Thursday, December 14, 2006

IBF grades confirmed by BJA

Members of the Young Judo Club took advantage of the new openness of the British Judo Association where they allow you to belong to any Judo organisations as well as the BJA. The YJC has always given its first loyalty to the International Budo Federation, the BJA offered to run a Grade recognition and Coaching recognition course at the Clubs HQ in Sittingbourne in the weekend of December 8,9,10. The course was a great success and the YJC instructors were impressed with the standard of the BJA examiners and their friendliness. Contest grades also had to go to the Budokwai to prove themselves on their contest as well as doing their theory at the club as expected John Clarke had his 4th Dan confirmed, Colin Carrott 3rd confirmed and Danny Carrott 2nd Dan confirmed. Those taking Technical Grades still have little more to do before they also get their grade confirmed but this will be no problem as it just a matter of demonstrating Katame No Kata. I will give a full report in January


Many months ago I responded to an email from Pakistan advertising Martial Arts equipment. Luckily I did not order a lot just a few samples a total cost of 99$, yes you have guessed I got nothing back in return. Guessed what the name of this company was? JAMY SPORTS they certainly are Jamy if they conned me. So do not order anything from JAMY SPORTS they are rip off merchants

British Open

This years British Sombo Open looks good we have had enquires from Russia, USA and Mongolia. More info at

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

FILA Thrust for World Dominance fails

FILA Thrust for World Dominance fails

Report by Martin Clarke BSF President


F.I.L.A. International Olympic Wrestling Association
F.I.A.S. International Sambo/Sombo Federation

Sambo/Sombo is a Jacket wrestling sport invented in the ex Soviet Union in the 1930.s

F.I.L.A. controlled Sambo/Sombo till 1985 when it asked Fernando Compte to form an independent International Federation, F.I.A.S. was formed and F.I.L.A. relinquished all connections to the Sport.

1993 F.I.A.S. split into two factions. 2004 was reunified under the Presidency of David Rudman

Above is a very brief history of the development of Sombo/Sambo which is important to this report, for some years now rumours have been banded about that FILA seem to have been trying to collect all wrestling styles under their banner to secure a world dominance of all wrestling discipline, they now have Celtic wrestling and Beach Wrestling the latter being Wrestling done in a sand pit with only standing techniques allowed. There next wrestling style on their target list was Sombo/Sambo, which they were informed was in disarray, with FIAS being unrepresentative of the Sport instead of checking their facts they went ahead a formulated a Sambo/Sombo section culminating in a World Sombo Championship being held alongside their Beach Wrestling Worlds in Turkey which coincided with the FIAS World championships in Bulgaria.

FILA had 13 countries at their World Sombo Tournament and FIAS had 33 countries, it was not so much the numbers but what countries took part

FILA participating countries: Turkey, USA, Spain, India, Hungary, France, Morocco, Puerto Rico, Armenia, Panama these are the only countries I could find who actually entered but the FILA Web site does state 13 countries. The countries are in order in how they placed in the medal tally.

countries are place alphabetically.

As you can see the calibre of the countries are totally different the FILA event had not one major Sombo/Sambo countries present in fact to my knowledge Turkey or India have never competed in any World Championships let alone been placed in one, yet Turkey who has never had a Sambo/Sombo federation wins most medals, what does that tell you. If you go to you will read an interesting blog on the whole of the Turkish event, the event seems to be a tremendous success for those wishing to enjoy a holiday but as you read through the Blog you see the whole event was a bit of mix and match. Beach Wrestlers who had never tried Sombo was asked to compete, competitors did not have equipment I could go on and this meant to be THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS! More like the Come & Try Worlds, Glamorous Venues are OK but the reason you attend a World Championships is to find who are the best Sombo/Sambo players in the World not to have a holiday.

I could go on and make comments about the actual competitors but that would be futile and spiteful as all competitors who participated in the FILA Worlds were prepared to fight anyone in the world, it was FILA who misled them.

There is a plus to this debacle of FILA for once and for all everyone will see that FIAS is the true representative of International Sombo/Sambo and it seems by the Blog report everyone enjoyed Sombo/Sambo and hopefully those who attended the event will ask their coaches how they can compete in FIAS events, I am certain that all competitors from FILA Sombo/Sambo would be welcome back into the fold of the true International Sombo/Sambo and hopefully FILA will learn to stick to what they know. For information on FIAS results go to and if your interested in competiting in the British Sombo Open in March 2007 all are welcome go to


Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Judo Unity

Letter sent to local papers

Dear Editor

For many years there has been disunity in the World of Judo and a sense of unfairness I refer to the fact that the British Judo Association the governing body for the sport forbid its members joining any other Judo association. Unlike other sports Judo is more then just a competitive system where a governing body decides rules of the game and oversees the conduct of its members, it’s a Martial Way and a philosophy of life. Therefore its practitioners have many interpretations on what direction they should travel to fulfil their ambition to become good Judoka, hence many Judo associations. The BJA have travelled down the road of being an Olympic Sport with some considerable success but their refusal to recognise other associations has caused upsets.
Recently there has been a dramatic change in the attitude of the BJA and I might say quite a courageous policy change in my opinion, they now allow their members to belong other Judo associations, this opens the door to clubs like the Young Judo Club based at the Swale Martial Arts Club East Street Sittingbourne to affiliate its members. The YJC which is 50 years old in 2007 has for the last 30 years been affiliated with the International Budo Federation an organisation that was founded in Holland and has representative throughout the World, the IBF caters for many Martial Arts and Combat Disciplines such as Sombo, CombatSombo and Kurash, hence you will see our members entering and grading in many varied events. If a member wished to compete at World Level in Sombo or Kurash their membership to the IBF was not a problem with Judo it would mean rejecting their IBF membership to join the BJA and then return at a later date, something I have done on many occasion 1977-80 becoming a member of the Olympic Judo Squad, 2001 winning the World Masters. This no longer the case and YJC members can now retain their IBF license and be a BJA member, which we intend to encourage.
Some months ago months ago the BJA approached myself about affiliating the club, the majority of the Instructors agreed, this involved having grades and coaching certificates verified. This has caused some concern with other clubs who refused to attend a familiarisation course, this I cannot understand as our own IBF would not allow someone to join without checking their credential and explaining their methods. The first step for YJC member was for our competitive Black Belts to attend a grading at the famous Budokwai Judo Club in London to see if competitive standards are the same needless to say they were Danny Carrott had 3 fights to confirm his 2nd Dan winning 2 and drawing 1 the latter in competition he would have won but in BJA grading only Ippon and Waza-ari are scored, Colin Carrott who is in his mid 40’s insisted on going for a competitive grade rather the a Technical Grade as his would have been allowed because of his age, also had his 3rd Dan recommended drawing 1 fight and losing to a 128 Kilo (20 stone) 4th Dan , John Clarke who is a member of the PE Staff at the Sittingbourne Community College, fought the same 4th with a different result in grading terms it was classified as a draw but in real terms John’s continual attacking made the big guy look ineffective and he picked up 4 penalty points (4 shido’s) in normal circumstances they heavyweight would have been disqualified but the examiners decided to let the fight continue as they wanted to assess John’s ability as their was no one else of his standard present, in my opinion this was the right course of action. An Ippon won his next fight he was recommended to 4th Dan. All returned proving that the YJC has a very high standard, being welcome edition to the BJA family something that our rivals have questioned in the past. Joining the BJA will help John in his bid for his 5th Dan because he can stay in this country the IBF would have expected him to travel to Holland.

The next stage is to have their theory confirmed this will be the easy side as the IBF theory syllabus is lot more involved then the BJA this will be done on the weekend Coaching Course the BJA are doing at the YJC Dojo in East Street where several of our older Dan grades and instructors will be attending. This liaison will prove a major benefit to both organisations and we are already preparing our youngsters for BJA competitions.

For further details on Judo, Sombo, Kurash contact 01795 437124, 07074 200150,,

Martin Clarke 8th Dan

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

CombatArts Writer Lurch Explains

Dear Martin,
As a wrestler you understand the theory of throwing, projecting a resisting opponent to the floor with his energy and energy you have supplied to knock him out or badly damage him so he cannot continue to attack you. But you are an 8th Dan in judo and a 6th Dan in jujitsu, you are extraordinary not ordinary like we lesser mortals. For me striking makes my throwing and locking techniques work. There are at least four theories of striking that I know about: the Chinese Internal Systems; the Chinese External Systems, which includes both long hand boxing-the origin of karate and short hand boxing, where wing chun kung fu system is the best known; western boxing has in it simplicity and effectiveness a lethal system; jujitsu has its strikes to stun, some systems within jujitsu especially the kempo jujitsu emphasis on striking.
The Ancient Greeks and Romans used the fist to strike, representations of boxers where found on pottery vases. However, the boxing of the ancients consisted of the left arm being used for defence and the right landing blows. Originally the Greeks sat on two stones across from each other and punched each other, the winner was the one who was best able to survive the punishment. Rome increased the gore by wearing cestuis, a form of brass knuckles. Representation of the earliest boxers can be found on the volcanic island of Santerini from the Minion Civilisation of ancient Crete. The Greeks of the classical period combined the skills of boxing and wrestling to produce the first close quarter battle system known as pankration. The army of Alexander the Great had tents where pankration was practised carried in his baggage train; in fact there is a theory that the army of Alexander brought their skill of pankration to ancient India where it took root in Indian martial arts, which was taken to the Shaolin Monastery by the Indian monk Bodhredama, who was originally an Indian prince, well versed in martial arts of India. From the Shaolin Monastery martial arts knowledge was carried by its fighting monks and their pilgrimage to all parts of the east.
Wearing armour influences warfare, the protective effect allows hack and slash fighting only, therefore atemi was not emphasised, wrestling was the preferred method of unarmed combat, kumi uchi-grappling in armour was used in medieval Japan. In the west manuals of combat, fechtbucher, showed wrestling defences against armed opponents. Gunpowder changed everything, heavy armour was a liability, it cut down on mobility the only defence against firearms. Striking became important, adapting weapon fighting techniques to empty hand fighting; in England quarter staff fighting was along with sword fighting the basis for Western Boxing, from the quarter staff came upper cuts and hooks; the jab came from the lunge in fencing. English and American Boxing changed with the Spanish-American War of 1898 when the United States of America gained the remains of Spain's Empire, Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines. The American Marines were famous for their boxing prowess after the victory over Spain in the Philippines they boxed with the Filipinos who due to their blade culture practised bobbing, weaving and evasion techniques against the American Marines who changed their style from the upright European Style to the crouched style that has now become the American Style of boxing.
The island of Okinawa midway between Japan and China was for centuries a trading centre between these two cultures it traded goods and conveyed ideas, weapons were banned by the ruler of Okinawa as a means of control after the rise of the Shogun in Japan winning in the civil war the Satsuma Clan had fought for the losing side, as punishment they were ordered to invade Okinawa for some perceived insult and to punish them. The clan were able to successfully invade the kingdom due to the banning of weapons. The inhabitants fought back with their empty hands and farm implements but in open warfare against the samurai with their long sword the katana they lost. Guerrilla Warfare was the only option available the Chinese centuries before had sent artisans to teach the Okinawans these Chinese brought their knowledge of kung fu which they shared with the inhabitants who combined what they learned with the native fighting arts of the island to form the art of karate. The Japanese Invaders found themselves fighting an enemy who turned their bodies into a weapon by hardening their hands and feet to punch through the bamboo lacquered armour. Karate was created from sword fighting, the back stance is a defensive position in ken jitsu, Japanese Fencing. The front stance of karate is the position that a fencer takes on cutting down with a katana. In karate there is the cat stance in ken jitsu there also is a similar stance for cutting down with the sword.
To study striking you must study weaponry to discover how it originated, if you discover this vital knowledge then you will make sense of your blows to weak points of the human body, all combat is influenced by the society it came from. From the 18th century the English developed boxing as a means of self defence when they were unarmed. During the 17th century the islanders of Okinawa developed karate as a vehicle to resistance against the Satsuma Samurai from Japan. Self protection is a universal need for society, to throw you must hit to distract and if you are successful you could knock out or disable your attacker so you may not have to.

Yours in budo

Ian " Lurch " Durie.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

An Ode to Kano from Colin Carrott

An Ode to Kano

In days of old,
When knights were bold
And Judo wasn’t invented.
Men wrestled their brother,
In front of each other
And had to be contented.

Then came a wise man,
From the land of Japan,
Who reasoned this couldn’t be right.
He devised his own art,
That took off from the start
When his students all followed the light.

His name was Kano
And he thought, I know,
I’ll call this The Gentle Way
We’ll throw one another
To the ground with no bother
The winner, on his feet, must stay.

And as this won’t hurt,
There’ll be no need for groundwork,
The best throw will decide the winner.
Large or small will not matter,
With no rule book to shatter
It’ll be equal for saint, or for sinner.

So, the best in the land
Decided to try their hand
To become a judo Dan grade.
A black belt they desired,
As their ambition was highered,
But a Kyu grade was what they stayed.

After practice and training
Through sunshine and raining,
After hour upon hour of meditation.
The judoka got his reward,
For his knowledge was broad,
He was applauded for his dedication

So as he studied this noble path,
A question that was often asked,
Do you meditate to control your karmas?
Follow your beliefs with all your heart?
Practitioners of this ancient art,
Or are you just a poof, in white pyjamas?

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

British Judo Association Affiliation


Over recent months there has been a lot of talk, letter, articles etc about the United Kingdom Coaching Certificate and the enforcement of every Judo Coach to have a UKCC by 2012. As In have said in the past as a country that believes in freedom I would normally have doubts about this ever happening but we have a New Labour government which does not believe in civil liberties and European Union which wishes to totally dominate and control our personal lives, so the possibility of UKCC by compulsion may not be so remote. My understanding of the UKCC is that it is not specific to any individual sport but a Certificate of Coaching; on completion you then go to your individual sport for level of competence. This concept could have been taken straight from The International Budo Federations Coaching Effective Programme, developed by 25 years ago by Martin Clarke and Geoff Gleeson. So I have no problems with the idea. I do question whether making it a legal requirement is right apart from the personal liberty factor, although I expect this government will turn round and say it is to do with the prevention of terrorism! It could lead to a dramatic loss of Judo Coaches and clubs. Many Judo Coaches will feel aggrieved that for many years they have coached given many years to help others only be told they are no longer competent, as with most things that are a legal requirement it will be costly to obtain how many clubs or coaches will be able to afford the cost?

The BJA has taken the blame for this but in reality it is a Government edict as the BJA are the governing body they will be required to implement the Judo section of the UKCC. So we now have a campaign to “Save British Judo” in the past I would be the first on the barricades but things have moved on since the days of Charlie Palmer former chairman of the BJA. So when the BJA through Dermott Hyslop contacted me and suggested we have meet I thought why not and I am glad I did. Dermott sat down for several hours explaining all they various concepts of the BJA and their hopes for the future which I have to admit were very exciting, he returned on one of our club nights to explain to our club coaches. The most important questions all my instructors wanted to know would we lose our identity answer NO, membership to the International Budo Federation is very important to us not only do we do Judo but we also practise many other Martial Arts and grappling sports, so would we have to give up the IBF answer NO, Could we still run IBF events answer YES.
So the most important things were not lost, yes coaches would have to attend a Coaching Course not re exam us but to show us what the BJA coaching system is and to show the differences in our view of the GOKYO, there will be a need for a validation of grades but unlike the past there would be a fair appraisal, In the 70’s I wish to try for the Olympics to do this I had to join the BJA, to enter the British Open which was my first test I had to be a Dan grade. The Charlie Palmer cabal refused to recognise my BJC 4th Dan telling me I was only worth a 1st Dan expecting me not enter I did and came 5th they then graded me to 3rd Dan at the end of the year after being in the BJA 8 months I won the National Trials. The recognition of Coaching award and Grades I suggest is standard I would not let anyone in the IBF without checking their standards.

So what will my club gain by being members of the BJA:
1) Member of the governing body
2) Access to all their events
3) Access to the UKCC
4) Contest Grades having the ability to get above 3rd Dan without having to leave the IBF or travel to Holland for gradings

What will the BJA gain from us?
1) All our Dan grades have a very high knowledge of Kata
2) More members
3) Proof that Judo can be unified
4) Expertise in other forms of Jacket Grappling

My club has organised a BJA Coaching and Grading Valuation in December and my son John and some of my other contest grades will be going to Budokwai end of October to get their grades confirmed and if they are good enough may even go higher. So my club has given the BJA a chance I would suggest others do the same.

Will I be attending the Course NO, will I go for grade recognition NO, this is not for any spiteful reason but as I have been doing Judo for 50 years in 2007, as I have been a Professional Coach since 1971 I do not think I need to be assessed my record speaks for itself. More importantly there are still people in the BJA who would object to my grade recognition and this could stand in the way of unification, it is my younger players who will take us forward.

Martin Clarke

Friday, September 22, 2006


This is an introduction to CombatArts I hope it will create some discussion between those who participate in CombatArts. My own expertise is in Judo, Sombo, CombatSombo, Belt Wrestling, Kurash and Jiu Jitsu plus i have an interest in all styles of Folk wrestling. for this blog to work it needs you to interact