UT Alum Coaches Kids Through Virtual Martial Arts Classes Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

Category: News

Former microbiology major Scott Bailey (’13) watched the development of COVID-19 and began to formulate a plan for his clients at his P3 Martial Arts studio in Farragut, Tennessee.

When social distancing and self-isolation became factors in daily life, he was ready with a plan for his 305 taekwondo students.

Bailey launched a series of virtual classes for kids stuck at home with the help of his general manager, Robbie Rauschert, who graduated from UT with a degree in business analytics and statistics in 2017.
“We definitely had to think outside the box,” Bailey said. “We had the action plan in place three weeks prior to everything occurring and were able to launch within two days.”

Students at P3 Martial Arts now participate in their classes online, virtually, and interactively via Zoom. Bailey has instituted weekly challenges that use techniques from video games and coaches parents on how to best help their kids train from home.

“There are many different instructor challenges to choose from,” Bailey said. “It works like this: you record yourself doing 25 push-ups, post it to the private Facebook group, and tag one of your friends. Your friend is then challenged to do those pushups faster.”
Another type of interactive class is set to video game music and students must respond to visual and audio cues by jumping, kicking, and spinning in sequence. Exercise is something parents have been desperate to give their kids while working from home. Bailey understands this as he has 10- and 11-year-old children himself.

“My own kids are going a little bit stir-crazy, so I understand,” Bailey said.
Adding to the challenge throughout the community, not all parents are able to work from home. In particular, this affects medical and emergency personnel such as nurses, doctors, firefighters, and police.

For them, P3 Martial Arts continues to offer in-person day camps that fall within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines and use enhanced cleaning. Bailey installed an ozone generator in his facility to kill germs and does projects with the kids like making their own hand sanitizer.

“We’ve been coaching the kids about leadership,” Bailey said. “More importantly than just pushing them to wash their hands, we want them to understand they have a chance to step up because others are watching and our community needs good influences.”
Even bad events may have a silver lining, and for Bailey and P3 Martial Arts that includes getting a chance to teach students in creative and interactive ways.

“There is always a positive to every negative,” Bailey said. “It’s just about how you look at things.”