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Original Issue


Culture Wars

THE NOMADS of Central Asia have sporting traditions that date back 1,000 years, though much of that culture was suppressed during Soviet rule. As a way to keep their heritage alive, the president of the Kyrgyz Republic, Almazbek Atambayev, helped establish the first World Nomad Games, in 2014. The third such competition, held in Cholpon-Ata, Kyrgyzstan, last September, featured more than 2,000 athletes from 80 countries competing in 37 sports. (The United States fielded more than 50 participants, many of them Peace Corps volunteers.) The events range from mounted archery to kok-boru, which involves teams on horseback vying to throw a headless goat carcass into a container. (It's as brutal as it sounds.) Ben Teitelbaum, who produced and directed The Lost Games for SI TV, calls his trip "easily the most eye-opening adventure of my life. The event felt 75% Olympics and 25% Medieval Times, with a dose of the Dothraki from Game of Thrones." You can experience the sights and sounds of this unique competition through SI's latest minidocumentary, now available on SI.TV.


In Swing in the Dark, SI TV follows three visually impaired golfers—Tommy Marks, 38; Chad NeSmith, 49; and Jeremy Poincenot, 29—during the U.S. Blind Golf Association national championship, in Old Hickory, Tenn., last August. (Each golfer won his respective division.) The film focuses on how the game has affected their lives and also on the relationships they've developed with their sighted coaches, who take on much bigger roles than traditional caddies.


For classic sports movies and TV shows, plus Crossover TV and other compelling original programming, go to SI.TV