Inside Kung fu Article

Discussion in 'Silat' started by serakmurid, Feb 24, 2006.

  1. Silk Road

    Silk Road New Member

    Salaam Hormat,

    I don't know nuthin' about any Serak. But what I like about this thread now is that you guys are talking about differences and interpretations instead of ****ing about who does the REAL or ONLY Serak.

    Please keep it up!
  2. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Could you be more specific about this response? Who did Cass study with in Holland and was only 2 times that he dropped by? His pukulan looks like Guru Maurice's in fact his bukajaln djurus look a lot like Guru Maurice's Djurus.

    Are you studying under Maurice's Line? Or Ventje & Dolf?
    Could you give some specifics???
  3. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    As to Cass Magda's style looking like the stuff of Maurice de Thouars, quite possibly true...but I'm not to sure that the videos of M de Thouars are good enough reference-material. The deeper insights are mostly never shown/explained on video and even the visits of your seniors to Holland do not automatically give them total insight in a system (i'm not saying that they don't have the insight, but it is not automatically a fact). Some of the stuff is so subtle that only feeling them gives you an idea what it is and I believe there is no replacement for feeling it!

    I myself don't study the Serak style of Dolf de Vries or Maurice de Thouars. I just study some pukulan and therefore know a little bit of what pukulan looks like and feels like. I'm not a senior student or something like that, not at all!. But...I know enough that pukulan and 'pentjak silat' are different sides of a coin where the one is not necessarily more refined than the other. From what I know in the past there was not a seperation between the two...there was just 'spel' (which translates into 'play') and 'spelers' (players).
  4. Wali

    Wali Valued Member

    Pukulan is the striking aspect of Silat. It derives from the word 'Pukul' which roughly means 'to strike'. What do you mean when you say "one is not necessarily more refined than the other"? This makes it sound like they are seen as two independant entities which aren't entwined.

    Have I missed something? :confused:
  5. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    Yeah sorry if I find it a bit hard to explain. In my view...pukulan is a seperate style and not just 'the striking aspect of Silat'. This would mean that if you practice your punches you would practice you practice pukuls. Pukulan is more like 'the art of punching' in my view. Pukulan has pukuls, as well as grabs, twists, kicks etc. Here pukulan means more of a different mindset. While in the regular pentjak silat styles the opponent recieves several pukulan the opponent has to be destroyed once they engage a fight.

    I must admit they are somewhat entwined, but it's too easy to say that pukulan is just 'the striking aspect'. Mentality is different...for instance in pukulan you almost never take a step back, you take a step forward (contrary to for instance Cimande)

    Pukulan is silat without the cultural nonsense, designed for fighting.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2006
  6. Steve Perry

    Steve Perry Valued Member

    Hit or Throw

    What we do in the Pacific Northwest we call Pukulan Pentjak Silat Sera Plinck, and for us, the pukulan is the striking aspect. Given how it is blended, it's hard to say what came from where, though we certainly consider that we have Tjimande roots down deep, we don't do a lot of backing up, either, so maybe that's where that came from.

    As I understand it, pukulan was primarily a striking art, and its origins, like many arts, somewhat hazy and hard to pin down exactly. We've been told by people that what we do have definite elements of pukulan in it, and it seems the Dutch players rely more on that that we do. And like a lot of arts, the possibility of evolution certainly exists.

    I think the finesses aspect comes from having more choice of weapons. When the only tool you have is a hammer -- a pukul -- then every problem becomes a nail. Boxing is very developed in punching, but that's what boxers do, they hit, they don't kick or grapple, they don't sweep or throw.

    An art that can do five things might not be more effective than one that can do one, but that's where the idea of this discussion arose, I think. As you say, pukulan has the cultural aspects stripped out, and by its nature, seems more direct and less complex. Good or bad, that makes it different from some other arts.

    For us, having a gun and a knife is better than just having a gun. And, of course, we don't consider this to be nonsense ...
  7. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    Hi Taoizt,

    I was confused by the use of the word 'pukulan' to denote a separate style. Wali is certainly right, in Indonesian it merely means 'to strike'.

    However, I think the word was used (mis-used?) by the Dutch Indos and hence in Holland and the US it is sometimes used as a term in itself!

    The main emphasis in the style I study is pukulan(hitting) and kuncian(locking). Great for going 'straight at 'em', but that is only one aspect. We also employ legwork to great effect in combination with pukulan tactics. Evasion, offbalancing etc.

    Of course the combination of upper & lower body movement greatly increase effectiveness. Combine this with attacks at different levels and you've got a whole lot of pecahan to play with :)
  8. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Last edited: Dec 14, 2006
  9. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Spoke to Guru Cliff today he says, Guru Plinck went to Holland with Pendekar Paul 2 times on both trips the met with other Serak players of the "ventje" line and also Pendekar paul went with Danny Huybrechts to holland aswell and also shared and spent time with other players.

    Now this is what my teacher gathered from his teachers trips and video....The

    "Dutch" use more or emphasize more of the Tiga than the other Langkahs in Serak & they use the Pukulan heavily aswell as the hand motion known as the "potong". Apperantly the djurus are not as emphasized. The potong used is the same motion found heavily in djurus 14 & 15 of Serak.

    He said also from what he saw and was shown it is very effective. Just a different flavor to what PDT taught. Although PDT also emphasized the Pukulan and the usage of the Potong in the djurus and in Application.

  10. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    Good responses guys. It shows that terms can get a different meaning in different countries or even regions. For me Pukulan is the complete package :), but again, what is complete? Offcourse we don't just use the fist as a weapon, open hands, sikuts and pecuts are as important as well, as are footwork and kicks. So the pukulan that is practiced in Holland is usually an entire style. If you have to make a comparison, perhaps it's easier to compare it with Wing Chun versus another Kungfu style. Ving Tsun's main weapon is the fist, but..they DO have kicks and footwork. They don't choose to lock because a lock takes time and in that precious time (even if its 1 second) another opponent can come up from behind. You have to take him out, and, preferably on the spot. The completeness of Ving Tsun is often debated because there is virtually no groundgame, but in the exponent of it can make it work standing up or on the ground.

    A lot of people think that pukulan uses different (more limited?) techniques to take someone down...perhaps that's true, but in the end it's the mentality that really makes the should only need 1,2 or 3 techniques on the street.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2006
  11. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    Interesting stuff :)

    So, in the past some Dutch collonial has asked 'what's that?' after observing some Silat & got the answer 'pukulan', which of course would be technically correct if striking was involved. ;) Reminds me of the old 'kangaroo' story :confused:

    No wonder there is so much conflict if we're all using the same terms to describe different things :Angel:

    So, is Dutch 'Pukulan' just a version of silat that concerntrates on striking with predominantly langkah tiga? The core of our system is pretty much the same.

    Of course a limited number of movements doesn't have to detract from the effectiveness, because they can all fit together and flow from one another in an unlimited number of ways.
  12. Steve Perry

    Steve Perry Valued Member

    Yeah, But Which Three?

    I don't think anybody was saying pukulan techniques didn't work, but that the PDT version of silat was, indeed, more complex than what we think of as "pukulan."

    While it is true, that in a streetfight, it might take three seconds and only a couple of basic techniques to do the job, the question is, which technique will it require? What options will you have? I'd liken this to playing pocket billiards -- you need to be thinking not only about the ball you are about to sink, but what shot you will have after that ball goes in. Or, if you miss, what shot that will leave your opponent.

    Duking it out with one guy is different than taking on three or four. The ability to put somebody onto the ground as a roadblock comes into play with multiple attackers. Precision could be more useful there.

    If your opponent somehow blocks the punch you planned to deck him with, what is your backup? The reason there are sweeps and takedowns is that they are useful, depending on the circumstances. We aren't big on reaching for locks, because we consider them low-priority moves, but if one presents itself, we'll take it. We have kicks, but we tend to use them on targets of opportunity, that is, we don't spend a lot of time setting up somebody for a kick. We aren't doing taekwondo. If it's there, yep, go for it, but we generally prefer to keep both feet on the ground when upright, (though there is a fair amount of groundwork, too.)

    We don't believe you need every tool Sears ever made in your toolbox, but we like the idea of having some that work at all four (and sometimes five) ranges. I think part of the finesse aspect is knowing what the ranges are, and which tool to use, and when.
  13. Tuankaki

    Tuankaki Valued Member

    That's what I said back on my Dec. 5th post, from my personal experience. (By the way Steve, if Serg is still around, he can verify this as he was there - he was my student at the time). Unfortunately I don't have any videos. The "potong" as such, can also be expressed as from Cimande dasaran (djuru-djuru?) 1 and 2, which is far more likely the source for that movement, if you've ever actually seen it - although the badan attributes are very different. From the Sera videos I've watched, most of the pukuls can be well derived from Sera djuru-djuru 1-7. The "potong" from djuru 5. At least that's what I gather from the videos. I like that one of the definitions of "potong" is to "slaughter, or amputate". Sounds about right to me.
  14. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    So what Langkahs are actually practiced in Serak in Holland or in Pukulan ?

    Which ones are emphasized?
  15. Tuankaki

    Tuankaki Valued Member

    Never been to Holland, and don't have any videos. It seems they don't travel to the U.S. much either. The guy I worked with had zero footwork to show for his 2 years of training.

    Actually to be fair, Guru Terlinden's art had ""Sera" djurus big time, and his Pukulan (from his videos) made extensive use of the tiga. Dr. Andre who comes from the Terlinden/Maurice line (although he resides near me, not in Holland), makes usage of all the platforms most Serakies would be familiar with, not just the tiga.

    Perhaps lumping all of Holland's Sera together doesn't serve to accurately examine the differentiating nuances from the deVries, deThouars, and Terlinden lines. It would be very helpful for folks from those lines to pitch in here, as it's really pretty much speculation from afar where it currently stands.
  16. Tuankaki

    Tuankaki Valued Member

    We just had Guru Paul Silva (Dr. Andre's "Master at Arms" for several years) here this past weekend, and we have Guru Plinck coming next weekend for a public workshop on the 17th. It's great fun to break out those videos periodically.

    Plus we'll have Gurus Bob Vanatta, Chris Geilen, Mike Choate, and Ron Miller here to review some of the Aikido Silat we all learned. Well, maybe not. We'll probably just concentrate on what Guru Plinck has to teach. Should be a hoot.
  17. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    Regarding langkas: Usually we practice the tiga footwork at pukulan. But as time and experience progresses there are some alternative, more forward stances.

    Regarding refinement: Somehow the idea is that practicing mainly pukuls (and their supporting footwork) is less refined than practicing the whole package. Sure there's more than punching..but Pukuls can be incredibly refined, in a way I previously never seen before, except perhaps from some esoteric kungfu movie :). Is the punch actually a push, or the push a punch?. Do you punch and keep your adversary close or do you punch in a way that you have to follow after your opponents retreat? Is the punch blocked, sure the 'brother' of the attacking hand is there to back up with another pukul. Is your whole intent transferrred into the punch (and I don't just mean body mass). etc. etc.

    About the dutch Serak lineages, I cannot write about it since I don't practice Serak. Here in Holland a lot of old-style pentjak and pukulan is still only practiced in the privacy of a living room or on a small attic. Old style pentjak was not ment to go public and commercial or even to be discussed on a public forum. Why would they give away their tricks? What is there to win?

  18. Wali

    Wali Valued Member

    The survival of the system. Many systems die out for this very reason. They become SO secretive that nobody learns them and they dissapear.
  19. taoizt

    taoizt Valued Member

    Sure that could be a reason. But even if you go public it remains to be seen if enough deep knowledge can be transferred. Only one or two will be able to pick up all or most of the knowledge if you're lucky. And if that person trains a new group himself, the same problem arises. If you train in a small group without going public it's the same case. Only advantage with attic or backyard-training in my opinion is that money never has to come into play. With money people expect something in return, even if they are only there for the sports. Rent has to be paid so a minimum number of trainees have to come to compensate for the costs, let alone make a profit of it.

    A lot of people say they really want to train, but if that means bruises, frustration and pain every day, how many people will sacrifice all of that for limited respect in a small community? A lot of people will bail out and take the shortcut of becoming a western 'pendekar' and make lots of money.

    I guess most of the older and deeper knowledge will remain hidden or will disappear whilst society marches on. Kungfu, Silat or Karate are no different in that. Or maybe I'm being just too cynical :)
  20. Pekir

    Pekir Valued Member

    I have to agree with Tristan on this. The lower stances are to train your legs and yes in our modest opinion one should be able to perform the techniques that way. To prepare our new students we have set up a basic training that helps our students to 'prepare' their leg strengh. The application though allways on the situation. I remember one karateka once stating that those low stances were not really practical in real fights. I quess he only watched the training sessions and did not fully grasp the application.


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