Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Spring Meeting

All club members and officers will need to meet in the coming weeks
to make some decisions about club events.

Be advised that practice location has returned to room 308 of the Franklin Street Gym.

Practice times, and days are still unclear.

If you were storing anything in the closet of room 331, you will have to wait until whenever the construction no one could tell was coming (how could they know?) is over.
Whenever that is. Sorry.

Practice will most likely be discontinued until Jan 14th. Please stay in touch with the blog, Facebook Group Page or via e-mail for any updates, and to answer any questions you may have.

Thanks for a great Fall Semester VCU!

PS: Remember This
they are really coming soon. I swear.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Meeting Next Week

All current members will need to meet up with Kevin and the officers
next week to help make arrangements for the next semester;
a little house cleaning before the holidays

Date, time and location will be announced shortly!


Friday, December 5, 2008

Winter Break

Winter Break is coming soon;

Finals are next week.

Attendance was such that practice was canceled on Thursday night.

I am willing to host any practices on Friday night, as long as I have the commitment of two others to be there.
I don't think it's fair to ask our volunteer instructor Kevin to drive all the way down here to teach us and not show up.

So, I need to know:
Who's coming, what days?
Tues, Thurs and Fri

Please contact us soon or we will start canceling practices. Attendance is always less during finals and Winter break for obvious reasons, there's no shame in saying "I'm not coming, I need to pass this test" just let us know so we can save some time.


Monday, November 17, 2008

Location Help

VCU Judo needs your help!

At the end of the semester, our current location is no longer guaranteed to us. It is not clear if this means that we will indeed be kicked out, or if our tenure at 331 will be continued indefinitely.

Obviously, this is no way to carry the club over the long term.

VCU Judo must find a new home!
Currently, exhausted options seem to include;
The Siegel Center (where flooring and scheduling conflicts make this impractical)
The Dance School (no space left)
MCV REC Center 'Martial Arts Room' (go look at it...)

We are open to any and all ideas, please contact us! We prefer being on campus or very close to it! We need to be able to store our equipment in the location, and preferably leave our mats safely deployed permanently...

Know of such a place? Please be in touch!

All VCU Judo members; We need you're help! Come through, and we can keep the club Alive, hopefully moving to even better space in the near future!


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

New T-Shirts and Sweater coming soon!

Headline says it all!

The VCU Judo club will be getting some new Ts and some hoodies too!

They should be in before the semester is over, so if you want to get one, be here!

Come to practice early, as there are several issues that must be discussed
regarding VCU Judo's future, such as;

New Officers
Budget Usage
Practice Times
Practice Locations

and other issues.

Come in and make your voice heard!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Class Schedule

Attention VCU Judoka!

Class is canceled for OCT 31st, Halloween.

Also be advised that club dues are expected at the beginning of every month, and as such we will be asking you forward them to an Officer or Kevin.
That's Matt V, Jason S or our instructor Kevin Santi.

Current club dues are $5 per month!

Please bring exact change if possible on Tuesday or Thursday.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Coaching Clinic in CVille


Gene Shin (the man) will be hosting Serge Bouyssou (the man) to share some knowledge on coaching. It's $75 for two days.

Date: Friday, November 7th, and Saturday, November 8th.

SSJ Judo
500 Henry Ave.
Charlottesville, VA 22093

Fee: $75.00 + USJI coaching certification fees

Eligibility and who should come:
This clinic is for anyone who wants to be certified as a coach with USA Judo, and/or who wants to learn from one of the most successful and respected coaches in American judo. Come and have a great judo weekend!

PLEASE NOTE: In order to receive your coaching certification, all required USJI Paperwork must be completed in advance, e.g. background screen, first aid/CPR training, etc.


Friday, November 7th
Registration: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Evening session 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Saturday, November 8th
Morning Session: 9:00 –12:00 noon
Break for lunch Noon to 1:00 pm
Afternoon Session 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm

For Additional Information Contact:
Gene Shin, at ssjjudo@gmail.com
Serge Bouyssou, at judocoach@cox.net.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Practice Canceled

No practice this Thursday, Oct 23rd.

We will not meet Thursday, Oct 23rd!

But we are meeting as usual on Friday.


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Loaner Gi

If you have borrowed a gi from VCU Judo,

it's time to bring it back.

Clean. If you are still training with us, don't worry. You've got some time. But order one of your own now! You'll be glad you did!

Don't know where to order one;

Start Here

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

VCU Judo Gear for Fall

These look to be the final designs;

T Shirt;

Make custom t-shirts at CustomInk.com

The Hoodie Sweatshirt;

Make custom t-shirts at CustomInk.com

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Upcoming Judo Events near Richmond

In the coming 6 weeks we have;

MD - Beltsville, Ken Tamai Memorial Fall Judo Championship

Sat Oct 18 – Sat Oct 18

beltsville, md

Judocalendar USA - EAST

sanction details, forms, and flyers for all will be available on http://www.huiojudo.com/events.html
contacts :kevin tamai 703-622-6861 kevin@huiojudo.com , mark smith 301-674-5438 mark@huiojudo.com

Maryland Open

Sat Nov 1 – Sat Nov 1

College Park, Maryland

Judocalendar USA - EAST

November 1, 2008
Ritchie Collisium, Univ. of Maryland
College Park, Maryland

also the Ken Tamai Memorial Fall Judo Championship in Beltsville, MD is moved to Oct. 18th, 2008
also the MD - Beltsville, Shufu Junior Promotional - Shufu Senior Promotional, is moved to Nov. 15th, 2008

karl tamai


MD - Beltsville, Shufu Junior Promotional - Shufu Senior Promotional

Sat Nov 8 – Sat Nov 8

beltsville, md

Judocalendar USA - EAST

sanction details, forms, and flyers for all will be available on http://www.huiojudo.com/events.html
contacts :kevin tamai 703-622-6861 kevin@huiojudo.com , mark smith 301-6784-5438 mark@huiojudo.com

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Please don't forget about Friday

VCU Judoka

Attendance has been pretty thin on Friday nights. I highly recommend attending, particularly if you want some extra time to work on specific skills, or if you'd like to some mat time for sparring.

The current model is very much an 'open mat' by default, but with such a small group Fridays, we can kind of make it whatever we want!

So come on out!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Recent Randori Footage

Here's a few videos of the end of Tuesday night's practice,

Eddie and Matt

recent yellow belt Zach with Adrian

Ed and Jonathan

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Get a Gi

The judogi, or dogi, or simply 'Gi' is the practice uniform of Judo.

Since the new semester began, we have seen 10-15 new faces, and many have had questions about a gi of their own. It's imperative that you do get your own, but if you're new to the sport/art, it's a little daunting figuring out what you need and where to get it.

This is the Toraki white label single weave Gi, and is an example of a decent cut. It sells for about $55.

This is the Golden Tiger gi endorsed by the USJA for beginners. It is advertised for $25 and $30 for the unbleached and white respectively. These two pictures are a good example of the difference between a $30 gi and a $50 gi.

This LINK will provide you with valuable information about how a gi should fit.

With this in mind, you can start to see some of the differences between the two gis; the Toraki is narrower around the body, with less excess fabric about the waist and chest. The skirt is significantly shorter, and the sleeves are straighter, leaving the closer to the same diameter of extra fabric at both the shoulder and the wrist. It's simply more 'form-fitting'. This will serve for relatively greater comfort over the long term as well as prove more effective for you in training and competition; a thin, baggy gi is easier for your opponent to grip, and is a painful implement with which to be choked!

If you are going to go the trouble and expense of ordering your own gi online, and waiting/paying for shipping, it may be a wiser investment to spend $60 rather than $40 to get a gi that you will not immediately outgrow. Assuming this, here are a few recommendations for quality 'beginner's gis';

All prices are for a size 4 or 170cm cut (5'9", 145lbs). If you are smaller, it may be cheaper, and if you are significantly larger, it may be more expensive.

Fuji Single Weave;
Classic 'japanese cut', a little shorter and wider. Very soft, and somewhat thick. $45
also sold here

DAX Europe;
A popular brand for competitors, a thicker collar and narrower fit about the chest and sleeves. Will suit you well if you are tall and thin or don't get too hot too easily. $45

Golden Tiger
Crap, but cheap. $30

Toraki 'White' Label
Somewhere between the Fuji and the Dax. Nice fit, nice fabric, good reputation for quality

Mizuno Single Weave
Another classic Japanese fit single weave. This will be a little 'tougher' than the Fuji (more coarse fabric). $57

HCK Standard Single
Technically a BJJ gi, and unbleached in color, this is a soft, thick and tough gi. I have had two Competition singles for 3 years. They are also a slightly more tapered fit than the japanese gis, but maybe not as narrow as the DAX. They are indestructible. This one is a little more than the others, but will be a 5 year + practice gi. $60

If you foresee yourself practicing more than once a week, or for more than one semester, make an investment in a somewhat more substantial gi. You'll be glad you did!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Fall Judo Schedule

The VCU Judo club will be meeting

Tues, Thursday and Friday Nights from

7 until 9 pm

in Room 331 of the Franklin Street Gym

see you there

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Great First Night

Thanks for coming out!

We had a pretty solid attendance for our first night of the Fall and our first night in our new home, Room 331 of the Franklin Street Gym.

Thanks to everyone that was there early to help set up the mats, break them down afterwards etc.

With such a diverse and enthusiastic group, I can only hope you all stick with us on the very long road that is Judo!

See you Thursday and or Friday night at 7pm!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

What do I need to have?

If attending VCU Judo for the first time, you may wonder;

what should I bring?

Do I need anything?

What kind of clothes do I where?

The first time you practice, it would be ideal for you to have a judogi (or gi, the uniform of judo). We understand that this is not realistic for everyone. As such, the club keeps a few extra ones around for you to use. Barring that, come wearing comfortable workout clothes. The first thing that one must know in Judo is how to fall, and you don't need a gi for that!

Secondly, it's important that nothing you wear will hurt you or any of your training partners while doing Judo. Because of this, you are strongly discouraged from wearing any jewelry, especially;
ear rings
other piercings etc
The judogi itself is the staple of Judo because it is sturdy, comfortable and can be treated rather roughly with out fear of damage. It soaks up sweat admirably, and just plain looks cool. You'll want to get your own as soon as possible.
A beginner could acquire any number of entry level gis for as little as $30. I'd recommend spending just a little bit more however. You will be very satisfied by the products from major known brands such as;
and others. They all offer beginners gis that are light, comfortable, well made and less than $70. These will last a long time. Sometimes that's not so true of the ones you get for less.

Along the same lines as the jewelery is the concern over hygiene. There are several things that you can do to ensure that you and your partner both get the most out of practice;
Come to practice clean (shower etc)
Come to practice with a clean gi
Come to practice with short and clean nails (hand and feet)
Brush your teeth
Keep you hair short and orderly. If you have long hair, braid it or keep it in a ponytail etc
Be mindful of how you smell generally (not everyone likes patchouli or tobacco or gin or whatever perfume you are wearing)
Not following ANY of these guidelines is grounds enough for someone to refuse to train with you, or for a club to ask you to leave. Don't start laughing if you are the 'stinky gi guy' and your training partners won't put up with it anymore!
None of these points is without merit. If you think this is frivolous, I encourage you to research MRSA, staph, ringworm and herpes. You will never have to worry about any of these things if you follow simple hygienic practices, but if not, you are exposing your partners to risks they do not deserve!

Keep these things in mind, and you should feel right at home in most Judo clubs, and certainly ours!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

What to Expect from Judo

If you are new to Judo, you probably have a lot of questions.

First, what to expect?
Well, Judo is a Japanese martial art. It is also an Olympic sport. It based on grappling, and features mostly throwing, pinning and submission techniques. From a self defense perspective, the goal of Judo is throw your assailant to the ground, with the aim of incapacitating him/her and escaping. Plan B is to throw your opponent to the ground, following closely upon him/her to effect a dominant or controlling position on the ground (a pin). From there to retain control until a comrade can rescue you or to incapacitate the opponent either by way of choke or joint lock.

In the sporting sense, these same concepts are conveyed by the way in which certain techniques are scored. To throw someone flat on their back with speed, force and control is to win immediately by 'Ippon'. To do anything less is to score a lesser score and continue on with the match, either by attacking one another on the ground, or returning to your feet to attempt another 'Ippon' throw. On the ground, there are several opportunities to win; more and more points are scored the longer that you hold someone in a pin (until 25 seconds, at which point you will have won), or Ippon can be declared upon your opponent's 'tapping out' or submitting to your shime (choke) or kansetsu (joint lock) waza (technique).

What set Judo apart from other Japanese martial arts in the late 19th century was the inclusion of the concept of 'Randori'. Randori essentially means 'free practice'. Jigoro Kano (founder of Judo) went about narrowing the breadth of techniques available under the umbrella of various Ju Jitsu schools he had studied in his youth. He chose to retain only that which he felt were both mechanically efficient and relatively safe to perform on a resisting opponent. This meant that a smaller weaker person must be able to do them against a larger person, and that a throw must place the victim flat on his back, or the submission hold must allow time for the victim to 'submit' or 'tap out'. Due to these criteria, the early practitioners were able to hone their skills against one another at full force, with full speed and resistance. In short time, it was clear which techniques were most effective, and who was most effective at applying them.

This is the paradox of Judo, and all martial arts that include full sparring and or sporting elements; the exclusion of the 'deadly' techniques (eye gouging, kicking the groin etc) allows for intensive and regular sparring, such that those who practice become highly skilled against resisting, combative opponents. I say paradox, because as you can see, by making Judo 'safe', Jigoro Kano allowed his students to become very good fighters. This was born out at an early defining moment for the fledgling art. In 1886, four years after the 'founding' of his art and school, Kano's students soundly defeated other rival Ju Jitsu schools at a tournament in Tokyo, proving the efficacy of his training methods.

It is a preparation that no other method offers. Those experienced in these arts; Judo, Wrestling, Muay Thai, Boxing, Sambo or Brazilian Jiu Jitsu will be glad to tell you that they know exactly what they can and can't do, in the ring, on the mat etc. No one who has trained both ways (via sparring and the traditional asian martial art method of 'form' or 'kata' practice) would ever argue that the non-resistive non-combative methods are remotely effective for the development of applicable skills in these scenarios.

When practicing judo at VCU Judo, you will be instructed on the methods of breaking a fall, throwing techniques, applying and escaping from pins and submission techniques, and finally you can elect to join in Randori. A typical practice session might look like this;

6:45pm - Individual warm up and mopping mats
7:00pm - Practice begins- Warm Up drills
7:15pm - Introduce Throwing techniques, with partner practice
8:00pm - Randori; approximately 10 3 minute rounds
8:30pm - instruction on ground techniques
8:45pm - Randori on the ground
9:00pm - Conclusion of practice, mat care/breakdown

Fall 2008 Schedule

Fall 2008

all meetings in room 331 of the Franklin Street Gym

Tuesday 7pm until 9pm

Thursday 7pm until 9pm

Friday 7pm until 9pm

See you Tuesday, August 26th!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Practice STARTS this FRIDAY!!!

Our first practice of the Fall semester will be Friday, August 22nd!

We will meet up at the end of Dr. Mills' PE course, and start at


in room 331
of the Franklin Street Gym

Additional Practice Time!

Professor Dr Alan Mills,
instructor of HPEX 121 (Judo)

has graciously volunteered to host another practice session for the VCU Judo Club!!!

He will be conducting a practice session every Friday night, beginning with the end of his own PE Class at about 6pm, and we will officially have our Judo Club practice beginning at
and going until

That's every Friday from 7-9pm!

This brings the total training times to;

Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays all at 7-9pm.

Here's to a great Fall!

Fall Meeting Schedule


VCU Judo has arranged new meeting times and a new meeting location for the Fall of 2008

VCU Judo will meet

in Room 331 of the Franklin Street Gym

Tuesday and Thursday Night

7:00pm until 9:00pm

All students, faculty and staff are encouraged to attend!

Monday, August 18, 2008

New meeting place

VCU Judo has been offered Room 331 of the Franklin Street gym
to conduct meetings for the fall of 2008.

We are in the process of readying the space.

If you'd like to volunteer to help out, and speed things along, please e-mail Jason Struck
at struckjm@vcu.edu

Otherwise, we should be getting back to practice late August or early September.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Min Ho Choi

Check out this link to see Min Ho Choi of Korea win several matches by Ippon on his way to an Olympic Gold medal in the -60kg


there are plenty of others Olympic videos on the site as well, including Ronda's bewildering loss to a Belgian in the first seconds of the match.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

July's Growing Judo

Click HERE
this link will lead you to the PDF copy of the USJA's 'Growing Judo' magazine. Enjoy!

Summer Schedule

VCU Judo will be taking a little summer sabbatical for the next week or two.

We are in the process of arranging a new practice space and moving our equipment in etcetera.

We should be returning to a normal 2 or 3 day a week practice schedule before or at the beginning of Fall.

Stay tuned!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

VCU Judo needs help!

Please contact Matt V or Mark C to volunteer to help VCU Judo secure it's equipment, while we temporarily abide this minor disruption!

They can be reached by student e-mail, or Kevin can be e-mailed tomorrow at the following address:


We may need some help moving some of our stuff around, so it doesn't get trashed or disappear during any of this construction.

come out and help us!

It's official

We are getting kicked out of rm 308.

They need it for Physiology 206 (they really do).

So, we have to find somewhere else to meet; I propose different times as well.

Suggest locations and meeting times in the comments section


Go Rams!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

YMCA Judo Camp

Just so you guys know;

Aug 10-Aug 16th

click here for more info

This is 7 days of hardcore judo training, all day, with about 4 students to teacher.
And when I say teacher, I mean like 11 sensei 5th Dan or higher.

It's $535. I know it's $540 more than you're average VCU student is willing to spend, but it's a hell of a deal. $75 a day, for all day instruction, room and board, in significantly less hot New York.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Eastern Open

Registration info here

Held in Baltimore, with senior registration and competition in the early afternoon, this should be a day-tripper for us.

Early registration ends Aug 22nd.

Currently claiming IJF weight classes, and Divisions for Sankyu (1st Brown) and Down, or Nikkyu and up (2nd Brown through all Black).

I went to this event in 2006, and it was ~ medium sized. Competing at 66kg, there were about 6 or 7 people in my division. It's at a new venue this year.

See the link for registration info. I do not access to club funds or time enough to prepare, so I cannot authorize club funds to pay entries for this event.

If you are interested in car-pooling up there however, please contact Jason Struck via e-mail. Thanks!

Go Rams!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Summer Schedule

Summer 2008

instructional meetings; Wednesdays 7:00-9:00pm

'open mat'; Sundays 4:00-6:00pm

Please be advised! The open mat practice is intended for experienced judoka to pursue their own self directed practice or to find sparring partners. It's still assumed that typical etiquette and rules for Judo training/competition are observed unless otherwise agreed upon by those participating.

That being said: Please come on out and join us! Right now, Sunday practice is pretty small, so you'll have plenty of mat time all to yourself if that's what you want.



Wednesday, June 25, 2008

VCU Judo Fall 2008 Season

Attention current VCU Judo members;

VCU will be competing as a team at several events this Fall. Here's the proposed schedule for the fall season;

Aug 31st - Eastern Open

Oct 25th - Ken Tamai Memorial

Nov 8th - Shufu Senior Promotional

We are currently seeking athletes in every weight class and of both sexes!

Opener is 8/31! If you're interested, contact Athletic Director Jason Struck immediately.

Spring 2008 photos

Here are some photos from last semester's practices

Coming Soon!

It's coming!

VCU Judo blog will soon be online!

Sunday, June 22, 2008