Internet

The Internet is going wild over a video of a 20-year-old Japanese woman snowboarding in a red, long-sleeved kimono

  • More than 5 million people have watched Sumire Morino, 20, tear up the slopes in a red kimono.
  • Morino wore a long-sleeved furisode kimono to mark Coming of Age Day in Japan.

The internet is going crazy over a video of a young Japanese woman snowboarding in a red kimono. A 20-second clip she posted on January 9 has already been viewed over 5 million times.

Sumire Morino, 20, told Insider that in the video she is wearing a furisode kimono that she bought for 20,000 Japanese yen, or $153. The furisoden is worn by unmarried women in formal settings. The term refers to the outfit’s long “swinging sleeves.”

“In Japan, there is a culture of women wearing a special long-sleeved kimono, the furisode, for the coming-of-age ceremony, and I wanted to wear one at least once,” Morino said.

Coming of Age Day is a holiday in Japan held to celebrate teenagers turning 20 and entering the next stage of their lives: adulthood. But Morino told Insider that she didn’t want to attend a traditional ceremony that would involve meeting all of her classmates from elementary, middle school and high school.

Instead, Morino chose to head to the Banshogahara ski resort in Nagano to celebrate, combining her high school hobby of snowboarding with a piece of tradition.

Morino—now a university student in Kyoto majoring in traditional Japanese crafts—told Insider that she was initially afraid the long furisode sleeves would get caught under the snowboard. But her worries were for naught, as evidenced by the video of her tearing down the slopes, long sleeves flying in the winter wind.

“The kimono looks so good on you! Congratulations on growing up,” it read a comment on Morino’s video.

“This is ridiculously cool, please marry me,” one more comment Read.

Morino also posted pictures of herself wearing a kimono on the slopes and on a snow lift. She told Insider that she had to adjust the outfit several times because the wind was blowing “really hard” and messed up her outfit.

“For me, Coming of Age Day was just an ordinary day,” Morino said. “But a lot of people celebrated with me and it was a very memorable day.”

At least one million people celebrated Coming of Age Day this year on January 9. The act of donning new, “adult” clothes to mark a rite of passage is believed to date back to the eighth century.

Women often wear furisode kimonos on Coming of Age Day, while men often wear suits or pleated hakama pants. Japanese youth are often seen with their family and friends visiting temples to ask for blessings or participate in seijinshiki, ceremonies held in local town halls. It is also the first day when many young people are legally allowed to drink and smoke, so the festivities can get rowdy.

Morino is not the only youth in Japan who has found a modern way to celebrate the day of tradition.

Two girls in Japan’s Shizuoka city recreated a viral photo of themselves in school uniform with Mount Fuji in the background. But this time the duo were older – and celebrated Coming of Age Day together.

Over in Kita-Kyushu, some young people chose flashy, non-traditional outfits to mark the day with their friends – a rare sight in Japan, but one that has become something of a local tradition.

The next Coming of Age Day will be celebrated on January 8, 2024.

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