Well as of April 2020 we were massively affected by certain rules and regulations that prevented us gathering in our usual venues but the early part of April had some type of normality to it. Unfortunately certain activities like Black Belt Gradings and the related sessions have been put on ice for the conceivable future. Competitions like the Welsh have also been ‘hit’.
We should be celebrating the dawning of new black belts within the fraternity but the journey has been put on a minor detour at present. It’s a time of uncertainty for many but there is always a chink of light that inspires us to carry on with whatever we do. Lots of you have found a way to carry on your personal quest to keep training. I have been introduced to things new. Virtual training in the virtual dojang via the platform Zoom started with trepidation by many including the Instructor. A guiding and schooling has made it more normal and those of you who have tried this new method of training have found it surprisingly beneficial.
The training hours as you can see have put some different names at the top of March attendance tables; hours are drastically lower than a normal time. This is no ‘normal time’ and to have lots of you embarking on the virtual dojang tour is quite inspiring for me. You beginners and lower belts are the driving force for the senior grades at present. A complete role reversal in circumstances, lots of you understandably have reservations about the computer lessons. I know that the dojang is a special place where you not only come along for Tae Kwon Do but the socialising and friendship of our wonderful club mates. Excluding the nagging Instructor you all tolerate you guys have a tremendous bond and support one another. I think some feel that bond has gone for the moment; well I must say it has not gone. The messages of support and proactivness of the students has been immense.
Lots of you have mitigating circumstances; extremely busy households with children home, even working from home. Room factors with families that train; having the space to fit you all in an area and do what we do is also a massive issue. Well done for whatever training you have managed to do during this period. If you have not made any I genuinely understand.
Some of my Instructor compatriots have been profits of doom but I can see many positives that have actually occurred. A caring nature that I knew was there has really come to the forefront with the group. Yes we have had a natural drop in attendance but we have also had several ‘New’ Students start during this period of no physical training hall. A special mention to Lisa Nethercott who has not only been our very first ‘digital beginner’ but has achieved a remarkable 16 hours of training in April 2020. I feel I know the front room very well, I think I would reposition that settee and change those awful curtains.
🙂 Lower belts have knocked attendance hours out of the park.
The Carver family; Jack 32 hours Craig 26 and another new beginner just before lock down Sharon has also completed 16 hours. Just phenominal efforts that are something to be admired. This is to name but a few of the top 10 in the lower belt section. Noura, Amar, Freya, Cerys, Veronica, Jack, Hector, Oliver, Sarah, Alfie, Morgan, Tara, Phoebe, Alexa and Darcy are just a few of the lower grades that really have stepped up and impressed. Thank you,
A funny thing from my perspective is meeting all your pets that seem to arrive next to your computers and phones when a different voice bellows out from the screen. I like to say ‘ walkies’ nice and loud and see the dogs reaction. Parents holding cushions, pads even cooking / washing up in the background. It has been a privilege too see your environments and what goes on. I am one fortunate Instructor. We have had visitors from Southampton, Tptton, Basingstoke and even Ireland come and join in; come and join us if you can. Would be great to see you.
I hope the situation improves in the near future and we are able to physically train together in the near future, I feel that social distancing may be the way to go for a while but at least it will be something with a social side to it. Please keep safe and do what we are advised to do as it genuinely must be the right thing to do at present. Missing you guys, just remember the comeback is going to be bigger than the setback.