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Setting the bar high: Filipino pole vaulter EJ Obiena ‘relentlessly working’ towards 2024 Olympics

Courtesy: Dylan Martinez/Reuters

Last July, Obiena was declared the first Filipino athlete to qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics after successfully setting a record on the entry standard of 5.82 meters during the Diamond League competition in Sweden. This accomplishment paved the way for him to explore more opportunities in the realm of pole vaulting.

As the Philippines gears up for the Paris Olympics, this world-class athlete is not only chasing personal triumph but is dedicated to elevating the sport of pole vaulting in his home country.

For many athletes, competing at the Olympics is the pinnacle of their dreams, and Obiena is no exception. With a determined spirit, he envisions not only standing on the podium but also representing his nation with pride. “Winning isn’t just a dream; it’s my focus. Representing my country in Paris is my ultimate goal, and I’m relentlessly working towards it,” he declares.

Obiena’s journey, marked by adaptability and focus, is a testament to his unwavering commitment. In the face of setbacks and challenges, he relies on clear goals as his anchor. “In the unpredictable game of sports, adaptability and focus are paramount. Whether it’s a good day or a bad one, my performance is unwavering because of my laser focus on what I want to achieve in my career.”

Reflecting on his career, Obiena emphasizes that victories do not define him; it’s the challenges, losses, and obstacles that shape him into the athlete he is today. He draws inspiration from incredible individuals who fuel his determination and surround him, motivating him to strive for excellence.

Under the coaching of James Lafferty, Obiena undergoes a challenging yet immensely rewarding experience. Lafferty’s disciplined approach, coupled with a wealth of knowledge from diverse fields, has shaped Obiena into a better athlete. “Being mentored and coached under Mr. Lafferty is undoubtedly worthwhile, shaping me into a better athlete,” Obiena remarked.

Crucial to Obiena’s journey is his partnership with Fine Hygienic Holding’s Motiva supplements, particularly the immuno booster. These supplements play a vital role in his overall health and recovery, ensuring swift recuperation and optimal performance during competitions.

As the Olympic Games approach, Obiena reflects on the impactful interactions with fellow athletes. The universality of sports and the bonds it creates among athletes from diverse cultures have left a lasting impression. Engaging in conversations with world-class athletes has proven to be not only magnificent but also incredibly inspiring.

Obiena expresses deep gratitude for the overwhelming support from the Filipino community, both in the Philippines and abroad. The waving of the Philippine flag in stadiums across the globe serves as a constant motivation, reminding him of the collective strength propelling him forward.

Beyond the Olympic Games, Obiena envisions a legacy deeply rooted in inspiring the next generation of Filipino athletes, particularly in pole vaulting. His message to aspiring athletes is clear: “Embrace the journey, stay dedicated, and believe in yourselves. The future of Filipino athletics is bright, and I have no doubt that the next generation will achieve remarkable feats with their talent and determination.”

As EJ Obiena soars to new heights, his journey becomes more than a personal pursuit; it transforms into a source of inspiration for an entire nation, echoing the potential and dedication of Filipino athletes on the global stage.

Staff Report

The Filipino Times is the chronicler of stories for, of and by Filipinos all over the world, reaching more than 236 countries in readership. Any interesting story to share? Email us at [email protected]

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