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Silat Vs Muay Thai: What's better?

Silat Vs Muay Thai: What's better?

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One thing we are always being asked is to compare the effectiveness between two different martial arts, and today we're going to be comparing Silat Vs Muay Thai. In this article we'll compare Silat & Muay Thai and decide which one is more effective. The answer to this question isn't going to be easy to find, but we'll delve into all areas of the different sports to find the answer!

Muay Thai is a martial art which has always been looked at as one of the deadliest striking art forms on the planet. It's a martial art which allows the use of all limbs and focuses on powerful strikes and perfected techniques with an element of grappling, that is called clinching.

Pencak Silat is a martial art which embodies many other martial arts. It involves striking, grappling techniques, and throwing. It does also include the use of weapons.

Both martial arts offer a lot of similarities and differences and in this article we'll discuss those differences in detail, as well as decide which martial art is more effective for self defence.

What is Silat?

Silat is a martial art that encompasses various different martial arts from the Malaysian Archipelago, Indonesia and surrounding Southeast Asian areas. Silat has a very mixed history, however it's earliest form can be dated back over 1000 years ago.

It's a martial art that relies heavily on weapons and was a form of defence for the Malays for many centuries. It is now a recognised sport in the Southeast Asian Games.

What is Muay Thai?

Muay Thai, also known as the “Art of Eight Limbs”, is a traditional Martial Art that originated in Thailand all the way back in the 18th century. A lot of people generally refer to it as Thai Boxing.

Muay Thai is referred to as the “Art of Eight Limbs” or the “Science of Eight Limbs”, because it makes use of punches, kicks, elbows and knee strikes, thus using eight “points of contact”. This is of course opposed to “two points” (fists) in boxing and “four points” (hands and feet) used in other more regulated combat sports, such as kickboxing. A practitioner of Muay Thai is known as a nak muay.

What are the differences between Silat & Muay Thai?

There are a lot of similarities between the martial arts of Silat and Muay Thai, however the most obvious difference between the two is that Silat incorporates the use of weapons whereas Muay Thai is purely a striking martial art without the use of weapons.

Silat is also a martial art that teaches strict movements and set forms whereas Muay Thai does not. Muay Thai is different from most traditional martial arts because of this.

Due to not having a fixed fighting system, Muay Thai offers more variety and fighting styles allowing fighters to be more creative in their own approach. You'll often see Muay Thai fighters who specialise in their respective strengths, such as good knee fighters, good boxers and so on.

Is Silat or Muay Thai more effective for self defence?

The age old question of which martial art is the most effective is something that we'll probably never be able to settle, however we're going to try and answer this for Silat Vs Muay Thai.

We would say that Muay Thai is the more effective self defence due to the fact that it does allow you to work outside of a strict system. Muay Thai will allow you to create your own form of self defence that can be used effectively within a situation where you need to defend yourself.

Muay Thai also allows for a more realistic fighting scenario that is more useful if you find your self in a street fight or a situation where you need to defend yourself. Strict fighting systems can sometimes not reflect real life situations and leave you unable to adapt in a fast-paced situation.

However, both martial arts are extremely effective and as with any fight, anything can happen when a Silat Vs Muay Thai fight happens.


The question of what will win between Silat Vs Muay Thai is something that people will keep asking themselves, as after all, who doesn't want to know who'd win between the best striking and best grappling martial arts.

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