By Michael Angelo S. Murillo
Senior Reporter

BARELY half a decade formed, the Jiu-Jitsu Federation of the Philippines (JJFP) has been steadily building its legs, creating and facilitating activities that bring together all jiu-jitsu clubs in the country to elevate the level of the sport in the country.
Formed in 2015, the JJFP is the National Sports Association (NSA) for jiu-jitsu in the Philippines, duly accredited by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC), the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC), the Ju-Jitsu Asian Union (JJAU) and Ju-Jitsu International Federation (JJIF), and led by set of officers representing a mix of experienced sports management professionals, successful businessmen, and highly accomplished and respected leaders in the jiu-jitsu community.
It is currently headed by Ramon “Choy” Cojuangco as president and Jason Lim and Ferdinand Agustin serving as vice-president and secretary-general, respectively.
Since banding together, the JJFP has chalked up several feathers under its cap, winning titles in various international tournaments, including the Asian Beach Games and Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games.
It now counts member athletes of over 2,000 spread all over the archipelago, a testament, JJFP said, to the steadily growing pickup of the sport by the Filipinos.
And with jiu-jitsu currently making its way to the mainstream consciousness like other combats sports karate and taekwondo, JJFP underscored it commitment to further enhancing the growth of the sport in the country while encouraging more people to consider it as something worth doing.
“The federation is open to all jiu-jitsu teams in the Philippines to join us as members. They just have to fulfill the requirements as mandated by the POC,” said TJ Sulit, JJFP assistant secretary-general, during the press conference hosted by the federation on March 28, where it got to detail how far it has come since being formed and its plans moving forward.
“Our goal has always been to form a strong team composed of the best athletes available who we hope to continue to get from our selections,” he added.
The JJFP has 25 national team members right now, which include Margarita Ochoa, Annie Ramirez, Kaila Napolis, Gian Dee, Marc Lim, and Apryl Eppinger.
For 2018, JJFP said it is going to be a busy year for the federation as it sets its sights on, among other things, the Asian Games in August in Indonesia, where jiu-jitsu will be played for the first time.
In the lead-up to it, our national team is set to compete in the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championships, April 16-29; Los Angeles, Jiu-Jitsu World League, May 19; and JJIF 2018 European Championships, June 8-10.
Also in the sight of the federation is the Manila Southeast Asian Games next year.