New portal of the International Traditional Karate Federation offers complete digital solutions and will connect ITKF leaders, leaders, black belts and dojos from all over the planet
July 28, 2020
By PAULO PINTO I Photos by BUDOPRESS and ARCHIVE
Curitiba – PR
The Executive Committee of the International Traditional Karate Federation (ITKF) officially launched its new portal on June 11, at a meeting that brought together officials and members of the executive committee, shihan-kai, technical committee, athletes committee and the organization’s communication and marketing committee.
Seeking to assess the impact of this initiative by the official international entity of traditional karate-do, Budô listened to leaders from various continents, who were mostly surprised and satisfied with the new ITKF management and institutional development tool.
The launch on the new portal coincided with the height of the global economic crisis generated by the spread of covid-19, and it is important to remember that it will be a powerful tool in the dissemination of initiatives taken in each member country to mitigate the effects of social isolation resulting from the pandemic.
Fernando Manuel Alves Maia da Silva, president of the Federation Budô Martial de Portugal (FBMP), considers the new tool extremely important, as the whole world can see, read and follow any information or news every minute, without any deviation of meaning or original purpose.
“The new website brings everyone, directly or indirectly involved in the ITKF, the feeling of being at home and that they belong to this great international family of budo, providing and receiving new information so that we can grow, increasingly stronger and united”, said Silva.
For Rajnish Kumar, president of the Traditional Karate Council of India (TKCI), the new portal will definitely be an important tool for everyone who wants to get information about the ITKF.
“The new website will certainly help us a lot in the institutional development of the organization, as it will serve as a complete guide for the ITKF, in which all the updated information will be permanently available to all practitioners and managers”, said Kumar.
Soebajo Rachmy, leader of the Czech Republic, praised the work developed by the executive committee of the International Federation of Traditional Karate. “The new ITKF website is very good and an important tool for the development of our entity, making it an innovative and very useful platform. I congratulate and thank you for the work done by the ITKF executive committee.”
In the assessment of Sadiomar Santos, director general of ITKF, the new website is configured as one of the most important actions among those planned for 2020.
“In addition to serving institutional promotion, from the first moment the new website was designed to be a support tool for members of the entity, as there are forms and guidelines that facilitate and bring the relationship with the institution closer. Several other services will still be incorporated and made available, such as registration, information search and e-commerce, with the objective of forming a multifunctional platform. Digital communication has become an indispensable tool, as it immeasurably expands the speed and capacity of communication, and ITKF is aligned with modern information technology processes”, explained the director general of ITKF.
Sandrine El Marhomy, president of the Federation of Traditional Karate and Budo of France, understands that the new website is a wonderful window for the sport. Clean and modern, it allows you to follow what ITKF and its affiliates are doing on a daily basis and, most importantly, shows their credibility and value.
“The website needs to be a reference for its members around the world. For its development, it may be beneficial to add a doping policy and its medical rules, meetings scheduled on the Zoom platform and a calendar to show its credibility as an international federation and its rich history. Perhaps you can house a store with books, t-shirts and personalized products. It is an important tool for us, members, to see who is affiliated and to be aware of upcoming events. It is necessary to have a recurring and continuous communication, so that the website is effectively our preferred platform for any topic related to the global ITKF”, explained the French leader.
Antônio Carlos Walger, president of the Pan American Traditional Karate Federation, pointed out that communicating his activities to the world is essential for the development of a company or institution. Keeping a website clear and easy to navigate is perhaps the most important communication tool with its affiliates, and in this regard the website is objective, practical and simple to navigate.
“The dissemination of activities, through an open website, reaches the entire public and transmits confidence. Disclosing information about the institution in a clear and transparent manner, reduces the timeline of the information and the result of its actions, attracting more followers.”
Dejan Nedev, leader of the Macedonian Traditional Karate Federation, believes that the new ITKF portal will further encourage the entity’s growth, offering an enormous contribution to the sport.
“Our new website will contribute a lot to the development of the ITKF, showing that we are a serious and very well organized world entity. And, of course, it is an important tool for our institutional development and for our communication”, evaluated Nedev.
Hector E. Maroli, president of the O.K.K. Argentina Federation approved the new ITKF portal. “The new website is agile, attractive and without a doubt an excellent tool to promote our institutional projection to the world, in addition to contributing to the internal communication, growth and development of traditional karate”, explained the leader.
Nicholas Marandich, president of the Traditional Karate Federation of Romania, assesses that the new ITKF website is compatible with the new moment of the entity.
“The new ITFK portal is very important to make us visible to the world of karate and for everyone to be able to access information about the entity. The Zoom platform is necessary in these times that we are going through, improving and streamlining the entity’s communication. As for the ITKF organization, I fervently believe in its reconstruction and I would very much like it to be a powerful organization again”, said the Romanian leader.
For Sérgio Luis Fonseca Bastos, president of the Brazilian Confederation of Traditional Karate-do (CBKT), the new ITKF website is a fundamental communication tool, in addition to being modern, easy to navigate and with innovative design, very useful for this new phase of the entity.
“Our new website is a tool of fundamental importance. ITKF deserved a website with this quality, both to facilitate its communication role with leaders and affiliates and to publicly position itself as a strong and credible institution”, said the Brazilian leader.
ITKF and the future
In addition to evaluating the new communication tool, the managers interviewed by Budô took stock of the current situation, with the sports world paralyzed due to covid-19.
For Fernando Silva, the Portuguese leader, the world has changed drastically and, therefore, new media have developed to overcome social isolation.
“The Zoom platform has become a fast and dynamic solution for meetings and decision making. In addition, with this method, we all save time and money, since we do not have the physical and financial burden of traveling around the world to have regular and face-to-face meetings. Not to mention that it was always very difficult to gather all world leaders for decision making. Without a doubt, this is a very important tool for all ITKF actions”, said Silva.
“In times of global instability, ITKF has managed to stay together. And not only that, the entity managed to grow so that, weekly, it is being sought by new countries or institutions interested in joining our entity. We are offering every support so that new countries can belong to our gigantic institution. This proves that we are on the right path”, concluded the Portuguese leader.
Antônio Carlos Walger recalled that in the current world there are no more distances. “I remember the time when we waited two years to hold an assembly or seminar and we updated the information and objectives. At most, we exchanged e-mails with replies and rejoinders. The new digital meeting tools brought objectivity and speed to decisions. Today, we can have much more dynamism in building and strengthening the institution using these tools. I see with great sympathy the holding of the virtual assembly because, in addition to gathering a larger number of affiliates, it allows the recording of all discussions”, said the continental leader.
“Today, ITKF presents its best phase after the passing of Master Nishiyama. We have a strong, active and motivated team on four continents and this has infected other members around the planet. We are rebuilding an institution without forgetting the principles and teachings left by the master”, concluded sensei Walger.
Bernardo Contarelli, president of the Italian Karate Federation (FEISKA), is skeptical about the use of new technologies, but understands that it is necessary to establish rules that define the new procedures.
“The work done in the construction of the new platform was very important to show the world that the ITKF is alive and has great potential for development. As for the use of the internet and new tools, I am not able to judge. I am a karate practitioner who still writes with a fountain pen and tries to follow the principles bequeathed by master Gichin Funakoshi. I have enormous respect for everyone, but I think that the human relationship and face-to-face evaluation of karate students cannot be replaced by online practice. I believe that, for ITKF, this can be a great path, but at the moment, I am not able to evaluate this strategy. I just think that there must be clear rules, that everyone can and should follow”, explained the Italian leader.
Rajnish Kumar stated that the ideal would be to use the Zoom platform for online meetings and presentations, as it is very easy to use and presents many options.
“I think the ITKF should be very aggressive in prospecting for new members, and everyone who recently joined should regularly attend the meetings and have their proposals considered. The running of the federation should not be limited to the thinking of two or three individuals; on the contrary, updates and proposals should be encouraged, in a brainstorming process. There should be a specific column on the ITKF website, in which any member can make suggestions for the development or well-being of the ITKF – and the best idea for a month should be displayed on the website. This would provide motivation for everyone and the process of personal engagement would be very high”, proposed the leader of India.
Sadiomar Santos understands that virtual meetings are nowadays indispensable for the administration of organizations with global reach, such as ITKF. “We realized that at the launch of the website, for example, we had members from the Americas, Africa, Asia and Europe. They are management tools that are here to stay. Meetings that were previously planned every two years can be held very easily, allowing not only the regimental movements, but also bringing together and allowing the participation of all members”, said the director general of ITKF, who concluded by evaluating the moment of the entity.
“I see the federation very positively and with great enthusiasm, as we are very close to all members of the ITKF, which reflects the strength of the institution. We are going through a moment of hard work and dedication, as the team led by sensei Gilberto Gaertner works intensively in the administrative and technical management processes, seeking to make new projects feasible and expand the institutional relations in progress. I feel deeply honored and grateful to be able to participate in and collaborate with the entity”, concluded the ITKF director general.
Sandrine El Marhomy pointed out that Zoom is an excellent platform for meetings. “The only disadvantage is that, if there are more than 100 participants, the questions must be written so that not everyone speaks at the same time. But our general meeting was clean. This platform can also be a tool for training courses in education, for example”, said the French leader, recalling that the organization is experiencing a new moment.
“Every day we are growing more. Communication through social networks and national federations is a good strategy. But there is not enough training for all members to speak the same language and adopt the same procedures and methods”, argued the French leader.
Dejan Nedev understands that the ITKF is going through a very positive turning point. “Zoom is a very good platform for holding seminars, presentations and meetings, but I don’t think it is a good tool for a general meeting. I understand that there is not so much urgency that justifies holding a meeting through Zoom. We have to wait for all this global health situation to end and then organize a live general assembly”, he said.
“At the moment, I think we are moving in the right direction and all activities lead to the improvement of the international status of ITKF and its affiliated organizations on the four continents,” concluded the Macedonian leader.
For Argentine leader Hector Maroli, holding the general meeting by videoconference is very valuable, and makes it feel that the current leadership takes its members into consideration on a daily basis. “In addition, we must look to the future”, he emphasized.
Maroli concluded by pointing out the positive outlook for the entity. “So far, the resurgence of ITKF has opened great expectations for a promising future full of success. I leave the best wishes for prosperity to the global ITKF.”
Making a final assessment based on logic and aiming at speed in decision making, Professor Sérgio Bastos exposed the need to create systems that speed up the management process.
“With the globalization of communications, the use of platforms like Zoom is a facilitator for meetings and decision making in companies and institutions with representation around the world. We have to view the organization globally and based on the ITKF revival. For that, we have to organize ourselves, create processes, strengthen our base and expand it. There is much to be done and I understand that we see a new moment, but decision-making must be agile and assertive”, predicted the Brazilian leader.