Just wanted to change the pace a bit and make a shout-out to my friend and fellow sport science hardcore advocate, Coach Pio Solon. I read his interview at philboxing.com with Ronnie Nathanielsz and was pleasantly surprised with his mention of sport psychology.
He’s the force behind the strength and power of our top pro boxers like, Donnie “Ahas” Nietes, Ray “Boom-Boom” Bautista, and AJ “Bazooka” Banal as ALA Boxing’s strength and conditioning coach. He used to handle basketball teams (La Liga Pilipinas’ M. Lhuiller-Cebu Niños and the University of San Carlos in Cebu) and also trains Cebu’s elite junior golfers who competed in the recent Callaway Junior World Golf Championships in San Diego.
I work with him and sports nutritionist Belay Ripoll in providing the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines (ABAP) with sport science support. I also collaborated with him when Banal successfully defended his World Boxing Organization Asia Pacific bantamweight championship against the running man, Tyson Cave.
Sport sciences (ex. strength and conditioning, sports nutrition, sport psychology) are here to stay and I’m proud to be part of this new (well at least here in the Philippines) approach to our national athletes’ training and development. I really hope to see more National Sports Associations (NSA) or sports teams going fully into sport science. Some already have a strength and conditioning coach, but except for ABAP and Far Eastern University’s seniors basketball team (for FEU, I work with Belay who takes care of sports nutrition and her husband, Eski, who handles strength and conditioning), I’m not aware of any other NSA or sports team who integrates the three sport sciences into their actual programs.
The more the Philippine sporting world knows about the sport sciences and their benefits, the better for our athletes who go through the daily hardships of training for flag and country.
Until that day finally comes, let’s keep on tooting our horn, Coach Pio.