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Filipino & Silat Martial Arts


Filipino martial arts (FMA) (Filipino: Sining panlaban ng Pilipinas) refer to ancient Malay and newer modified fighting methods devised in the Philippines. It incorporates elements from both Western and Eastern Martial Arts, the most popular forms of which are known as Arnis, Eskrima, and Kali. The intrinsic need for self-preservation was the genesis of these systems. Throughout the ages, invaders and evolving local conflict imposed new dynamics for combat in the islands now making up the Philippines. The Filipino people developed battle skills as a direct result of an appreciation of their ever-changing circumstances. They learned often out of necessity how to prioritize, allocate and use common resources in combative situations. Filipinos have been heavily influenced by a phenomenon of cultural and linguistic mixture. Some of the specific mechanisms responsible for cultural and martial change extended from phenomena such as war, political and social systems, technology, trade and practicality.

SILAT - is a tough and powerful martial art from Indonesia and roughly translates to ‘skill for fighting’ in Bahasa Indonesian. In reality, it is a combination of a vast number of slightly different martial arts that have been developed independently across the islands of Indonesia, historically seeing each ‘kingdom’ have it’s own official fighting style. They were designed for war (just like most other martial arts) but focus on efficiency. Silat is not a martial art designed to knock someone out, its about taking people out quickly, giving you the chance to take on another attacker before they strike you. It’s adaptable and in the modern day, a perfect martial art to combat group attackers – if you can perfect the style.


Silat has a few simple self-defense principles that synchronize with the fighting style itself. Some of these principles include de-escalating a situation with open hands and open hands in general. It is easier to facilitate the use of more techniques and it is easier to catch kicks with open hands. It is also (theoretically) easier to stop a weapon with open hands and to restrain someone, you need to grapple them, so again, open hands are a good idea.


Mike Allen

CCKMC FMA & Silat Instructor

Mike Allen is both an accomplished FMA and Savat Instructor

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