The militia musters together each Fire Season and learns to fight together. They aren’t drilled so much as learn how to gather together in groups, how to fight with sword and shield (this is organised by the Orlanth cult after all), how to march in groups, etc. They have foot races, wrestling matches, boxing, swimming contests, and other athletic competitions. They engage in mock single and group sparring contests, with anywhere from one to ten contestants on a side. The wealthy engage in hunts from horseback or chariot races. The tribal king oversees this, participates in it – and there are many opportunities to bond with the tribal war leaders.
During this period, the tribal assembly is held. So you can see that there is going to be a bias towards the tribal king at the assembly – but if the tribal king is a poor war leader or otherwise has upset the rank and file of the tribal militia, this can be really disastrous.The next season, many of these same youth participate in games to honour and please the Earth Goddess. That’s your real contests where you might get a wife or husband, or win some prize from the Earth Priestesses!
But you can imagine there are these athletic competitions, contests, and mock combats going on in every valley in Sartar during the summer. Some tribes might give prizes that attract spectators.
In early Earth Season, a biennial competition is held to celebrate Orlanth’s wooing of Ernalda. One of the events is to run along the royal road from Two Hour Town to Boldhome wearing full armor. Those who can make the race in two hours or less are given great honors.
I think the biggest thing they do is compete, spar, and get used to doing things in groups. So lots of sword fighting (with wooden weapons), javelin throwing, wrestling, boxing, pushing games, foot races, etc.
You spend much of Fire Season doing militia service – patrolling, etc. But the tribal muster is probably only a week or three, and is combined with the tribal assembly (and may have once upon a time been the same thing). Then you go back to your village.Then in Earth Season, you see many of your tribe again when you go to the Earth Temple for festivals celebrating the goddess. But that is again for only about a week at most.
The “Elmal cult” (aka Yelmalio) is not involved in training Orlanthi militia. He’s over at the Sun Dome Temple, training templars.
Clans group together as a tribe for matters of war.
A free man is expected to own a sword and shield. Yes, spears are trained as well, but those without a sword are looked down upon.
A sword is something that is likely passed down from generation to generation. It is a mark of being a free household – that someone has a sword and can use it.