An Attempt to Save Judo in San Diego

San Diego County used to have a vibrant Judo community in the 1970s when I first started my coaching career. We had over twenty-five active Judo clubs. Our members participated in monthly clinics, and tournaments, which would attract 250-300+ players. Little by little, our coaches, many of them active military personnel, were transferred out of the area or they retired or they died. Few had successors to keep the clubs going. Politics, pitting USJA and USJF supporters, and personal issues between the few remaining coaches further weakened our area. Continue reading

Notes from the 2009 U.S. Open, Part 1

I just got back from San Jose, California where the 2009 U.S. Open was held. I had the opportunity to talk to friends, coaches, and athletes, many of whom I had not seen in years. Here are some of the thoughts I came away with.

I don’t have enough fingers and toes to count the number of times I heard that “Judo is dying.” Continue reading