Leeds Karate club goes online amid Covid-19 pandemic

Face to face Karate classes will now be forced to close under restrictions placed by the UK government

Leeds Shotokan Karate Club has made the leap to virtual group lessons in light of new social distancing rules in place across the UK.

Covid-19 has stopped the country in its tracks, cancelling all major events and forcing people into their homes following government advice.

Sensei Ryan Tucker helps to run the club and began the first of his online sessions yesterday, after agreeing earlier in the week that lessons would be postponed due to the Coronavirus. “We took the decision pretty early to close because people weren’t really coming anyway.

Within about a week of us doing that the halls that we hire had all closed anyway so it was the right decision to do.”

It is very important to keep the students engaged during the time that the club is under closure, ensuring that each person has something to do while in isolation. Tucker continued

“Everybody’s very very bored at the minute, you could just sit and watch the telly all the time so it’s important for people to do as much as they can.

Any sort of activity can really build people’s confidence and just generally improves people’s mental health by being active and just putting some sort of routine into people’s day.”

The first of the club’s virtual lessons took place on an online video calling platform named Zoom. Zoom has become increasingly popular in the UK and around the world as more and more people begin to self -isolate and seek to find new ways of communication.

Although Tucker agrees that you cannot replace face to face martial arts training with a virtual alternative, he does agree that when someone reaches out for a 1 to 1 training session he will consider using video calling again.

Leeds Shotokan Karate Club aims to provide it’s students with many more virtual lessons in the meantime while the country stays indoors. However they remain hopeful that Coronavirus will soon be a thing of the past and they can continue as normal.

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