Submitted by Sandy Vaughan-Sydnam
I couldn’t think of a better way to bring warmth and Judo Spirit to Creston’s brand new training facility than the hosting of a Kata Clinic. Sensei Joe Meers was present to honour the event and officially open Creston’s new Dojo. Meers started his training in Belgium in 1950 under Sensei Ishiro Abe. Meers is now age 90 and still oversees the activities of the Creston Judo Club. Now, the Creston Judo Club members have dedicated this beautiful facility to Sensei Joe Meers…. And, we got to play in it!
On October 1st and 2nd, Judo BC supported the clinic sending Mr. Art Nishi, Shichidan from the Judo BC Grading Board and Mr. Ron Kuramoto, Godan respectfully from the Steveston Judo Club. Together with participants from Invermere, Fernie, Castlegar, Salmo and Creston we learned about Nage No Kata or forms of throwing, one of the Randori no Katas and Ju no Kata, that studies the principals of attack and defense.
We had an enthusiastic youth group of nine who attended a pre clinic instructional course in Salmo with Sensei Sandy Vaughan-Sydnam the weekend prior. The youth group were all U13 and had a whole bunch of fun learning the Nage no Kata sequence and demonstrating kokoro (Judo spirit) to all of the adults. The youth were so very interested and performed some amazing technical skills for their grade and age. They all managed to get the first three sets, (left handed and right handed) memorized and demonstrated.
Sandy Vaughan-Sydnam of Salmo and Ben Reinhardt of Creston were designated by Mr Nishi as the Nage no Kata demo team…. Until Ben left for work and Sandy’s uki increased in size to Fred Gietz from Fernie for the sacrifice throws. Ron Kuramoto and Sandy finished out the Sunday by demonstrating the Ju no Kata for the group, all under Sensei Nishi’s trained eye.
All of us, whether novice or youth, competitor or recreational Judoka went back home with a load of information, not to mention bruises, bumps and sore muscles, to share with our fellow Judoka.
Thank you from all the students to Sensei Art Nishi and Sensei Ron Kuramoto. We are very happy to have you come to the Kootenays to share your knowledge. Many thanks and appreciation is extended to Judo BC for making this Kootenay Kata Clinic possible.
Left to Right, Back Row: Munroe Albert, Ron Kuramoto, Karen Sharp, Oscar Bot, Art Nishi, Joe Meers, Hermann Mauthner, Alisha Temple, James Welychico.
Front/Middle Row: Tia Lundgren, Brae Booth, Joseph Albert, Kaeden Rendek, Kaydon Booth, Kyle Qualtieri, Fred Gietz, Dillon Hack, Sandy Vaughan-Sydnam