balikbayan Pronunciation /ˌbälikˈbīən/ /ˌbɑlɪkˈbaɪən – a Filipino visiting or returning to the Philippines after a period of living in another country.
My name is Mike Calimbas. I was born in Davao City, Philippines. I moved to the United States at a young age but a huge part of me never left the islands. I’ve always been passionate about the Philippines and am similarly passionate about the Art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Now I’m seeking to combine the two and showcase the beauty of both.
This September 2020 I’ll be hosting by first Balikbayan BJJ Travel Camp experience in Bohol, Philippines.
My goal for this is two-fold:
- To travel with old BJJ friends and make new ones as part of the most amazing training vacation ever – As a former resident and multiple-time vacationer to the Philippines, I know first-hand how awesome it is. I’ve swam with whale sharks, snorkeled in the clearest of waters, ate the most delicious foods, and spent time with some of the most genuine, authentic people in the world during my time in the Philippines. Now I want to share the same experience with others in the BJJ community, especially my friends who otherwise would never make it to this side of the world. It truly is a life-changing experience and is guaranteed to broaden your perspective and appreciation of your own life so I want everyone I care about to experience this, as I have!
- To give back to the Filipino BJJ Community – As a fairly-new BJJ Black Belt but longtime supporter of the global fight community (since early 2000’s as a contributor and even earlier as a fan), I’ve seen first-hand how BJJ has grown and expanded around the world. I’ve photographed major events around the world and traveled to even more cities as a photographer for Fight 2 Win. Everywhere I see Filipinos passionate for this sport. We’re everywhere! So now as a BJJ balikbayan, I want to come home and spread whatever BJJ knowledge I have with the local Filipino BJJ community, and encourage other Filipinos abroad to come with me and do the same! Why? Because I truly believe our countrymen can be one of the best in the world with BJJ and i want to help drive that growth. No politics, no team flags, just Filipinos helping other Filipinos grow.
Who Can Attend?
Anyone! This camp is structured for participants of 18+ participants at experience levels from white to black belt. Note: Families are welcome also, but let’s discuss on a case-by-case basis just to make sure your needs as a family are being met. This goes for everyone whether you have small kids, dietary restrictions or anything else that we should pay special attention to.
Accommodation options will be structured so there will be options for everyone whether traveling alone, as a couple or with a group!
Also important to note is that our camp will be open to students from all affiliations. We want everyone to feel welcome to train and enjoy their time at camp.