Joseph Oreste (Graduate 2018)

I’m Joseph Oreste, I was born and raised in Ridgecrest CA and now live in Los Angeles where I am currently pursuing a career as a Stuntman.

From the first moment I witnessed Balintawak being practiced, I was blown away. It was fast, powerful, and the movement itself had flair. I absolutely had to try it; I desperately wanted to learn this amazing style. Though initially I was attracted to it’s shiny surface, Balintawak proved to be a proficient art that changed my outlook for the better. In ways I could have never imagined, it has changed my life.

In Spring of 2017, Armand Rabanal was gracious enough to show me a little bit of the art. He then brought me to his teacher, Bryan Sloyer. A few training sessions in and I was hooked! I would practice my forms at home every single day, waiting in earnest until the next training session. Just after a few months of training balintawak, not only was I learning how to control my body more in depth, but it was also teaching me so much about life. Courage, patience, perseverance, how to remain present while facing adversity; it brought me a peace I hadn’t felt before. I was able to take the things I learned from my training and apply them to my daily life. It allowed me to have more patience with the people around me. It gave me the courage to take on challenges I normally wouldn’t and I felt a deeper sense of peace in uneasy situations.

Most of these transformations have been largely due to my teacher, Bryan Sloyer. He’s been such a huge influence on my life. As a teacher, a friend, and a role model. He constantly encourages me and pushes me to strive for my highest potential every single training session. Bryan not only keeps me motivated during training, but also in the off-time as well. He is always training himself. I feel blessed to be able to call him my Guro. I also have to thank all of my fellow brothers and sisters that have trained beside me during my journey.

My experience training and testing at the 2018 World Camp in Charlotte, NC was incredible. To be able to meet and learn from practitioners of the art from all over the world was a beautiful opportunity. Nearing the end of my test, I crossed sticks with each of the masters that would decide if I passed or failed, including the Grand Master of the art Bobby Taboada. It was a privilege and an honor for me to test in his presence and be granted graduation of my Level 6. I hope to continue showing him my progress. I’d say, my current goal is to continue training and hopefully impart the knowledge and wisdom I’ve learned to students of my own one day.

From my heart, we welcome you, and with respect,
Joseph V. Oreste