Twenty minutes off math and Co., even from the same environment. A little variety and workload for the children. That should bring the small sports lesson of handball players from SC DHfK Leipzig into the living room. They are small stories in video form: a visit to the zoo, to school or to a child’s birthday – everything that is actually not possible, because everyday life comes to a standstill because of Corona, and with it school and sports games.
The Leipziger therefore started the videos for primary school children. One episode runs on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. “The children get homework from their teachers, but nothing for physical education,” says Lucas Krzikalla. The handball player is the main character in the video. “Now in the apartment the movement is neglected anyway. If the children cannot get out, we still try to take them out of the situation a bit with the videos.” And to do justice to social responsibility as an association, says the 26-year-old.
Leipzig’s handball players are not the only ones. Basketball premier league team Alba Berlin also started a regular video sports lesson, the Baskets Bonn followed suit. Other clubs and athletes put small programs online.
#Together as a motto
“There are also workout videos for adults. We also wanted to offer children something that is fun and good for them,” says Krzikalla. “We have adapted the series so that you can easily do it in the living room. We work with what is there. With socks as balls and towels as a throw circle, for example.” Or a round in a circle around the coffee table, together with the plush club mascot.
It shouldn’t really be about handball, says managing director Karsten Günther. “We sports clubs have a great responsibility in the current situation. A lot of people are interested in us and we have a role model function.” That also means that you should now abide by the rules of the game. “So we stay at home for everyone’s health – and find ways to do sports here.”
The school sports videos have labeled the people of Leipzig with the hashtag #GemeinsamVorbildSein. The Robert Koch Institute’s information on protection can be found on the association’s website. Also a help exchange for searching and bidding. Two of the club’s internationals were in quarantine in mid-March. Her teammate had tested positive for the corona virus.
Successful youth work for years
At the moment everyone in the team is on their own. The players can only communicate via Whatsapp. You have to keep yourself fit. Lucas Krzikalla mainly runs. At home, he does his own weight exercises and spring cleaning. For him too, the videos mean variety for the children. It is not the first time that the sports student has worked with the young target group. “Otherwise we go to schools every week, play handball with the children and also offer teachers further training.”
He teaches a good 200 children between the ages of seven and eleven every week in several elementary schools in Leipzig. It is great fun, he says. And it also helps the club. While most complain about a shortage of young people, the number of young handball talents in clubs in the Leipzig area has increased from 1400 to 1800 since 2016, according to the DHfK. “As in most clubs, the number of young players in handball has declined for years. But we managed to take advantage of the momentum of the European Championship 2016. Since then, our numbers have been increasing again,” says Krzikalla.
With its involvement in the crisis, the club could get even more children excited about sport. Managing Director Günther also sees the opportunity. It would be something positive these days – if some rediscovered the joy of movement and followed it when everyday life was back. Maybe in the sports club – children and parents together.
“People will certainly feel the urge to move more in the apartment these days,” he says. “I don’t object if the project brings a few more children to the clubs. But that’s not the point. It’s mostly compensation. And a little bit of fun for the children when the days are rather boring or sad are.” A break from the state of emergency.
The change is also good for your own people, says Günther. The Handball Bundesliga is suspended until the end of April. Training and young talent also no longer take place. “This is a great challenge for us as an association. We are trying to bring the current business year to a good end and then reorganize ourselves,” says Günther. “Common sense tells me that we won’t play a handball game this season, so we have to be creative and fight to secure the future of our 62 employees.”
Clubs provide neighborhood help
The association has estimated the financial losses from viewer income, TV money and sponsors to be up to half a million euros. They are currently working on various measures to intercept this. The professionals have already declared that they will not be paid. The employees are on short-time work.
If necessary, a number of sports clubs in the region have joined forces. You want to support yourself in the crisis. In addition to the DHfK handball players, the soccer players from Erzgebirge Aue and the volleyball players from Dresdner SC are in contact with each other and with the state’s politics.
Part of the discussion is therefore how the clubs want to continue to assume social responsibility despite all the concerns. The Leipzigers definitely want to keep their sports lesson, says Günther. “We would definitely have the consequences for the next two weeks.” And for the time after that, you would also come up with something if necessary.