Pukulan: the Art of Striking

Literally translated, the term Pukulan means “to strike”. It is therefore a word that has its common use in Indonesia, but it also has a specific meaning in reference to the Indonesian martial arts. In this context it represents a real way of practicing the martial art of Pencak Silat, with certain martial and biomechanical principles that define it and distinguish it from the approach used by other schools which, although they practice Indonesian martial arts, cannot be defined as practitioners of Pukulan.

From the perspective of Pencak Silat, Pukulan generally refers to exercises that emphasize striking with the hands, whether with closed fists or open hands. In the Indonesian language, there are other terms such as tendangan (kicks), kuncian (joint levers), and senjata (weapon usage) that exist alongside Pukulan. Each of these terms can find its place within the martial curriculum of a Pencak Silat school or be used to define a specific style or trend.

Walter van den Broeke - Pukul Beach Training

However, there is another meaning of the word Pukulan that holds special significance for us. Pukulan is understood on physical, mental, and spiritual levels as a methodology that revolves around striking. It extends beyond simply training one’s fists and encompasses learning and applying linear geometries integrated with the biomechanics of the human body. This approach ensures that each strike produces the desired result with minimal effort and maximum effect.

Physical and mental conditioning also play vital roles. The footwork of a Pukulan practitioner follows precise geometric lines, designed to intercept and disrupt the opponent’s attack lines. By doing so, the practitioner prevents the opponent from reacting effectively and gains control over the surrounding environment.

A constant focus is maintained on the possibility of a second opponent, while timing and momentum create the dichotomy that enables strikes to achieve their intended outcome. Born in the streets, Pukulan inherently embraces the concept of facing multiple opponents.

As a result, the art of Pukulan remains alive and in a constant state of evolution, which is exemplified through the continuous practice of the members of the Naga Kuning Institute.

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Pukulan in the Blog

If you want to find out more about Pukulan, its meaning, history, and origins, we invite you to read the articles of our blog where we explore the history, culture, traditions, styles, and fighting techniques of Indonesian martial arts.

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