Driven by the desire to improve his overall skill set, hard-hitting strawweight Rene “The Challenger” Catalan
is traveling thousands of kilometers away from home to focus on his training.
The multiple-time Wushu World Champion will be spending a month in Indonesia to train with the Surabaya Jawal Time Wushu Team, a gym that is made up of the nation’s top wushu artists.
Under the tutelage of head coach Agus Suprayitno, Catalan will look to sharpen his tools in preparation for his next match-up, which could potentially be for the World Title.
“This is a part of my preparation for my next fight. We went to Indonesia to improve on my wushu sanda skills, and other little things that I need to develop, like the ground game,” the 40-year-old said.
“I would also like to work on my conditioning to maximize my stamina and endurance.”
Always wanting to be two steps ahead of the game, Catalan is fully aware of how mixed martial arts is rapidly evolving.
In fact, that is what prompted him to leave the Philippines and devote all of his attention to sharpening his skills elsewhere.
“I’ve been training everywhere, left and right. I know that I still have a lot to work and to improve on if I truly want to stay ahead of the game,” he explained.
“I admit that there are still a lot of things that I need to work on — that’s why I went here to Indonesia to truly focus on it.”
Last month, Catalan scored the biggest win of his career when he registered an impressive first-round TKO victory over former ONE Strawweight World Champion Yoshitaka “Nobita” Naito at ONE: REIGN OF VALOR
in Yangon, Myanmar.
By doing so, he became the first person to defeat the Japanese athlete via stoppage.
Also, that win was his sixth consecutive victory, and it put him in good position to potentially challenge for the ONE Strawweight World Championship.
On Friday, 12 April, the belt will be disputed by reigning titleholder Yosuke “The Ninja” Saruta and challenger Joshua “The Passion” Pacio at ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR
, live from the Mall Of Asia Arena in Manila.
Whether his next bout is for the World Title or not, it is important for the Filipino veteran to be prepared.
“I am happy that there are people who aren’t hesitating to help out and share their knowledge in the sport. For me, they’re a blessing,” said Catalan of his Indonesian partners.
“I have always dreamt of being a World Champion and for me to get there, I have to always be ready.”