Silambam is the oldest Martial Art of the world, it is the Mother of all Martial Arts and it is one of the Traditional Martial Arts of Tamilnadu. Silambam is the most spiritual Martial Art. It is familiarly known as Silambattam.

References in the ancient Tamil epic Silappadikkaram and other works of Sangam literature shows that Silambam has been practiced as far back as the 2nd century BC. According to Sangam era literature, there were many Martial Arts training centres known as silamba koodams all over the Tamil Nadu, and Silambam is recorded as one of the 64 art forms of ancient India and patronized by the rulers Chola, Chera and Pandya.

Many people think and portray Silambam as martial art practiced only with a stick/staff. But in reality, Silambam includes a variety of weapons and practice methods such as the Twin sticks, Short sticks (Chedikutchi), Pandhukol (staff with balls of fire or weighted chains on each end), Kuttu kattai (Spiked knuckleduster), Kattari (Kuthu vaal), Spear, Deer horns (Maan kombu, Madu, Maru), Bladed whip (Surul Vaal), Single Sword, Double sword, Sword & Shield, Dagger, Sickle, etc.,

Also, there are unarmed (barehand) fight forms in Silambam collectively termed as Verum kai prayogam which comprises of Kuthuvarisai, Adi Varisai, Pidi Varisai, Malyuttham (wrestling/grappling), those are based on animal movements such as the elephant, snake, eagle, tiger and monkey. Disciples who advanced in Silambam are taught Varmakalai (Art of striking the pressure points & Art of healing). Highest phase of Silambam is Varmakalai, both could not be treated separately.

Few forms of Silambam from Tamilnadu are practiced in many names across India as Karra saamu in AndraPradhesh, Lathi khel in Bengal, Mardaani khel in Maharashtra, Gatka in Punjab, Neduvadi in Kerala and khathga in Jharkand & Bihar, etc.,

Hope you understand that Martial Arts praticed worldwide have their origin in Silambam and are derived from our Tamil Martial Arts that were developed, practiced & well established at the ancient times.

One who is expert in Silambam will have the ability to handle all types of traditional weapons around the world.

Here I have listed the benefits and advantages of practicing our Traditional Tamil Martial Art Silambam,

  • Practicing Silambam activates the left and right brain’s coordination, which helps many students to come out of their stress and helps them to understand better with more gain on motor skills. Silambam is a form of mindfulness promoting mental peace.
  • Students who practice Silambam as a Martial Art has increased concentration level which results in good academic progress.
  • To get good mental health and stability.
  • Practicing Silambam is helpful for self defense especially for women.
  • Learning Silambam will most certainly lead to a positive change in your life.
  • Practicing Silambam increases the person’s self confidence to the highest level.
  • To obtain self realization and uniqueness. Development in Immune system.
  • To gain knowledge and awareness about human Anatomy.
  • It enhances self esteem and improves flexibility of the body, creativity, concentration and patience level.
  • To realize our mind and body’s full capability.
  • Silambam as a sport, has special quota in sports. Students will get more opportunities and recognition through this sport.

Gopinath Ramachandran