“Life begins kapag hindi ka na nag-iinarte,” so the UP Mountaineers say. What could this actually mean for the longest running mountaineering organization in the country? Its forty years tell us how UP Mountaineers pioneered and sustained mountaineering as a consequential sport. More importantly, it showed how mountaineering is not just about literally reaching the summit, but going beyond it.

The current Chair of the UPV Healthy Lifestyle and Wellness Committee, Mary Lyncen M. Fernandez, is a staunch advocate of health, fitness and wellness. “Six years ago, my blood chemistry was going through the roof. A doctor told me that I needed to take maintenance to control my blood sugar, uric acid, high cholesterol levels, and high blood pressure. I was a short, fat, middle-aged woman who weighed more than 80 kilos. I called myself ang babaeng walang leeg (the woman with no neck).”

Percival Balite Assistant Professor 1 Department of Human Kinetics College of Arts and Sciences UP Los Baños

It was PE 2 (wrestling) in UP Diliman in 2006. It was memorable for me because of its novelty. Our professor, Prof. Norberto Madrigal, was very well-versed in the sport, and his method of teaching was not only accommodating but was also patient. The class in itself, to me, was not just practical in engaging you physically and strategically; it also planted seeds for a budding competitive sport.

Being a varsity athlete in the university, I did not have to take PE classes. However, we were required to take electives in my course, sports science. The most memorable one for me was basic weight training because I learned all about the different exercises that can be done in resistance training or in the gym, what muscles they target, how to do them properly, how to teach the exercises to others, and how to plan out a weight training program. I believe it was a very practical class which I could truly apply in life and in my sport.

My most memorable PE subject was my first PE, folk dance under Ma’am Dioquino. Folk dance requires dancing in pairs, but back then, my blockmates and I were not yet close friends and we were still shy, so dancing was awkward! Towards the end, it became group dances. I remember the girls were practicing Pandanggo sa Ilaw where we would put a glassful of water on top of our heads while changing from standing to lying on our bellies to rolling to the left and right. Imagine, there was spilled water everywhere! The boys were busy perfecting their hand-and-body coordination for Maglalatik, which was no joke! The dancers should have timing and grace. Our final exam was an intermission number for the annual dance recital where all PE dance classes showcased their moves and were up for winning in their categories. We had a great time, and guess what? After our performance, we had to clean up.

Fernando P. Florendo Coordinator, Human Kinetics Program UP Baguio

I have two memorable PE subjects: PE 1 Foundations of Physical Fitness since it deals with all the basics of fitness including exercise physiology, health, and wellness. The other is PE 2 Swimming, a required course for BS Biology students, which is the most difficult and risky PE 2 course to teach since extra precautions are very much needed compared to the other PE 2 courses. The teacher and students would travel for an hour going to, and an hour and a half coming from, the venue which passes through steep roads.