Definition of gymkhana
: a meet featuring sports contests or athletic skills: such asa : competitive games on horsebackb : a timed contest for automobiles featuring a series of events designed to test driving skill
gymkhana was our Word of the Day on 06/15/2013. Hear the podcast!
Did You Know?
Both the word gymkhana and the event it describes originated in 19th-century India. The word is probably an alteration of the Hindi "gedkhana," which describes a ball- playing area similar to a racket ball court, with the first syllable influenced by our word gymnasium. The first gymkhanas were displays of athletics and equestrian skill, and while those are still common, the 20th century introduced a new kind of gymkhana, designed to show off car handling. These newer gymkhanas are often held in parking lots, where contestants race over tight, twisting courses marked with cones or pylons.
Origin and Etymology of gymkhana
probably modification of Hindi gẽdkhāna & Urdu gendkhāna, literally, ball court
First Known Use: 1877See Words from the same year
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