This pair of Indian Clubs was donated by the Josie Flaten family.
They were used as hand weights, swung by the user in different routines. Click here to see video. These are one pound clubs, but various weights were available – up to 50 pounds.
Indian clubs derive their name from similar clubs traditionally used in India to train for strength. The practice of swinging such clubs to develop physical fitness was first introduced to England by British soldiers who had studied the discipline while stationed in India during the 1800s.
British soldiers stationed in India in the 1800’s were impressed by the strength and agility of the Indian Kushti wrestlers. The wrestlers trained by swinging similar objects. The British adapted the rounties and brought the training technique home.
Indian clubs were popular in Europe and the United States in the late
1800s – early 1900’s. Everyone from soldiers to genteel ladies used t
hem for conditioning. They were even an Olympic gymnastics event in the 1904 and1932. The popularity of the Indian Club waned in the 1920s and 1930s.