PESILAT Pledges

(adapted from the original Indonesian)

Pesilat (Coach and Athlete)’s Pledge

  • I, as a silat coach or athlete, am an individual with noble mind and character.
  • I, as a silat coach or athlete, am an individual who honors one’s fellow man and loves friendship and peace.
  • I, as a silat coach or athlete, am an individual who always thinks and acts positively, is creative and dynamic.
  • I, as a silat coach or athlete, am a knight who upholds truth, honesty and justice, and are always resilient in facing any ordeal and temptation.
  • I, as a silat coach or athlete, am a knight who is always responsible for one’s words and deeds.

Wasit / Juri (Referee and Jury)’s Pledge

I, as the referee and jury of the United States Sport Silat Association hereby declare the pledge:

  • That I, shall sincerely hold the trust and the honor that I accept, with the whole of my self-esteem.
  • That I, shall sincerely obey the rules and regulations of the United States Sport Silat association with responsibility.
  • That I, shall sincerely conduct pencak silat competition honestly and fairly for the sake of the sublimity of the dignity and honor of pencak silat.
  • That I, shall sincerely obey my pledge and if i disavow this pledge, I ought to bear all of the sanctions of it in every respect in body and soul

Faces of the USSSA – Ariffin Yeop – Silat Gayong and Silat Melayu

Editor’s note: In leading up to the USA Pencak Silat National Championships 2019, the USSSA is highlighting representatives from the many styles you’ll see at the tournament.

Name

Ariffin Yeop

Location:

San Clemente, California

Website:

www.ariffinyeop.com

Style(s)

Silat Gayong and Silat Melayu

How did silat find you? 

My passion for martial arts was first inspired at the tender age of 8, when I began training in the school of Silat Gayong under the late Mahaguru Dato’ Meor Abdur Rahman. Once grounded in the fundamentals, I continued training under various teachers appointed by my father, the legendary Singa Malaya (Lion of Malaya), Dato’ Yeop Mahidin M.B.E. (1918 – 1999), and on the authority of Pendekar Dato’ Pawang Noh M. B. E. (1874 – 1977).

My father also encouraged me to practise other traditional martial arts such as Shaolin Kung Fu and Karate. However, my passion remained with Silat which I began teaching in in 1979 in Malaysia. Later, in 1991, when I moved to London, I founded the school, Seni Silat Haqq Melayu and then in 1995 established Gayong UK.

Explain the history of your style as you understand it.

Silat Melayu has been practised by Pendekar from time immemorial and Silat Gayong is the biggest Silat organisation in Malaysia.

What excites you about sport silat?

I love sports and I love Silat so I am super excited to see the amalgamation of the two in a classical beautiful way.

Anything else we should know about you?

Silat is my life but my dad always taught me that if all you can do is Silat you are quite useless. So, I also embarked on a life in the film industry, am a qualified traditional healer, a minister of religion, a teacher of scuba diving and horseback archery and in my spare time can be found enjoying good food, good company and good music.

Faces of the USSSA – Joel Champ – Silat Seni Gayong

Editor’s note: In leading up to the USA Pencak Silat National Championships 2019, the USSSA is highlighting representatives from the many styles you’ll see at the tournament.

Name

Joel Champ

Location:

Bolingbrook, Illinois

Joel Champ – You may recognize his face from National Geographic’s documentary series Fight Masters.

Website

United States Gayong Federation (Facebook)

Style(s)

Silat Seni Gayong

How did silat find you? 

I met my Silat teachers (Cikgu Shamsuddin Salim and Cikgu Shamsul Salim) through a mutual acquaintance of my father, who would ask them to teach at my Fathers martial art school. After Cikgu Shamsul moved back to Malaysia in the mid 1990’s, I continued to train directly under Cikgu Shamsuddin Salim from 1996 to Present. I have had the honor to visit and train in Malaysia, and during one of those trips to be “adopted” by the late Siti Kalsom of Silat Seni Gayong, the daughter of the late Mahaguru Dato Meor Abdul Rahman. 

Fellow Silat Seni Gayong practitioner Dave Krzyzewski (Left)
Joel Champ (Middle)
Joel’s teacher: Cikgu Shamsuddin “Sam” Salim

Explain the history of your style as you understand it.

Our style of Silat dates back to the time old Malay warriors, Hang Tuah and Hang Jebat. This style is from the Bugis people and has been handed down through the generations to our late Mahaguru, Dato Meor Abdul Rahman. The art of Silat Seni Gayong has undergone changes through those times, but the spirit has always remained the same. Silat Seni Gayong is a sovereign art of the Malay people and a treasure for all. 

Cikgu Sam – Head of Silat Seni Gayong USA, and USSSA Director of Wasit / Juri Development

What excites you about sport silat?

I feel that Sport Silat can be a good tool to augment the training of traditional Silat regardless of style. It gives a added resistance to the training and teaches a lot of good lessons of distancing, timing and builds heart. The most important aspect is that Sport Silat unites us. It unites all styles of Silat for the single goal of promoting the art and culture of Silat. 

Anything else we should know about you?

I do not consider myself anything more then a student of Silat Seni Gayong. I am a simple family man that is honored with learning the art of Silat, and I am forever grateful to my Silat teacher, Cikgu Shamsuddin Salim, and all of my teachers who have taken time to share their art. Thank You

Dave Krzyzewski – Silat Seni Gayong


Faces of the USSSA: Chris Robinson – Satria Fighting Arts

Editor’s note: In leading up to the USA Pencak Silat National Championships 2019, the USSSA is highlighting representatives from the many styles you’ll see at the tournament.

USSSA Virginia State Coordinator – Chris Robinson

Name

Chris Robinson

Location:

Williamsburg, Virginia.

Website:

http://williamsburgdojo.com/

Style(s):

Satria Fighting Arts

How did silat find you?

I remember the exact minute that I found Silat or as my teacher says, Silat found me. I was teaching a seminar in Miami and someone pulled out a kerambit and hooked his partners achilles from a low position and took him down. He immediately crawled up his body cutting the whole time. It all happened so fast I was amazed! I had a huge paradigm shift then let go of a lot concepts and thoughts and jumped right into the world of Silat.

Explain the history of your style as you understand it.

Satria Fighting Arts is taught to me by Guru Steven Benitez. His teacher, Guru Ma, teaches that everything in your Silat can be found in nature. We use 6 animals but as in most Silat it is much deeper than sikaps and langkah!

What excites you about sport silat?

I started off a bit dubious but I have become more and more excited as we have jumped into sport Silat! I believe it will help us all share our wonderful martial art to more people.

Anything else people should know about you?

Fun fact like Conrad, I can fall asleep on command. Lol!

Faces of the USSSA: Yusuf Kurniawan / Perisai Diri

Editor’s note: In leading up to the USA Pencak Silat National Championships 2019, the USSSA is highlighting representatives from the many styles you’ll see at the tournament.

USSSA California State Coordinator – Yusuf Kurniawan

Name:

Yusuf Kurniawan

Location:

Santa Clara, California

Style(s):

Perisai Diri

How did silat find you?

When I was a child, I briefly learned traditional Silat from my Grandfather. Then I tried different traditional Silat from different sources. When I studied in University, I learned Silat Perisai Diri and focus on it until now.

Explain the history of your style as you understand it.

The founder was a proficient Silat practitioner within one of the Keraton (Kingdom). He then traveled and enriched his skills and wisdom outside the Keraton from one place to others. He also learned Kungfu/Kuntao martial art. Then he taught Silat to others as a summary of his journey.

What excites you about sport silat?

For athletes, sport silat is a tool to add many aspects to his original Silat background. For general Silat people, the events is a way to interact with other Silat practitioners and to promote Silat to people outside.

Anything else people should know about you?

I never win any sport silat competition 😀


Taking a seat at the big PERSILAT table

Official PERSILAT membership announcement

Last month (January 2019), the United States Sport Silat Association (USSSA) was officially recognized by the world governing body for Silat, the International Pencak Silat Federation (PERSILAT) based in Jakarta, Indonesia.

THIS IS BIG

This makes the USSSA the only national body in the United States sanctioned by PERSILAT.

This gives us the authority to bring the USA Pencak Silat National Team to international competitions like the World Pencak Silat Championships, the Belgian Open, the Singapore Open and more.

At the same time this enables us to host first-class, PERSILAT sanctioned events here in the United States.

This opens up a wealth of global Pencak Silat knowledge and experience and strengthens bonds between the United States and the rest of the world. We are now in good company with 52 other member countries.

Most importantly this gives us the charter to showcase the uniqueness and diversity of Pencak Silat in America on a world stage.

Making it official: USSSA on the world and national stage

Just a sample of the richness and diversity of Pencak Silat in the USA

This past weekend was an historic event for Pencak Silat in the United States.  Our Roadshow to the Olympics was the first truly inclusive gathering of the diverse number of Pencak Silat styles in America.  This summit brought together silat players from over 12 different styles and 10 different states spread across all regions of America.  With approximately 30 pencak silat players in attendance, the atmosphere was abuzz with this newfound spirit of unity.

USSSA President Jacob Richter accepting an award of appreciation from PERSILAT Executive Chairman Benny G. Sumarsono

As part of the showcase, we were honored and blessed to host PERSILAT Executive Chairman, Benny G. Sumarsono.  He made the long trek from Indonesia (through multiple flight delays no less) to attend this gathering and to offer his expertise and leadership.  In addition to providing training on the specifics of pencak silat events — helping to lay the foundation for development of future athletes, coaches and officials.  Our event culminated with Pak Benny’s speech at our celebratory banquet.  He advised the audience that our success hinges on coming together under one umbrella and expressed support for USSSA, its mission of sharing Pencak Silat with the United States and its goal of serving as the governing body for Pencak Silat sports competition in the United States.

Pak Benny G. Sumarsono demonstrates a guntingan takedown as allowed in the  Professional Pencak Silat Federation rules.

Selection of State Coordinators

Also as part of this meeting we selected coordinators for the states in attendance.  The list below enumerates our current representatives.  More details will come soon on the website.  These people have graciously stepped forward to oversee development of Pencak Silat sports in their states and will be organizing state and regional competitions as part of the Road to the Olympics.  We will publish more details for about how to communicate with them in the near future.  In the mean time, thank you coordinators for your commitment.

State Coordinator Style / Affiliation
California Yusuf Kurniawan Perisai Diri
Colorado Edward Alexander Inti Ombak Pencak Silat
Florida Chester Melonius Pencak Silat Manyang
Georgia Kireeti Sangadala Premiere Martial Arts
Pencak Silat Tenaga Tiga
Hawaii (Big Island) Bahati Mershant Pencak Silat Tenaga Tiga
Hawaii (Oahu) Leo Sues Pencak Silat Mande Muda
Illinois Dr. Sheik Shamsuddin Silat Seni Gayong
Maryland Dr. Scott Sobel Silat Serak
Massachusetts May William Baringin Sakti Pencak Silat
Missouri Jeff Sprawls Maju Bela Diri Pencak Silat
New Hampshire Ismail Sujadi Pencak Silat Galih Pasundan
New York Benny Rahardja PGB Bangau Putih
Texas K.R. Doc Dority Pencak Silat Mande Muda
Utah Nate Zeleznick Merpati Putih
Vermont Mark Zizis Inti Ombak Pencak Silat
Virginia Chris Robinson Silat Satria