My Filipino Martial Arts Journey So Far: Updates and Goals

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

The mediocre teacher quote

Via quotlr.com

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Balintawak Eskrima Certification Test Under Applied Eskrima Global

Blade Apprentice AEG Module 1 Balintawak Eskrima Certification Test (Practical)

Blade Apprentice AEG Module 1 Balintawak Eskrima Certification Test (Practical)

The most dreaded day came. The moment of truth. The Judgment day. During our recent Eat, Sleep, Train FMA: Balintawak Eskrima Training in Cebu, two of my teammates and I took our Module 1 Balintawak Eskrima Certification tests under Applied Eskrima Global. The AEG comprehensive exam consists of three parts: written, verbal and practical.

Module 1 is the foundation of AE system and is no joking matter—by no means easy to master. It has a total of 26 lessons (A to Z) and with each lesson having at least 3-14 sub parts.

Applied_Eskrima_Module_1_Lessons_A-Z_Covers

Applied Eskrima Module 1 Lessons A-Z DVDs

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Balintawak Eskrima Beach Training (January 2015)

Applied Eskrima Manila by the beach
Beach and Eskrima are two of my favorite things. Put them together and it’s a happiness explosion. Make it a sunrise or a sunset background and it’s heaven. We didn’t get the last one, but still it was pure joy.

The past couple of days of our 3-day Balintawak Eskrima training were a bit gloomy and stormy. Fortunately, we were blessed with a fine weather on our last day in Cebu—ideal for seaside training. So after our morning training and breakfast, Master V brought us to a nearby beach. Yay!

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Filipino Martial Arts: Balintawak Eskrima 3-Day Training (January 2015)

Applied Eskrima HQ Cebu

While everyone was catching Pope Francis fever, and others were partying at the Sinulog Festival, some of my Applied Eskrima teammates and I were learning the foundation of AE system. We flew in all the way from Manila to Cebu, where AE Headquarters is located, to get a 3-day intensive Filipino martial arts (Balintawak Eskrima) training with Master Virgil Cavada.

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Balintawak Eskrima Practice Sparring

I’m usually rattled when I’m pressured. But I’d like to believe I’m a diamond in the rough. So I accept all the polishing and pressuring needed to become a stronger, better fighter. In the end, win or lose, I’ll still emerge a champ.

Sharing to you a quick Balintawak Eskrima sparring session with my Filipino martial arts teacher, Guro Jeric Pantaleon of Applied Eskrima. Pardon my haggardness!

Yes, my face, my face! 😀

Filipino Martial Arts Seminar in Manila: Master Virgil Cavada of Applied Eskrima (Balintawak Style)

Applied Eskrima Global

My Combat Kali Manila teammates and I had been extremely excited for Master Virgil Cavada’s 2-day Filipino martial arts seminar. Master Virgil, or Master V as he is fondly called by most, is my teacher’s Balintawak Eskrima teacher. He’s part of our lineage that traces all the way back to Grandmasters Crispulo Atillo and Venancio “Anciong” Bacon.

So the big day came! Time to meet and learn from a renowned Filipino martial arts master, who travels across the globe to teach his system, Applied Eskrima. And whose first student is Dan Inosanto. Oh my God, I can’t get over it. I’m still on a high until now.

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Filipino Martial Arts: Top 10 Frequently Asked Questions about Kali, Arnis, Eskrima

Robert Downey Jr
First off, Kali is a very newbie friendly martial art. But I understand many people have questions and doubts about this discipline. To help shed some light on those uncertainties, I’ll answer some Kali FAQs that are probably holding you back from trying out Filipino martial arts.

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Finding a Kali Teacher

Mission Impossible 3 Eskrima

Photo grabbed from TheWritingNut.com

You might want to read this first (or not): How I Got Into Filipino Martial Arts

Finding a Kali teacher is no easy feat!

Around February 2013, I was researching where I could possibly learn Filipino Martial Arts. I found out that my choices are infinite! There are a ton of gyms/schools/teachers offering many different FMA styles/systems. I thought this pursuit is getting more and more confusing yet very interesting.

Anyway, I contacted a handful of prospective teachers; many of them were quite unresponsive or snob for some reason. Others sounded promising yet too far from my place or were expensive. I wasn’t making excuses, I swear! Plus, I’m pretty choosy when it comes to getting a trainer/teacher because I had a few disappointing experiences with my previous trainers (in boxing and Muay Thai). At one point, I wanted to ask myself, “Is it me?” Haha. I guess like most things, finding a teacher requires trial and error.

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