The Moose Jaw Koseikan Judo Club will be a busy, busy place Saturday.
More than 50 young judoka from throughout southern Saskatchewan will take part in a beginner’s 12-and-under tournament at the local dojo, (801 Hochelaga St. E) an event that promises to act as an excellent first-time competition for most of the young fighters, according to club sensei Cliff Wiens.
“For a lot of these kids, it’ll be a really good way to break into competition, a chance for them to see what it’s like,” he said shortly after a recent training session.
“The good thing about it is that it’s not a major tournament with a lot of pressure, the kids will be able to compete without having to really worry about how they’re going to do.”
That kind of a situation can be ideal for the young judokas to learn to put their training to practice, according to Saskatchewan high-performance coach Ewan Beaton.
“It’s a lot different that just regular training, the kids will have a chance to try their skills in an actual competitive situation and that can make a big difference in their development,” said Beaton, who was in Moose Jaw this week for a series of training sessions at the Koseikan dojo. “Even though they’re so young, they’ll have a chance to learn what works and what doesn’t work for them, something that will help them in future competitions.”
It’s expected 15 competitors from Swift Current and 25 from Regina will take part in the event, which begins at 1 p.m. and runs all day.
“It’ll be a bit packed in here, but we’ll be able to work it pretty well,” Wiens said. “The most important thing is that the kids will all have a chance to see each other compete and have a good time doing it.”
That kind of an atmosphere is one thing that will make this weekend’s event unique, says Beaton.
“The kids will be right there, they can have their parent right close in the stands if they want, it’s a great way to fight in your first tournament,” he said.
The tournament will again be sponsored by Kirby Duzan and Investor’s Group, which is donating all the medals for the event.
Appeared in the Moose Jaw Times-Herald Dec 10, 1999