su·​mo | \ˈsü-(ˌ)mō \

Definition of sumo 

: a Japanese form of wrestling in which a contestant loses if he is forced out of the ring or if any part of his body except the soles of his feet touches the ground

Examples of sumo in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Perform a total 2-4 sets of step sumo squats and bench dips, resting 30-60 seconds between sets. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Stepping up your training can boost your heart, lower-body muscles," 11 July 2018 Day 2: Tokyo Waking up early, you will be driven by private vehicle and escorted to a Sumo Stable or beya by an expert journalist, to learn about sumo while watching up close how these mammoth wrestlers practice. Scott Gilman, Town & Country, "How to Plan a Trip to Japan," 5 Oct. 2016 In male-only sumo, women are considered ritually unclean and are banned from the dohyo, which is considered sacred. Washington Post, "Japan mayor saved by nurse says female sumo ban irrelevant," 29 June 2018 Watching sumo requires that visitors sit on tatami mats and are absolutely still and silent for approximately two hours. Scott Gilman, Town & Country, "How to Plan a Trip to Japan," 5 Oct. 2016 Baseball, soccer and sumo are the favorites in Japan. Stephen Wade, Fox News, "AP Explains: American football's niche following in Japan," 23 May 2018 This month sexist rules in sumo came under fire when female first-aiders attending a sick man were ordered to leave the ring. The Economist, "A rare victory for #MeToo in Japan," 26 Apr. 2018 Some have pointed out that sumo has not always been so pious. The Economist, "Why women are not allowed in sumo rings—even to save a life," 14 Apr. 2018 In sumo's tradition, the ring is considered sacred and women are prohibited from entering. Fox News, "Sumo in uproar as women first responders ordered out of ring," 5 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sumo.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of sumo

1880, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sumo

Japanese sumō

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Dictionary Entries near sumo


Sumner's method

Sumner line




sump fuse

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Time Traveler for sumo

The first known use of sumo was in 1880

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English Language Learners Definition of sumo

: a Japanese form of wrestling that is performed by very large men

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Spanish Central: Translation of sumo

Nglish: Translation of sumo for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about sumo

Comments on sumo

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to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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