Bedford Open Judo Championships
Saturday October 1st 2011
IBF Black belt Russell Dodds recently started a new Judo club and to give this new club a boost he organised a Judo event in the Town of Bedford. His new club has been a run away success and operates on a Saturday morning; it has been a few years since Bedford has held a competition.
I am not going to write a report on the tournament I shall this leave to Russell to write one for the IBF site and Drew for the Young Judo Club but I would like to make a couple of observation
First it was very well attended and organised even though the venue was a bit on the small size but this due to the success of the competition. When Russell first approached me about running an event we both expect about 40 Judoka, this was about the norm for comps lately in Kent, and we did not expect 80 Judoka. Most importantly there were different players competing from as far field as Scotland. This made the competition interesting to watch as regular medal winners were being eliminated or being pushed down the medal table, this was a good thing as some of my own Clubs Judoka was becoming stale and complacent.
It was also good to see all the IBF Bedford getting together to make the competition a success, this particular section of the IBF is a very young group and have plenty of enthusiasm but there one old timer who I was glad to see that was Steve Jacob who has had some problems recently but has now returned minus his pony tail.
IBF Bedford has supported Kent Judo for over thirty years now it is time for Kent to support them especially as most Kent Judoka does not want competition. Plus Bedford is better positioned being in the middle of the country and travelling any where today is no longer cheap, so if we all help bear the cost Judo Competitions may not collapse altogether
I think the rule changes to Judo have had a detrimental effect especially the down grading of Ippon to what 10 years ago would have been Yuko, this has made the competitions quicker but will deter novices in competing. Those in power, who administer these rules, administer for World Class athletes not for the ordinary Judoka. This weekend I saw many novices and beginners competing who were on the mat for just under a minute some had travelled from Kent and Scotland to give up a day, travel for about 5 hours and pay petrol for a couple of fights which in total lasted 1 minute 30 seconds will not encourage people. If the Judo hierarchy, will not do anything then the ordinary Judoka must, because these people sit in their ivory towers pontificating and earning good money from Judo, reminds me of Nero playing the fiddle while Rome burns
Here are two ideas which will encourage new Judoka 1) make obtaining an Ippon harder this will lengthen the matches or leave Ippon as it is but have three to win the bout 2) Stop oseakomi being an outright win, I have seen literally thousand of youngsters enter there first competition only to be pushed over held down match finished in 35 seconds and they paid up to £20 for that.
If you want to try something different come to my Junior Points scoring competition in December. To finish well done Russell and Bedford you are helping to keep Judo alive