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015 Davao Tagum Clinics


2015 Davao Tagum Clinics in Hindsight

Feb 13, 2015

As part of the Davao trip, I also ventured North with a small group to the new sports facility for Tagum Training I was accompanied by Airnel T. Abarra pinoyathletics writer and organizer of the Davao Blue Knights meet, Bev Tariao former local sprinter, and Maricris Caintic the silver medalist in the Uni Games Triple Jump.

There we were greeted by the bi-spectacled Giovanni Galunes the sports director of Tagum and his assistant Chris a sports science graduate of UST. They showed us a very good video of 10 local indigenous children being supported by the government and developed as long-distance runners.

After lunch, I took the athletes out to train at Tagum a site that will be used for the 2015 Palarong Pambansa. As most of the kids had competed on Saturday and attended that clinic I didn’t expect a huge turnout from the locals as many were resting or had the family day. However, it was good actually working with a small group to give more attention and feedback. Bev and Caintic were joined by John Kenneth Paculba a young local sprinter who had just clocked in at 11.2s yesterday and his two training partners also sprinters.

Nice new stadium

The new stadium was really nice. However, they informed us they were still getting equipment in. We were planning for Caintic to do some jumping and on inspection of the pit, it looked like concrete with several large stones in it. I immediately requested a rake and spade. After around 40 minutes a spade and rake were located by the groundsman and he, myself, and two of the boys started preparing the pit.

Once this was done I got the athletes to go for a one-lap easy jog. In addition to that with AIMS stretching. After the AIMS Stretching, we did sprint drills. However, I gave feedback as I watched them go one by one which as it was a group of five still took some time However was easier to get through.

After that, the next part was to get them to do 3 runs over 50m at 80-90% effort. They were to go individually. I got Airnel to video each of them once from the front, back, and side. Kenneth had issues with the knee lift and backside mechanics probably due to a recurring foot injury. The other 2 boys had issues with backside mechanics However not knee lift. Caintic needed to fix her arm swing and there were also backside mechanic issues.


Bev didn’t seem to have major backside mechanic issues and had very nice acceleration for someone who has been out of the sport for a few years. The issue was her arm swing and tightness in the upper body. It’s clear that Bev with a PB around 13.5 could be a sub 13 sprinter due to the amount of power generated at the start.

I then got Kenneth to rest as his foot injury had flared up and got the other 2 boys and Bev to do some block starts. Again Bev demonstrated a very nice example of acceleration very similar to the start of a speed skater, however, her actual arm swing needed quite a lot of work. The boys seemed to be ok going out of the blocks However needed to transition better.

In between the rest of the block starts, I dabbled with some jump coaching. Caintic who studies at the University of Mindanao and is coached by an old friend Harrish Ratag. I was able to get permission to bring her up to Tagum to get some jumping videos for further analysis. (videos still coming). Caintic is being eyed right now for intake into Philippine Airforce when she graduates.

Jumping Board

One thing to note is that the jumping board is very hard wood almost like concrete. Caintic was taking off 50-60cm before the board probably cause she was scared she was going to injure herself if she hit it. Her leaps varied from 10.90m to 11.43m However every leap increased she had 5 jumps. Her PB is 11.84m so possibly in better shape than that right now judging by the fact she was taking off early.

2015 Davao Athletics Speed Clinic

Feb 11, 2015

After three legs of time trials, the Davao City-Team Blue Knights Monthly Track Meet concluded with its grand finals at the Fr. Martinez, Sports Complex Track Oval, Ateneo de Davao University-Matina Campus on 07-February. Athletes coming from different parts of Davao Region including the cities of Davao, Tagum, and Digos unleased their skills. As part of educating the Athletes, the organizers invited Philippine Sports Commissioner Representative Andrew William Pirie to grace the opening ceremonies.

In order to provide new inputs and learning experience in Athletics Mr. Pirie shared his skills and knowledge to the athletes and coaches in a sprinting clinic during the noon break. Participating Athletes enjoyed as well the snacks provided by the Ateneo de Davao Varsity Parents Council and winners of different events received gift packs from Scotch, Post-it by 3M.


“Honored today to be invited to Davao, representing on behalf of my boss PSC Commissioner Jolly Gomez. I would like to share this inspirational message with you the Davao Athletic Community.”

“Delivering this motto which sums up the Batang Pinoy and National Games projects of the PSC. Being involved in sports builds lessons and values that last a life time”.


Covered in the Clinic

  • Aims Workout
  • Basic Speed Drills (no time to go into advanced due to time constraints and lots of younger athletes)
  • Looking at running mechanics, back-end mechanics, etc evaluations

Around 50-60 Participants.

Duration around 2 hours

Schedule Itinerary

 06 Feb

Arrived in Davao City

Hostel Check-in



07 Feb

(read the message on behalf of com Gomez)

6.00 Monthly meet AM Session Finals start

12.00 Lunch at Vikings for 31st Birthday

15.00 Clinic (AIMS and Sprint Drills)

16.30 Monthly Meet PM Session Finals start



08 Feb

7.30 Check out of the hostel

11.00 Arrived in Tagum meet Giovani (me, caintic, bev and airnel)


Training Session with Maricris Caintic (jumper – 5 triple jumps and drills)

Training Session with 3 local sprinters and Bev (drills and block starts)

Departure to Manila


Things I have worked on

  • Research Assistant for PSC
  • Consultant for Athletics and Fil-Heritage athletes
  • ATFS Statistician
  • Former JR National Athlete Philippine Athletics
  • Editor
  • Co-Manager of 2014 ASEAN School Games
  • Philippine Airforce Co-Manager
  • Selector ASEAN School Games and other teams



Olongapo Sprinters Clinic

October 10, 2014

Accompanied by PATAFA National Sprint Coach Ernie Candelario. We took what ended up as more than a scenic tour on the way to Olongapo to conduct The Olongopo Speed Clinic.

An early morning bus ride became a 4-5 hour trip. Every topic under the sun regarding the state of Philippine Athletics and Philippine Athletics, in general, was discussed on the way up.

The trip also included passing two ‘MARLON’ Videoke Bars (the *The mind boggles) a mere 10 minutes apart.


At The Track

We eventually arrived at Olongapo and were greeted by our hosts. Local Coach Cmikeako Cakomike. Who I used to run against at the National Games. And Miss Olongapo turned sprinter Karissa ‘Anne Aliarte’ Lopez aka. El Negra.

It was a scorching hot day, and we ended up at a track which I later realized I had been to before on a summer outing with the Obiena family which was on the way to Subic. (I told you, Karissa, I have been there before :P).

The six-lane track looked in much better condition than the decrepit Rizal memorial coliseum oval.

We were introduced to Coach Mike’s athletes which were around 20-30 kids mainly in high school. But also featured Karissa and her bestie Angel Redira who were constantly running around and laughing at photos of each other take on the camera.

Olongopo Speed Clinic
A good turnout of Coach Mike’s athletes being given drill instructions by Coach Ernie for Olongopo Speed Clinic.

Ernie teaches Drills

Coach Ernie got to work teaching them drills as the kids had already done an earlier workout.

He went through the sprint drills with them some of them picked up on them really quickly although it took a few attempts, while others clearly needed more training.

We then gave them several tips on diet, core activation, etc. I was armed with the stopwatch as coach Ernie instructed the 800m runners-up to do 2 x 2 200m with 30-second rest in between, around 6 mins between the set. One boy who is at San Sebastian who happens to live up there finished first on all the reps.

Olongopo Speed Clinic
Coach Ernie giving instructions using hand gestures. Olongapo Speed Clinic.


Olongopo Speed Clinic

Olongopo Speed Clinic
Coach Ernie helping the kids stretch using AIMS Method.

At the Gym

After a workout and some picture taking with the athletes, it was time to head to the gym. At last, I saw it the world-famous ‘TETANUS Leg Press’. Anyway, we have to improvise as the gym was lacking a lot of crucial equipment and was under renovation.

It was surprising how quickly Karissa, Angel and one thrower took to learning the Power Clean and the Deadlift. On the first attempt, they were leaning to forward and using there back to lift. But once I had advised them to put there feet under the bar and look straight under the mirror they had a near-perfect technique.

In addition, the thrower boy just needed to learn how to shrug and pull at the same time rather than shrug pause and pull. I think these kids were able to learn faster as they never really did the lifts and did not pick up any bad habits to unlearn.

Olongopo Speed Clinic
Karissa Lopez mastering the cleans technique very quickly.
Olongopo Speed Clinic
Karissa static lunge with coach Ernie. Olongapo Sprinters Clinic

Coach Ernie also taught them step-ups and other mobility exercises in the gym.

Olongopo Sprinters Clinic
Karissa being taught step-ups by Coach Ernie. Olongapo Sprinters Clinic
Olongopo Speed Clinic
The Fab Five From Left to Right Karissa Lopez, Angela Redira, Ernie Candelario, Andrew Pirie, and Coach Mike. Olongapo Sprinters Clinic

After that Coach Mike, Coach Ernie, Myself, Karissa, and Angel went to have lunch we brought Pizza ‘Garden Special’. As coach Ernie can’t really eat meat cause of his gout then it was time for the long trip back home. I also got quite badly sunburnt being up there the whole day.



So in hindsight what can we sum up from this trip me and Coach Ernie had made at our own expense to assist the athletes of Olongapo and there coach Mike. In conclusion well here are some collected thoughts.

  • Region 3 has not produced a national athlete since Eugene Caluag in the early 90s, and more notably Lydia De Vega of Malabon, Bulacan. However, it has had Olongopo born, the US-Based Eric Cray.
  • Coach Mike stated they only have four meets in one year.
    • City qualifier
    • Regional PRISAA
    • PRISAA Nationals
    • Philippine National Games

However the need to hold maybe perhaps a dual meet with Bulacan State. Or another school or to bring in a rotational series of Regional Weekly  Weekly Relays they can share with Nueva Ecija, Bulacan and other tracks in the area.

We also plan to visit more regions when we have time. And return at some stage to Olongapo to see how the athletes are going. We left them with some knowledge and a program and will check up on them from time to time. But the trip was more about a technology transfer to Coach Mike to help him be able to better train his athletes, not a trip in which we are trying to take over the athletes.

We also agreed to allow Karissa Lopez who we felt was the more promising athlete of the group PNG 200m Silver medalist joint the Philippine Airforce Squad for the National Champs.




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Andrew was elected Vice President of the Association of Track and Field Statisticians in 2020 after being a member for 7 years.

He has worked as a PSC Consultant and Research Assistant from 2013-2015, Consultant, and Sprint Coach at Zamboanga Sports Academy from 2015-2017.

Current editor and chief of, and has recently done consultancy work for Ayala Corp evaluating the Track and Field Program.

Coaches Sprints, Middle and Jump events he is working towards his Level 3 Athletics Australia Coaching Certification in Sprints and Hurdles.

He can be contacted on [email protected]

You can find more information on Coaching here

By Andrew Pirie

Andrew was elected Vice President of the Association of Track and Field Statisticians in 2020 after being a member for 7 years. He has worked as a PSC Consultant and Research Assistant from 2013-2015, Consultant, and Sprint Coach at Zamboanga Sports Academy from 2015-2017. Current editor and chief of, and has recently done consultancy work for Ayala Corp evaluating the Track and Field Program. Coaches Sprints, Middle and Jump events he is working towards his Level 3 Athletics Australia Coaching Certification in Sprints and Hurdles. He can be contacted on [email protected] You can find more information on Coaching here

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