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Pinching game

According to Mrs. T Majiya, one child would hold out his/her hand to another one who would pinch the top backhand and another child does the same to another until the whole lot of children have their hands on top of each other.

The person consulted.

The researcher spoke to Mrs. T Majiya of uMlazi BB section who gave an explanation about this game.

Who play this game?

This game is played by boys and girls between the ages of 4 – 10.

What is used to play this game?

No equipment is used to play this game, children use their hands only.

When is this game played?

This game is played at anytime, even at night.

Where is this game played?

This game can be played anywhere either inside or outside the house where children are.

How is this game played?

If children are too many, they can form groups maybe of five. The first child holds his/her hand in the open. The next child would pinch this hand on the back and the next would do the same. A person is not supposed to pinch his/her own hand. When all hands are pinching each other they would move them up and down chanting:
Yosu Yosu Yosu

As they say “yosu, yosu, yosu” each hand pinches the other hard in such a way that younger children cry when playing with old people. It is always preferable that young children play on their own. Other children pinch so hard that one may bleed. This is not a popular game because other children get hurt and end up crying. As a result it is not played regularly.

Custom associated with this game.

This game teaches perseverance of pain no matter the magnitude.


From a Masters dissertation by Victoria Mkhize for the School of IsiZulu, University of KwaZulu-Natal. Supervised by Professors P.J. Zungu and V. Prabhakaran.