Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Geof Gleeson GB greatest Judo Philosopher

One of the greatest thinkers in British Judo since it first came to the UK in my opinion was Geof Gleeson 9th Dan, I had the privilege of being able to call him a friend and mentor. He was responsible for developing the IBFBCSA Coaching Effective Programme something way ahead of its time. I have finished reading his book “Judo Inside Out” first published in 1983 he gave me a copy and signed it “From one Coach to another” this was great honour because he did not have a high regard of most coaches, one time a very senior Judo Grade someone a lot older then me once asked him to sign his Judo License, he refused brushing this very high grade to one side. At the end of the seminar I asked why he refused stating that he had signed my book, his reply was “You understand he doesn’t” That made my signature even more valuable.
Below is the preamble on the flyer take special note of the second paragraph and remember this was written in 1983 27 years ago! Read through the book and you will find even more gems. Now you tell me this man was not ahead of his times.

Judo's origins lie in Japan, and although judo has been practiced in Britain for over sixty years British interpretation of this foreign skill has not taken sufficiently into account the rationale behind the techniques. The differences in the two cultural approaches - their philosophy, religion, social attitudes and psychological pressures - need to be fully appreciated before judo skills can be most effectively taught. In this book, Geof Gleeson takes a close look at the social pressures and ideologies which have helped to mould the shape of judo in Britain and Japan, and shows how new ways of teaching quickly and effectively at all levels emerge from a deeper understanding of the origins and development of the sport itself.
In a society where sport is becoming an increasingly powerful force and can all too easily be manipulated for personal or political ends, the role of the coach becomes ever more vital; but he will himself need special training to be able to deal with all the various aspects of sport. This stimulating and controversial book offers a new approach to sport education, both specifically in judo and more generally in the wider issues that sport will continue to raise.

Geof Gleeson is well qualified to tackle these issues. As National Coach he has taught and coached judo at all levels of performance in many parts of the world. He has trained in Japan and won competitions in Britain, Europe and Japan. His post-graduate research was concerned with the socio-psychological aspects of championship performance (not just in judo), and he has written on the moral and ethical interactions between sport and society.

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