Pencak silat or silat is a traditional martial arts originating from Indonesia. Pencak silat as part of Indonesian culture developed in line with the history of the development of Indonesian society. Pencak silat martial arts are widely known in Indonesia, even starting to develop in neighboring countries such as Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, southern Philippines, and southern Thailand, precisely in Pattani province, in accordance with the spread and development of the Malay Archipelago. Pencak silat comes from two words, pencak and silat. Pencak means the basic movement of martial arts that is bound to the rules. Silat means perfect self-defense which originates in spirituality.

The term silat is widely known in Southeast Asia, but in Indonesia the term used is pencak silat. This term has been used since 1948 to unite the various streams of traditional martial arts that developed in Indonesia. The name pencak is used in Java, while silat is used in Sumatra, the Malay Peninsula, and Kalimantan. In its development, the term "pencak" now emphasizes the elements of art and the beauty of the movement, while silat is the core of the teachings of martial arts in battle. Maryono (1999) concludes that what is the criterion for differentiating the meaning of Pencak and the meaning of Silat is whether or not a movement can be displayed.

IPSI Executive Board in 1975 defines pencak silat as follows: "Pencak silat is the result of Indonesian human culture to defend, maintain its existence (independence) and integrity (unity) towards the surrounding environment / nature to achieve harmony in life to increase faith and piety to God The Almighty ". Founding figures of IPSI (Indonesian Silat Pencak Silat Association) have agreed not to distinguish between the meaning of Pencak and Silat because the two words do have the same meaning. The words Pencak and Silat both contain a sense of spirituality, rhythm, beauty, tips and practice, performance, or application.

There are three profiles or display of pencak silat in Indonesia, namely:

1. Original Pencak silat, is a pencak silat originating from local and ethnic communities in Indonesia.

2. Pencak silat is not original which mostly comes from Kung Fu, Karate and Jujitsu.

3. Mixed martial arts, is a mixture of native and non-genuine martial arts (foreign martial arts who want to join the name pencak silat according to IPSI rules and ART).

Now pencak silat has penetrated into the world of education. In various schools from elementary to tertiary level, Pencak Silat is a part of extra curricular activities that many enjoy. Even Pencak Silat has become one of the sports that is competed in various championships both national and world level. If the four aspects can be integrated in the fighters, of course it will be one of the elements of the nation's glue to unite and elevate the dignity, degree and dignity of the Indonesian people in the eyes of the world.


Pencak silat is one of Indonesia's cultural heritage that should be preserved because pencak silat is one of the unifying tools of the nation and Indonesian identity. This martial art developed from the skills of indigenous Indonesian tribes in hunting and fighting using traditional weapons such as machetes, shields and spears, for example in the Nias tribe tradition. Silat is estimated to spread in the Archipelago since the 7th century AD, but its origin cannot be determined with certainty. The great kingdoms of old, such as Srivijaya and Majapahit, were said to have great warriors who mastered martial arts that were extraordinarily tough and were able to gather soldiers who had skills in self defense and a reliable State.

Silat researcher Donald F. Draeger (2006) argues that evidence of martial arts can be seen from various weapons artifacts found from classical times (Hindu-Buddhism) as well as on relief sculptures containing the attitudes of silat horses in Prambanan Temple and Borobudur. Meanwhile Sheikh Shamsuddin (2005) argues that there are influences of martial arts from China and India in martial arts. This is because since the beginning Malay culture has been influenced by the culture brought by traders and nomads from India, China and other countries.

As a vehicle for short education, pencak silat is full of noble values. The noble values ​​in pencak silat can be understood from four aspects, namely the mental spiritual aspects, sports aspects, aspects of motion art, and aspects of martial arts.

1. Mental Spiritual Aspects: Pencak silat builds and develops one's noble personality and character. The warriors and omnipotent martial arts teachers of old times often had to go through the stages of meditation, asceticism, or other aspects of mysticism to reach the highest level of scholarship.

2. Aspects of Cultural Arts: Culture and the game of "art" pencak silat is one very important aspect. The term Pencak in general describes the form of pencak silat dance art, with traditional music and clothing.

3. Martial Arts: Belief and perseverance are very important in mastering martial arts in martial arts. Glossary term, tends to emphasize the technical ability aspects of martial arts martial arts.

4. Sports Aspects: This means that the physical aspect of pencak silat is important. Fighters trying to adjust the mind with body work.

These four aspects form a unified strength and unity (Subroto and Rohadi, 1996: 6).

According to Draeger, weapons and art in martial arts are inseparable, not only in terms of body work, but also in spiritual relationships that are closely related to Indonesian culture. Pencak silat is a part of one's spiritual practice. As a mental-spiritual aspect, pencak silat focuses more on the formation of attitudes and temperaments of pesilat personalities that are in accordance with the philosophy of noble character.

In the aspect of martial arts, pencak silat aims to strengthen human instincts to defend against various threats and dangers. The basic movement in silat itself is obtained a lot by imitating the movements of animals in the environment, such as imitating the movements of monkeys, tigers, snakes or eagles. Some basic movements in pencak silat include stance, punches, kicks, strokes, steps, development, moves, strokes, cutouts, and finally locks that contain elements of dance so as to beautify the pencak silat movement.

From martial arts and folk dance, pencak silat developed into part of the education of defending the country to confront foreign invaders. As a unifying tool the pencak silat nation plays a role in defending the country to face foreign colonialism. In the history of the struggle against the Dutch colonizers, there were noted warriors who took up arms, such as Panembahan Senopati, Sultan Agung, Pangeran Diponegoro, Teuku Cik Di Tiro, Teuku Umar, Imam Bonjol, and female warriors, such as Sabai Nan Aluih, Cut Nyak Dhien, and Cut Nyak Meutia.

Pencak silat is also studied by many political movements including several national scouting organizations. Silently the martial arts college managed to cultivate the power that was ready to fight the invaders at any time. For the movement who were captured by the invaders and discarded secretly, they spread pencak silat martial arts at the disposal site. However, the Dutch colonizers had powerful politics in dividing ethnic groups or the pencak silat school (devide et impera).

It's different from Japanese occupation. Pencak silat is free to develop. Japan used it to face the Allies. Even Japan advocated the simultaneous concentration of martial arts forces throughout Java which was regulated by the government in Jakarta. But Japan did not approve pencak silat to become a sport for morning gymnastics in schools, so as not to compete with Japanese Taisho gymnastics which was already used for gymnastics every morning.

Pencak silat developed after pencak silat which was motivated by ex-PETA students, Pelopor Silhouette, and Heiho, began compiling the teaching system of pencak silat. The teaching system is given to wear ceremonies such as Japanese martial arts (ceremonies, honoring, praying and starting to warm up, practice and close with ceremonials again). The teaching system is different when viewed between the pencak silat teaching system from Central Java, East Java, West Java and Sumatra.

In accordance with the demands of the struggle for unity, on May 18, 1948 in Surakarta a single organization of Pencak Silat was formed which was named the Indonesian Pencak Silat Association, abbreviated as IPSI. With the intention of:

1. Unifying and fostering all Pencak Silat colleges in Indonesia.

2. Digging, preserving, developing and popularizing Pencak Silat and its values.

3. Making Pencak Silat along with its values ​​as a means of nation and character building as well as a means of national struggle.

Pencak silat is one of the traditional Indonesian sports that must be preserved. Understanding pencak silat has a very broad understanding and has a clear function, including that of Pencak Silat as a tool for exercise, as a tool for martial arts, as a means of spirituality, as a show or art, and as a means to defend the nation.

Pencak silat as one of Indonesia's original cultural arts is able to provide an important role for the Indonesian people to increase its existence in the eyes of the world. This can be seen from the development of Pencak Silat today, especially developments in neighboring countries, such as Malaysia, Brunei. Singapore. Philippines and Southern Thailand, precisely in Pattani province. In addition to developments in several countries, currently Pencak Silat has been competed in official events such as the SEA Games, Asian Games and World Championships. With the contestation of Pencak Silat in official automatic events the sport of Pencak Silat is increasingly in demand and known by many people, so as to elevate the dignity of the Indonesian people.

Formerly the heroes used pencak silat as a way to fight against foreign invaders, after the independence of pencak silat became a part of culture and now pencak silat has become a sport, becoming one of the lifestyle, one of the choices to reflect on yourself and also exercise physical fitness for self defense. Without our awareness, pencak silat has become a national identity, where this sport, this culture, has emerged everywhere in our society. Pencak silat in our country is like taekwondo or karate in Japan and Korea, which in the end this martial art makes one proof of their existence in other countries, taekwondo and karate have brought Korean and Japanese names to the whole world.

Now, pencak silat is increasingly in demand by the community, both Indonesian people and the international community. In America and several countries in Europe, some martial arts colleges have accepted students in those countries. Pencak silat can now be compared to other martial arts such as taekwondo, karate, judo, kempo, muay thai, and so on. In Diponegoro University itself, there are also several Student Activity Units (UKM) which are pencak silat, and have different unions, such as the Setia Hati Terate Association, Merpati Putih, and so on. This is also a proof that pencak silat is one of the keys to the existence of banga, that this nation still exists, this nation's culture is still there, one of which is still a lot of public interest to preserve the existence of this pencak silat martial arts.