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NAS: Four years of celebrating triumphs and making Filipino sporting dreams come true


Marking its fourth anniversary today (June 9), the National Academy of Sports (NAS) situated in Clark City, Pampanga continues to provide a nurturing environment where aspiring Filipino athletes can pursue their sporting dreams while receiving quality education.

Republic Act No.11470, which established NAS in 2020, was made possible through the tireless sports advocacy and efforts of Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, who was then Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Recognizing the need for a specialized institution dedicated to sports education and athlete development, Cayetano principally sponsored the measure and rallied support among stakeholders to turn this vision into reality.

“Ang sports po ay nakatahi sa ating pang-araw-araw na buhay. Whether you talk about anti-drugs, you talk about teamwork, you talk about discipline, you talk about passion, you talk about nutrition, isama-sama niyo po lahat yan, makikita ninyo sa sports,” Cayetano, a long-time sports enthusiast, said.

Four years on, the academy continues to thrive in nurturing athletic talent and fostering a culture of sports excellence.

In its 2023 figures, NAS boasts a total of 160 students, among them 63 student-athletes being trained across various disciplines.

These student-athletes come from all over the country – 26 from North Luzon, 13 from Mindanao, 9 from Visayas, and 8 each from South Luzon and National Capital Region.

The sports programs offered by NAS also encompass a wide range of disciplines, including aquatics, athletics, badminton, gymnastics, judo, table tennis, taekwondo, and weightlifting.

The academy currently trains Grade 7 to 9 students, and will have the first Grade 10 batch this coming school year.

Through state-of-the-art facilities and expert coaching, NAS provides student-athletes with the resources and support they need to excel in their chosen sport while fostering values of discipline, teamwork, and sportsmanship.

PH’s growing prowess in sports

In the backdrop of NAS’ training is the series of sports hosting opportunities for the Philippines in major international events.

This year alone, the country is hosting a number of tournaments, including the 2024 Asian Volleyball Confederation (AVC) Challenger Cup, the Volleyball Nations League (VNL), and the Volleyball Challenger Cup (VCC).

The country will also be single-hosting the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship in 2025.

Recent sporting triumphs such as the bronze win of Alas Pilipinas in the 2024 AVC Challenger Cup – a first in 63 years – also serve as a shining example of the Philippines’ growing prowess in sports.

Cayetano, who is former chair of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC), lauded this victory in a Facebook post.

“Asian Volleyball Bronze Medalist! Medal after 63 years! What a great achievement! Thank YOU LORD GOD for this sweet victory! For the whole team and everyone who supported them! My salute to Alas Pilipinas for bringing honor to the country, happiness to the volleyball community, and unity among Filipinos.We are very proud of you!” the senator wrote.

He said such victories underscore the importance of institutions like NAS in providing necessary support and infrastructure for athletes to thrive, and also in nurturing and developing the next generation of Filipino athletes, who are poised to make their mark on the world stage.

“NAS is here so that we have a high school that will focus on sports, find new talents, and provide scholarships to deserving student-athletes,” he said.

To further complement NAS’ training of student-athletes, Cayetano is pushing for the establishment of a nationwide grassroots sports program.

“I really believe na dapat ibalik ‘to, y’ung grassroots sports program. Kailangan naka-integrate sa DepEd, from kindergarten all the way to college, dahil napaka-importante ng sports,” he said.


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