Thai Language Blog

How to say Planking in Thai? Posted by on Aug 8, 2011 in Culture, Intermediate, Videos

For those who don’t already know, planking is the recent fad that involves a person laying face down with a stiff body. It seems lame/silly, but when you see pictures of planking in amusing situations/places it can be quite fun (as fun as a short-lived fad can be).

Anyway, the word for planking in Thai is the same as in English, แพลงกิ้ง plang1 ging3. To say lay down with a still body, you say nawn1 ning3 ning3 นอนนิ่งๆ. To go into a particular body position is called tum1 taa3 ทำท่า, where tum means to ‘make’ and taa means ‘body position’. Whatever the position is, it must be jeng5 เจ๋ง, meaning ‘cool’ (it’s slang).

For example, here is an example song about planking:

Planking has even been used in Thailand as a political statement/gimmick. Not too long ago, the ‘red shirts’ protest group held a mass planking demonstration to represent those who died during the 2010 political violence:

As planking is/was a fad, new but similar fads have come from it. The next is called levitating, which coincidentally is also pronounced the same in Thai, le1 wi1 teh1 dting3 เลเวทิติ้ง. It is when you make yourself appear to be floating in the air, or ลอยข้างอยู่บนอากาศ.

From a cultural stand-point, I think it is interesting that Thai’s have taken on an international fad. It shows that Thais are becoming less and less xenophobic, connected and open to ideas from the international community. There will of course always be purists against cultural change . . .

Now for those who are more ‘Amish’, there is the Thai version of planking called nang3 pap1 piap1, or นั่งพับเพียบ. This involves sitting in the traditional Thai way, but doing it in strange situations/places like with planking. Even the Thai Cultural Minister approves of this fad (after he ranted about planking). And of course a video with examples:

Now that you’ve learned some words that are very important to your social existence, here is a news program that covers all three styles to help you practice your new vocabulary:

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