Cebu City assembles ‘biggest’ arnis class
(The Freeman) - December 2, 2015 - 9:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City yesterday gathered 4,200 athletes at the Cebu City Sports Center yesterday for a class in arnis, the ancient art of stick fighting, to set a record for the biggest class for the national sport.

Edward Hayco, chairman of the Cebu City Sports Commission, said no record for the sport has been established anywhere else just yet.

In effect, the certification from the Guinness World Record (GWR) Limited would just be a formality.

“We are not attempting to break a record this time. Even if we field in 20 or 500, we are already a record holder because there is no existing world record for this. However, we also do not want to do that. We want to establish a good record by fielding in 4,200 participants, a record that will also be hard to beat,” Hayco said.

Hayco said it took some time for CCSC to bring the players together because arnis was not a popular sport until the Department of Education (DepEd) included the same in the Palarong Pambansa.

The group at the sports center was composed of students from the Abellana National School, Cebu Normal University, Ramon Duterte Memorial National High School, Inayawan National High School, as well as representatives from schools in Mandaue City and special group of differently-abled arnis players.

The participants performed synchronized movements for several minutes.

Cebu City has set several GWRs in the past, including the largest dance class and biggest chess tournament and largest class. 

Cebu also owns the record of having the biggest human pink ribbon formation for breast cancer awareness and held briefly the GWR in the biggest Zumba class.

CCSC also made a successful attempt at breaking breaking the largest archery tournament and largest archery lesson, but had to re-submit the entry due to some technicalities.

Sans the certification, Mayor Michael Rama said what the young Cebuanos have done is already reason enough to be proud of.

He was present at the sports center yesterday even as he was set to fly to Paris for the 2015 Paris Climate Conference.

“Let this be a moment of pride for all of us. Only in Cebu that you can see the youth excel in arnis this way,” Rama said.

Rama was one of the witnesses who signed the documents to be sent to the GWR headquarters in London.

The CCSC is attempting at world records as a means to attract the youth to engage in sports and to promote a healthy and active lifestyle.

Philippine Sports Commission Commissioner Jose Luis “Jolly” Gomez who was present at the sports center yesterday told The Freeman he was not surprised at the accomplishment.

“I am not surprised at all. I know the Cebuanos are very well capable of doing this. The Cebuanos’ community spirit is simply amazing!” he said.

Arnis was named formally as the national sport through Republic Act 6850. — /JMO (FREEMAN)

ABELLANA NATIONAL SCHOOL ACIRC CEBU CEBU CITY CEBU CITY SPORTS CENTER CEBU CITY SPORTS COMMISSION CEBU NORMAL UNIVERSITY CEBUANOS DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION EDWARD HAYCO RECORD
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