Tuesday 12th January 2021
The pandemic has been pretty devastating to HEMA. Obviously whilst there is some element of social distancing when you are trying to stay out of the range of someone’s blade, it’s just not practical to risk it with a big group of people together, and it provides a burden to clubs that are little more than solo ventures in most parts.
With sports centres closing, venues have been closed as well and whilst I know some – even in my own school – who have found spaces outside and taken all required safety measures, it’s been at the mercy of ever changing guidelines, infection waves, and of course, weather.
A lot of people are, not so much using the pandemic to make, but naturally making huge changes in their lives. New hobbies have been taken on, and with it, old ones left behind as people start new chapters in their lives. It used to be those life events were confined to going to university, getting married, etc. But for all of us, the pandemic has been added to the list.
In my own life, online raiding has replaced tournaments for me. I fully expect to go back to HEMA once it reopens, but for others, the past is the past.
I have friends who were very active in the HEMA scene, decide to move on. Maybe they will come back eventually years down the line, maybe they won’t.
Many expect that even when we can return, students will have dropped off a cliff. We’ll rebuild but it’ll take time.
I’d been planning to start my own school just before lockdown. We would have started last year and I had everything in place. I still plan to do it, but not until we’re back to some sort of normality. That might be September but with the chance of a smaller third wave late 2021, maybe it won’t be to 2022.
Weirdly, the break has done me some good. I’ve had some health challenges over the last couple of years that really blew up end of last year and into 2020. Just keeping my head above water at times felt difficult and not being in peak condition made me very frustrated with HEMA. It’s frustrating enough when you are competing but with my health as well to fight, at times it just got all too much. I both loved it, and I didn’t.
The pandemic has given me a bit of time to ride out the worst of my health issues and get things to something relatively stable. But I’m overweight and unfit as a result. I have a mountain to climb to get back to where I was, and that’s not something I’m looking forward to. At least by not having HEMA presently gives me a bit of space to start to deal with that.
I suspect it’s going to take me until February and the approach of warmer weather to start making progress… and then progress will be slow. But everyone’s on hold at the moment. Whilst they give up and move onto other things, I can move forwards and start clawing back.
I’m very much trying to get myself into the mindset of doing little things daily and ignoring the goal. Whether that be writing, or grinding things in Warcraft, or health, it’s about putting that one step in front of the other and trying not to get frustrated by slow progress.
HEMA will come back and with it, so will my health, It’ll be slow and have many setbacks, but honestly… now’s the best time to do it.
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Past Years: 2020 – The Year of Being Fearsome | 2019 – The Year of Soldiering Through | 2018 – The Year of Priorities | 2017 – The Year Of The Offensive
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