How Danny Kingad balances competing with learning
MANILA, Philippines – With all plans either delayed or put on hold because of the coronavirus, Danny "The King" Kingad is looking for something positive to hatch out of the pandemic.
The goal has always been to win the ONE Championship flyweight world title, but with the way things are going, it is going to take a little while for that to happen, as he still has to wait for the match between reigning world champion Adriano "Mikinho" Moraes and Demetrious "Mighty Mouse" Johnson to play out.
His other goal is within his reach though.
Kingad, who is earning his bachelor of secondary education at the University of the Cordilleras, is set to graduate this August as schools have been transitioning to online learning during this crisis.
"Now I have all the time to focus on my studies as we're in quarantine the past few months. I still work out at home, though, because I want to finish my studies and continue to improve as an athlete," Kingad said.
"I am happy because I'm going to finish it in less than 3 months' time. It's no joke, but with discipline and sacrifice, I was able to pull off being an athlete and a student."
The degree was a long time coming for the pride of Baguio City.
For years, Kingad had to go in and out of university as he juggled time between being a student and one of the best mixed martial artists to come out of the country.
He has made sacrifices as well.
When he joined the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix, he had to take a leave of absence in school to focus on the tournament that involved some of the best athletes in the division. (READ: Young stars Pacio, Kingad leading Team Lakay new generation)
"It's tough to balance my time between studies and competing in ONE because both of them need your attention. It's not a joke to study and memorize your lessons while also training and sparring in the gym," Kingad said.
"But I took it as a challenge. I dedicated myself to succeeding. That's why even though it is tough, I give my 100% as much as I can."
At the end of the day, "The King" wants to use his platform not just to inspire future athletes to excel in the sport, but to also put gain something that will last forever – education.
"It's all about the eagerness to get what you truly want," Kingad said.
"That’s what I think about every day, every time I go to school, every time I train. Like my journey in ONE, there are obstacles and failures, but I know that it will only make me better in the future." – Rappler.com