through the ranks to become one of the top players in the world.

Early Life and Tennis Career

Naomi Osaka began playing tennis at the age of three, inspired by her father, who was a college tennis player in the United States. She started training at the Osaka Municipal Tennis Centre and quickly showed a natural talent for the sport. By the age of 14, she had moved to the United States to train at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, where she honed her skills under the guidance of coaches.

Breakthrough and Rise to Fame

Naomi Osaka’s breakthrough came in 2016 when she won her first WTA title at the Japan Women’s Open. She then went on to achieve a career-high ranking of world No. 19 in 2019, becoming the first Japanese woman to achieve such a ranking since 2005. However, it was her victory at the 2018 US Open, where she defeated Serena Williams in the final, that catapulted her to international fame.

On-Court Style and Personality

Naomi Osaka is known for her powerful and aggressive playing style, which has earned her a reputation as one of the most exciting players on the WTA tour. She is also known for her unique sense of style, often wearing custom Nike outfits that showcase her love for anime and Japanese culture. Off the court, Osaka is known for her down-to-earth personality and her passion for social justice causes, particularly racial and gender equality.

Off-Court Ventures and Philanthropy

Naomi Osaka has been involved in several philanthropic endeavors throughout her career. In 2018, she founded the “Hope for Japan” charity, which raises funds for disaster relief efforts in her home country. She has also been an advocate for women’s rights and has spoken out about the need for greater diversity and inclusion in tennis.

Overall, Naomi Osaka is a true inspiration to aspiring athletes around the world, demonstrating that with hard work, dedication, and a strong sense of purpose, anything is possible.

Figure Skater Yuzuru Hanyu

Yuzuru Hanyu is a renowned Japanese figure skater who has made a significant impact on the sport both nationally and internationally. Born on December 7, 1994, in Sendai, Japan, Hanyu began skating at the age of six and quickly showed a natural talent for the sport.

At the age of 16, Hanyu became the youngest male to win the NHK Trophy, a prestigious international figure skating competition held in Japan. He continued to make history by becoming the first Asian skater to win the gold medal at the World Figure Skating Championships in 2014, and then again in 2017.

Hanyu’s performances are known for their technical precision, artistic expression, and emotional depth. He has revolutionized the sport with his innovative programs, incorporating elements of both traditional and contemporary Japanese culture. For example, his “Eagle” routine at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, was inspired by the ancient Japanese art form of Ukiyo-e woodblock prints.

Throughout his career, Hanyu has suffered from numerous injuries, including a serious ankle injury that forced him to withdraw from the 2018 Winter Olympics. Despite these setbacks, he has demonstrated remarkable resilience and determination, always striving to improve and push the boundaries of the sport.

Hanyu’s influence extends beyond the world of figure skating. He has become a beloved icon in Japan, breaking down barriers and inspiring a new generation of athletes. He has also been recognized for his humanitarian efforts, including his work to support victims of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

Overall, Yuzuru Hanyu’s contributions to the world of figure skating and Japanese culture have been significant and far-reaching. His legacy as a trailblazer and artistic visionary continues to inspire future generations of athletes and fans alike.

The Future of Sports in Japan

The Role of Sports in Japanese Society

Sports have played a significant role in Japanese society for centuries, and their importance continues to grow in the modern era. From a young age, children in Japan are introduced to various sports and physical activities, which helps to cultivate a love for athletics at an early age. In addition to promoting physical fitness, sports also play a vital role in promoting social interaction, teamwork, and discipline.

One of the key aspects of sports in Japan is the concept of “mind sports,” which emphasizes the mental aspect of athletic competition. This philosophy is rooted in the idea that success in sports is not just about physical ability, but also about mental toughness, focus, and strategic thinking. As a result, Japanese athletes often place a strong emphasis on mental preparation and training, which has led to numerous successes in a wide range of sports.

Sports are also an important part of the cultural fabric of Japan, with many traditional sports and games having been passed down for generations. For example, sports such as kendo, judo, and sumo have a rich history and are deeply ingrained in Japanese culture. These sports are not only popular among competitors, but also among spectators, who appreciate the skill, technique, and tradition that goes into each competition.

In recent years, sports in Japan have also become a significant economic force, with the industry generating billions of dollars in revenue each year. This has led to the development of new sports facilities and technologies, as well as increased investment in sports research and development. As a result, Japan is well-positioned to continue to be a leader in the global sports industry, both in terms of competition and innovation.

Overall, the role of sports in Japanese society is multifaceted and far-reaching, encompassing physical fitness, mental development, cultural heritage, and economic growth. As the sport that started in Japan continues to evolve and expand, it is likely to play an increasingly important role in shaping the future of sports in Japan and around the world.

The Growth of Sports in Japan

Sports have long been a significant part of Japanese culture, and their popularity continues to grow. With the increasing participation of both children and adults in various sports activities, it is evident that the future of sports in Japan is bright.

Popular Sports in Japan

Soccer, baseball, and basketball are among the most popular sports in Japan. These sports have a large following, and the country has produced world-class athletes in these fields. In addition to these sports, sumo wrestling and martial arts such as judo and karate are also popular in Japan.

Government Initiatives

The Japanese government has been actively promoting sports and physical activity in the country. Initiatives such as the “Sport for Tomorrow” program have been launched to encourage more people to participate in sports and to promote the development of sports infrastructure in the country. The government has also invested in sports facilities and equipment to support the growth of sports in Japan.

Private Sector Involvement

The private sector has also played a significant role in the growth of sports in Japan. Companies such as Nike and Adidas have invested in sports programs and events in the country, helping to promote sports and physical activity among the younger generation.

Olympic Success

Japan’s success in international sports competitions, particularly in the Olympics, has also contributed to the growth of sports in the country. Japanese athletes have consistently performed well in various sports, and this has helped to inspire more people to take up sports and physical activity.

In conclusion, the growth of sports in Japan is driven by a combination of government initiatives, private sector involvement, and international success. With the continued support and promotion of sports in the country, it is likely that the future of sports in Japan will remain bright.

The Development of New Sports in Japan

Evolution of Traditional Sports

Traditional sports in Japan have evolved over time, adapting to changes in culture and technology. For instance, baseball, which originated in the United States, has become a hugely popular sport in Japan. The Japan Professional Baseball League (NPB) was established in 1936, and since then, baseball has been deeply ingrained in Japanese culture.

Emergence of New Sports

As sports continue to evolve, new sports are emerging in Japan. These new sports often combine elements of traditional sports with modern innovations. One example is the sport of “Knokkeboor,” which is a fusion of hockey and football. It was created in the 1980s by a Dutch coach in Japan and has since gained popularity among both children and adults.

Innovative Sports Technology

Sports technology is also playing a significant role in the development of new sports in Japan. Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies are being used to create new sports experiences. For example, the VR game “BoxVR” combines boxing and rhythm gameplay, providing a unique workout experience.

Furthermore, sports analytics is becoming increasingly important in Japan, with teams using data to optimize performance and improve strategy. This trend is expected to continue, with more teams investing in sports analytics and technology.

Sports for All

In recent years, there has been a growing trend towards creating sports that are accessible to people of all ages and abilities. This has led to the development of sports such as “Walking Baseball,” which is designed for older adults who may not have the physical ability to play traditional baseball.

Overall, the development of new sports in Japan is an exciting area to watch, as it reflects the country’s commitment to innovation and creativity in the realm of sports. Whether through the fusion of traditional and modern elements or the creation of sports that are accessible to all, Japan is leading the way in the development of new and exciting sports.

The Role of Technology in Sports in Japan

Technological Advancements in Sports

Technology has played a significant role in the evolution of sports in Japan. The country has been at the forefront of sports technology, utilizing cutting-edge technology to enhance the performance of athletes and improve the overall experience of sports for fans. From sports analytics to wearable technology, Japan has embraced technological advancements to revolutionize the sports industry.

Impact on Training and Performance

One of the most significant impacts of technology on sports in Japan has been in the area of training and performance. Sports analytics has become a critical tool for coaches and athletes, providing insights into performance data and helping to identify areas for improvement. Wearable technology, such as smartwatches and sensors, has also become popular among athletes, allowing them to track their performance and optimize their training.

Fan Experience

Technology has also transformed the fan experience in Japan. With the advent of virtual reality and augmented reality, fans can now experience sports in a more immersive way. Virtual reality technology allows fans to feel like they are part of the action, while augmented reality technology overlays real-time data and statistics onto the field of play. Additionally, social media has become a critical platform for fans to engage with sports in Japan, with many athletes and teams using social media to connect with their fans and build a community around their brand.

Challenges and Opportunities

While technology has brought many benefits to sports in Japan, there are also challenges that need to be addressed. One of the biggest challenges is the issue of data privacy and security. With the collection of vast amounts of data on athletes and fans, there is a need for robust data protection policies to ensure that personal information is protected. Additionally, there is a need for education and training to ensure that coaches, athletes, and fans are aware of the potential risks associated with technology in sports.

Overall, the role of technology in sports in Japan is poised for continued growth and innovation. With a strong focus on research and development, Japan is well-positioned to lead the way in sports technology, creating new opportunities for athletes, coaches, and fans alike.

The Importance of Sports in Japanese Culture

In Japan, sports play a significant role in the country’s cultural fabric. They are not just a form of entertainment or a way to stay fit, but a reflection of the country’s values and beliefs. The following are some of the reasons why sports are so important in Japanese culture:

  • Emphasis on teamwork and collectivism: In Japanese culture, teamwork and collectivism are highly valued. Sports provide an opportunity for individuals to work together towards a common goal, promoting unity and cooperation. This is evident in sports like sumo wrestling, where the wrestlers must work together to push each other out of the ring, or in sports like baseball, where the team must work together to score runs.
  • Promotion of physical fitness and health: Physical fitness and health are highly valued in Japanese culture. Sports provide an opportunity for individuals to stay fit and healthy, while also having fun. This is evident in sports like martial arts, where individuals can learn self-defense techniques and improve their physical fitness, or in sports like jogging, where individuals can improve their cardiovascular health.
  • Development of mental strength and resilience: Sports can also provide an opportunity for individuals to develop mental strength and resilience. Through training and competition, individuals can learn to overcome obstacles and setbacks, and develop a strong sense of determination and perseverance. This is evident in sports like gymnastics, where individuals must perform difficult routines while under pressure, or in sports like marathon running, where individuals must push themselves to their limits.
  • Creation of national pride and identity: Sports can also create a sense of national pride and identity. When Japanese athletes compete on the international stage, they represent not just themselves, but their country as well. When Japanese athletes win medals or set records, it is a source of national pride and inspiration. This is evident in sports like figure skating, where Japanese athletes have achieved international success, or in sports like soccer, where Japanese teams have made a name for themselves on the world stage.

Overall, sports play a significant role in Japanese culture, reflecting the country’s values and beliefs. They provide opportunities for individuals to work together, stay fit and healthy, develop mental strength and resilience, and create a sense of national pride and identity.

The Continued Growth and Evolution of Sports in Japan

Despite the numerous sports that have originated from Japan, it is interesting to note that the country continues to evolve and grow in terms of its sports culture. The following are some of the ways in which sports in Japan are expected to continue growing and evolving in the future:

  • Technological advancements: With the rapid advancement of technology, sports in Japan are expected to become more high-tech. This includes the use of virtual reality and other technologies to enhance the sports experience for both athletes and spectators.
  • Increased focus on youth development: There is a growing emphasis on developing young athletes in Japan, with many sports organizations investing in youth development programs. This is expected to lead to a new generation of elite athletes in the country.
  • Greater international exposure: Japan’s hosting of the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics is expected to increase the country’s exposure to international sports, leading to greater interest in sports from around the world. This, in turn, is expected to lead to greater participation in sports and a more diverse sports culture in Japan.
  • The rise of new sports: As with any country, sports in Japan are constantly evolving and new sports are emerging. The continued growth and evolution of sports in Japan is likely to see the rise of new sports that reflect the changing interests and needs of the population.

Overall, the future of sports in Japan looks bright, with a growing interest in sports and a strong focus on youth development. As technology continues to advance and new sports emerge, it is likely that the sports culture in Japan will continue to evolve and grow in exciting new ways.

FAQs

1. What is the origin of the sport that started in Japan?

Answer:

The origin of the sport that started in Japan is not entirely clear, as many traditional Japanese sports have been around for centuries and have evolved over time. However, some of the most popular sports that originated in Japan include martial arts such as karate, judo, and aikido, as well as sports such as sumo wrestling, kendo, and javelin throwing. Additionally, many modern sports, such as baseball and soccer, have been introduced to Japan from other countries and have become popular among the Japanese people.

2. When was the sport that started in Japan first introduced?

The exact date of the introduction of the sport that started in Japan is not known, as many traditional sports have been passed down through generations and have evolved over time. However, many modern sports that were introduced to Japan from other countries, such as baseball and soccer, were first introduced in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

3. How has the sport that started in Japan influenced other countries?

The sport that started in Japan has had a significant influence on other countries, particularly in the field of martial arts. Karate, judo, and aikido, among other martial arts, have become popular around the world and are practiced by millions of people. Additionally, baseball and soccer, which were introduced to Japan from other countries, have also become popular in Japan and have had a significant impact on the global sports community.

4. What is the most popular sport in Japan?

The most popular sport in Japan is baseball. Baseball has been played in Japan since the late 19th century and has become a national pastime. The Japanese Professional Baseball League (NPB) is one of the most popular professional sports leagues in Japan, and the country has produced many talented baseball players who have gone on to play in the Major Leagues in the United States. Other popular sports in Japan include soccer, sumo wrestling, and basketball.

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