Amazing African Tribal Traditions – The bull jumping of the Hamar

Last updated on January 15th, 2024 at 11:09 am

Ethiopia’s Hamar tribe (also known as the Hamer tribe), made up mostly of pastoralists who respect and treasure their cattle, have a rather athletic initiation ritual.

Forget cow tipping – this tradition is all about the art of bull jumping. Bull jumping is a three-day rite of passage that all boys must partake in, and it’s extremely important for the dignity of both the initiate and his family.

The initiate must walk over 15 castrated bulls that have been rubbed in dung to make their backs slippery (and the task that much tougher). If he fails, he’ll have to wait a whole year to try again. And if he succeeds? It means he’s ready to marry a girl of his parents’ choosing, and to raise his own children and cattle.