Exercise Your Right To Go Digital
May, 15 2020
What have we learnt in the two months since lockdown began? Have we learnt that buying dozens of toilet rolls is a sheer act of selfishness and shows a lack of concern for others? Have we learnt that making a slight cough whilst being two metres away in a supermarket queue creates immense suspicion and anxiety? Have we learnt that wearing a mask whilst out and about indicates you’re taking it seriously but it also makes you look a complete dingbat?
Whilst all of the above are true there’s something else that we have learnt in the last couple of months. What would normally take several decades, a revolutionary format has helped us immensely, it is of course the digital platform.This exciting innovative channel has encouraged collaboration, community effort and immediate action.
In the context of sport, many people have discovered lessons and classes online for the younger generation and the more mature amongst us. This however, does cause some concern. If we eventually reach a level of normality what will be the outcome for traditional sports clubs, gyms and leisure centres? Coaches may become redundant for the foreseeable future unless they continue to find a space in the digital world.
We must not forget that around 1 in 6 of our population are not digitally enabled and not everyone is a digital native, so this does beg the question about populations of our communities being left behind; generally the most disadvantaged with the most to gain from being more active. This clearly is an aspect that if the benefits of being active are to be brought to our communities we need to get right; Government and charity investment needs to focus on digital inclusion if this benefit is to be universal and not to amplify inequalities.
Six months from now you will see a series of people rising from the ashes of this corona pandemic. They’ll be the survivors and pioneers of this crisis. They’ll be the ones who would have created an action plan to equip the country to continue to exercise away from the living room laptop. They’ll be called up amongst the innovators and leaders to design a new way forward and to prevent the UK from becoming couch potatoes.
This next year will show whether the digital innovations in our sector will stick, or whether clubs and providers will be more cautious and return to business as usual; will they be bold and take risks? I hope so, as opportunities for transformational change like this don’t come along too often (thankfully) and create such innovative benefits and learning; let’s not slip back to where we were before.
^Alex Ashworth CCG UK Blogger