General Luna, Siargao Island, Philippines – On September 23rd, one day prior to the opening day of the WSL QS1500/ASC sanctioned 22nd International Siargao Surfing Cup, the first ever ISA International Judging and Officiating course in the Philippines was held at the Siargao Bleu Resort and Spa.
ISA Official Course Presenter and WSL Australasia Head Judge Glen Elliott led the 12 participants through an extensive interactive classroom course in the gym area of the resort, which was then followed up by both shadow judging and real live judging during three days of actual competition, which gave the participants the immediate opportunity to put into practice what they had learned under the supervision of experienced professional judges.
At the conclusion of the competition, 8 trainee judges gained the necessary practice hours to attain their Level 2 judging certification, and the three Level 2 judges their Level 3 certification. All of the 8 first time course participants had varying levels of judging experience at the local and national level, but had never taken a formal course, whereas the other three participants had taken the same course three years ago in Bali, Indonesia with Glen Elliott as the instructor and had gained subsequent experience.
Of the 12 participants, 6 were from Siargao Island, 1 from Ilocos Norte, 1 from Sorsogon, 1 from San Fernando (La Union), 1 from Quezon City, 1 from Zambales, and 1 from Australia (expat living in Siargao).
Luke Landrigan heads the newly formed United Philippine Surfing Association, and had this to say;
“After working closely with the ISA on the development of the sport here in the Philippines to form our new NGB, we thought this international surfing event was a great opportunity for getting some of our judges certified, especially since we are setting up a surfing championship tour. The plan is to have as many of the surfing provinces involved as possible, not just as competitors but also as judges and for technical work,” explained Landrigan. “We have been working closely with Glenn (Elliott), the WSL and Tim (Hain) of the ASC here in the Philippines for the past 3 years and we just learn so much each year. I know we have a long way ahead of us, but I know we are on the right track because we are working with the right people. We are very lucky to have guidance from them since day one. The sport is in good hands and we at the UPSA and PSCT (Philippine Surfing Championship Tour) are so grateful for the unending support from them,” he added.
Course presenter Glen Elliott has been helping educate the surfing community from his role as Head Judge at professional surfing events in Asia for over 10 years now, and was delighted to be able to put on a class here in Siargao Island.
“I am proud to witness the unification of Filipino surfing with the formation of the United Philippines Surfing Association,” said Elliott. “The first crucial steps have been taken by applying for membership to the International Surfing Association and with the help and guidance in establishing properly trained Judges and Officials will benefit all efforts in establishing ‘best practice’ in Judging and Officiating at their Regional and National competitions. It is undeniable that the UPSA will influence the sport and lifestyle of surfing in the Philippines, and the eco-tourism opportunities that surfing brings to local villages will continue to grow and directly benefit local communities.”
The ASC’s Tim Hain added, “I’ve been involved in the surf community and at events here in the Philippines with guys like Luke, Bjorn, Mike and others for the past 10 years, and as the ASC, we’ve been sanctioning events here since 2013, so it’s really gratifying to see it all coming together now. Having guys that are not only surfers but have been competitors as well, heading up these surfing organizations, being judges, and in charge of professional surfing in the Philippines, gives real legitimacy to their efforts and they know they will continue to receive 100% support from us.”
The UPSA thanks Siargao Blue Resort and Spa as the host, Gerry Degan from Sagana Resort for event coordination, the ASC, the ISA, the WSL, Glen Elliott and Mike Eijansantos (Mylifeonboard.net) for their contribution and assistance.
For more information please contact:
United Philippine Surfing Association
International Surfing Association
Office # 858.551.8580