They say there is no greater pain than heartbreak, but I beg to differ. Getting hit in the nuts is worse. To this day I, and most guys I know, have no clear way of articulating exactly how it feels when we get knocked down there. The weight of discomfort travels upwards, all the way to the stomach. If hit hard enough, you’d start feeling faint and nauseated. Then I discovered a remedy.
In a recent intense football match for the Chinese Super League leg 1 finals, Mubarak Wakaso, a Ghanaian player for Jiangsu Suning FC was seen lying on the pitch with his head down and hands on his crotch when South Korean player Park Ji-Soo, from the opposing team Guangzhou Evergrande FC, went over, squatted, and pounded his butt repeatedly.
A tweet assumed that Wakaso was “feigning injury,” but Twitter account Korea Football News cleared everything up and said that he was indeed injured and likely hit in the balls.
“There is a widespread belief in South Korea that hitting buttock (sic) can reduce pain in the balls,” the tweet reads.
In the same Twitter thread, another account links to an article from South Korean website Morning Economics, where Urologist Park Bong-hee from St. Mary's Hospital in Uijeongbu city talked about the science behind the treatment.
“At this time, tapping around the hip or tailbone with a fist can help relieve pain by releasing the muscles in the testicular area that are excessively tense,” he said.
A blog posted by the Cha University Medical Center explains that “tapping the hips, lower back, and tailbone with your fists relieves the muscles in the area of the testicles.”
This custom of “hitting the buttocks” is widely known amongst South Korean boys — something they learn as early as primary school. It’s not a magical solution but a home remedy that helps diffuse the pain.
It is also a custom — especially when playing football — that if a guy were to get hit in the nuts, other players should hit his butt to help him relieve the pain. Think of it as good manners.
In this episode of the South Korean variety show Knowing Bros, Sungjong from the K-pop group Infinite gets hit in the nuts with a football and is seen crouching down in pain as hosts tap his butt.
I had never heard of this before. When I was a kid, all I did was curl up into a pathetic ball until the pain subsided. Other people swear by jumping jacks, a cold compress, and even just lying flat.
Getting whacked in the balls is an excruciating experience but I’m not gonna lie — I kind of want to try this butt-hitting trick if I’d be so unlucky to need it in the future.