The Warrior Odyssey book author and Destinations columnist for Black Belt magazine learns muay Thai and silat while meeting some of Southeast Asia's top martial arts masters in this international martial arts adventure video!

Travel to Malaysia with Antonio Graceffo, author of the book Warrior Odyssey: The Travels of a Martial Artist Through Asia, in this installment of his ongoing series of international martial arts training videos. As he learns muay Thai moves and discovers silat history, Graceffo meets and trains with two Malay martial arts masters: Kru Jak Othman and Mazlan Man. These martial artists teach him silat techniques from two of the styles found in Malaysia: silat kalam and silat tomoi.


SOUTHEAST ASIAN MARTIAL ARTS TRAINING VIDEO Antonio Graceffo Studies Silat Techniques and Muay Thai Moves in Malaysia!

"Malaysia is one of the coolest countries in Southeast Asia," Antonio Graceffo says. "It's down below Thailand, and it's a place where all the various kinds of martial arts meet because you've got Chinese, Indians [and] Malay all living together, bordering on Thailand with a sea border on Indonesia. You've got silat, you've got muay Thai, you've got tomoi, you've got silambam. In Malaysia, there are 430 registered types of silat. So even if you just study silat techniques, you could be busy for years upon years upon years." Graceffo's encounter with Kru Jak Othman revealed a friendly but feisty man teaching silat techniques from a style called silat tomoi, which "comes from Kelan Tan, which is a border state between Malaysia and Thailand," he says. "[Silat tomoi has] elements of muay Thai boran, but then it's got elements of silat in it, as well. It's a very, very cool martial art."

Travel back in time for Black Belt’s first in-depth look at the Indonesian martial arts with this FREE download! Pencak Silat: Techniques and History of the Indonesian Martial Arts

As Graceffo's journey in Malaysia continued, he encountered another guru for his martial arts training who opened his eyes about silat history. "The second guru that I met was Mazlan Man," Graceffo says. "Guru Mazlan Man teaches silat kalam. When I first landed in Malaysia, what I didn't understand was that a lot of these arts are only for Muslims. It's the predominant religion in the country, and if you want to learn the Malay martial arts — the Islamic martial arts — a lot of times they only accept Muslim students. And what I didn't understand at the time was that kalam is actually the short form of the word kalamat, which means 'to profess one's faith.'" Graceffo explains that Man's style of silat was a strictly Muslim form of the martial art. However, the two men met and the guru agreed to teach Graceffo and to be filmed for the Warrior Odyssey author's ongoing series of martial arts training videos — a double win, as Graceffo would reportedly be the first non-Muslim student of silat kalam. "Most people believe that [silat kalam] comes from Persia," Graceffo explains in the video's section about silat history. "This is an ancient Persian martial art, a grappling art. The original art [has] all but disappeared in modern Iran, but in Malaysia, it lives on as silat kalam." About Antonio Graceffo: Antonio Graceffo is a freelance writer currently based in Asia. In his book Warrior Odyssey: The Travels of a Martial Artist Through Asia, Graceffo details the cultures, languages, people and martial arts he has encountered during his decade-long travels through nine countries, including Taiwan, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and the Philippines.

Join Antonio Graceffo for a trip around the world in these exciting martial arts training videos:

Dr. Craig's Martial Arts Movie Lounge

When The Fast and the Furious (2001) sped into the psyche's of illegal street racing enthusiasts, with a penchant for danger and the psychotic insanity of arrant automotive adventure, the brusque bearish, quasi-hero rebel, Dominic "Dom" Toretto was caustic yet salvationally portrayed with the power of a train using a Vin Diesel engine.

Keep Reading Show less
Over the last few months, there have been many changes. With the restrictions brought on by the pandemic lifted, most people are having to go back into their places of business for at least a few days, if not the entire week. Also, many virtual school programs are ending in favor of in-class instruction and frankly, we're all ready for it, right?
While being able to work in sweats, take Zoom meetings in the bathroom, and throw a load of clothes in the washer between client callbacks was fun for a while, returning to our pre-lockdown lives is what we've all ached for. However, that brings back some old problems with training: finding the time.

Now that we have work schedules, commutes, school pickups and dropoffs, increased in-person activities, and all those things we had previously excised from our daily routines, we have to find the time to train again. But how?

Keep Reading Show less

Eighteen-year-old Anastasija Zolotic became the first American woman to win Olympic gold in taekwondo since the martial art earned full medal status in 2000 when she defeated Tatiana Minina 25-17 in the finals of the 57 kg category Sunday in Japan. Dana Hee, Arlene Limas and Lynnette Love had previously won gold for the U.S. back in 1988 when taekwondo was still considered a demonstration sport. On the men's side, Ulugbek Rashitov of Uzbekistan won the 68 kg class over Britain's Bradly Sinden 35-29.

In judo, host country Japan added to it's gold count as Uta and Hifumi Abe made Olympic history becoming the first siblings to win gold medals on the same day. Uta Abe captured the women's 52 kg division defeating France's Amandine Buchard by pin in overtime. Then Hifumi Abe earned the men's 66 kg gold hitting an osotogari, outside leg reap, for a half-point to defeat Georgia's Vazha Margvelashvili.