Rodeo Terminology in the Navajo Language

Rodeo, or known as Ahóóhai in the Navajo language, is a very popular sport on the Navajo reservation. Since many Navajos have cattle, it's not suprising that Navajos undertaken this competitive sports event. This video basically covers the names of the events in Navajo, both timed and rough stock events. This video also covers the names of key individuals involved in a rodeo, for example: Akałii: Cowboy: Dóola Bił Naalgeedígíí: Bull Rider Hastiin Łá̜ At'ínígíí: Rodeo Clown Bił Nída'algeedgo Nídayiiláhígíí: Pick-Up Man The term "rodeo" in Navajo comes from the word "Naa'ahóóhai," which means "chicken" in Navajo. Rodeos on the reservation initiated around a "chicken-pull." Over time, this word got shortened to "ahóóhai," and rather than being named after chicken pulls it became the term for "rodeos" as rodeos got popular on the reservation. Also, some people will use the term "Naa'ahóóhai" or "Ahóóhai" for agricultural shows; tribal, county, or state fairs. The names of the rodeo events in Navajo: Łí̜í̜' T'áá Dilkoohgo Naalgeedígíí: Bare Back The breakdown: Łí̜í̜': horse T'áá Dilkoohgo: in a smooth manner (ie without a saddle) Naalgeedígíí: the one that is bucking Łí̜í̜' Bik'ídahaznilgo Naalgeedígíí: Saddle Bronc The breakdown: Łí̜í̜': horse Bik'ídahaznilgo: things are set on it (ie it is saddled) Naalgeedígíí: the one that is bucking Béégashii Ałts'á̜á̜' Wódleehígíí: Team Roping The breakdown: Béégashii: cow Ałts'á̜á̜': on each side Wódleehígíí: the one where it is roped ...

 

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