Physical and emotional well-being through physical exercise and sport is the focus of the 21st CAI Sports Congress in Alicante

Once again this year, the Alicante Homeless Shelter (CAI), municipally owned, run and operated by the Foundation for Health and Community (FSC), opened its doors to the city of Alicante to enjoy a day of coexistence, with an emphasis on physical life. Exercising is one of the cornerstones of maintaining a healthy life, as well as physical and emotional well-being. The meeting once again became a reference point for various entities and groups. About 150 people participated in the scheduled activities, highlighting the good atmosphere and cooperation among all attendees and participants in the event.

On this occasion, we have chosen innovation, integrative and collaborative sport, with the great novelty of celebrating the first running and walking marathon, where participants from the most athletic to people with functional diversity were able to enjoy a street tour of the city.

The most popular sports activity of the day was the Modified Karate Class, directed by Juan Almiñana, 4th Dan Black Belt, Karate Instructor, and CAI Professional for over twenty years. The course ended with an exhibition of this type of Japanese fighting presented by participants in the center’s various programs, who train weekly under Juan. Likewise, attendees were able to enjoy a cardio session, prepared and directed by a group of CAI residents.

The opening of the conference was attended by a very special guest, Kiko Martinez, a boxer from Elche and a four-time world boxing icon. With great kindness and humility, Kiko shared his life experience, talked about how sports helped him advance in his personal and professional life, and above all, conveyed the importance of daily work and effort to achieve what one wants, pointing out that achieving something is not a matter of luck, but rather work, perseverance and perseverance. There were many questions asked of him by the audience, and he answered them with great honesty and life wisdom.

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After Kiko’s presentation, Juan Alminiana took the stage, shared his karate experience, and explained how the sport influenced his life and work. Juan was accompanied by a CAI participant, who told us how this sport helps him in his recovery process and in his daily life. Karate is a core activity at CAI for users in the recovery process, and has been taught for approximately two years every Friday afternoon at the service.

Among the benefits for the homeless is physical development: training includes movements that strengthen the body, improve flexibility and increase cardiovascular endurance. This can help them improve their physical health and overall well-being.

And also self-defense: Karate teaches them effective self-defense techniques that can help them protect themselves in dangerous situations on the street. Discipline and Self-Control: Emphasizes mental discipline and emotional self-control, which can help homeless people develop stress management skills and control their impulses.

Likewise, confidence and self-esteem stand out as benefits; A sense of belonging, as well as focus and concentration. In this sense, karate can offer homeless people a positive structure, a sense of purpose and a path to personal empowerment and improved quality of life, they tell us from the center.

Continuing the 21st CAI Sports Days in Alicante, at the end of the morning, aperitifs were served outdoors, where participants, professionals and volunteers from the various entities who attended the day exchanged impressions and experiences in a more relaxed space. On the other hand, they decided to participate again in future activities organized by different parties, leading to communication and support among everyone.

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In short, we enjoyed a day full of activities, testimonies and emotions, in which we once again sought to exchange and strengthen social relationships inside and outside the service, as well as to encourage strengthening of connectedness and a sense of rootedness. To the community through sport because of its great benefits among the participants in the Alicante homeless shelter.

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