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GRABONG – Traditional Staff Fighting

GRABONG (staff, quarterstaff) is traditional armed combat with body length objects such as quarterstaves, spears or broomsticks as improvised weapons.

Southeast Asian wanderers and monks have always used simple bamboo sticks to transport provisions and luggage. According to the legend of Zaiyuh, it was the monk Tang Gam Jang who, when he brought the Buddhist teachings to China, passed through the Nanjauw region populated by the Thai, using a magic long staff.

But it is more likely that resourceful Pahuyuth Free-Warriors have used such staffs much earlier for protection against waylayers and wild animals.

A typical free warrior GRABONG is an even, about body length long staff made of heavy wood. Ancient war staffs were additionally covered with braided steel wire or riveted with metal plates to withstand sword blows.

The special feature of the GRABONG are the complex turning techniques, which distinguish this unique discipline from most staff fighting methods and make it possible to use it in narrow or obstructed environments. It is said that a good GRABONG-Warrior can move his long staff so skilfully that it looks as supple as a rope.