It was ten years ago that Bev Stack first joined Dewsbury and Wakefield Lau Gar Kung Fu Club, bored of the gym and looking for a new challenge.
Now, aged 51, she looks forward to her weekly martial arts session as a way of keeping fit and healthy, learning new skills, and taking some time out of the daily grind for herself.
She said: “I started to learn the martial art at the age of 40. I was looking to improve my fitness and flexibility and wanted something to stimulate both my body and my brain.”
A typical session at the club, featured this week as part of our #sistersport campaign, which celebrates local women involved in sport and activity, includes a warm up, circuits, stretching, and practicing techniques for attack and defence.
“It’s a brilliant workout of cardio, stretching and strength,” Ms Stack said.
“You get a real sense of achievement when mastering a new skill or technique and as well as a boost to your physical fitness, it helps your confidence and raises your self awareness as there’s a focus on both body and mind.
“We don’t compete but we do grading and we’re all individually working towards our next goal. What we are all there to do is learn more, have fun and build fitness. You work at your own pace and do what you want to and can do and we are all friendly and help each other.”
The club, which meets at Jubilee Hall in Lupset on a Thursday between 7pm and 9pm, currently has around ten members, both men and women.
Anyone interested in joining can attend a taster session for free and can find out more at www.dewsburyandwakefieldkungfu.org.uk
Ms Stack is also supporting #sistersport, which is backed by The Ridings Shopping Centre and ambassador for Women In Sport Kate Hardcastle. She said: “It’s really important to keep moving. It can add years to your life and it makes you feel full of energy almost immediately.”