Pencak silat practitioners, a martial art indigenous to Southeast Asia, sparring during practice in Jakarta.
Anwar bin Sholeh had something to cheer when he showed up at a Jakarta training centre to practice pencak silat -- the Indonesian martial art was added to UNESCO's prestigious heritage list.
"It's an honour that pencak silat has been recognised internationally," the 38-year-old, who has been practising the art since elementary school, told AFP.
"This will motivate us to preserve our traditions and culture," he added.
Dating back to as early as the 6th Century, one legend has it that the ancient martial art -- which blends self-defense and artistic elements -- originated after a woman watched a tiger do battle with a giant hawk, and copied their techniques to fight off a pestering group of drunken men.
The term pencak silat describes hundreds of indigenous combat styles in Southeast Asia, with fighters wielding a terrifying array of weapons such as knives, sickles and machetes.
It has gained greater awareness outside Indonesia after being featured in Star Wars and John Wick films in recent years.
"I'm glad that Pencak Silat is now not only recognised in Hollywood," said practitioner Rian Irawan bin Maswan Hasan.
"It's a unique martial art because it is not only for health and self defense, but it also builds solidarity and brotherhood among it members," he added.
The inclusion on UNESCO's list of "Intangible Cultural Heritage" practices was decided during a committee meeting in Bogota last week.
"In addition to their sporting element, traditions of Pencak Silat also encompass mental-spiritual, self-defence and artistic aspects," the United Nations Economic, Scientific and Cultural Organization said.
"The moves and styles of Pencak Silat are strongly influenced by various elements of art, involving a unity of body and movement fitting the accompanying music."
The martial art was featured at last year's Asian Games, where host Indonesia swept the gold medal tally.
Traditional Pencak Silat covers a broad range of styles and can be different from what appears in official sporting competitions with set rules.
"Many tradition-based silat practitioners could not take part in those competitions because the standards are very different," said 43-year-old Hasan.
Indonesian batik and Wayang puppet theatre are among the Southeast Asian nation's other entries on the UNESCO list.
The decision recognises the importance of the central Myanmar site — which includes more than 3,500 stupas, temples, monasteries and other structures built between the 11th and 13th centuries — and will likely be a boon to Myanmar’s tourist industry.
The ancient city of Babylon, first referenced in a clay tablet from the 23rd century BC, was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site on Friday, after a vote that followed decades of lobbying by Iraq,
Barefoot and muddied, a group of youngsters sprint across a makeshift pitch in rural Vietnam, passing the ball in a game of touch rugby in a country where few people have ever heard of the sport.
Montreal -- the Canadian city that spawned the global juggernaut Cirque du Soleil -- has once again reimagined the circus, this time tapping into the rich animation and video game production talent found in the Quebec metropolis.
Amid the coronavirus pandemic which has brought the sporting calendar to a grinding halt, tennis star Roger Federer is trying whatever he can to remain in touch with the sport and hone his skills.
'Steve was more of a match saver than a match-winner,' Warner said about Waugh whom he included in his all-time Australian Test XI to be led by Allan Border.
Brazilian footballer has denied suggestions that he ignored social distancing guidelines amid the coronavirus outbreak by playing footvolley with friends at his mansion near Rio de Janeiro.