Pencak silat resumes training at indoor sports facilities

Fadhil Yunus

Pencak silat has been added to the list as one of the sports to resume training activities at indoor sports facilities in accordance with the latest health and safety guidelines.

The country’s elite exponents underwent training at the Menglait Sports Complex with the latest training session for the artistic discipline held yesterday afternoon under the tutelage of a coach.

Training received an encouraging response from high-level pencak silat exponents over the past week as one of the martial arts sports to make a comeback at sports facilities.

Karate also marked their return after a long absence due to the widespread closure of sports facilities with dozens of junior athletes training at the Menglait Sports Complex in another section of the complex.

Pencak silat followed wushu, badminton and fencing by holding training or scheme activities involving national athletes in recent times.

Badminton, cue sports, ten-pin bowling, tennis, table tennis, golf and squash have also staged a return in the recreational scene with a surge of attendance seen particularly in tennis in the past month.

The Menglait Sports Complex. PHOTO: FADHIL YUNUS

The inclusion of double matches in tennis has also aided the rise in tennis players in courts with at least one double match last Sunday at the National Tennis Centre of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex.

Swimming pools also entered a second week of operations since the re-opening on July 6 with a 30 per cent capacity and limited to swimmers aged 15 years and above.

Under the guidelines, swimming pools only open three times per week while swimming pools under the purview of the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS) only open on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

Pencak silat has gained both national and international recognition owing to the national athletes’ series of podium finishes at major competitions in the past decade.

Last December, national pencak silat exponent Anisah Najihah binti Abdullah snatched bronze in the women’s artistic singles event in the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games at the Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention Centre in the Philippines.

Indoor sports facilities’ operations are carried out in line with social distancing practices with line markings on the floor and a registration file placed at the entrance mainly for athletes who use the facilities.