Kaizen Dela Serna is the Obstacle Course’s Jill of All Trades
Sports

Kaizen Dela Serna is the Obstacle Course’s Jill of All Trades

Kaizen wears an ALEXANDER WANG top and trousers from UNIVERS GREENBELT 3, GUCCI necklace. Photographed by Mark Nicdao for the July 2024 Issue of Vogue Philippines.

“Being feminine doesn’t necessarily mean you’re weak or fragile. A woman can be both feminine and strong.”

Kaizen Dela Serna’s sporting talents aren’t confined to a single skill. To excel in obstacle course racing, one needs upper body strength, coordination, flexibility, balance, and most of all, the mental fortitude to go beyond your body’s limits.

These skills have helped her nab medals at the 2019 and 2023 SEA Games and break records along the way. In 2022, she achieved the Guinness World Record for the 100-meter obstacle course race. All this, while balancing her life as a student and career as a model on the side.

Parallel to how she has trained for different categories in obstacle course racing, what has driven her to excel in different areas of her life is an unbridled passion for sports. “I think women in sport… It really makes you confident. It makes you resilient, it makes you fearless. And for me, sports really changed my life,” she says. 

Now, she hopes that her journey as an athlete will inspire other women to dream big, too. Her sporting career sets an example of how Filipinas can defy what is expected of them. “Being feminine doesn’t necessarily mean you’re weak or fragile. A woman can be both feminine and strong,” she affirms.

Obstacle course racer Kaizen Dela Serna wears a VANIA ROMOFF dress. Photographed by Mark Nicdao for the July 2024 Issue of Vogue Philippines.

Through sports, she hopes to inspire others to stand up for themselves and dream big. In her obstacle course club called the Ninja Monkeys, she hopes to develop women and the youth at the grassroots level to reach for their goals.

Kaizen knows how difficult it is to be an athlete in a relatively new sport. Winning medals is one aspect that she continues to train for, but learning how to get financial support and sponsorships is another aspect that is crucial for the community to grow. Her teammates are world record holders and world champions too, and she sees so much potential for Filipinos to continue excelling. “With the right support, we can build more opportunities for young athletes in these types of sports and showcase our Filipino talent on the world stage,” she says.

In the obstacle course where she thrives, she likes how strong she is because of the weights she carries and the hurdles she overcomes. At the same time, she also enjoys being feminine by her makeup or the ways she can dress up during competitions. As a Filipina athlete, she loves that she is able to do both. “Playing sports is so powerful and beautiful, it is something that will always be close to my heart,” she beams.

This month, Vogue Philippines pays tribute to stories of grit, determination, and the pursuit of excellence. Below, meet more of the athletes who continue to shatter the glass ceiling of sports.

CHAMPIONS: OLYMPIANS, SPORTSMEN, AND WOMEN

Vogue Philippines: July 2024 Issue

₱595.00
By BIANCA CUSTODIO, NANA CARAGAY, PATRICIA VILLORIA Photographs by MARK NICDAO Beauty Editor JOYCE OREÑA Fashion Director PAM QUIÑONES. Stylists: David Milan, Steven Coralde of Qurator Studio. Makeup: Angeline dela Cruz, Bea Mocorro, Janica Cleto, and Japeth Purog of Estée Lauder Philippines, Nadynne Esguerra. Hair: JA Feliciano and Kyle Velasco, Jessica Riva and Noel Muncada of Toni&Guy Philippines, Mong Amado. Art Director: Jann Pascua. Producer: Anz Hizon. Bookings Associate: Bianca Zaragoza. Beauty Writer: Bianca Custodio. Nails: Extraordinail. Photographer’s Assistants: Arsan Sulser Hofileña, Crisaldo Soco, John Phillip Nicdao, Villie James Bautista. Stylist’s Assistants: Geno Karlo, Kyla Uy, Ticia Almazan. Shot on location at Balay Kobo and Vogue Studios. Special thanks to VMG Asia
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