Commissioner Bruce Adamson isn’t one for throwing his weight about – but that all changed on a visit to Edinburgh Judo!
Bruce and team member Nicola Harris took part in a judo session with children and young people and their instructors as part of our participation roadshow. It’s the first sports group we have visited during our programme to find out what issues matter to children across Scotland as we emerge from the pandemic.
The children at Edinburgh Judo told us how the sport has helped their confidence, respect for others, and sense of fair play. They talked about disruption to judo during lockdown, with one saying: “I missed the classes and seeing my friends.” And another talked about the impact that missing sport had on their physical health: “It was kind of weird because you got used to not having it and our bodies were really stiff because we couldn’t exercise.”
All the children at the club are delighted to be back practising in person, saying: “It makes me tired so I enjoy my dinner more. It’s good for our brains and body.”
Commissioner Bruce, coached at the session by Paralympic athlete and JudoScotland Regional Development Officer Samuel Ingram, said: “It was great to join Edinburgh Judo to see the incredible work they are doing. Sport, artistic, and cultural activities are important for children’s education, development, socialisation, mental and physical health. The clubs and communities in these sectors play a vital role as we try to understand and address the impact of the pandemic on children. They can provide safe and supportive spaces to learn, play, and socialise. It’s essential they are properly valued and supported.
“This was my first time trying judo, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. The children were brilliant at giving me tips and I gave it my best shot. But there’s no doubt that my skills need a wee bit more work!”