An update from British Taekwondo – what are we doing and where are we heading:
Our British Taekwondo Membership System, Dan Gradings and Education Courses
We want to be able to help our instructors and club administrators to run their clubs and membership without the amount of time consuming administrative paperwork that has been required – less tedious paperwork and more taekwondo was the message. We are therefore building an online membership system that will enable this and the first part of the system will be tested in October and coming on line at the beginning of November. It will allow you to administer and pay for your memberships on line and in time will also be used for booking onto coach and referee education courses, setting up Dan Grading and entering competitions.
We had a lot of feedback about Dan Grading and the desire for our higher, 6th Dan Members to be able to run their own Dan gradings with more flexibility and ownership. We have introduced this across the membership and it seems to be working well. We recognise the importance of Dan Grading to our whole membership and will continue to review our Dan Grading structure from the feedback we get.
Mike McKenzie added that ‘we recognise that Dan grading is an important part of the Taekwondo experience for all our members and an important link to their instructor. We wanted to empower our senior instructors to take more control of their own grading and it seems to be working well from the positive feedback we have had’
We recognised that for many of our membership, Poomsae is what they practice most. We wanted to invest and develop this area or our organisation and have done so – building new structures and opportunities for development and squad days, investing in our National Teams and initiating a summer camp and training experience for our younger members. We have the exciting opportunity to take a Para Poomsae Team to a home World Championships in October and plan to continue this Poomsae investment and development programme into 2018 and beyond
Said Khelwatty, GB Board member and an active Poomsae competitor reflected on the progress ‘we had a very positive trip to the Europeans at the beginning of the summer and wanted to make progress from there with further investment into Poomsae. It has been exciting for me, as a new Board member, to be able to help, advise and bring a Poomsae players perspective to these discussions and decisions I look forward to keeping the progress going with further input from all our Poomsae players, coaches, officials and clubs’
British Taekwondo Cadets and Talent Investment
With changes in funding profile at GB Taekwondo the Cadet Performance programme came under threat. We have been able to invest directly in this – taking ownership for our British Taekwondo Cadet Selection Championships and funding our Cadet team to the European Championships. We will look to further this development into supporting the talent pathway where we can and continue the development of our Cadet Development programme
We have been fortunate to have Sarah Jennings, as an ex Olympian and medal winner, to give an athletes perspective into discussions about our competitive teams and the competition format. Sarah added that ‘I wanted to be able to make sure that we focus on our young athletes and competitors when we are making decisions. The cadet project has been an exciting opportunity for me to reconnect to Taekwondo and to give something back to the young athletes of the future. I also want to see how we can develop all our competitions and make sure we can give the best opportunity and event experience to our athletes across the whole country’
Our location, our structure and supporting our members
We want to be able to support and engage with our instructors and membership more than we do. To deliver this we are moving locations to Manchester and restructuring the organisation – developing departments that will be able to deliver directly to the membership and moving into Manchester. We have secured an office within the Manchester City Emirates Campus at the Manchester Regional Arena and will be opening this in October. From here we will build a base to support our members to deliver more taekwondo to more people and help us support the demand that many clubs seem to be have for their classes.
There will be more updates to come in the next few weeks.