Just over 50 judoka representing 18 different clubs from every County within the Western Area gathered to take part in the first Development Day at Kingsley School in Bideford on Saturday.
The event was organised by the Western Area Head Coach Simon Ward, who wanted to engage a greater involvement for Education at the Western Area Training sessions. so the plan was to give an opportunity to allow not only the judoka to gain valuable experience, but also parents to join in with a number workshops throughout the day.
The day started with a mass 12-minute Cooper Run to get the blood flowing and some screening for squad testing, before the judoka were split into three age groups for the three training units including Tachiwaza & Newaza technical development, situational randori and fitness conditioning, and the day was rounded off with some fun judo games.
Running alongside the judo, parents and club coaches had many exciting opportunities to take part in three informative educational workshops including judo-specific “Children’s Strength and Conditioning”, a Sports Nutrition course on “Fuelling Your Young Athletes body” run very successfully by Francis Sanderson.
They also ran a judo-specific sports injuries course focusing on soft tissue damage which included practical practises on strapping injuries. The final workshop was run by Sport England Club Matters. This was an excellent course run by Martin and Karen French who delivered the Club Experience, “How to be an amazing club for young people”. This course was well attended by many clubs who all found the information incredibly informative and useful to help support their club’s development.
During the day, the Western Area judoka had an opportunity to have their photo take as part of the International Judo Federation’s (IJF) Ippon Project Guinness World Record challenge for the largest participation in a judo Poster, which will be displayed at the 2019 World Championships.
The Coaching team for the day included Neil Roode 6th Dan and former senior GB international Fran Roode. We also welcomed South Brent Coach, Gary Gregory and Devon County Coach Justin Allen, who were all supported by a number of club coaches working alongside the Western Area Team of Simon Ward and Eva Minarikova.
Simon Ward commented “I’m very pleased with the success of the development day and already parents and coaches are asking for further events in the future. It was very pleasing to see a large number of Minors and proves, as an Area, we have a fantastic group and next generation judoka coming through from their clubs. I’m very honoured that so many coaches came along to support the event and its very much appreciated”.
Caroline Clements (Parent) said “It was a very informative day, thanks to the coaches, hopefully more to come.”
Karen Creasey-Cottle (Parent) said “Thanks coaches all the kids had fun and the courses were very informative.”
Gareth Williams (Judoka) said “The 12-minute run wasn’t fun, but I managed 2990m which I’m proud about. The coaching levels have been great and I’ve really enjoyed being part of the randori.”