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Martial arts day sets record

Bregenz / Austria, May 04, 2020

It was May 1st, Labor Day, but for Eva Kathrein and Stefan Mayr from the Karate Bregenz club it was not a day off as for many Austrians, because on this special day they carried out the 1st World Budo-Day, a top-class sporting event. 18 top-class martial arts masters from all over the world taught live and online for a whole day until late in the evening.

1870 participants from around the world
Mayr, president of Budo Austria and chairman of Karate Bregenz, was overwhelmed: “We didn’t expect that. When we made the decision to organize the World Budo-Day just three weeks ago together with Uwe Schwehm from the German club „Teikyo Karate Team Kaiserslautern“, we had no idea if other coaches would support us and how many participants we could reach. ”The commitment from the coaches, including many world champions and active top athletes as well as national team members, the Bregenz and Keiserslautern sports clubs organized within a week. „Everyone was enthusiastic about the idea – martial arts know no boundaries,“ says Mayr. “When I looked at the statistical analysis of our event on Monday, I didn’t want to believe it at first. 1870 participants were active at the 1st World Martial Arts Day and were inspired by the martial arts professionals!“

Inclusion knows no limits
„The World Budo-Day also sends a strong signal for the inclusion of people with disabilities in sports,“ said the president of the Vorarlberg Disabled Sports Association „Vorarlberger Behindertensportverband“ Edgar Mayer. That it is possible for everybody to practice martial arts, Vorarlberg karate trainer Eva Kathrein impressively demonstrated with her lesson for people with mental impairments. Many participants in the Erasmus+ project IKONS (Short: Karate for individuals with Down Syndrome) from Austria, Italy, Belgium, Hungary and Romania and also many people in wheelchairs were enthusiastic about the various units of the day.

Cross-border partnership
The good cooperation between Austria and Germany in terms of inclusion is also very gratifying. With Karl Grandt and Lothar Kniebel, both from the Health-Media g.e.V. association, the organizer was able to win very experienced and competent partners for the World Budo-Day. Karl Grandt, project coordinator of “Inclusion needs action” – Tours, has gained a lot of experience in the field of inclusion through this committed project since 2011 and is now sharing this with other organizations.

Training started in Australia
Sensei Stephen Kelly, coach of the Australian Karate National Team, had the honor to open the World Budo-Day and hold the first practice session with a gap of 9 hours time difference.

Sport Austria President excited
Just in time for the unit from Austrian karate world champion Alisa Buchinger, Sport Austria President Hans Niessl, one of the most important advocates for sports in Austria, sent personal greetings. He was enthusiastic about the idea of ​​an online martial arts day all over the world, especially in this difficult time for sports, too.

Participation record went to Italy
Silvio Campari is not a stranger in the karate scene. The internationally highly regarded coach, a multiple world champion himself and supervisor of the Italian national team, ultimately set the meeting record. 185 participants from various nations such as Chile, Paraguay, Australia, Canada, USA and of course from many European countries closely followed the lesson of the top coach. „In the short term, our internet connection broke down“, co-organizer Eva Kathrein describes the exciting minutes. „But we were back online very quickly and the training with Silvio was able to continue.“

A total of 45,984 meeting minutes were held on that day. A real record and reason for the team of organizers to plan the World Budo-Day again next year.

Charity for people with Down Syndrome
The organizers also want to support people with their campaign who have a somewhat harder life. All trainers and the team of organizers therefore provided their services free of charge. „That’s why we decided to donate the net proceeds of our event to the Vorarlberg group Karate for people with Down Syndrome (and other mental peculiarities),“ Mayr said.

Donation account Down Syndrome
Raiffeisenbank im Rheintal
AT43 3742 0000 0015 6315


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