Shufu Players Dominate the USA Team for the 2016 World Kata Judo Championships.

November 17, 2016
2016 United States World Kata Team Oishi, Tamai, Jackson, Shimizu, Takeuchi, Lifshitz, Burton,

2016 United States World Kata Team
Chase Oishi, Bryce Oishi, Karl Tamai, Diane Tamai Jackson, Barb Houston-Shimizu, Kuniko Takeuchi, Wayne Lifshitz, Monty Rahmon Burton, Lisa Capriotti, Rob Gouthro


By Diane Tamai Jackson, Wayne Lifshitz and Monty Rahmon Burton

Photos Courtesy of Rob Gouthro


The World Kata Judo Championships returned to Malta this year.  Eighty-eight pairs from over 20 countries competed in five katas. At Worlds this year, the competition was at the highest level we’ve seen and even slight imperfections were the difference between a medal or not. This year, in the Nage No Kata finals, three teams tied for second with 402 points each, and the next team had 401 points. According to IJF tie-breaking rules, two of these teams did not medal. In the other finals, medalists were separated by 2-3 points also. Japan won all Katas except Kime no kata (France) and Ju no kata (Germany, 2nd time gold medalist).


The competition also keeps the judges at close reach of the IJF rules. Several teams received automatic deductions due to uniforms (Gi’s) not meeting regulation. For example, one player wore his practice gi, two players had incorrect back numbers, and one player had a non-regulation uniform. These slight and unfortunate infractions can make or break a medalist. But this is the World Championships, where competition is at its highest.


At the World level competition, all teams (men, women and mixed) compete together. Competition is broken out into two brackets per kata with the top three teams in each bracket advancing to the finals. Each kata competition happens over one day with preliminaries in the morning and finals and medals in the afternoon; three katas on Day 1 and two on Day 2.


This year, the USA had four teams at Worlds; three were from Shufu. Wayne Lifshitz and Monty Rahmon Burton from National Institutes of Health and College Park judo clubs competed for the first time at Worlds in Kodokan Goshin Jutsu; they finished 15th.  

Lifshitz and Burton demonstrating Goshin Jutsu at 2016 Kata World Championships

Lifshitz and Burton demonstrating Goshin Jutsu at 2016 Kata World Championships


Karl Tamai and Diane Tamai Jackson from College Park Judo and Hui-O Judo competed for their fourth consecutive year. Competing in Ju No Kata (a switch from Nage No Kata) finished 12th.


Robert Gouthro and Lisa Capriotti from Hui-o Judo competed for their third consecutive year.  This was their second year to compete in Kime No Kata and finished 7th.


Another first year team was Bryce Oishi and Chase Oishi, brothers from California, who competed in Katame No Kata; they finished 19th.

Bryce (Tori) and brother Chase (Uke) perform Katame No Kata at the World Kata Championships

Bryce (Tori) and brother Chase (Uke) perform Katame No Kata at the World Kata Championships


The team was also represented by Kuniko Takeuchi sensei who was there as the Pan-American Judo Conference Kata committee chair, and Barb Houston-Shimizu as team manager and secretary for the PJC kata committee.


The competition was followed by two days of kata seminar and practice led by the Kodokan senseis. The instruction was of course top-notch, the gold medal teams demonstrated their expertise in slow motion, and players were able to discuss fine points of technique execution during the practice sessions.


For those of you who are kata judges, we need more of you at the judging table as judges are an integral part of the overall team. The USA is gaining knowledge and experience at the World level and are closer to reaching the Finals! Congratulations to all of the teams on their efforts.


Click here for Monty Burton’s Perspective on competing in his first Kata World Championships

Shufu Shinbun is BACK !

This newsletter is presented in memory of Malcolm Hodges who was a dedicated Shufu and Washington Judo Club member for many years and wrote and was the editor of the monthly Shufu Shinbun newsletter.


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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:

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.