How popular is Silat in your neck of the woods?

Discussion in 'Silat' started by pakarilusi, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. pakarilusi

    pakarilusi Valued Member

    Just curious.

    Especially from those in the States, Canada and the UK...

    Is it always affiliated with the Kali and/or JKD groups?

    I know, difficult to answer but basically is Silat there more prolific now compared to say, ten years ago or is it les prolific?
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
  2. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    Good question, although i'm not in the States, Canada or UK, but the Netherlands. Netherlands is different than the previous countries in that we have a long relationship with Indonesia, or actually the former Dutch Indies. So Silat is quite well known here, there are plenty of schools, some bigger and public, some still just trained in gardens, attics or in the living room. We had some quite famous silat teachers who were known all over Europe and the States and even Canada.

    In the Netherlands sadly the quality of silat has become less and less. Partly because of Olah Raga and Seni separations, partly because a lot of the older well trained generation has already passed away. MMA and for quite some years Kickboxing has been the most popular type of martial art. It's sad because there was a time that even the most skilled kickboxers had respect for Silat as a style. Now it's more seen as the stuff you see on demonstrations (fancy, nice dress and not really effective).

    In the Netherlands Silat is rarely linked to Kali or JKD, that's rather an exception than a rule. The link between silat and kali/jkd mainly comes from teachers like Dan Inosanto and Paul de Thouars (the main teacher of the style i practice).
  3. Infesticon #1

    Infesticon #1 Majesticon

    My community healthcare nurse has recently started training in Silat, it's a development from the Yoga class he attends.
  4. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    There's both here. A couple places teach it as part of the Inosanto blend of martial arts. A couple others teach it as a solo art. Either way I wouldn't call it popular. There are still lots more TKD schools in strip malls.
  5. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    I would say that it's primarily associated with Guro Dan. But certainly not exclusively. I'm just outside of Washington, DC. So it's a pretty diverse area. The Indonesia Embassy, for instance, used to have silat classes. They likely still do. I'm sure those have no relation to Guro Dan. And MAP's own "GungFuJoe" (who doesn't post here anymore) teaches silat here in Northern Virginia, again with no affiliation to Guro Dan that I'm aware of.

    More or less popular than 10 years ago... I'm not sure. The 90s is when Southeast Asian martial arts really came into vogue here. Silat, bando, kali, muay thai, bersilat, kuntao, etc. Again, largely thanks to Guro Dan. But he opened the door for public awareness. That doesn't necessarily mean that every teacher who came to light as a result was associated with Guro Dan. Just that Guro Dan raised people's awareness of and interest in those arts.

    I think it often feels like there's more available, though, because the information age has made it so easy to FIND these teachers. Back then, it would have been a feat, in itself, to locate a silat teacher. Now, a few seconds on Google generally does the trick.

    Bottom line, though, the majority of people I'M AWARE OF in the DC Metro area are associated with Guro Dan and JKD/Kali. That could well be because I'm better plugged into the JKD and FMA communities than I am the silat community though.
  6. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    Actually from what i see in Dan Inosanto's silat it has a lot of influences of Paul de Thouars' silat (he still practices with Victor de Thouars) and Herman Suwanda's Mande Muda.
    If you look further back before Dan Inosanto probably there were a few dutch indo's who brought silat to the States back in the 60's.
  7. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    I'm not disputing any of that. But neither I nor anyone I've spoken to knew about silat prior to Guro Dan. Doesn't mean it wasn't there. But the question was about popularization. I'm quite sure there were (and are) legit silat teachers here before that.
  8. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    I was not disagreeing with you, just adding some extra info ;)
  9. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    Gotcha. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't coming across as trying to "lay claim" to all silat in the area under the Inosanto banner. :)
  10. pakarilusi

    pakarilusi Valued Member


    It seems with the advent and popularity of youtube and socal sites such as facebook, Silat has had a little more exposure. On the net at least, for me...

    I would love to give seminars someday in the future on my family's Silat style. My late grandad would like that, I think.
  11. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    As silly as it sounds, styles also benefit from cinema. Tell me that the muay boran teachers didn't shoot from obscurity to superstars the moment Tony Jaa hit the scene. Or aikido for Steven Seagal. Sometimes it doesn't even require that the movie star in question actually does that particular style. Jeff Speakman's double stick work undoubtedly sent enthusiasts in search of FMA schools (despite him doing American Kenpo). Van Damme's Kickboxer surely piqued people's interest in muay thai, despite a complete dearth of genuine muay thai in that film.

    For better or worse, The Raid is going to raise the overall interest level in silat.
  12. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    I'm curious if this will be the case. Genuine Silat instructors are difficult to find. The Silat community also tends to shoot itself in the foot a lot with bickering over authenticity as it is here in the states.
  13. pakarilusi

    pakarilusi Valued Member

    Yup, authenticity always is the bane of traditional styles that need to trace their lineages.

    Silat has always suffered this problem, even here in Malaysia.
  14. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    That never happens with kali.



    I tried to keep a straight face.
  15. pakarilusi

    pakarilusi Valued Member

    Anyone else? ;)
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013
  16. shootodog

    shootodog restless native

    That NEVER EVER EVER happen.



  17. Dave76

    Dave76 Valued Member

    Here in the wild west, si-what? JK-who? :p Not a bit to be found. Most likely some is available in Denver, CO, about six hours drive south.
  18. pakarilusi

    pakarilusi Valued Member

    The styles that you do do see are mainly of which schools yah?
  19. Dave76

    Dave76 Valued Member

    TKD, modern Ju-Jitsu, BJJ, and some karate LARPers.
  20. Ben Gash CLF

    Ben Gash CLF Valued Member

    There's actually no Silat exactly where I am, nearest teacher funnily enough lives here but teaches 15 miles away. Within 2 hours there's loads though. Some Maphilindo and Majapahit but also Cimande, Walisongo, Suffian Bela Diri, Lincah, Kuntao and others.

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