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Roy Inman OBE Seventh DAN comments on :- 

Children’s Judo Training

THE SHARPENING

DEVELOPING A CONTEST SKILL

Howey’s Eight Week Preparation

ROY INMAN 7th DAN OBE (JUDO CV)

Children’s Judo Training

Roy Inman, judo teacher in London schools and team manger judo to British squad for 15 years. 

“If monitored correctly, it would be a great idea. Of course, you would have to have experienced coaches-it’s no good getting some PE teacher to do a four-week crash and then try to teach martial art.

But there are many pluses to kids learning judo, for example, at school. One of the most important is the physical contact that judo gives, unlike most other sports. Most children have very little physical contact with each other, but what they do have is aggression. Judo allows physical contact in a controlled manner - and I have found it helps relax the kids and lessen any future hostile confrontations. Children are nervous of each other - you have only got to watch a group of new first years. The physical contact of judo helps ease these nerves.

The mat is also a great place to expend al the pent up energy. I have over the years reached the opine

that the judo actually lifts discipline levels. Even the most hyper-active and uncontrollable kids develop etiquette and self-control. After all, judo is not a violent sport. It is one of the few combat sports whose aim is not to hurt or maim. If someone does get injured, it is an accident.

Another beauty of judo is that everyone can do it. It gives even the most non-athletic shaped kids something they can be good at. This just doesn’t happen in all their other sports, especially ball games where you’ve either got co-ordination or you haven’t, introduce judo and it will help those who don’t normally stand out to shine.

Judo can be ultra-competitive - but even children who don’t like one-to-one competition can still measure their progress with the grading system. In this way, they compete against themselves by improving judo skills and this builds their self­confidence.

Other sports have tried to copy this sort of system - but really the grading system is unique to the martial arts.

THE SHARPENING

Specific Shiai preparation requires planning ,various elements have to be in place one of which is to peak for the event I call this Sharpening (other terminology used is peradization programmes the sharpening is the final training period pre contest) this would follow the final six week general preparation programme the emphasis is on shia uchi-komi and nagi-komi concentrating on the individuals shia wa.zas with speed, accuracy and timing with fast gripping all top priority areas .in other words look sharp be sharp feel sharp (SSS) Recovery rate programme has already been done in previous weeks but this aspect is monitored within the Sharpening sessions so as to maintain levels already reached. Probable possible opposition wazas, grips, postures and stances is also a factor incorporated and considered when devising the drills .Randori is essential part of the Sharpening period each practice should be treated as shia (though your opponent may not be aware of this) and be as fresh as possible for each practice do not use the session as fitness and recovery training (ie do not go to the failure and recovery phase) be very motivated and specific On attacks with the aftitude of expecting to score not hoping to.. Ne-waza opportunity and follow though must be incorporated into the randori session and opponents should be aware of this so as to give the proper response mat space safety must also be controlled with the tachiwaza newaza combined policy a average newaza time allocation on this aspect would be 15 seconds approx .this time allocation should be monitored by the coach as players do tend to spend longer than is required in newaza randori the newaza training should emulate what will happen in the actual shiai EIJF referee policy of standing players up if no immediate score looks likely.

Time allocation for the Sharpening phase would be approximately 2weeks ( 6 randori sessions) pre travel to the event . the rest time management aspect and monitoring should be strictly enforced as panic training pre event can suddenly manifest itself within the sharpening period .The objective of the 3 SSS is to boost the confidence of the player they also feel prepared. To undertake and achieve this standard of preparation Requires to have a high degree of the general fitness elements strength flexibility and muscular endurance With a judo recovery rate training drills a core element of the programme

COMBAT JUDO

DEVELOPING A CONTEST SKILL

My definition of a judo skill is something that works in a competitive situation. A lack of systenI~tic teaching in judo all too often creates a dabblers mentality. A player can at national training and club sessions and on international courses during the course of the year be presented with dozens of ~ techniques and combinations by various coaches. To establish a skill in any one or two of these techniques requires planning. It takes time for the individual to absorb the basic movements and they must then be able to incorporate it into, their own

established judo patterns, therefore it must be realised that a commitment to develop a technique into a contest skill can be along term affair. The decision must not be taken lightly

During the course of my years of experience in coaching teams and players I have developed various guide lines:

I. Look at your current major throws and what they normally score. Look at the minor throws and what they normally score. Is there an obvious weakness? e.g. The lack of a throw to one side or to one angle? The lack of a throw against a particular defence in extreme circumstances? The lack of a throw against a particular opponent?

2.Only decide on a throw if it not only suits the situation but also suits your own ability, size and movement pattern eg. (it’s probably not worth a man over 6ft 6ins to adopt morote seoinage as a special study)

3.    First of all consider the basic mechanics:­

a. Look at the ideal grip.

b. Look at the entries - which is the quickest and/or most effective entry? To by pass, slip or blast through the opponents defenses? One step? Two steps? Jump in? Hop in? Pull the opponents body onto you? Or set a trap so that he walks into it?

c.Establish in your own mind the direction of he throw.

d. Which is the ideal stance/posture from which to attack?

e. To get the best result should the opponent be moving or static? If moving then in which direction?

f. Devise the uchi-komi sequences, to begin with standing still and practising the established entry with the occasional completion of the technique.

g.Start to incorporate movement at first with just the one step pattern then gradually introducing variety and covering large areas of the mat. h. After some time has passed the technique should be ready to be introduced into the randori session. Initially attempted against lighter and/or less experienced players

4.   Once fluency has been obtained and you are sure in your own mind exactly what you are trying to achieve, gradually introduce it into harder randori’s and eventually into your contest programmes.

Additional Factors

Very often a new skill needs time to settle down. This cannot be forced, sometimes it can fail for months and then suddenly appear as if from nowherç as a mature contest technique. The golden rule is to establish 

First impressions are often very crucial, so the first impression made upon the ‘body memory’ should be the correct ones. Make each aspect of the throw - entry, lift, rotation - precise. You should be very clear what you are aiming to do at each point in the throw. It is not enough to just leap in with a fast and extravagant movement and hope that it will work. Only when the throw is becoming established should you consider spin off’s from the movement, in terms of other opportunities or combinations. The study should also be undertaken of counters to your particular movement or throw. The understanding Of counters to your favourite throw is ~is important as a study of the throw itself.

Players and coaches should always remember that an important part of the judo skill (what works) is very often linked to correct tactics and strategy and the fitness of the player. When a player becomes tired his timing goes, his level of co-ordination decreases and he ceases to think clearly. A fit player can concentrate on his opponent, a tired player goes on the defensive and makes mistakes. The objective of fitness in judo is very simple and very specific: you are developing fitness in order to maintain your skill level.

Of all the major throws seen in top tournaments uchi-mata and seoi-nage (all types and entries) are in my experience the most used; closely followed by ashi-waza’ s of various descriptions, the most successful of which is ko-uchi-gari/gake. Sutemi-waza’s like tomoenage and yoko guruma can also be very prevalent in some tournaments. 

The conclusion I have reached over the years is that a top player has in his or her repertoire a technical range of four to six throws with an average of two attacks in ne-wa.za, and within this repertoire a standard ‘~-range of counter techniques against particular styles of opponents. A rule of thumb I try to use as a coach is to introduce skills that suit the player’s physique and temperament and to produce training situations which make the skills into automatic responses from the players.

Howey’s Eight Week Preparation

Champion of the World    Kate Howey

THE PREPARATION

At the 1997 world championships in Paris Kate became U66 Kg World Champion (forever with category changes next year!) It did not just happen; a great deal of planning, preparation and time was involved. Players like Kate require an infrastructure containing seven elements. Listed below are what I call

MAGNIFICENCE SEVEN

1.   EXPERIENCE (coach & player)

If a coach is going to prepare a player for a~ major competition ie. Worlds or Olympic Games he has to have an in depth knowledge of the strengths and weaknesses of the player.

In the case of Kate Howey she first got into a British National Squad aged 15 and I have been involved in her coaching and preparation since.

During this period she became Junior World Champion and went on to win a World silver medal (senior) and various European medals not forgetting her Olympic bronze in 1992 games and A class Golds. Her experience is second to none.

2.    CONDiTIONING

Cardiovascular (recovery rate training - 4 session per week)

Sprints, running, circuits and speed/power uchikomi, with a weights training system inclusive of a muscular endurance & slrength gaining module (always making sure and monitoring that it had relevance to improving. Kate’s judo ie.weight lifts that are throw specific)

3.  COMPETITION 

Two objectives in this element: first to compete jn events and achieve results which would get her selected for the World Championships ie. A class events and Europeans (also using these events and others as preparation training eg.British Open etc.) With such a comprehensive contest schedule it was possible to put together a video index of probable and possible opposition which was to become invaluable in the skills sessions element.

4.RANDORI.

Structured randori is an indispensable part of Kate’s preparation. It enables her to try new skills and also maintain work on established skills with a pressure training system included to improve match fitness (she had 4 sessions per week: at Dartford,)

5.SKILLS

Eight weeks before the Worlds we reviewed video of Kate’s previous and most recent fights. I analysed her strengths and weaknesses and devised uchikomi drills geared to what was actually happening in the contest situation, taking into account the following: different opponents and styles, also their grips and postures. Special attention was paid to the Korean and German players (which with hindsight was most fortunate as they became her Semi & Final opponents at the World Championships). The randori sessions were plann’éd with a feedback dialogue ie. What’s working or not. Monitoring and testing of judo fitness was also part of the Skills Element sessions. I Would take Kate to her physical limit - with a judo circuit we nicknamed “devil training” -whilst endeavouring to keep her skill, entries and throws accurate. We linked this with recovery rate work. These mat session were one-on-one, 2 per week( mornings). Kate’s training schedule consisted of a seven day week; five working days, two resting. The rest aspect was very important, this enabled her to recover in time for the next session.

6.    PSYCHOLOGICAL

One of the major aspects of a good performance is confidence. It can be easily shaken’ by many factors but it is hard to erode if you have established it through good preparation. Kate knew at the Worlds she was well prepared. She knew her opponents and had tactical and visualisation plans in place. She also knew

• she was as fit as it was possible to be anci she had fought and beaten most of her probable opponents. My emphasis in training was to remind her of this aspect as often as possible and point out just how worried the opposition was about her. You could tell she was really confident (as the day progressed at the Worlds her confidence grew). It became apparent that when she attacked she expected to score rather than hoped to. This increased her follow through and she scored more ippons.

Physically and Technically prepared = Psychologically prepared 

7.     RESOURCES

To undertake a World Championships competition and training programme requires resources ie. money for: facilities, transport, food, fees and equipment. Kate’s situation was that she was sponsored by Twinings Tea with the use of a car without which it would have been impossible to travel to the required veni~es. The majority of petrol costs had to be paid by her (she had a part time job) other costs were funded by her father, family or friends which paid for other living expenses. The B.J.A. pay for full International trips and give a small food supplement for training camps. She also had a grant from the S.A.F but has had to borrow money to supplement her expenditure on training (not forgetting my fees which are huge! I wish!!)

The Seven Elements mentioned are only covered in abbreviated form in this article. To cover them in real depth would require a lot more space than is available here.

QUOTES

The players make the coach. The coach who thinks his talent for coaching is more than the talent of his player is an idiot.  

Coaches are best when people barely know they exist; not so good when people obey or acclaim them; worse when they despise them. But of good coaches who talk little, when their work is done, their aim fulfiled, their charges will say “we did this ourselves”. 

Lao Tzu Tao Te Ching (sixth century)

ROY INMAN 7th DAN OBE (JUDO CV)

CURRENT POSITIONS 

A LONDON BUDOKWAI COACH 

HIGH PERFORMANCE COACH UNIVERSITY of BATH 

A BJA DIRECTOR OF COACHING (NBC)

A NATIONAL SENIOR EXAMINER

NVQ EXAMINER & ASSESSOR

MEMBER BJA NATIONAL COUNCIL

PREVIOUSEXPERIENCE AND POSITIONS HELD

MEMBER OF BJA BOARD OF DIRECTOR (1OYEARS) 

CHAIRMAN NATIONAL GRADING COMMISSION 

AUTHOR OF CURRENT DAN GRADE SYLLABUS) 

AUTHOR OF VARIOUS BOOKS ON JUDO 

BJA REGIONAL CHAIRMAN NHC AREA (13 YEARS) 

PERSONAL COMPETITION CAREER

A BRITISH INTERNATIONAL (1OYEARS)

WORLD AND EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS PLAYER)

COACHING EXPERIENCE CURRENT & PREVIOUS 

BRITISH WOMAN TEAM COACH & MANAGER (16 YEARS) 

OLYMPIC COACH AT SYDNEY OLYMPIC GAMES 

BRITISH OLYMPIC COACH & TEAM MANAGER SEOUL OLYMPICS

BRITISH OLYMPIC COACH & TEAM MANAGER BARCELONA OLYMPICS

BRITISH ESPIORS &MEN’S COACH (4YEARS)

A BRITISH NATIONAL COACH (5 YEARS)

AWARDED INTERNATIONAL A COACH OF THE YEAR ( NCF AWARD) 

QUALIFIED B.A.W.L.A COACH 

QUALIFIED TRAMPOLINE COACH

RESULTS WITH BRITISH TEAMS AS A PERSONAL COACH 

8 WORLD CHAMPIONS 

13 WORLD TITLES 

6 OLYMPIC MEDALS 

7 WORLD SILVER MEDALS 

12 WORLD BRONZE MEDALS 

10 EUROPEAN CHAMPIONS 

19 EUROPEAN TITLES 

15 EUROPEAN SILVER MEDALS 

31 EUROPEAN BRONZE MEDALS 

6 Commonwealth Games Gold Medals 

3 JUNIOR WORLD CHAMPIONS 

3 TIMES SENIOR EUROPEAN TEAM CHAMPIONS COACH 

2 TEAM SILVER 

2 TEAM BRONZE 

115 (A) TOURNAMENT MEDALS GOLD, SILVERS & BRONZE 

AWARDED OBE (SERVICES TO JUDO)