The Osaka City Board of Education has announced it plans to ban "kumitaiso," the popular gymnastic formation known as a human pyramid, at local school sports days, due to increasing safety concerns.
The human pyramid, where students kneel in rows on each other’s backs, is a long-running sport practice at Japanese schools, but it has also been the cause of ongoing serious injuries, stirring a nationwide debate on its safety, Fuji TV reported.
A major accident that sparkled the safety debate occurred in September last year at a junior high school in Yao, Osaka Prefecture, when a 10-tier human pyramid collapsed during a performance at the school’s sports festival. The accident left several students injured, including one with a broken arm.
In 2015, Osaka city’s government launched a safety guideline for elementary and junior high schools to limit the tier number in the pyramids, but accidents continued nevertheless, leading them to judge that the practice is unsafe.
The board of education plans on starting the ban officially from April.© Japan Today