The second World Vovinam Championships opened on July 28 at HCM City 's Phu Tho Gymnasium with about 300 athletes and officials from 22 countries worldwide.

The opening ceremony began with a drum performance and was followed by a magnificent vovinam (Vietnam-style martial arts) performance by young martial artists from HCM City .

President of the World Vovinam Federation Nguyen Danh Thai said the tournament was the biggest competition of its kind in the world.

He hoped competitors would play fairly and contribute to promoting the human values and genuine spirit of vovinam.

Among 22 participating countries, Australia , Belarus , Cambodia , France , Germany , India , Iran , Italy , Poland , Russia , Romania , Indonesia and Vietnam are attending for the second time.

Algeria , Argentina , Belgium , Denmark , England , Morocco , Poland , Spain and Switzerland are newcomers.

Indonesia once again sent the second largest quad of 46 athletes behind Vietnam , which has a contingent of 47 competitors.

Vovinam was founded in Hanoi in 1938 by late Grandmaster Nguyen Loc.

For 73 years, vovinam has been expanding to many parts of the world and has over 30 member federations.

It is considered by some to be a philosophy of human culture and sportsmanship.

Vovinam became Vietnam 's first sport on the roster of a continental competition at the Asian Indoor Games in 2009 when it was the host nation.

It has been accepted as an official sport at the 26th SEA Games in Indonesia late this year./.