Two Shufu Kata Teams Represent the USA at 2013 World Judo Kata Championships

November 29, 2013
Karl Tamai, Diane jackson, Kevin Hobbs, and Bill Brownlowe at the Kodokan's Jigoro Kano Memorial

 

Karl Tamai, Diane Tamai Jackson, Kevin Hobbs, and Bill Brownlowe at the Kodokan’s Jigoro Kano Memorial

The 5th World Kata Championships, organized by the International Judo Federation, was held at the Budo Centre in Kyoto City, Japan on October 19thand 20th.

Over 200 athletes from 32 countries competed in five katas.

The USA kata delegation included seven teams: two from Shufu, two from upstate New York, one from Chicago, one from Texas, and one from Hawaii.

This was the first time two teams have represented Shufu on the USA World Championships squad.  Karl Tamai (College Park Judo) and Diane Tamai Jackson (Hui-O) competed in Nage No Kata while Kevin Hobbs (AmraJuku Judo) and Bill Brownlowe (Fairview Judo Kai) competed in Ju No Kata.

To qualify to represent the United States, teams must score very high marks at the National Championships, and not all teams that place are invited to join the US competitors for the World Championships.

Unlike at the USA National Championships, there is only one category per kata (including male, female, and mixed) at the World Championships, and the scoring is conducted under the IJF Kata Competition Rules with reference also to the official Kodokan Kata videos.

The Budo Centre, built by the Japanese government in 1987 as a comprehensive training facility for the Japanese martial arts, is very special to judo. It is at the Kyu-butokuden, which was built in 1899 and is the oldest martial arts training hall in the country.  It was in the Kyu-butokuden that the first katas were developed.

Jigoro Kano taught the importance of kata along with randori in Judo training and encouraged all judoka to train in both elements in order to master the essence of Judo.

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