Kime No Kata Clinic a Success, and Fun, Too!

March 10, 2015


March 7, 2015


Thirty-five judokas gathered at DeMatha High School in Hyattsville, MD today to benefit from the knowledge, experience, and teaching skill of Noboru Saito, the guest clinician for the 2015 Shufu Kime no Kata clinic.


Kevin Tamai, the clinic organizer, and Diane Tamai Jackson, Shufu’s Chairman of Kata Development, two of the head Senseis at Hui-O Judo

Senseis Kevin Tamai, Noboru Saito, and Diane Jackson

Senseis Kevin Tamai, Noboru Saito, and Diane Tamai Jackson

in Beltsville, MD, invited Sensei Saito to the Middle Atlantic area to teach this special topic for the annual Shufu kata training session.  They have collaborated in the past to bring other, nationally recognized experts to the area for these special events.


An 8th degree black belt, Sensei Saito has been an Olympic Referee, President of the United States Judo Federation


(USJF), was the recipient of the 2012 USA Judo Lifetime Achievement Award, sits on the USA Judo’s Kata Judge Board of Examiners, and is President of the Michigan Judo Development Association.



With great attention to detail, Sensei Saito adeptly guided the teams with his hands-on and personal style.  During the morning session, he taught the overview as well as the details of the standing techniques against unarmed and armed attackers, while the afternoon was dedicated to the kneeling techniques against similar types of attackers.

Justin Schaffner and Chris Mattern

Justin Schaffner and Chris Mattern

Justin Shaffner and Chris Mattern, both from Charlottsville, (VA) Judo, were two judoka who traveled to Hyattsville this morning to attend this special clinic event.  When asked about their interest in Kime No Kata, Mattern said, “I like weapons.  Adding the range of weapons into my judo knowledge will help to round me out a lot.”  Shaffner added, “Approaching 40, I don’t see myself as a big shiai (controlled combat) guy, just starting out in judo – I’m interested in the larger judo outside of the sport, and we also train in Kali Eskrima. (Ed: traditional martial arts of the Philippines) which uses weapons.  So I’m interested in bridging some of the gaps between some of the combat martial arts and some of the larger judo outside of the sport.  I really like the wrist locks!”  Mattern then commented that “It’s legitimate.  They are good techniques – solid.”


Dr. Robert White, from the NIH judo club, said, “This is the third time I’ve participated in a Kime No Kata clinic.  I come to bring back self-defense techniques to my club.  And also, the first time I did this kata was after the 9/11 attacks.  So I also do it in preparation for getting on a plane next week.”

Dr. Robert White and Joseph McMillian

Dr. Robert White and Joseph McMillian


Joseph McMillian, from D.C.V.A Judo, and a student of Sensei Mark Smith, said, “So far, I’m definitely learning a lot of new skills and techniques and I’m out here enjoying myself.  Being the lowest ranking guy here, I’m just taking it in from all the different ranked black belts – just soaking everything in.  I’m enjoying it.”


Ken Archbold, from D.C. Judo, said “It’s valuable.  I like to see the connection to the old jiujutsu of the past and how it evolved into judo.”


Greg Gobel and Ken Archbold

Greg Gobel and Ken Archbold

Greg Gobel, who practices at US Naval Academy Judo, and is a student of Edwin Takemori’s, was excited to be at the clinic.  “Mr. Saito has a lot deeper understanding of this kata that I have yet to attain, and so I’m learning a lot of new things, watching and paying attention to how he’s teaching, as opposed to watching just what he is doing, so I can get a much deeper understanding of how the techniques work effectively.  I’m learning styles of teaching and how to do the kata at the same time.”

Kevin Tamai, Clinic Organizer and Director: “On behalf of Shufu Yudanshakai, I’d like to thank Sensei Saito for coming in to share his knowledge with us on the Kime no Kata.  I think it is important for Shufu Judo to provide

Kevin Tamai

Kevin Tamai

these types of clinics to all of its members and to continue to promote the growth of judo in the area.  We had a nice turnout today, with 35 people ranging (in rank) from Gokyu all the way up to Godan.  It was a nice blend of teaching and practical experience, and I think that everyone got something beneficial out of the clinic today.”


Photo Gallery

Hilaire Notewo Seeking Donations for Judo Programs in the Ivory Coast, Needs Gis and Equipment

Longtime Shufu Judo member Hilaire Notewo is planning to relocate to Côte D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Africa in late November/December. He will be supporting judo programs, but equipment (esp. judo uniforms) are difficult to come by.  Hilaire is looking for gently used judo gis and other equipment.  Hilaire will also be visiting and donating goods to orphanages.  Should you have gently used shoes, clothes for teenagers, youths, and toddlers, kindly make them available to Hilaire.

If you would like to donate to this effort, you can send your donation to the following address:

Hilaire Notewo

7401 New Hampshire Ave. #1003

Takoma Park, MD  20912

Or contact him via his email address: 202 945 3781.

Coach Certification

SafeSport Certification is now required for all USJF registered clubs. If you have already completed the course and submitted a copy of your certificate, you do not need to resubmit. For more information or to take the course, please visit

Heads Up concussion training, through the CDC’s website, is a requirement for all members of your USJF registered club who function as teachers at any time. Please advise all of your instructors and assistant instructors of this requirement. The training can be accessed at: