With the two-year project, financed by VUB, the university focuses on the challenges young people face and how sport, in this case martial arts, can help them to cope with those challenges.
“With the BXL Living Martial Arts Lab, we are focusing on raising awareness on the potential added value of martial arts. Not only in a club context, but also in other contexts such as the welfare sector, the social sector, etc,” says Marc Theeboom, chair of the VUB research group Sport & Society and initiator of the project. “It has been scientifically proven that martial arts such as boxing can lead to increased social cohesion. With this project we are also committed to breaking the negative image of martial arts and focusing on these types of sport from a variety of perspectives, also as a form of artistic expression.”
“As a university, it’s important that we take nuanced positions on all aspects of social life, also in relation to often contested issues such as harder martial arts. As an institution that prepares young people to enter the workplace and the world at large, we want to inspire our viewers through shedding light on diverse topics and contribute to more nuance thinking in relation to martial arts,” adds Hebe Schaillée, project manager of the BXL Living Martial Arts Lab.
Partnerships with various actors and disciplines
The BXL Living Martial Arts Lab consists of a consortium of 10 scientific partners of the VUB and the Université libre de Bruxelles and two additional partners, the Flemish Martial Arts Platform and UNIVER.CITY, which provide project-based support.
“Each scientific partner in the consortium has its own research expertise. The lab offers a unique opportunity for partnerships between various actors and disciplines, such as sport and exercise sciences, educational sciences, sociology, psychology and criminology. For all the activities, we collaborate with different target groups and encourage interaction between people from different sectors. Setting up new partnerships and strengthening existing ones is central to the work of the BXL Living Martial Arts Lab,” says Theeboom.
Note for the press:
Debate on potential of hard combat sports
The VUB, the Koninklijke Vlaamse Schouwburg and the Flemish Martial Arts Platform are joining forces for this unique online event on the potential of martial arts. The guests will reflect and engage in discussions on various aspects of Martial Arts and include, amongst others, VUB rector Caroline Pauwels and Marc Theeboom, chair of the VUB research group Sport & Society. The event is part of the VUB weKONEKT week.
- 30 March 2021 (online broadcast)
- Registration is not necessary
The World Needs You
The Vrije Universiteit Brussel carries out its scientific and social responsibility with love and vigour. That’s why VUB launched the platform The World Needs You. Here, ideas and actions are brought together, started up and developed around six Ps. The first P stands for People, because that's what it's all about: giving people equal opportunities, prosperity, well-being and respect. Peace stands for fighting small and large injustices in the world. Prosperity deals with poverty and inequality. Planet stands for actions on biodiversity, climate, air quality, animal rights, etc. With Partnership, VUB is looking for collaborations to make the world a better place. The sixth and last P stands for Poincaré, the French philosopher Henri Poincaré from whom VUB derives its motto that thinking may not submit to anything except the facts themselves. VUB is an “urban engaged university”, strongly anchored in Brussels and Europe and working according to the principles of free enquiry. #TWNY www.vub.be/dewereldheeftjenodig