Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Oido Arnis Taught at Ma-ao ES by: James U. Sy Jr.

Teacher II Mary Janet Gubaton-Sayson and Oido de Caburata Arnis Grandmaster Sabas T. Gubaton together with students participants of the Arnis training at Ma-ao Elementary School (ODCA picture).

Grandmaster Sabas T. Gubaton training his students in the basics of Oido de Caburata.

Training for students in the Oido de Caburata System of Arnis officially started last July 31, 2010 at the Covered Court , Ma-ao Elementary School , Bo. Ma-ao, Bago City .

This development came after the school received a Department of Education, Culture, and Sports (DECS) circular informing it of the inclusion of Arnis as Physical Education (PE) in the school curriculum as mandated by Republic Act 9850 “An Act Declaring Arnis as the National Martial Art and Sport of the Philippines,” which was signed into law by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo last December 11, 2009.

Teacher II Mary Janet Gubaton-Sayson was designated by the school as its Arnis Coach since her father, Grandmaster Abraham T. Gubaton, is a renowned and well respected Arnisador in Bago. GM Gubaton, now 82, has a total of 64 years experience in Arnis, having first learned Arnis after World War II, in 1946. He is the Grand Patriarch of the Oido de Caburata Arnis (ODCA) group.

The one tasked to teach the students was GM Gubaton’s younger brother, Grandmaster Sabas T. Gubaton, 72, Chief Instructor of the Oido de Caburata Arnis (ODCA) group.

Oido de Caburata is a unique system of Arnis founded by Grandmaster Antonio “Toñing” Tolosa in 1936 in Minoyan , Murcia to counter the existing prevalent system of Arnis during his time, the Espada y Daga or Methodo format of Arnis. Oido is a Spanish word which means “by the ear” and is used in colloquial language to mean “to play without notes,“ as in the case of a piano or a guitar. In Arnis parlance, Oido denotes the absence of a numbered pattern which is common with most systems of Arnis/Eskrima now taught. Caburata is a kind of flexible weapon which was once used by the now defunct Philippine Constabulary (PC).

After mastering the Espada y Daga method, GM Tolosa practiced the caburata and later translated its movements into the stick, thereby giving birth to Oido de Caburata Arnis. What makes Oido de Caburata Arnis unique is that its strikes can go around a defensive block, a characteristic it has borrowed from the caburata.

As of press time, training had already been done for July 31, August 7-8, and 14, 2010, whole day each. Participating in the program are Juan Carlos Alisaje, Juan Miguel Alisaje, Mariz Blasé, Kim Angela Calpe, Alexander Diosano, Daphy Escarra, Arvin John Gonzaga, Joshelle Gubaton, Mary Camille Gubaton, Denise Marie Lantape, Christian Angelo Saquian, and Vanessa Torrecarion. Except for the Gubaton cousins who are junior high school, the Arnis trainees are Grade IV, V, and VI students of the Ma-ao Elementary School .

The Arnis training was received with enthusiasm by the faculty and is very much supported by Principal Merian C. Banas, Sports Coordinator Mario Ferrer, and District 4 Supervisor Rutchill Ducay. The children themselves are very much interested in learning their own indigenous Filipino Martial Art (FMA), especially a system which has established itself as a formidable system of self protection in that area of Bago City , Murcia , and elsewhere in Negros Occidental.

Teacher II Mary Janet Gubaton-Sayson, who teaches Science 4 and Geography, History, and Civics 4, welcomes this development as this will help the youngsters appreciate their cultural heritage as Filipinos. The Filipino Martial Arts (FMA), commonly called Arnis/Eskrima, have a rich history and tradition that are only starting to be scholastically studied and documented in the last decade or so. Knowledge of one’s martial culture will instill pride in the Filipino youth as has Taekwondo, Karate, and Wushu for Korea , Japan , and China .

Grandmaster Sabas T. Gubaton taught the first four basic techniques of Oido de Caburata techniques to the students. He was assisted by Jerry Divinagracia of Brgy. Ilijan on August 14, 2010 as well as two other teaching staff in at least two occasions.

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