The BJA recently sent me and their BJA members a letter stating “Some changes in direction and personnel to address some specific issues and promote a clearer focus on the delivery of our objectives” this sound like there is some under lying problem within the BJA Administration, I do not know what maybe someone can enlighten me.
What did strike me they continue you to say that their membership is steadily increasing? Why is that clubs are closing, Competitions are being cancelled and most clubs have seen in a drop in membership is the membership coming from the School Kids who just pay £5 and do Judo for 6 weeks?
The Hey Day of Judo was the 1970’s and 1980’s I believe they had a couple of paid staff now they have 80. They say their turnover is up to £7m a year most of it coming from government funding presumably this being paid on staff and Olympic Squad members.
With the amount of money being spent on the Olympic Team we should expect at least 8 medals but will this lead to more people doing Judo I doubt it. One would have thought with the Olympics being so close all sports would be on the increase yet figures show there is a 20% decline in Sport participation.
I have said for years Judo needs to re brand itself for example
1) Coloured Gi’s with advertisement
2) Judo Boots like Sambo Boots
3) Change the rules so a complete Novice can understand them with 10 minutes
4) Introduce rounds
5) Give Kata a bigger presence because this makes Judo different to all other grappling styles
6) Introduce more all association championships
7) Get referees out of Blazers they look to officious
8) Have more Judo shows like Boxing shows where you have say 6 matches with people watching from tables where they are being served a meal, this will create Judo celebrities
9) How much would it cost to have a Judo TV channel maybe the £7 million would be better spent there
I have said before some are saying Brazilian Jiu Jitsu will be more popular then Judo in a few years, if they were properly organised in GB they would be bigger now. My main love is Sambo but sadly this has not had the impact in the UK I had hoped but the throughout the rest of the world participation has been astronomical
I am already organising Jacket Wrestling Competitions to attract all Jacket Wrestlers, why doesn’t the BJA do the same maybe have an All Style Judo Competition change the rules slightly i.e. allow more then hold, award points how your opponent lands and extra for technical skill just an idea, some one steal it if they like
Martin Clarke 8th Dan