PingPong Pandemic Postponed

The euphoria of my previous post was abruptly brought back down to earth, with a bump, as the whole country (and most of the rest of the world too) were asked to self-distance or full isolation for the foreseeable future, so they can get a handle on the global pandemic.

Despite the obvious set-back, there is light at the end of the tunnel as soon as we can get back to the new normal and be ‘allowed out’ to play again. Read on to find out more….

Just as my PD TT message was starting to get heard, we were quickly forced into a lock-down situation. Travel is only permitted for essentials, such as food, medicine, work and medical emergencies. Only household groups >2 can gather, and everyone should try to keep a 2m air-gap to minimise the chance of catching this deadly virus known as covid-19. Whilst a full sized TT table is 2.74m in length, the physical exertion in a confined space would not be safe to play someone.

The good news before all this kicked off was that TT clubs and individual players with PD were starting to express their interest in my activities – as far away as Brighton, Rotherham, Peterborough, St Albans, Grays and elsewhere unknown. At both end of the scales too – from setting up a new TT-based exercise group, through to playing in a national tournament or even to attend the 2nd World Championship (PD-TT-WC), which had just been scheduled to be played in Berlin during the Paralympics in August. And, at least two PD attendees each week now attending the ActivIpswich session at Gainsborough Sport Centre near Ipswich.

2nd ITTF PD TT World Championships – POSTPONED

By the end of March though, practically all sports games including the Olympics & Paralympic Games had been postponed or cancelled altogether. Other casualties included the fantastic Parkinson Young Onset Vision2020 Conference due to take place in Leicester, as well as the amazingly successful YOPD Football Tournament that same weekend 18-19 April. I was looking forward to attend both and promote the benefits of TT exercise for people with Parkinsons and start to pick up players for a UK tournament and the PD-TT-WC.

None of this was to be. Nor the weekly TT sessions in Ipswich with ActivIpswich. All cancelled until further notice. Even the ancient mighty Olympian Gods could only summon a 12 month delay. Although, my efforts to take TT a bit more seriously, in the shape of a TT robot and (borrowed – thanks to BTTTC) TT table which I’ve managed to squeeze into the garage (just).

TT Practice at Home

However, in the midst of all this confusion and mayhem, there are some shoots of success from earlier seeds that had been sown. So on this rather unusual World Table Tennis at Home Day, I shall leave you hanging for a few more days before you find out what else has been happening behind the scenes, and whet your appetite for when the curfew is lifted and we can all partake once more this wonderful game of Table Tennis.


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