Wednesday, January 6, 2010

GM Estanislao T. Guarra: New NOBF President By: James U. Sy Jr.

P/Sgt. (Ret.) Grandmaster Estanislao “Eslao” T. Guarra, Founder of Guarra Style Modern Arnis, has officially succeeded Atty. Col. Grandmaster Marcelo C. Jalandoon, Ph.D., Founder of the Negros Occidental Baston Federation (NOBF), as President of the federation. GM Jalandoon made the appointment official last October 4, 2009. GM Jalandoon retired from his post for the reason of old age and health matters.

GM Jalandoon is one of the, if not the, most avid supporter of the indigenous Filipino Martial Art (FMA) of Arnis/Baston/Eskrima in Negros Occidental. He successfully brought together not less than 12 organizations under the collective banner of the NOBF and coordinated its members’ efforts to popularize and propagate the Filipino arts of self defense.

The NOBF, under GM Jalandoon’s leadership have organized tournaments using World Eskrima Kali Arnis Federation (WEKAF), Arnis Philippine, Inc. (ArPi), and International Modern Arnis Federation, Philippines (IMAFP) rules. Among the tournaments held during GM Jalandoon’s term as President were 1st Talisay City Baston Tournament (January 29, 2005, Talisay City), 1st Bacolod NOBF KaliSilat Sport Arnis Invitational Tournament (September 29-30, 2007, Gaisano City Bacolod Supermall), and 1st ArPi-Bacolod/Negros Occidental Goodwill Tournament (May 18, 2008, Casino Filipino Hotel).

GM Jalandoon also led the Arnis Philippine, Inc. (ArPi)-Bacolod/Negros Occidental in taking home a 1-3-5 medal haul during the 3rd Philippine Olympic Festival Visayas Qualifying Games Arnis Competition last July 25, 2008 at the NORSU Cultural Center, Negros Oriental State University, Dumaguete City.

During GM Jalandoon’s term as President of NOBF he had three Vice Presidents, namely Grandmaster Estanislao “Eslao” T. Guarra of Guarra Style Modern Arnis (South Negros Occidental), Grandmaster Ibarra E. Lopez of the Golden Kamagong Arnis Kali Eskrima Association (Central Negros Occidental/Bacolod), and Grandmaster Jerson “Nene” Tortal of Dekiti Tirsia Siradas (North Negros Occidental).

GM Tortal went on to tour the US to propagate his own system while GM Lopez was elected President of International Modern Arnis Federation, Philippines (IMAFP)-Bacolod/Negros Occidental Chapter. GM Jalandoon turned over the Presidency of the federation to GM Guarra. Meanwhile, GM Jaladoon turned over his Commissionership of Arnis Philippines to NOBF Secretary Grandmaster Danilo “Danny” L. Cardinal of KaliSilat Arnis Association (KAA)-Bacolod.

GM Guarra started his training in Arnis under his father Grandmaster Cornelio “Kune” Toledo Guarra, learning his father’s and his group’s fighting arts locally known as Herada Redoble or Espada y Daga. Guarra went on to study under different professors of Arnis, 20 of them in all. Among his teachers were Grandmasters Guillermo “Guimo” Yasay, Alfredo “Pedong” Yasay, and Constantino Arca (Ofensa Defensa/Yasay Sable), Claro Alvarez (Saber), Esmael “Maing” Alvarez (Saber), Senyong, Reynaldo Cabinta of Bukidnon (Disarming), Homero Sian (Fencing), Anong Abellana (Judo), Casimiro “Chingi” A. Grandeza (Karate), Juan Recomura, Jose Garganera, Sulpecio Fernea (Herada Batangueña), Tatang Balat of Pampanga, etc.

GM Guarra retired as a police sergeant after 32 years of service in the Bago City Integrated National Police (INP). He had served as a training staff of the Bago City Police Station, having trained auxiliary police in all barangays of Bago City. During his service, he had received many awards and commendations.

GM Guarra had served as Security Officer and ROTC Tactical Officer at the University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos (UNO-R). He started teaching Arnis publicly around 1970. By the time he retired from the force, he had already taught Arnis to more than 10,000 barangay tanods, police officers, security guards, and civilians.

GM Guarra had his own share of testinganay among different arnisadors in Bago City and other parts of Negros Occidental.

GM Guarra’s martial arts history and style was first put to writing by Rev. Fr. Jerson Balitor, then Parish Priest of Ma-ao, Bago City, himself a researcher and accomplished expert of the martial arts. GM Guarra was first introduced extensively to the general public by Negros’ premier martial arts historian/writer James U. Sy Jr., Founder of Conceptual Martial Arts Society (CMAS), Inc., through his various works.

GM Guarra is Founder/Grandmaster/President of the Guarra Style Modern Arnis (formerly the the Gen. Juan A. Araneta School of Arnis) and had served as Vice President for Arnis Philippines (ArPi)-Bacolod/Negros Occidental Chapter, Vice President-Internal Affairs for the Intercontinental Federation of Filipino Martial Arts Schools (IFFMAS), and Consultant for the International Modern Arnis Federation Philippines (IMAFP)-Bacolod Chapter.