Lombok Culture, Stick Fighting

Peresean is a battle between two men armed with a cane stick (penjalin) and a shield made of a thick and hard buffalo skin (the shield is called the ende). This tradition is carried out by Sasak tribe communities, Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia. The fighter in peresean is usually called pepadu and the referee is called pakembar.

The fighters of peresean are not prepared before, but the participants are taken from the audience. The audience can point themselves as participants or are pointed by the referee among the audience. Pepadu holds a cane stick in the right hand and shields in the left hand. Both pepadu have to attack each other to get a high score from the referee. Pepadu will get the highest score if he can hit the opponent’s head. The winner is the one who gets a higher accumulated score after fighting in 5 rounds or if one of the pepadu has waved the white flag as he is bleeding. After the fight, both pepadu embraced each other as the sign of no revenge between the two.

Formerly, Peresean was held to train Sasak tribe’s agility to combat the colonists. Additionally, Peresean is also such a medium used by the fighter (pepadu) to train agility, strength, and bravery in the fighting contest. It is said that Peresean is also a ceremony to ask for rain that is held by Sasak tribe communities in the dry season. Nowadays, Peresean is held to welcome guests or tourists who visit Lombok.


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