Binnadang is the Igorot version of the Filipino bayanihan, which is communal cooperation especially during trying times. Igorot mixed martial arts veteran Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 36, of the Philippines recently talked about the importance of volunteerism and charity during the new coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Knowing how to follow the rules and being helpful are the key Igorot traits, according to Folayang. He said, “The Igorot people are obedient.”
“We make sure to follow our figures of higher authority, especially our elders,” Folayang said of Igorots. “We also practice what we call binnadang, which means helping those in need, which is very important during times like this.”
Training out of Team Lakay in La Trinidad, Benguet, Philippines, Folayang has been competing professionally as an MMA fighter since 2007. He is one of the athletes who have been signed with ONE Championship since the Singapore-based martial arts organization started in 2011.
Founded by Mark “The Machine” Sangiao, 41, Team Lakay is home to some of the top athletes in ONE Championship. Among Folayang’s teammates are Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly, 35, Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang, 27, Southeast Asian Games 2019 gold medalist Gina “Conviction” Iniong Gina “Conviction” Iniong, 30, ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix finalist Danny “The King” Kingad, 24, former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio “The Rock” Banario, 30, former ONE Bantamweight World Champion Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, 32, former ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, 31, and reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua “The Passion” Pacio, 24.
While quarantined in Baguio City, Philippines due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Folayang has been participating in the binnadang activities of Team Lakay along with his teammates. He has also been making sure that he is ready to fight after this pandemic.
“Since the Enhanced Community Quarantine, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my family, especially my two daughters,” Folayang shared. “I’ve been doing a lot of home-made training programs. I’ve also done a lot of crossfit workouts and I’ve been shadowboxing just so I can keep my striking on point.”
Folayang reigned as the ONE Lightweight World Champion from November 11, 2016 to November 10, 2017 and November 23, 2018 to March 31, 2019. Here is an interview with the Igorot MMA fighter months before the COVID-19 pandemic:
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