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Castells Competition Builds Human Castles in the Sky

If you thought the gravity defying feats your college cheerleading squad performed were awe-inspiring, we can probably agree the 22nd Tarragona Castells Competition in Tarragona, Spain was breathtaking.

The annual human towers or castells (a Catalonian word that means "castles") event took place this weekend, drawing spectators from across the globe and some very nimble participants.

The competition is a bit of a cultural phenomenon — the tradition originated at the end of the 18th century in Valls, Tarragona, when rival groups of people called colles turned creating different kinds of human towers into a competitive sport, according to Castellers de Barcelona.

The last person to climb the whole tower is the anxaneta, a young girl or boy who, on arriving at the very summit raises his or her arm and salutes the public. This is the highlight of the event and the crowing moment for the castell.


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Join The Conversation
juju4 juju4 8 years
I was a cheerleader in high school, but terrified of heights. I preferred to be a spotter. I couldn't even do a shoulder sit without getting a little freaked. :-) Just looking at these people makes me dizzy! They must have amazing balance.
Jillness Jillness 8 years
Me too, Marni! I could NEVER go that high though! They are really far up in the sky! Dang!!!! Does anyone ever get hurt?
yesteryear yesteryear 8 years
this is awesome. i love spain.
Marni7 Marni7 8 years
How very very cool! and I thought being a flyer back in high school was challenging lol
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