An Update from Ian Leafe

Hi Everyone,

Now that I’ve been in post for a month, I’m starting to get a real sense of the challenges that British Taekwondo has faced recently and for me, more importantly, the opportunities there are ahead.

We have a lot of great things going on to shout about, to name a few:

  • An Under 21’s team in Sweden this week
  • 3 of our finest international referees going to Japan for the Olympic & Paralympic Games 2020 test events
  • Senior members out in Thailand to be inducted into a Taekwondo Hall of Fame
  • A full Cadet team going to the European Championships in October
  • Recent appointments onto World Taekwondo committees for Sarah Stevenson Jennings and Master Tong Wan Shin

Well done / Good luck to all concerned – and do us proud if competing!

Plus, we have lots to look forward to, such as:

  • Our National Kyorugi Championships at the beginning of November
  • Our National Poomsae Championships at the end of that month
  • Our British international Poomsae event in January
  • Multiple Kup and Dan gradings, training programs, and seminars going on across all disciplines

And lots of local competitions up and down the country!

We’ve also had 4 new clubs join up in the last few weeks so that’s a great trend I hope will continue.

I’ve already touched base with some of our program leaders, referees, staff and event organisers – to try and get things moving on a number of issues that need attention.

I have also met and spoken to a few groups and club leads, and want to continue getting around as many as I can, and will do this over the coming year – so if you want to discuss something specific or pressing, please drop me a line and we will set something up.

One thing is for certain, there are a lot of passionate Taekwondo people out there!

Behind the scenes, we’ve been reviewing a lot of the processes and structures, in readiness for our next board meeting in mid-September, where we want to look at getting our member committees back up and running properly and empowering the large number of very dedicated Taekwondo people who give up their time week in and week out to organise things for others, promote our sport and advance our knowledge.

We are also looking at coach education opportunities to help everyone with a club operate safely and effectively and how we, as a National governing body, can get you access to the best examples of training plans, latest trends and welfare practices.

We also want to encourage hosts to organise great local events up and down the country and are reviewing the events sanctioning policy as we speak, with proposals coming out in the next few weeks (once I get them approved by the Board!).

We all want the same thing – well run and very safe events that are well supported – so that’s our starting point.

Watch this space.

In the medium to longer term, we want to start getting people collaborating again and are looking at National level training seminars, promotion opportunities and events – more on those in future messages.

We will be setting out some of these strategies and plans in the coming months, and at the AGM on the 7th December in Manchester.

One of the first and most common comments I’m hearing is that we don’t communicate enough – hopefully we can change that too!

I look forward to seeing you all at upcoming events and gatherings in the coming weeks.

Ian