Core Judo Coaching UAE is rapidly approaching 12 months of having its doors open in the nation. That’s figuratively speaking of course given the well known struggles faced by sporting academies – and every business and individual – throughout the pandemic.
Headed by Aaron Turner, the academy is bolting towards its first birthday at speed, constantly building momentum.
We caught up with Turner to find out about how the first 12 months have been, and what’s in store for the next trip around the sun.
You’re nearly up to a full year operating in Dubai-how has the academy grown in that time?
We are coming up to our one year birthday in January, it’s been a strange and challenging year due to the situation, but we have still managed to continue growing despite the currant climate. We started with only one student in January within the club and now we are up to 60-70 kids and we also have our school program which we have a lot of schools interested in when we are eventually able to go back to coaching after school clubs.
We have had great support from our close friends at Champions Karate who have helped us and supported us with getting into the school programmes and great support from Heroes Academy in Motor City where we run our club based program. I used to do all the coaching myself, and although I am still am at every session, I am also thankful to have four other brilliant coaches now involved.
What have been some of the highlights from the past few months?
The main highlights of the past few months have been seeing how many children have come back to judo and how much they are eager to learn. It’s been great to finally be back doing judo again which the kids have loved and I think seeing them progress and improve has been the best thing for us as we have finally had a solid block of training.
What are you most looking forward to across the winter months?
Over the winter months we are looking forward to hopefully (depending on the DSC) run our first judo tournament which will be great for the kids as for almost all of them it will be their first experience of a tournament. We are hoping to run a big camp at Easter where we are planning to bring over some current international athletes to help us out.
How supportive have parents been of the return to practice?
Our parents have been great and I couldn’t be more thankful, they have supported us so much and are so understanding with the guidelines we have to use. We actually have a few parents who are Judo black belts who help us with coaching which is a massive help us as it gives the kids different types of coaching styles.
The parents are all so passionate about the sport and support by travelling and taking their children to the coaching sessions which is very important as if you do not have a good support unit in sport it’s very hard to achieve. The parents have supported us by recommending us to other parents which has helped us to grow, they have also recommended us to their schools for when we are eventually allowed back in schools.