IO – Cecep Arif Rahman strictly maintains his mastery of pencak silat, the traditional Indonesian martial art that brought him international fame as an action movie performer. The natural complement to his native martial arts skill is the kerambit blade, which the Western world frequently spells as “karambit”. “The kerambit has many advantages and it is reliable for both attack and defense. However, it must be accompanied by strong skill and a high level of mental wisdom. I do hope that the younger generation can continue to preserve the use of kerambit in Indonesia’s pencak silat community, especially with many other martial arts types from around the world on offer,” Cecep said.
Cecep explained a bit more about kerambit in a pencak silat workshop titled “Kerambit: From Indonesia to the World” hosted by Thunder11 Martial Arts on Sunday, 7 July 2019 at Aston Imperial Hotel, Bekasi, West Java. Cecep’s passion for the kerambit caught the interest of international actor Keanu Reeves, who then requested that the infamous blade be included in his fight scene against Cecep in the movie John Wick 3.
Kerambit is a small, curved hand blade from the Minangkabau or West Sumatra area. Traders from this area brought the cunning weapon in their travels to Java Island and the Malay Peninsula, leaving the inheritance of kerambit throughout Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines. This weapon is very strong despite its small size, because it can easily and quickly slash or tear the enemy’s flesh before they knew what happens. Kerambit is popularly said to be inspired by the claws of the tiger, the animal representing the biggest threat in Sumatra.
Thunder11 is a martial arts dojo established by another international Indonesian action actor, Iko Uwais. “Martial arts are meant to exert self-control, and can form a protective personality around a person. We believe that this can channel and suppress anarchic impulses from a young age. Our primary contribution is to create access for a martial arts education that suits the needs of the community,” Iko said. (rp)