Definition of gymkhana in US English:



  • A day event comprising races and other competitions between horse riders or car drivers.

    • ‘The gymkhana society are great supporters of the community so please come along and support them.’
    • ‘If it wasn't for them a lot of football matches, fêtes and gymkhanas just couldn't take place.’
    • ‘Beyond the purely practical there are more dapper variations of this apparel for spoiled horsey to wear on special occasions such as gymkhanas.’
    • ‘The motor gymkhana events, which are held under floodlights, are the ‘zig zag’ event where in you have to snake across a series of barriers as quickly as possible and clock the best time.’
    • ‘He bought the young Tony a succession of ponies to ride in their field, the last one being called Chippy, and, despite never having had a riding lesson, Tony entered a series of gymkhanas and won almost all of them.’
    • ‘At Easter and Christmas you see them, there were very few motor cars, and every little town had a fête of a gymkhana, they used to call them.’
    • ‘The scene is a gymkhana, or rather the parking lot for horseboxes, where the animals are brushed and groomed in preparation for events going on off screen.’
    • ‘Mr Stephens said the money would also be used to provide new outreach services to isolated station people and community events such as local race meetings, gymkhanas and festivals.’
    • ‘Used mainly as cavalry horses, the walers also excelled as mounts at polo, race meetings, and gymkhanas.’
    • ‘For younger riders there is mini-jumping and a gymkhana.’
    • ‘Emily only began serious dressage competition under strict British Dressage rules in January after some success at gymkhanas and country shows.’
    • ‘Here they will receive horse ridding lessons and see a mini gymkhana.’
    • ‘Horse trials, a gymkhana and a dog show as well as the funfair, exhibition tents and fast food.’
    • ‘Heavy rain in the afternoon kept the attendance down but the weather improved later and the gymkhana in the evening proved a great attraction.’
    • ‘This is always an enjoyable day and over the years the gymkhana society have generously sponsored the various organisations in the community and they are worthy of your support.’
    • ‘A mini gymkhana is also being organised for the Japanese group.’
    • ‘Sunday after Sunday saw Paddy head off for some of the regional shows or gymkhanas where he was a regular performer and from which he amassed an impressive array of rosettes.’
    • ‘Visitors were supplemented by a busy calendar of social events that tied together a community of settlements in gymkhanas, cricket fixtures and golf tournaments (on a dirt course).’
    • ‘Following a day including gymkhana, open jumping, driving, horticulture, children's sports, fell race and much more, the committee rounded of the annual show with a barbecue and dance in the evening.’
    • ‘The annual gymkhana and garden fête will take place this Sunday, opening at 1.00 p.m., admission €2.’


Mid 19th century: from Urdu gendḵānah ‘racket court’, from Hindi geṁd ‘ball’ + Persian ḵānah ‘house’, altered by association with gymnastic.