The Harder, The Better?

During a recent coach education course that I attended as an observer, one of the participants asked the clinician what type of mats would be best for Judo.  The clinician replied that his own preference was for getting the hardest mats possible.  The reason?  To ensure good ukemi!  That response nearly knocked me off my chair.  Here was yet another piece of information that in my mind was clearly a great disservice to all the coaches present, and ultimately to Judo itself.  Let’s examine why this statement was not in our best interest as we try to hang on to a diminishing segment of the martial arts market.

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