Wednesday, March 26, 2008

IFFMAS JOINS SAN SEBASTIAN DIOCESE CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL by James U. Sy, Jr.


Mr. James U. Sy, Jr. interviewing Mr. Serge Tan, in charge of the festival celebration.

The Intercontinental Federation of Filipino Martial Arts Schools (IFFMAS) of Master Elmer V. Montoyo sent a 4-man demo team to give a presentation during the San Sebastian Diocese Diamond Jubilee Celebration Children’s Festival last Easter Sunday March 23, 2008 at the Bacolod Lagoon, Bacolod City .

The San Sebastian Diocese 75th Year Jubilee Celebration, organized by the San Sebastian Diocese under the leadership of the event’s overall Chairman, Mon. Rev. Victorino Rivas, is ongoing and will close in October 2008. Various activities were lined up, the Children’s Festival being one of them.

The Children’s Festival started with a mass by Mon. Rev. Victorino Rivas at the San Sebastian Cathedral along Rizal St . Then a parade heading to the Bacolod Lagoon, Bacolod City followed.

Several schools offered cultural presentations such as dances, songs, field demonstrations, bands, etc. Among the schools in attendance were Education Training Center School (ETCS) 1, 2, and 3, Domingo Lacson National High School , the University of St. La Salle , and the San Sebastian Children’s Choir. There were also visiting performers from abroad, like the San Diego Learning School .

Several tents were erected within the immediate area of the stage where the audience and the performers stayed. There were resource guests who taught dancing, breakdancing, etc.

Intercontinental Federation of Filipino Martial Arts Schools (IFFMAS) was one of the invited performers and was represented by Founder/Masters Narciso “Hansy” L. Alojado and James U. Sy Jr. and USLS student Fritz K. Fernandez of Conceptual Martial Arts Society (CMAS), Inc. and Tapondo Black Belt Jake A. Bugna of Tapondo International Federation Inc.-Bacolod (TIFI-Bacolod)/Tribu Hangaway (TH). The IFFMAS Demo Team showed 6 forms of Filipino, Chinese, and Japanese Martial Arts.

Alojado and Sy went through the single and double touch 2-man form from the Long Quan (Dragon Fist). Bugna and Fernandez demonstrated Aikido and Tapondo irimi nage (entering throw), shiho nage (4 corner throw), and kote gaeshi (wrist turn out) against shomen uchi (overhead strike), yokomen uchi (scapular cut), and mune tsuki (chest strike).

Sy did a short sinawali free form from Lapu-Lapu Viñas Arnis. Alojado fed Bugna for the basic uno and dos and higher striking forms of Original Filipino Tapado. Fernandez concluded the presentation with the 8-steps Tai Chi Chuan form.
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After the IFFMAS demo, the delegation taught three basic self defense techniques from Aikido and Tai Chi Chuan to about 25 interested teens and children in one of the tents. Older teens, among them practicing martial artists as well, later asked questions about knife defenses and other aspects of self defense. The group tried to answer their queries the best they can.

The group wrapped up the short workshop with a lecture on the philosophy of the martial arts as applied to real life. They corrected the mistaken notion of having to kill somebody when defending oneself. Instead they advocated the total control/neutralization of an aggressor with the minimal injury possible for humanistic reasons. They pointed out how violence would adversely affect one’s future, school, work, family, and life.

One of the audiences approached the group to ask about Original Filipino Tapado, he being a resident of Brgy. Taloc, Bago City , the birthplace of the art. The group referred him to the 1st Generation Inheritor of the art, Grandmaster Benefredo “Bebing” M. Lobrido, the nephew of the late Founder grandmaster Romeo “Nono” C. Mamar.

Alojado, who was first contacted by Serge Tan of the Office of the Event Secretariat, said, “we are happy that in our own little way we had helped the youth see the physical, mental, and spiritual benefits of the martial arts and educate them in the pacifist and philosophical foundation of the arts that center on respect, discipline, righteousness, and good living.”

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