We Are Warriors Harlow
At Harlow College, as part of their Enrichment programme, providers are invited to offer activities and education to the students, after finding a need for students to engage in a non-traditional activity. Martial arts was the activity of choice.
We are Warriors were invited to the college and delivered sessions on the ancient martial art of Muay Thai. Muay Thai originates from Thailand and uses all body parts. It is a very physical form of activity, but has the ability to support participants' personal development and this is incorporated within the style of teaching.
During the sessions, participants would partake in dynamic stretches, a high intensity warm up and then basic technique development. Instructors included partner drills where students could include pad work, but every session would end with a discussion depending on the weekly topic, which could range from respect to diet.
The course structure enabled students to work towards a recognised qualification within the martial art which was a beneficial element of the project, allowing the young people to focus on a goal and work towards something they were passionate about.
The success of the project has meant the college will continue to offer it to their students who are in the next academic year. A learning from this year’s course, was the importance of needing female role models in martial arts as well as the need for female only courses. After identifying this need, the deliverer is now exploring opportunities to deliver a female only self defence class for local residents.
This project was funded through the London Marathon Foundation, as a result of RideLondon-Essex 2022. The Find Your Active small grants programme was powered by the Foundation, and Active Essex worked in partnership with the college to support with their enrichment activities. The nature of the creation of this project with the students assessing what they wanted, follows the Find Your Active philosophy in terms of finding what works best for residents.