Sepak Takraw

When I was up in the village last week I had the opportunity to attend a multi-denominational Easter service that included all the churches from the area.  After the service there were lots of games and sports played, but instead of arranging teams by church or denomination, they were arranged by village.  This was a great way for each of the churches to come together and also for everyone to come together as a community.

All of the games were traditional Indonesian/SE Asian games.  There was tug-of-war with a huge rattan vine:

2012_4_13_Walandano_multidenomination_church_service&games (22)

Climbing a greased pole to try to pull prizes down from the top (sorry I don’t have any pictures of the actual climb!).  Greasing the pole: 2012_4_13_Walandano_multidenomination_church_service&games (2) 

The poles upright and ready to climb:

2012_4_13_Walandano_multidenomination_church_service&games (12)

And last but not least: takraw .  It looks a lot like any other net-based game like volleyball or badminton, but the big difference is that you can use anything BUT your hands.  That means feet, chest, and head are all fair game and it leads to some pretty spectacular spikes made with a flying kick.  The ball is made of woven rattan.  I was absolutely fascinated by the coordination and skill it takes to play this game!

If you’d like to read more about the history and rules of Sepak Takraw, here’s a link to a great wikipedia article.  Otherwise, I highly recommend you check out this approx. 5 minute video I shot of two local village teams competing.  (Sorry if the camera is a little wobbly: I wasn’t really prepared for a recording session so this was all done with a hand-held point-and-shoot camera)  There’s some great plays at about 1:25, 2:20, 3:50, and 4:30.

Takraw in our village

I also got a picture of one player in the middle of a spike/kick:

2012_4_13_Walandano_multidenomination_church_service&games (11)

It’s a crazy game, well beyond my limited athletic ability!



Filed under Church Events, Sports

3 responses to “Sepak Takraw

  1. Charlotte Griffiths

    How do you pronounce it? se-Pak Tak-raw? or se-Pak ta-Krauw?

    • mattmenger

      The second one. I would’ve spelled it “takrau” based on the way everyone pronounced it, but because it is an international sport, the spelling probably came from somewhere else.

      Matt Menger

    • mattmenger

      The second one. I would’ve spelled it “takrau” based on local pronunciation, but because it is an international sport the spelling was probably borrowed from somewhere else in Asia.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s