It’s been almost 3 years now since I started practicing Filipino martial arts. Picking up the sticks is probably one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I admit there were times when I got distracted and lost my focus because work happened. Travel happened. Personal battles happened. Laziness happened. Oops, sorry! But never did it cross my mind to give up this art/sport/lifestyle that I’m crazy about.
What occurred in the last 3 years was exactly what I had imagined. Looks like I’m slowly starting to become a “Visualization” or “The Secret” or “Law of Attraction” believer—or whatever you may want to call it. So far…
I’ve found a teacher
I mentioned in this article that I initially had a difficult time finding a Filipino martial arts teacher. I really wanted to find a steady mentor who can guide me, be patient with me and help me progress as a martial arts practitioner. So I’m really happy to have found Coach Jeric, who turned out to be an amazing martial arts teacher (FMA & Muay Thai). On several occasions, he’s also become my motivational coach. What a gem!
I’ve found my niche
I knew it from the start that FMA will be my niche. That I will be passionate about it. And I was right. While I’ll always enjoy boxing and Muay Thai, FMA is special to me—a more serious pursuit than just a leisure one. A forever love and not a short-lived fling. #FMAForever
I’ve found an outlet
This forever love has even taken a role of a BFF. My go-to solution for anything. Weirded out yet? Hear me out. You see, I’m not much of a talker really. I only trust a handful of people when it comes to my feelings (or the lack thereof). I mostly channel my emotions if I’m not eating them. And guess what, FMA comes handy during these times. When I’m down, FMA training cheers me up. When I’m stressed, it relaxes me. How about when I’m angry? Oh I wanna punch someone in the face when I’m mad, so I do boxing for that! And that’s usually not enough. Thus, I do Eskrima next to finally appease my rage.
Not only as a Filipino martial artist, but also as a person. FMA has taught me that anything is possible with passion, patience and perseverance. I pretty much try to apply this lesson in all aspects of my life. More lessons and tips.
I’ve gained lifelong friends
I notice that many students just come and go. Some will dabble in FMA and never return after a class or two. While others stay longer—a few weeks to a few months. Some attend more regularly than others for many different reasons. A few are noticeably more diligent than most and they find ways to train regardless of the situation. By “a few,” I mean no more than ten. And with these ten, I can envision maybe four or five of them being my lifelong teammates and friends. How cool is that, right? Finding your own tribe whom you can talk to about FMA and train with even when you’re old and wrinkly. #SquadGoals indeed! #Blessed
I’ve been certified in module 1 of Applied Eskrima Balintawak. It means I can legitimately teach if I want to. I like having that option should I decide to down the line. However, I’m honestly not interested to teach at the moment. Not for selfish reasons. I definitely want to spread FMA like virus. And yes, teaching is the best way to accomplish it.
Being one of the senior students in class, I frequently assist in teaching the newbies. I’ve even tried on one occasion teaching one of my friends just for kicks. It’s not so bad. In fact, I kinda enjoyed it. So I’m not shutting any possibility. The motivation to teach is probably somewhere on the horizon. But right now, I just want to continue learning as much as I can to become a better Eskrimadora than I was yesterday.
Speaking of learning, one of my future plans is to learn from another FMA master/GM. To become a more well-rounded, diverse practitioner, I think it’s important to cross train and discover what else is out there. But only after you’ve got a solid foundation. As for me, it’s AE Balintawak.
I already have a couple of teachers in mind whom I’d like to learn from if/when given a chance. And many more others I’d like to meet just because they’re awesome.
So there goes a concise update about my journey as a lifelong Arnis / Kali / Eskrima practitioner! Thoughts? Let me know in the comments section below. Cheers! Pugay!