Source: The Straits Times
Singapore Silat Federation, also known as Persisi, was formed in 1976 as the main governing body that includes the management of Silat activities, coaching, talent-scouting, coordinating competitions worldwide, technical officiating, and cultural promotion of the art to educational institutions, corporations, and communities. With the hopes of bringing the Silat community together, Silat associations and Silat Clubs are working closely with Persisi to conduct Silat lessons in Singapore, island-wide.
Singapore Silat Federation works hand-in-hand with numerous sports associations, such as Singapore Sports Council (SSC), Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC), People’s Association (PA), International Pencak Silat Federation (PERSILAT), and many more in order to sustain the awareness of the sport locally and internationally.
In 2006, Silat was introduced in Singapore Sports School with special spots given to national athletes each year. Since its first inclusion, 16 (and counting) national athletes have graduated! With the two upcoming major competitions–the Asian Games and the World Pencak Silat Championships, 2018 marks an important year for Persisi. The silat sport will be making its debut as a medal sport this August in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, followed by the world championships four months later.
Silat Is Not For Everyone
Requiring a great deal of commitment and discipline, Silat is an intense sport that covers all the fighting arts of the Indonesian archipelago, including complex defence and attack techniques. Rigorous drills and technique trainings are necessary, and budding enthusiasts must master important basic moves before even approaching the competition arena.
Types of Competitions
In order to allow a particular team to fully showcase its abilities in various areas, there are four kinds of competitions events–Tanding, Tunggal, Ganda, and Regu categories.
Tanding refers to a match, where two teams send out a representative each to engage in a bout with each other. Opponents have to abide by strict rules regarding stance, movement patterns, and permitted attacking areas.
Tunggal, on the other hand, is a singles event. Only one contestant is allowed in the arena at a time. He or she will showcase a solo routine - without weapons first, before moving on to an armed segment.
Groups of two will participate in the Ganda, or doubles, category. They will showcase a three-minute routine, taking turns to performed unarmed and with weapons.
The Regu category refers to a team event. It involves routines performed by three members of the same team, but, unlike the Tunggal competitions, contestants go in unarmed.
To ensure a fairer contest, contestants are divided into three separate age groups, two gender classes and weight divisions within each category. The first and youngest age classification is the pre-teenagers’ group, which comprises of budding silat talents aged 12 to 14. The teenagers' group is made up of youths aged 14 to 17 while the adult group includes silat practitioners aged 17 to 40.
There are three basic strike moves in Silat–straight punch, uppercut and palm strike. Many fighters familiarise themselves with these moves to better understand how to defend against them. The straight punch is the most commonly used, while the uppercut is especially useful when facing a taller opponent. The palm strike is similar to the uppercut, only you strike with an open palm instead of a fist.
Where To Learn
The Singapore Silat Federation are always recruiting people to join their national team or normal programmes! If you fall between aged 5 and 50, you’re eligible to participate in their training programmes. Training is conducted every Tuesday and Thursday nights at Bedok Sports Complex. Some of the moves in the training syllabus include punching, kicking, blocking and self-defence.
Walk-in registration for the Silat National Team recruitment happens daily from 9 am to 6 pm at 11 Bedok North Street 1, #04-02 Singapore 469662. Interested parties may learn more about the Singapore Silat Federation and its training programmes on its Facebook Page or website.