Paandi

This game of hopscotch is also known as Nondi in Tamil Nadu, Tokkudu Billa or Tangidi Billa in Andhra Pradesh and Kunte Bille in Karnataka. While no one knows of its exact origin, it is believed to have existed in early centuries, and is said to have been mentioned in ancient Tamil literature.

The game needs only a relatively even surface, and a flat stone. It can technically be played by one person alone, but is more fun when played in a group.

A series of connected boxes are drawn on the ground. The end result look like three boxes stacked on top of each other (Top), which is in turn stacked on two boxes placed touching each other and stacked on a single box (Middle). All of this is stacked on two connected boxes (Bottom).

The player throws the stone in the Bottom first box. The stone should not touch the boundary lines. Then, he/she has to hop directly from the start line to Box 2. Further, he/she has to quickly hop from Box 2 to Box 8, and hop back in reverse and collect the rubble in the first box (with one hand only) and jump to the starting point.

The person who does all of this without fumbling, falling or touching the boundary lines, continues playing. This time, the stone is thrown in the second Box, and the process is repeated (with the person starting by jumping into Box 1). The person who completes all eight boxes is a winner. When a person gets out, others get a turn. Some versions involve a final round that requires the winners to hop through the boxes with their eyes blindfolded.

The game helps to develop stamina, agility, flexibility and hand-eye coordination. Once popular in rural and urban homes, it is now seeing a decline due to lack interest in outdoor games.

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