This past weekend, three of my adult players kidnapped me and forced me to coach them at a team tournament in Los Angeles. It still gives me the creeps when I have to take players to an IJF rules tournament, which is something that I’ve only done twice in the last two plus years.
As a follow up to my last post (Show me the evidence!) I’m happy to announce that I’ve created a Facebook group, which is dedicated to bring together the Judo community that is disenchanted with IJF’s misguided leadership. The group is called the International Judo Freestyle Alliance. The idea for this group comes from Steve Scott, the founder of AAU Freestyle Judo rules. He picked my brain, asked me what I thought, and voila! A voice of sanity.
Several months ago, I had a heated discussion with my assistant coach who happens to be an international referee. As usual, the conversation revolved around the silly IJF rules, and how he could not support my transition away from IJF rules Judo to my own version of Judo competition, which is similar to AAU Freestyle Judo. Upon telling him that I needed to move on in order to keep Judo relevant, and that lots of people had similar concerns and had made the same decision as I had, he demanded that I show him the evidence. Furthermore, he stated that he wasn’t interested in Judo that can’t be done outside the dojo. Small mind.
For those of you who have been turned off from competing under the restrictive IJF rules, the National AAU Freestyle Judo Championships, which take place on March 23-24, 2012 in Kearney, Missouri, offers you a great opportunity to compete under more sensible rules that allow the full complement of Judo skills.
While there are many books that cover various aspects of Judo history, they always seem to me to be incomplete, maybe even superficial. That all changed when I read A History of Judo by 1964 British Olympian Syd Hoare, 8th Dan. Finally, this was the book that I had been looking for. A History of Judo was so informative and transformative that I bought out Amazon’s stock twice in order to offer the book to my assistant coaches.
Happy New Year! Let’s start off 2012 with a bang! Here’s something I’ve been thinking about for a long time. I know my ideas probably won’t get very far officially, but it’s important that we at least discuss them to see if they make sense for general skill development and self-defense.