Thursday, March 29, 2007

Robin Hyslop Replies

I can remember my first taste of judo way back in 1972! an old Nissan hut in a quiet area of Dumfries, wind howling through the not so well fitting windows and a canvas flooring, just right for all those burns that I’m sure we have all sustained at some point, i also remember the gradings that some of us went to, demonstrate a few throws and then fight and win to advance up the grading system. It is true that Judo has changed over the decades; it seems to be more sport orientated rather than a martial art and has lost a lot of its identity over the years! So what direction should Judo take??? Who wants to get bashed about these days??? Who is willing to travel to comps??? Who is willing to be a coach or instructor??? Who wants to be a referee? (Now that’s a joke)!!! so what if you have a pink Judo suit, it would certainly get people talking! Where have all the Judo players disappeared to over the years? are they all really stuck in front of a computer screen or did they all just get pissed off with the way Judo was going in the UK? i think the latter! In the 70s if you picked up a Martial Arts magazine you would only find about 2 or 3 organisations advertising in it, nowadays its not worth buying one because they are all full of adverts. The coveted Black Belt? well if you dilute something then you weaken it, i think that’s an easy way to express how i feel about all of these so called experts that talk too much, (get a job as a car salesman for goodness sake, and stop kidding us on!) What i like to see is just plain competitive Judo! There’s nothing better than to see 2 evenly matched Judoka fight, a real pleasure to watch clean technical throws being executed, oh! and a referee that has a clue about what’s going on, (maybe that last bit is too much to ask for) think i have had a decent moan, got to go, have invented this new martial art/sport which entails both players whacking each other about the head with a laptop also doing courses in laptop self defence and laptop Kata, if i ever get my hands on the people who send spam!!!!ROBIN HYSLOP 4th DAN

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

World Champion CON

For many years I have been bemused by the amount of World Champions there are in the Combat Disciplines so I started to investigate an area I know something about that is Sombo/Sambo. I first trawled various web site on the Subject and was amazed at how many World Champions the USA has produced having entered my first World Championships in 1985 and involved in one capacity or another since then, I was some what dubious especially as I know the dominance the Eastern block has had in the past and still does I began to check. Many people criticised the breakaway Sombo Group who found a nesting place under the auspices of FILA (For the uninitiated FILA run International Wrestling Olympic Style and Greco Roman, FIAS is the Sombo/Sambo recognised by the World Governing body for sports GIASF) for running a World Championships claiming that it was a Mickey Mouse affair, this was some what unfair as they did have 13 countries competiting. Admittedly none were top quality teams from strong Sombo/Sambo countries and when it was reported USA asked a Beach Wrestler to enter the event even though he had never competed in Sombo and then he went on to win the event did put the whole thing in context, what was important is that he actually competed he did not know the opposition but had the courage to get on the mat as far as I am concerned he is a FILA World champion but not a FIAS World Champion who notably had over 30 countries at their event. There have always been occasions when there is more then one organisation, one will have a higher standard then the other, my problem is those Somboist who claim to be a World Champion who never fought for them. Yes there are several people who have had a Walk Over in a so called World Event who put on their CV they were a previous World Champion, surely this is a fraudulent claim and apart from that what real competitor would claim a title without a match? I can understand you sometimes want to put bit of gloss on your CV and sometimes you may win an event where there are only two or three players but at least you fought and hopefully if asked you tell the truth.

Am I wrong to be critical of these people? Maybe one them can reply and explain.

Martin Clarke

Tuesday, March 27, 2007


I have had my first reply it is a pity the contributor did not have the courage to leave his name and grade this would have added some weight to argument and being anonymous is normally the act of a coward or some one who just watches their children do Judo. He may have some points do you think the Oreintals superior to Westerners ? World championship results dispute that apart from what our contibutor says.
Yukio Tani (1881 - 1950) was a Jiu Jitsuka note the correct spelling
Gunji Koizumi, (1885-1965) introduced Judo to England my father Nobby was taught by him and I met him in 1962 note the spelling
Kenshiro Abbe 1915-1985 he graded both of my parents Nobby and Margret to 1st Dan in 1962, I went on several of his courses
I knew Mr Otani and attended several of his courses

I think anonymous was trying to say in a rather crude way"JUDO should return to being a Japanese Way"
lets have your opinion but lets have names and grades

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Should Judo be updated": Judo has changed, this is one of the reasons why it is in decline. The idea of making judo more fashionable by having cloured judogi's (which are already in use in many clubs) is ridiculous and the idea of introducing "shoes" just doesn't make sense.The invention of the computer and the internet is the current method of communication, interaction and entertainment and has affected many activities.Judo has changed and not for the better, it has become more like wrestling, it is already easier to obtain grades, at one time to see a black belt was a honour and very rare, now they are tow a penny and some not so deserving exponents have exploited the art, and also developed their own organisation, self graded and exploited people. Judo used to be a scientific art of using techniques and had an air of mystery about which maintained interest.For judo to improve and be able to keep exponents interested it needs to take a few steps backwards to when it was an art. It is very doubtful as to whether this would be possible, it has perhaps gone too far along the wrong road, the Japanese master's that where here like M. Otani, Y. Otani, K. Abbe and G. Kizumi are dead. If you want to have any idea as to what judo is really all about you have to look to the Far East, to Japan, Korea and China. In International competition they rule the mat, just look at their style (ie standing upright) etc.In the western world we have, without good reason and with detrimental effect changed judo in the name of sport, this is a great shame. Posted by Anonymous to Combatarts at 6:47 PM

Monday, March 26, 2007

Should Judo be updated

Judo in the UK is going through a rather sticky patch at the moment, with numbers on the decrease, competitions are not being supported many are being cancelled. 10 years ago you had to stop youngsters entering competitions now we have to insist that they enter at least one competition in between gradings, this apathy is not just restricted to Judo it is spreading throughout the Country for what ever reason people have given up on the UK.

So how can we stop this destructive attitude, some associations think by dropping standards Judo will appeal to more people, having inferior Dan grades only ridicules our discipline. A Dan Grade should be treated like a Degree something of a high standard worth having, Kyu grades and junior grades are just apprentice grades. Today everything thing is visual, if you want young people involved you have to presented it as a Modern trendy thing and what is trendy CLOTHING. Keep the standards and traditions of Judo but change the Clothing, lets have Multi Coloured Judogi’s, maybe change the shape and cut of a Judogi, introduce Judo Boots soft soled like in Sombo but multi coloured, make competitions more exciting introduce light shows, music introduce competitors with a bit of razzmatazz, instead of massive all day events maybe have a smaller venue and just 3 or weight cat, so the competition doesn’t become a marathon. Maybe these ideas are not the way forward but somebody must think the impossible or Judo in 10 years will go the same way as Boxing and Wrestling just a couple of hundred participating

Martin Clarke 8th Dan