The Kyrgyz people are nomads who came from Siberia and then moved to the south till they came down to the Tien Shan Mountains. Their principal profession in their life was the cattle, especially sheep and horses, which were the most important animals, but also cows and goats were raised. Horse - back riding is one of the most noteworthy part of Kyrgyz culture, therefore there are many traditional games played with the help of horses.
There are different types of horse-back riding games existing and played even nowadays especially for the big festivals. They usually perform them during the festivals or shows, and the high skill of riding the horses, where the moves are mostly derived from every-day circumstances from cohort to generation. Boys learn how to look after of sheep by helping the adults and they start from the early ages.
Girls also learn the traditional handicraft skills since their early childhood, the colorful carpets that they make take months or years of work. The most popular rugs are Shyrdak and Ala-Kiyiz , which are both made of felt and colored patterns embroidered on the surface, that are naturally extracted.
These wonderful carpets are not only the best production of Kyrgyz people but also one of the main national symbols of the Kyrgyz life. For instance the yurt is also made of felt and can be found everywhere in the pastures or villages. Yurts are still part of every-day life of the people in Kyrgyzstan even in big cities: You find street-cafés all over the places, serving local meals, and also families in large towns still build the yurt on the most imperative holidays, such as the child's birth, a marriage or a funeral. The significance of it is demonstrated in the flag of the Republic: It is of red color with a circle in the middle. It is the top crown of the yurt, with its typical wooden circle and the crossed sticks in its middle.
Yurt is portable nomadic dwelling that has many useful functions and consists of a wooden building with felt covers. This whole structure is fixed with short leather-ribbons (instead of nails) and ropes made from animals' hair. The decoration is spread out everywhere inside the yurt: Rugs are hung on the walls and spread on the floor, and the "Djuk" which takes at the end of the yurt, opposite to the entrance: at this place there are bed sheets are spread at night on the floor and offer a soft and warm place for sleeping overnight, but during daytime they staple and covered with a beautiful cloth, forming the back part of the place for the guests.
There is a little stove located in the middle of the yurt for cooking and warming the house. It is absolutely necessary even in the summer time in those high-altitude regions, especially if the weather is cold. The yurt is strictly separated between men's side and women's side. For example you can find kitchen values, pottery and everything needed for handicraft and sewing only on the right hand side. The equipment for hunting, fishing, horseback riding and everything for the sheep are put on the left side of the entrance.
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