Sports science boosts pencak silat team
KUALA LUMPUR—An obscure Indonesian martial arts just made its contribution to the Philippines’ struggling campaign here Tuesday.
And pencak silat has sports science to thank for it.
Association head Princess Jacel Kiram said the 14 athletes who came here underwent “sportonomics,” which analyzed their endurance based on their blood specimen.
“This is the first time we had it,” said Kiram whose charges ended a 12-year gold medal drought in the SEA Games after Dines Dumaan triumphed in the tanding Class A 45-50-kilograms Tuesday.
She said the pencak silat team went to Thailand for two months’ training although the squad didn’t employ a foreign coach.
Then, according to Kiram, the athletes had a 60-day “isolation camp” in Camp Canawan in Morong, Bataan.
“They were not allowed to go home or see their families and spent the whole time training and bonding with each other,” said Kiram.
Already, the Philippines won one gold and one bronze, with two more athletes vying for the top honors late Tuesday.
Last SEA Games, the country could only come up with three bronzes.