The Warrior Teacher #AskWednesday

Welcome back to #AskWednesday!

Today, we’ve got Lynette Carpio-Serrano. We went to the same high school, took up the same bachelor’s degree, and then worked for the same college radio where her monicker, Glitch, came from. We were even in the same archery class and I know for a fact that she got high grades for her precision in shooting arrows. I was secretly envious.

I mean, I knew she was already brainy, and she sang beautifully with the school chorale, but she was great with arrows, too?!!! THEN, she’s blessed with that wonderful radio voice…So. Unfair. #BitterMuch…Kidding aside, she is currently helping shape younger minds as a faculty member of the UPLB College of Development Communication.

lynette-carpio-muay-thai

Lynette doing intense Muay Thai training. Copyright © Augusto Lee Mendoza

This is Lynette, in her own words: “I write. I take pictures. I teach. Occasionally, I kick and punch. Lately, I’ve been making comic strips.” (2011) She’s added “kick and punch” in her wonderful resumé. And that is why she is here, to share a bit about her love for Muay Thai. (BTW, will add another pic soon so you can see her better, he he) I never would have guessed she’d take Thailand’s hard-style martial art (MA); heck, I never would have guessed she’d take any martial art at all! But in this brief interview, she proves me wrong…

1. What made you decide to take up martial arts? Who or what made you decide on your chosen MA?

My love affair with Muay Thai started way back in 2010. I only tried it because a bunch of girl friends from Baguio invited me to join them. I wasn’t expecting to have fun, and I never really saw myself as someone who would learn to love martial arts. The training was difficult, but something in my head clicked.

So I came back a couple more times. Then I signed up for a monthly membership and started training two to three times a week. When I moved back to my hometown, I wanted to continue training. I asked around and found a gym with a Muay Thai team that offered training. That’s the Pugilist Muay Thai – Biagtan. I’ve been practicing on and off since.

 2. Why choose Muay Thai in particular? What do you like about it or get out of it?

It was completely by chance that I tried out Muay Thai. I guess it could have been Tae Kwon Do, or Judo, or any other martial art. I tried it out of curiosity, and realized that it was good exercise (it combines cardio, strength and flexibility). It’s also a good way of clearing my head and managing stress.

It’s brutal–I’ve lost count of the sprains and bruises I’ve had to recover from (but thankfully no broken bones)–but it’s also taught me that physical stress can be a productive thing. It  can make you stronger and faster.

3. What does your MA require of its artists? What separates it from others?

I think it requires the same of its practitioners as other martial arts: discipline, humility, and a willingness to push yourself to your limits. What makes MT different from other martial arts is, they call it the art of eight limbs: we’re taught to kick, punch, and also to use our elbows and knees to strike our opponents.

4. How has it helped you? Have you been able to use your knowledge/skills? In what way?

I’ve always been a pretty clumsy person. MT has improved my body coordination and sense of balance. It’s also raised my tolerance for pain. But if you’re wondering if I’ve ever had to hit or kick someone in self-defense, thankfully, no. It’s helped me in other ways though: it’s good exercise, and it’s good for my mind.

MT was also helpful because I was physically fit when I got pregnant. Although I had to stop because of doctor’s orders. I didn’t have such a hard time shedding the post-pregnancy baby weight. Went back to MT when my little boy turned two, and now I’m getting stronger and more agile again. (Ed. That’s good advice. I actually want to do the same and train for MT, but some things I don’t have right now. I haven’t hung up the gloves yet, though, figuratively speaking…)

muay-thai-in-action

Science or art? You decide

5. Other people say MAs are violent. Has anyone ever said that to you? Do you agree? If yes, why do/did you continue?

You don’t have to know a martial art to be violent. I guess what I’m trying to say is, knowing MA doesn’t automatically make a person violent. If anything, it teaches you discipline and respect for other people. It also teaches you to control yourself. If you’ve been on the receiving end of punches, kicks, and strikes, and if you see the kind of damage they do in the ring, you know it’s not something you take lightly.

6. Are you trying out other MAs? Or any other MA you’d like to try? Why?

At the moment, no. MA training takes time, and at the moment, I have to balance taking care of my family, work, etc. I try to train a couple of times a week, but there’s just not enough time to learn a new MA.

That dance at the start is the Wai khru. Now, I know it’s an exhibition, but that girl is still bad***!!!

muay-thai-artist

According to Lynette, Muay Thai is about “discipline, humility, and a willingness to push yourself to your limits”…I think this guy here is Muay Thai artist and Ong Bak movie star Tony Jaa based on the look

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Thank you so much, Lynette, for granting us an interview!!!

For more interviews, just do a search on “#AskWednesday”. Do check them all out!

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