History Made at First Adaptive European Championships Kata

Westerleigh Judokwai’s Braydon Robus and Isabelle Everest made history for British Judo at the weekend as they topped the podium in the first-ever Adaptive European Championships Kata.

The pair scored an impressive 261.0 points for their Nage No Kata to take home the Gold medal. Their incredible performance saw them secure the second highest points tally of the day across all other disciplines.

The competition marked the first time that the European Judo Union has held an official event whereby both able-bodied and people with physical and intellectual disabilities were competing together in the same event. In the case of British pairing, both Braydon and Isabelle have adaptive needs.

Isabelle’s Mum Pauline was full of emotion at seeing the pair awarded the medals after being told by a Neurologist years earlier that “I don’t know what the future holds for Izzie, she has significant brain damage so it’s really up to her and you.”

For Izzie, this was a dream to represent her country, for me, it was a moment to reflect. Well it takes a village to raise a child – we had a city of amazing people, and yesterday she sat on the podium to the National Anthem. Thank you judo for being part of her journey is all I can say.”

Speaking of their son, Braydon’s mum Janine added: “Braydon has bilateral iris colobomas and anterior segment dysgenesis of his eyes. He also has hypermobility in his hands, is severely dyslexic and has Sensory Processing Disorder. He is currently awaiting an autism and ADHD assessment.

“We are incredibly proud of what Braydon has achieved and is striving to achieve in his life.”

British Judo Young Leader Tyla Slater of Drake Judo Club sent her congratulations to the pair after she met them on a recent coaching course:

I just wanna say a massive well done to Izzie and Brandon and just a few words especially for the younger ones about Izzie and the impact she has on people.”

“I met Izzie and Brandon on a Level 1 coaching course. When coaching, I had thought about adaptive athletes but had never thought about how I would adapt my judo to a child that was in a wheelchair. When on the course, I was placed in a group that included Izzie and Brandon.”

“Izzie helped me to adapt difficult techniques and combinations for people like her. Seeing the type of judo Izzie was doing and to a high level, made me realise that literally anything is possible. Izzie is a big inspiration to lots of people especially younger people. She is now the reason that I am able to adapt any judo coaching plans with children and adults that have physical needs.”

“So if you are ever going through a rough time during your judo just think this…”If Izzie can do it, then I can do it.”