USJA: getting back to our pioneering spirit

My mom used to take a wooden coat hanger or her high heel shoe to beat my little butt when I misbehaved.  Why the behavior modification tools?  Her excuse was that when she used her hand, she’d break blood vessels and would become black and blue.  From time to time she’d remind me that the only reason she beat me was because she loved me.  Well, I’ve been beating up on the USJA, and I do so, just like my mom did with me, because I love the USJA.  More precisely I love the USJA that I joined back in 1975.  Unfortunately, I hate seeing what it has become.

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One Step Backward, A Few Steps Forward

Contrary to what I was originally told, I received word a few days ago that the Women’s Judo Championships in Las Vegas scheduled for January 23 will use the new rules. How that came about is more troubling and disappointing than the decision itself. An official from the USJA asked several of the referees what they thought we ought to do. Hello! What do you think referees are going to say? Their allegiance is to the rules, not the sport. For the life of me, I don’t understand why the tournament director didn’t make that decision? Meek sheep falling in line?

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Coach Education: Reinventing the Wheel?

Although most U.S. Judo Association members don’t yet know it, we are working on yet another revamping of the coach education system. It’s unfortunate that we have to address this so soon after the last fix, but four years ago we threw out a lot of good stuff and didn’t replace it with anything meaningful. “The more it changes, the more it’s the same thing” is a French proverb that sums up our coaching situation. After serving on the coaching committee for nearly thirty years, I’m getting tired of the changes that seem to make little difference in the quality of our coaches. Continue reading