The 2012 Takemori Open Championships

October 16, 2012

The Takemori Family

Photo courtesy of Roy Nanjo

Shufu JudoYudanshakai held the 2012 Takemori Open Judo Championships at DeMatha Catholic High School on October 13th in Hyattsville, Maryland.

Participating at the championships were judo clubs from throughout the region including Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Attending clubs included Aldan (PA), Arlington (VA), Baltimore (MD), BMA Judo, Budokan (MD), Bushikai (MD), Charlottesville (VA), College Park (MD), Dale City (VA), DC Judo (DC), DC Recreation Judo (DC), Drexel University (PA), E.D.G.E (PA), Hui-O (MD), Judo Movement (NJ), Korean Judo, Lancaster Judo (PA), LINXX Academy (VA), Mainline (PA), Maryland Judo Team (MD), Norfolk Judo (VA), Pure Performance (MD), Rankin (WVA), Seigneury (MD), Sport Judo (VA), Team Maryland (MD), Tidewater (VA), Wall 2 Wall (VA), Washington (DC), and Yawara Force (PA).


The tournament is named in honor of the Takemori Family, which has been a key part of Shufu Judo Yudanshakai since it was founded in 1953. Senseis Jimmy and Edwin were both incredible competitive judoka in their early days and have been instrumental in the growth of judo in the US. As their competitive time came to end, they grew into international referees and have continued to lead their clubs and Shufu Judo Yudanshakai for over 60 years. Jimmy, who is now 85 and holds a ninth degree black belt, first began practicing judo in 1937 in Fresno, California.  He has been an instructor in the D.C. area for over 60 years, and has coached both the men’s and women’s U.S. international teams.  Sensei Jimmy also held a competitors’ clinic for juniors early in the morning of the tournament.


The next generation of Takemoris were all skilled judoka on the junior and senior level. Senseis Miki and Terri continue the tradition of developing Junior and Senior elite judokas. We thank all the Takemori family members for their outstanding devotion and service to judo. This year we were honored to have Jimmy and Edwin, along with Jimmy’s daughters Miki, Teri, Robin and Chrissy with their children.

The event was jointly hosted by Hui-O-Judo Beltsville and the College Park Judo Club at the beautiful DeMatha venue, where there were three competition mat areas. The event had 104 junior contestants and 74 senior competitors. The junior divisions included judoka from 5 through 16 years old, with 24 junior female competitors in 8 divisions and 81 junior male competitors in 23 divisions. Senior competitors ranged in age from 15 to 50 years old, with 62 senior men competitors in 12 divisions and 12 senior female competitors in 4 divisions.

Amir Bakhirov from Sport Judo won the Outstanding Junior Competitor, and the Outstanding Junior Team was College Park Judo Club.  Clarisse Palmer from the Washington Judo Club won the Outstanding Senior Competitor award, and the Outstanding Senior Team was the Washington Judo Club


In the kata division. Christine Levine and Ariana Kwoh, from Philadelphia Judo, took top honors in both the Ju No Kata and Nage No Kata divisions.


It takes lots of staff to make any event happen. We want to say special thank you to all of the volunteers who make our events possible. All of officials who volunteer their time to help make our event successful by being a referee, technical official, or other tournament official. We would like to thank all of our competitors – without you we would not have an event. Thank you to the parents for bringing their kids to the events, and to all of the judo supporters who come to cheer on our judoka. We also thank DeMatha Catholic High School for allowing us to use their incredible venue for this event.


Shufu Yudanshakai provides events throughout the year for its members and is open to all members of the USJF, USJA and USA Judo members. We provide teacher clinics, clinics on various katas, referee clinics, two promotional events, kata competitions and four tournaments. In addition there are 8 other local tournaments run throughout the year by local Shufu Clubs.


Please note the final two major events for 2012: The Shufu Yudanshakai Promotionals on Saturday, November 3 at the College Park Community Center. (Please note that this event will be held on one day only, when both juniors and seniors will be examined for promotion.  All Shufu Yudansha are strongly encouraged to attend the semiannual Yudansha meeting that morning at 8am prior to the examinations.)


Two weeks later, the 2012 Shufu Open Judo Championships will be held on Saturday, November 17 in Lancaster PA at the beautiful venue of the Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology.


Additional information on all of the above events are posted on the Shufu website:


Finally, we want to thank our leadership team of Shufu Judo Yudanshakai: John Morrisson, President; Charles Medani, Vice President; Kurt Tamai, Secretary; Michael Landstreet, Treasurer; Tad Wilson, Recorder; Mike Grunberg, registration and Tad Nalls, Chairman of the Board of Examiners. We also thank all of our subcommittee chairpersons for all the work they do throughout the year.


And a big thanks to all of our judoka and families for your support of Shufu Judo Yudanshakai.


We’ll see you at the promotionals!


Full Results

Kevin Tamai                                                                 Kurt Tamai

Head Sensei – Hui-O-Judo Beltsville                 Head Sensei College Park Judo

Takemori Open Tournament Director              Takemori Open Tournament Director

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.