History of Sepak Takraw

In 1935, during the Golden Jubilee Celebrations for King George V, the game of sepak raga was played on a badminton court, in the Malaysian State of Negeri Sembilan. The development of the game was interupted by the war. In 1945 in Penang the net was again introduced and the popularity spread to surrounding areas and then countries. n 1965 Malaysia hosted the South East Asian Peninsular games (SEAP) and sepak raga was introduced. There were lengthy discussion between Malaysian and Singapore delegates, on the one hand, and Laos and Thai delegates, on the other, with regard to the official name of the sport.

An agreement was subsequently arrived at and it was decided that the sport would be known as “Sepak Takraw”. Sepak means KICK in Malay and Takraw means BALL in Thai word. Almost every nation that played this game knew it by a different name. In Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, it’s called ‘sepak raga’, whereas in Thailand it’s commonly known as ‘takraw’. The same game goes by the name of ‘sipa’ in the Philippines, ‘da cau’ in Vietnam, ‘rago’ in Indonesia, and ‘kator’ in Laos. Since sepak takraw was played and enjoyed in several countries, there were a lot of inconsistencies in terms of how the game was played and judged.

In 1960, representatives from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Lao and Thailand met in Kuala Lumpur to standardise rules and regulations for the game. And after a long and heated debate, consensus was reached that the sport would henceforth be officially called sepak takraw. They also formed the Asian Sepak Takraw Federation (ASTAF), and translated the rules into English, setting the stage for the first international competition, held in Malaysia in 1965, at the Southeast Asian Peninsular Games, or SEAP Games, the predecessor to today’s Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games).

This chain of events set the stage for the international development of sepak takraw. However, it was the replacement of the natural rattan ball, which tended to splinter and warp, with the more standardised synthetic plastic ball that really kicked the game’s popularity into high gear. In 1990, sepak takraw was included at the Asian Games in Beijing. Women also got in on the action with the first women’s championships in Thailand hosted in 1997. Today, more than 20 countries have national sepak takraw associations with representatives on the board of the global governing body, the International

The standard court of the Sport Sepak Takraw is an area of 13. 4m X 6. 1m free from all obstacles up to a height of 8m. It is advisable that the court is flat concrete surface. The width of the lines that determines the perimeter of the court should not be more than 0. 04m measured and drawn inside the measurements of the court. The lines of the court should also be at least 3. 0m away from any obstacles. Each side should have a 6. 7X6. 1m area. The centerline of the Sepak Takraw court, measuring about 0. 02m, divides the court into two equal halves.

A quarter circle must also be drawn at the intersection of each of the sidelines with the centerline, measuring 0. 9m in radius. The quarter circle must be drawn outwards from the edge of the measured radius. The court should also have a service circle of about 0. 3m in radius. This circle is drawn on the left on the left and from the sidelines. The 0. 04m line will be measured on the right court and should be drawn outward from the ledge. The sideline facing the net should have a 2. 45m distance from the center of the circle and 3. 05m from the side. Posts The post height differs with males and females.

The official height of the posts for males is 1. 55m from the floor and 1. 45m for the females. It should be made using very strong material and shall not be more than 0. 04 in diameter. The position of the posts should be 0. 3 m away from the sideline and should be positioned in line with the centerline.  Both male and female players are required to wear shorts and sleeved t-shirts. Players must tuck-in their shirts. The t-shirts for all players must also be numbered permanently in which numbers are only ranged from 1 to 15. The captain of each regu (team of 3 or 4 players) is required to wear an armband on their left arm.

Any apparel that could endanger opponents is not allowed. Area of 14. 4m (7. 2m X7. 2m each side of the court) x 6. 5m free from all obstacles up to the height of 8 m measured from the floor surface. The surface of the court must be beach sand. 1. 2. The width of the lines bounding the court should not be more than 0. 04m measured and drawn inwards from the edge of the court measurements. A tape or rope can be used to be the boundary lines. All the boundary lines should be drawn at least 3. 0m away from all obstacles.  The Centerline of 0. 2m should be drawn equally dividing the right and left court.  The posts shall be 1. 55m (1. 45m for women) in height from the ground and shall be sufficiently firm to maintain high net tension. It should be made from very strong materials and shall not be more 0. 04m in radius. The posts shall be erected or placed firmly 0. 3m away from the sideline and in line with the Centerline.

The net shall be made of fine ordinary cord or nylon with 0. 06m to 0. 08m mesh. The net shall be 0. 7m in width and not shorter than 6. 50m in length and taped at 0. 5m from tape double at the top and sideline, called boundary tape. 3. 2. The net shall be edged with 0. 05m tape double at the top and the bottom of the net supported by a fine ordinary cord or nylon cord that runs through the tape and strain over and flush with the top of the posts. The top of the net shall be 1. 52m (1. 42m for women) in height from the center and 1. 55m (1. 45m for women) at the posts.  The Sepaktakraw ball shall be spherical having 12 holes, 20 intersections. It shall be made of synthetic fibre of one woven layer covering with synthetic rubber. The circumference shall not be less than 0. 0m and not more than 0. 44m. The weight before play shall not be less than 170 gm and not more than 200 gm for men and women. All world, international, regional competitions sanctioned by ISTAF, including but not limited to, the Olympic Games, World Games, Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and Sea Games, must be played with ISTAF approved sepaktakraw balls.

A team comprises four players and two reserves. The game is played by two “REGU’s” consisting of four players (per team) on each side. The player serving will position himself behind the baseline of the court. Any one of the four players can execute the serve. The other three players shall be in their respective court.  The players are allowed to wear anything besides jeans, long pants, and as long as the attire is decent. It is forbidden for players to wear anything that endanger themselves or their opponents during the game. Players wearing earrings, chains, watches and any other form of accessories are not allowed to play in the court.  For women swimming costume is allowed but shorts or bermudas must be worn to overlap the costume. Jerseys T-Shirt, Singlet Round neck shirts Bermudas Shorts Tights Caps Sunglasses or Visors Goggles . The players are permitted to use sun visors, goggles and caps to protect their eyes from the sun.

The entire apparel of a player is regarded as part of his/her body . The regu captain is identified with a marking or an armband on the left arm . Anything that helps to speed the ball or movement of a player is not allowed . Substitution of a player is allowed at any time on request made by the Team Manager to the Official Referee when the ball is not in play.  Each “Regu” is allowed to make one substitution per set only.  A Player who has been sent off by Referee during a match may be substituted, provided no substitution has been made. Any player having played in the starting line-up or as a substitute in the current game is not allowed to play again.  Any “Regu” having less than 4 players will not be allowed to continue the game and will be considered as having lost.

Two technical delegates to the Sea Games, Asian Games and World Championships and any other international competitions that are sanctioned by ISTAF. The expenses of the Technical Delegates involving round trip air tickets, accommodations, meals and allowances of US$75. 00 per day shall be paid by the organizing committee.

The host country must guarantee proper accreditation for technical delegates who have been appointed. The technical delegates must be allowed to inspect the competition venue, facilities and equipment to insure that they conform to ISTAF regulations . ISTAF Members Jury of Appeals – 4 members to be appointed to a Jury of Appeal to any ISTAF sanctioned competitions including Asian Games, Sea Games and other International and Continental competitions sanctioned by ISTAF. The host country shall provide accommodations, meals and internal transportation during the competition period.

Members of the Jury shall be paid US$20. 00 per day for their services. Two (2) members of the Jury of Appeal are to be appointed by the host country of whom one of them is the technical committee chairman and shall act as the chairman of the Jury of Appeal. As for the other member of the Jury of Appeal from the host country, he will act as secretary without vote.  Before commencing the game, the Referee will toss a coin or disc and the side winning the toss will choose side or service. The side that loses the toss will abide with the decision.

The side winning the tossshall “warm-up” first for 2 minutes followed by the other “Regu”. Only 5 persons are allowed to move freely in the court with the official ball. At the start of play, the players of both “Regu’s” must be in their respective courts in a ready position.  The Player serving the ball must have both feet outside the base line. The other three players shall be within their side of the court and remain in one spot, while ‘serve’ is being made.  The opponent or receiving Regu is free to be anywhere within its court.

The “Regu” that chooses “service” shall start the match.  Once the Referee calls the score, the player doing the service will toss the ball in the air and kicks the ball over to the opponent. The ball can be kicked in any manner using the foot. If the Tekong throws the ball before the Referee calls the score, it shall be a re-throw and a warning will be given to the thrower. The serve can be executed anywhere along the baseline.  During the service, as soon as the Tekong kicks the ball, all the players are allowed to move about freely in their respective courts. . The service is valid if the ball passes over the net, whether it touches the net or not, and inside the boundary of the two net tapes and boundary lines of the opponent’s court.The “Tekong” plays about with the ball (bumping, giving to other player, etc. ) after the call of score has been made by the Referee. The “Inside” player lifts his feet or steps on the line or crosses over or touches the net while throwing the ball.  The “Tekong” does not kick the ball on the service throw.

The ball touches his own player before crossing over the opponent court. The ball goes over the net but falls outside the court.The ball does not cross to the opponent side.  The tekong foot touches the baseline or any other markings in the court before he kicks the ball to serve?  A player uses his hand or hands, or any other parts of his arm or arms to facilitate the execution of a kick even if the hand or arm does not directly touches the ball, but it touches other objects or surfaces instead when doing so.

Arguably it is the most important skill. This is the kick you will use the most. Watch any top class players in action and you’ll see that this is the control kick of choice. This move sets up all the killer spikes. While doing an inside kick, you should stand in a good athletic stance. Feet shoulder width apart. Remember to bend your support leg at the knee. And, it is important, always keep an eye on the ball!

The kicking motion is easy and don’t swing at the ball too hard. The ball is bouncy and you need to just hit it in the right spot on your foot as well as with the proper motion. Try a few times of simply tossing the ball to yourself. Focus on the ball and pop it back up to your hands. Catch the ball and then try again. Do this until the ball is consistently coming back up with ease and pop it back up to your hands. Once you have gained consistency in this drill you can begin to try to link some kicks together. Try dropping to your strong foot, popping the ball up and then kicking with your weak foot before catching the ball.

Try to link three kicks together, on alternating feet. You should be able to see your progression. All rights reserved. Spiker Dek is owned by Sport Action International in the promotion of sepak takraw in the Takraw Thailand League. All rights reserved. Knee/Thigh kick. The knee and thigh is used when the ball comes fast towards the area between your knees and your waist. This skill is used to “bump” or deflect the ball up enough to use an inside kick to control the ball. It is also used when kicking consecutive kicks or in a circle and the ball gets to close to your body.

The motion is like a high step marching motion. Simply raise the leg with your hip allowing your knee to bend. Try to contact the ball on the thigh where possible instead of the knee as it provides better control. Make sure the ball hits the fleshy part of the thigh to “bump” the ball up and out a bit. Try a few back up to your hands. Once you feel comfortable, try to link with one inside kick, and then catch the ball. Do this over and over until it comes naturally. Once you get this combination and doing it naturally without thinking, you will be aware of your improvement in skill. Header.

The header is probably the second most important skill to have, especially in the net game. The header is used to pop up a ball that comes higher than the waist. The best way to learn the header is like the inside kick. The contact point should be just above the forehead at the hairline, not too much on the forehead and not too much on the top of the head, right in between. Toss the ball to yourself, hit it with your head and then catch it. Do this several times until you feel comfortable with this skill. When doing the header, remember to bend your knees and get low beneath the ball.

Like the other kicks, you don’t need to focus on power but on accuracy and placement. The next step in this skill drill is to toss the ball higher and again control it with your head before catching the ball. It hurts a bit at first, but you’ll get use to it. The graduating step is to a header from a high inside kick or from a header to a controlling inside kick. Try both combinations as you will be using both of them as you begin to play more Front kick/Toe kick. The toe kick is a defensive kick, great for saving a ball that has gotten out in front of you. It is not, however, a good control kick.

Those who play soccer may disagree, but in sepak takraw the inside is the right way. Learn the toe kick for saves, the inside for control. The toe kick is achieved by placing the foot out for the ball and depending on the height of the, either lifting the foot with your hip or just letting the ball bounce off. You don’t need much power because the ball tends to fly off uncontrollably. Do it slow and take it easy. Like the other kicks, do the same toss and catch drill. Then try with different combinations. Do the same progression.

Block is usually made by jumping in the air and raising a leg and/or back to divert the ball back into the opponents court. A block counts as one contact. Center Line: Divides the length of the playing court into two equal halves. Dig: The act of fielding hard hit ball successfully, usually a spike or block, to regain control. i. e. The Dig by Thailand came at crucial point in the game. Dink: A soft hit ball -usually either a “dink serve” or a “dink spike” Fault: A violation of one of the rules of the game. Feeder: Person who “sets” the ball to the “spiker”. First Ball: Term used to describe receiving the serve by the opposing team.

Killer: Same as Spiker. Common in international terminology. Quarter Circle: Place on court where the serving team’s forwards (left inside and right inside players) must remain until the ball has been kicked by the server or back player. Regu: Malaysian word for team. In takraw, a team of 4 players (3 starters plus 1 reserve) is known as a “Regu” and a squad of 3 “Regu’s is known as a “Team”. Roll Spike: Spike in which the player jumps with his back to the net, rotates in the air and kicks the ball over the opposite shoulder from the kicking foot with a flip like motion. The most dramatic and famous move in the game!

Service Over: When the serving team fails to return the ball over the net or commits a fault or foul. The opposing team becomes the serving team but a point is not awarded to either team. USA also uses the same term as volleyball – “Side Out”. Serving Circle: Circle of 1 foot radius located in both halves of the court. The server is required to have one foot touching the ground inside the serving circle during a serve. Set (1): A period of play which is concluded when one team reaches 15 points. Matches consists of the best of three sets. Set (2): A high pass by one player to a team-mate or to self to enable a spike.

Service: The act of putting the ball into play by the back player. Service (Hand) Toss: A hand throw of the ball by one of the forward “inside” players to the “back” who must kick the ball into play in one try. Spike: A powerfully hit shot directed into the opponents half of the court by the foot or head. Sunback Spike: Spike in which the player jumps with his back to the net and kicks the ball over the same shoulder as the kicking foot. In soccer this is known as a “bicycle kick” or “bike” for short.

The receiving team will attempt to play the takraw ball towards the front of the net, making the best use of their 3 hits, to set and spike the ball.The goal in any form of takraw is to keep the hand-woven ball off the ground for as long as possible using any part of the body except hands and arms. Takraw challenges an individual’s assumptions of what they are, and are not, capable of doing. As you gain control of the takraw ball, you will find it very rewarding when you can easily whiz through a string of consecutive kicks or place an accurate pass to another player.

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