April 3, 2022

Hollywood Judo Scrimmage III

Newly added-Hollywood Judo Scrimmage III

Next Juniors’ In-House tournament 2022

Parents’ Tai Chi demonstration class continues this Friday

Referees’ Clinic (tentative schedule)

Next hike

Dojo tournament/event schedule

Newly added- Hollywood Judo Scrimmage III

Mark your calendars for Sunday 1 May from 12:00 noon-4:00 pm for our nest Hollywood Judo Scrimmage. This scrimmage was moved since original date, 17 April, fell on Easter Sunday. The hours have been expanded to have more competition. However, it is only opened to the first fifteen from our Dojo because of limited occupancy. Test your skills sooner.

Hollywood Judo Scrimmage IV remains on our calendar, Sunday 5 June

Referees’ Clinic

On Sunday 24 April from 10:00 am-2:00 pm,we will host a Referees’ Clinic for our members. The clinic will be hosted by Gary Takemoto, Head Instructor @ Harbor Judo Dojo. He is one of the best referees with a long list of credentials and esteemed experience.

IJF-A Referee / 2016 Rio Olympics Referee / 2022 USA Judo/IJF/PJC delegate to Lima, Peru for the 2022-2024 IJF Rules Seminar / USA Judo International Referees Development Director. He is also the Referee Chairman for Nanka Judo.

This clinic is tailored for our Seniors Brown Belts in fulfilling their Black Belt requirements and being trained as referees. This is also for our older Juniors to prepare them as Junior referees. In either case, refereeing at local tournaments will improve your focus, concentration, and overall knowledge of Judo rules, protocol, and techniques. As soon as the USJF officially sanctions this clinic, I will forward the clinic’s official registration form and pricing to you. Juniors will be eligible to referee at local tournaments at the age of 10 years old or older. This clinic will be opened to other Dojos and clubs in and outside of Nanka Judo Yudanshakai.

The clinic will be held at Jovany Varela’s Competition Team Anaconda Academy in Gardena, CA.

Anaconda Academy

13428 Normandie Ave, 

Gardena, CA 90249

Next Juniors’ In-House tournament 2022

On this Friday 29 April, starting with warmups @ 6:00 pm. Invite your friends and family. They can also watch this event via LIVE STREAMED on TWITCH @

Goshin Jutsu Kata Clinic

This advanced Kata clinic given by Osugi Sensei and Brian Mark Sensei on Saturday 30 April at Valley Judo Institute from 9:00 am-5:00 pm.

Valley Judo Institute

8850 Lankershim Blvd.

Sun Valley, CA 91352

(323) 725-3090

This clinic is open to following:

  • All Judoka of Sandan rank looking to satisfy Goshin Jutsu requirements for promotion to Yodan (fourth degree black belt) and aboveAll judoka Sankyu and above; all students who have not reached the rank of Sankyu brown belt, must have Kata competition experience or be Nanka Certified Junior Referee.All Certified Judo Instructors, Coaches and Referees.Every participant is encouraged to bring a partner; there will be discount for partners.Must be current members of USJF, USJA or USA Judo.  Must bring proof of current membership and government issued picture ID.

The purpose is to teach the IJF Kodokan Goshin Jutsu standards. Provide testing for Nanka “C”

level certification. The Nanka “C” level certification will satisfy one of the requirements for

Yodan and above promotions for USJF.

$80.00 per person or $100.00 with partner (both partners must register together). If you wish to

test at the end of the clinic, the testing fee is $20.00 plus $20.00 certification fee per person. The

Testing and Certification fee will be waved for all Nanka Judo Yudanshakai members.

Lunch will be served to all paid participants; $15.00 fee for non-participants who would like to

participate in the clinic lunch program.

In preparation for this clinic, here are a series of instructional and demonstration videos.

Instructional video

Demonstration video

Here is a .pdf file reviewing Goshin Jutsu published by the Kodokan Judo Institute

Next hike

On 8 May, we will hike up Brush Canyon towards the Griffin Park Observatory in the other direction. We had 16 people join us on the Brush Canyon hike to the Hollywood Sign last Sunday. Here are photos from last Sunday’s hike.

Dojo tournament schedule

Extra Seniors Workout, every Saturday @ Hollywood Judo Dojo from 1:00-2:00 pm

Kata practices, Saturday 16 April from 9:30 am-12:00 pm @ Anaconda Academy

USJF/Nanka Referees’ Clinic, Sunday, 24 April from 10:00 am-2:00 pm, given by Gary Takemoto Sensei, @ Anaconda Academy (pending official sanctioning)

First Juniors’ In-House tournament 2022, Friday 29 April, starts with warmups @ 6:00 pm

-This event will be LIVE STREAMED on TWITCH @

Goshin Jutsu Kata practice Saturday, 30 April from 9:30 am-12:00 pm @ Valley Judo Institute

Hollywood Judo Scrimmage III, Sunday 1 May, 12:00 noon-4:00 pm

Next hike, Sunday 8 May, 10:00 am-1:30 pm

Hollywood Judo Scrimmage IV, Sunday 5 June, 12:00 noon-4:00 pm

Golden State Judo Championships, 13-15 May, Northwiew High School, Covina, CA

2022 Senior National Championships, 21-22 May, Daytona Beach, FL

Closed Memorial Day, Monday 29 May

USA Judo Junior Olympics, 24-26 June, San Jose, CA

Sensei Gary’s Birthday Scrimmage, 25 June, Claremont, CA

Closed Fourth of July, Monday 4 July

California State Games Judo Event, 17 July, San Diego, CA

USJF/USJA Summer Nationals, 21-24 July, Fort Lauderdale, FL

USA Judo Open Championships, 24 July, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

US Open Judo Championships, 28-31 July, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Closed Labor Day, Monday 5 September

Dr. Z Memorial Scrimmage, 8 October, Claremont, CA

Closed Thanksgiving Weekend, Thursday 24 November-Sunday 27 November

Last Juniors’ In-House tournament 2022, Friday 20 November, starts with warmups @ 6:00 pm

17th Annual Judo Winter Nationals, 4 December, Azusa, CA

Annual Holiday Awards & Potluck Party, Friday 9 December

Winter Holiday Shutdown, Saturday 10 December-Tuesday 3 January 2023

Dojo 2023 Re-opening, Tuesday 3 January 2023

The growing tournament schedule

As COVID restrictions ease, Judo organizations will be posting their future tournaments. More local tournaments are expected in the coming months. For more information about local, national, and international tournaments, please refer to the Nanka Judo Yudanshakai tournament/event schedule link.

Great things come from hard work and perseverance, no excuses. If you love a thing, you will overcome all difficulties. -Kobe Bryant

“It is not the critic who counts, not the one who points out how the strong man stumbled or how the doer of deeds might have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred with sweat and dust and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, if he wins, knows the triumph of high achievement; and who, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat.” President Theodore Roosevelt – April 23, 1910

March 17, 2022

The Olds (opposite of the News)

1st JUDO TOURNAMENT for 2022

Ian Zhang, Junior Orange belt, and Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales, Senior Sankyu, competed at today’s Taishi Judo Tournament. This tournament marks the first local Judo tournament held in two years since the outbreak of COVID shutdown Judo activities in March 2020. With the pent-up demand, there was a huge, overflowing turnout of over 600 competitors for this tournament crowded into the packed gymnasium at Westminster High School, Westminster, CA.

The ever hardworking, disciplined, and dedicated, Ian Zhang, won all three of his matches decisively and in short-order taking home a well-deserved Gold medal. Maurice later finished the night with three matches in a highly contested lightweight Brown/Black Belt division.

Thank you to all who supported this mega-marathon event. The tournament ended in the early evening hours this Sunday. Thank you to Hugo Rey, Eduardo Medrano, Patricia Claus, and Adrian Mendoza for assisting at one of the score tables today. Thank you to Osugi Sensei for refereeing. Thank you to Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales for coaching Ian today to victory.

Congratulations to the Taishi Judo Club, and head instructor Rob Oishi, for a very successful tournament. It was the Taishi Judo Club’s 2020 tournament that was canceled just days before their Sunday’s tournament back in 2020. Taishi Judo Club is located Torrance, CA,

Welcome new members to our Juniors’ class

Maurice Chagar

Eowyn Huang-Concannon

Scout Huang-Concannon

August Sone

Quiz of the week-Can you name the 53 Ippons of 2021?

As our 2022 begins, here is an inspirational video compilation of spectacular, lightning quick Judo techniques performed on the International Judo Federation circuit, “Best of Judo in 2021 Motivational Highlights – Royalty (柔道 2021).” Challenge and test yourselves, watch carefully, maybe watch over and over again until you fully understand . Don’t blink as there are 53 techniques in less than just three minutes. Scroll down below for the answers by Osugi Sensei.

Luchia Torro visits again

Last Wednesday, Luchia Torro became Shodan, 1st degree, Black Belt. This past Wednesday, Luchia walked in as a videographer recording for a Sawtelle Judo Dojo commercial which she will also edit and produce.  She has already produced video for Nanka Judo and for climate activism. Could Luchia Torro become a name like Hitchcock, Kubrick, Spielberg, Marshall, Bigelow, Coppola, etc? Here’s the videographer in action.

National Collegiate Judo Championships

Three former Sawtelle Judo Dojo attended the National Collegiate Judo Championships at Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, on Saturday 12 March.

Marisol Torro, Stanford University-Gold

Kohtaroh Uchida, University of Hawaii

Kohsei Imada, Orange Coast College-Gold

This is a FISU World University Games Points Qualifying event. The next FISU World University Games is slated for 8-19 August 2023, in Ekaterina, Russia.

Congratulations to all of them for competing at this event. They are all off to undergraduate and graduate studies. Kohtaroh is pursuing becoming a doctor, Marisol in bioengineering, and Kohsei in aerospace engineering.

Hollywood Judo Dojo Scrimmage- Sunday, 6 March

Yesterday, twelve from competed at the Hollywood Judo Dojo Seniors’ Scrimmage. It was very well run completing all 31 matches in less than one hour before the pizza arrived. So, we had some exhibition matches for anyone who volunteered to get some extra mat time. You can watch the entire scrimmage on Tatami Talk’s TWITCH channel. The competition begins @ 40:00 minutes into the recording. Instead of white and blue belts for scoring, the competitors wore red and white sashes, Kohaku (red/white).

Sawtelle Judo members competing at Hollywood Judo Scrimmage

Emma Chacon Yonkyu (Green)

Miska Kajanus Yonkyu (Green)

George Ishii Ikkyu

Tae Ho Kim Yonkyu (Green)

Miguel Maia Yonkyu (Green)

Brian Selem Sankyu

Dmitriy Karpov Sankyu

Dr. Michael Damavandi Sankyu

Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales Sankyu

Stefano Cossu Sankyu

Harry Morris Yonkyu (Green)

Kevin Watanabe Purple

Thanks to the others who came out to support our members at the scrimmage, Senseis Mike Trelinski, Julius Bhang, Pamela Moye, Yazmin Bojaca, Jerry Hazemoto and Adrian Mendoza. Their next scrimmage will be in June as Hollywood Judo Dojo celebrates its 90th anniversary on 15 May 2022. If you did not already know Hollywood Judo Dojo and Sawtelle Judo Dojo were founded by Tadashi Kikuchi Sensei, in 1932 and 1927, respectively.

Luchia Torro joins the ranks of the Yudansha (Black Belts) WOW!!

Last Wednesday, Luchia Torro was awarded her Shodan, 1st degree, Black Belt from the venerable Osugi Sensei. Starting as a tiny six-year-old, the Stanford-bound, the now seventeen-year-old, is a now budding videographer and climate activist. She literally follows in her older sister’s footsteps, Marisol, competing on the IJF circuit and joining Marisol later this fall at Stanford, too. At such young ages, they are simply “walk on water.”

For class, she demonstrated her Tai Otoshi with Baba Sensei.

“We would like to express our gratitude for all that you have taught Luchia. Judo has instilled in her so many important qualities of perseverance, dedication, and humility. Thank you for being her guide and mentor all these years. We are so proud to be part of Sawtelle Judo Dojo.”-Lori Quon, mother of Luchia Torro-

Like stars, Luchia has journeyed a long way to arrive at this point. The universe is in front of her and at her grasp. She’ll forge her own path from now on.

Mike Trelinski Sensei promoted to Nidan

Also, last Wednesday, Mike Trelinski Sensei officially received his Nidan certificate from Osugi Sensei. He had received months before during our COVID shutdown. While he is not teaching our Adaptive Judo and Seniors’ classes, Trelinski Sensei is a USA Judo Referee and a USJF Instructor. He is also instrumental in developing our tournament application for online registration, pooling, and scoring. He is our resident tech guy. We expect that he will be up to many other things in the future. We are always looking up to him, anyways.

Enter our Dojo-masks are optional

For the time being, we ask for your cooperation as we have our Dojo protocols to insure the health and well-being of our membership.

Following the latest LA Public Health Dept. guidelines, and since we have a vaccinated membership, beginning today Monday 28 February, masks are optional during workouts, in all of our Adaptive, and Seniors’ classes. You may continue to wear your masks if you would like. For our Juniors’ class, we will continue to wear masks until further notice following latest LA Public Health Dept. guidelines and LAUSD school/COVID protocols.

As members and visitors enter our Dojo, as protocol, they will ask the following questions.

Did you read yesterday’s newsletter? If not, they will receive a copy of the following text.

Have you been exposed to anyone who has tested positive for COVID in the last two weeks?

Have you been COVID vaccinated & boosted? When did you receive your booster? Has it been more than five months since you received your initial vaccination shots? If so, get your booster shot, now?

Here is a list of reminders for our members as they return to practice.

As before, we will still follow our standard protocol for our memberships. To enter our Dojo and to either watch, or practice with everyone else, you must be fully vaccinated if they are eligible to be vaccinated. It is for the health and safety of each other.

  • If you do not feel well, have a sore throat, coughing, or sick, just stay home. We regularly exchange sweat with no complaint, but no viruses.
  • Cut your fingernails and toenails short and make them smooth before practice in order to minimize torn nails or cut skin. If you do get cut or get blood on your Judogi, we have hydrogen peroxide to clean the wound or Judogi and band-aids and tape to cover cuts.
  • Clean your hands and feet before you arrive to our Dojo.
  • Bring your surgical or N95 masks, your beach sandals/slippers, change of warm clothes, gym bag and own water with your name on it.
  • Wash your Judogi before each practice. For everyone’s safety, make sure that there are no holes or tears in the jackets (uwagi) or pants (zambon). Do not wash your Judo belt as it will shrink excessively.
  • Please park in the school parking lot. If both sides are full, park as close to the auditorium as possible facing the building like a valet park. If you are blocking any vehicles, they are usually the instructors. If someone needs to leave, we will identify the vehicle to be moved. If you park on the street, use metered parking only, otherwise you may make a generous donation to the City’s parking department. The residential area is permit parking only.
  • Before you bow-in to enter our Dojo, please clean your hands using hand sanitizer on the table and conduct your temperature check. If you have an abnormally high temperature, everyone will know by its alarm. You will be asked to go home.
  • Change into your Judogi in the changing rooms. Wear your Judogi, always tie your Judo belt, wear your mask and slippers and bring down your water bottle downstairs to our mat area.
  • Before you bow onto the mat, leave your water bottle on the small desks near the foot cleaning station. Use the foot cleaning station to clean your feet. There are two parts to this foot cleaning station. The first part is a wet station pad saturated with hand sanitizing solution. Thoroughly wet your feet in it and then step over to the other foot station to dry your feet. From the dry station, bow before stepping onto the mat. The action of bowing is a show of gratitude or thanks.

We want to ensure the safest practice environment as possible for our membership to prevent COVID infections. We are also looking into other preventative measures against COVID-19 infections as well. Wash your Judogi clean, cut and file your finger and toenails smooth and short, and look the part when you return. We will continue to follow the LA County mask mandate until further notice. Everyone entering our Dojo must be fully vaccinated and boosted, when eligible. No exceptions. If you have been with someone that has tested positive for COVID in the last two weeks, please show proof of a negative test. We are on the honor system.

Kodomo no Kata

For our Juniors, please review the first two minutes of this Kodomo no Kata video.

-Dressing yourself

-Tying your belt

-Performing a standing bow (Ritsurei)

-Performing a sitting bow (Zarei)

Planning to join our Dojo

If you plan to register and join our Dojo for Judo practice, complete your online USJF membership and monthly subscription. Bring in your complete and signed Judogi. Arrive 30 minutes before class starts to provide enough time to review your enrollment form and fit you into your new Judogi if you do not already have one. For more information or assistance in enrollment, please contact us at or 310 463-4962. You are always welcome to visit. However, please show proof of vaccination as all members and visitors must be vaccinated and boosted when eligible.

“The way one takes care of how one looks and dresses in daily life, the same care and attention are required when we put on a judogi to practice judo, whether it’s for physical exercise, randori, or in a competition.”
“At every moment it’s important to be as flawless as possible.” “Whenever a randori ends, before greeting and thanking the partner, and as a sign of respect to him or her, we must ensure that the judogi and belt are in order.”
“This habit allows us to be ready to greet our next companion in a proper way.”
-Maestro Hiroshi Katanishi – 8th DAN- during Tre Torri International Judo Summer Camp.

Kodokan Judo YouTube Channel videos

For your reference, here is the link for the Kodokan Judo YouTube Channel with a large assortment of Judo demonstration videos. Learn to associate the names of each technique with the actual execution of each technique.

The answer to this week’s Judo “53 Ippons of 2021”

Below are the answers to the 53 Ippons demonstrated on the YouTube video.

  1. Hiza Guruma
  2. Uchimata
  3. Soto Gaeshi/O Soto Gari
  4. Uki Goshi/O Goshi
  5. Harai Tsurikomi Ashi
  6. Kata Guruma
  7. Ippon Seoi Nage
  8. Ko Soto Gake
  9. Yoko Tomoe Nage
  10. Obi Tori Gaeshi
  11. Sode Tsurikomi Goshi
  12. Uchimata
  13. De Ashi Barai
  14. Utsuri Goshi
  15. Okuri Eri Jime (Bow & arrow choke)
  16. Yoko Tomoe Nage to Juji Gatame
  17. Ura Nage
  18. Ko Uchi Gari to Ko Uchi Gake
  19. Sode Tsurikomi Goshi
  20. Seoi Otoshi
  21. Uchi Gari entry to Uchimata
  22. Soto Gaeshi
  23. Tomoe Nage
  24. Ashi Guruma
  25. Uchimata
  26. Ko Uchi Gari to De Ashi Barai
  27. Ashi Guruma
  28. O Soto Gari to Tani Otoshi
  29. Yoko Otoshi/Tani Otoshi
  30. Utsuri Goshi
  31. O Soto Gari
  32. Ura Nage
  33. De Ashi Barai
  34. Ko Uchi Gake
  35. O Soto Gaeshi
  36. O Uchi Gari
  37. Ura Nage
  38. Ippon Seoi Nage..Tani Otoshi
  39. Ippon Seoi Nage
  40. Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi
  41. Tsurikomi Goshi
  42. Soto Makikomi
  43. De Ashi Barai
  44. Ko Soto Gari
  45. Uchimata
  46. Uki Goshi-Utsuri Goshi or Ko Tsuri Goshi
  47. Yagura Nage
  48. O Soto Gari
  49. O Uchi Gari
  50. Nidan Ko Soto Gari
  51. Seoi Nage (Kata Eri Seoi Nage)
  52. Ko Soto Gari
  53. O Goshi

February 9, 2022

GET READY!! We finally re-open for in-person Judo practice next Monday.

Get Ready!! We finally re-open next Monday

This is our long-awaited announcement as we finally re-open for in-person Judo practice in 2022, this Monday 14 February beginning at 5:00 pm with our Adaptive Judo class at 5:00 pm, 6:00 pm with our Juniors’ class. Our Seniors’ class will resume its regular practice times from 7:30-9:30 pm.

Juniors 6:00-7:00 pm M/W/F

Seniors 7:30-9:30 pm M/W/F

Adaptive Judo 5:00-5:45 pm (Mondays only, beginning 8 February)

We expect a huge and crowded Dojo as we return to in-person Judo practice.

As before, we will still follow our standard protocol for our memberships. To enter our Dojo and to either watch, or practice with everyone else, you must be fully vaccinated if they are eligible to be vaccinated. It is for the health and safety of each other.

We want to ensure the safest practice environment as possible for our membership to prevent COVID infections. We are  also looking into other preventative measures against COVID-19 infections as well. Wash your Judogi clean, cut and file your finger and toenails smooth and short, and look the part when you return. We will continue to follow the LA County mask mandate until further notice. Everyone entering our Dojo must be fully vaccinated and boosted, if eligible. No exceptions.

Planning to join our Dojo

If you plan to register and join our Dojo for Judo practice, complete your online USJF membership and monthly subscription. Bring in your complete and signed Judogi. Arrive 30 minutes before class starts to provide enough time to review your enrollment form and fit you into your new Judogi, if you do not already have one. For more information or assistance in enrollment, please contact us at or 310 463-4962.

Judo Data

Follow your favorite Judoka in international competition with their statistics. This database covers a range of statistics related to international matches. It is great resource for fans and provides some insights for coaches and instructors on how international matches are played out. With the advent of technology and real-time statistics, Judo joins other international sports in tracking how their sport is performed and now is leveraging this knowledge.

In Major League Baseball, about twenty years ago, the Oakland A’s were instrumental in using statistics to create a team of relative unknown players into a contending championship team within a few years and a relative low salaries cap compared to the New York Yankees. This is now standard practice in baseball. How will affect Judo in the future.

NEW-Goshin Jutsu Kata Clinic @ Valley Judo Institute (pending sanction)

Here is early announcement for a Goshin Jutsu Kata Clinic hosted by Kenji Osugi Sensei on Sunday 27 February from 9:00-5:00 pm at Valley Judo Institute in Sun Valley, CA.

NEW-USA Judo Coaching Clinic by Tony Mojica

On Saturday 5 March from 10:00 am-12:00 noon at Esther Snyder Community Center, Baldwin Park. You must be a member of USA Judo in order to participate and receive your coaching certification.

 Judo Dojo Scrimmage-NEW DATE Sunday, 6 March & time

The Hollywood Judo Dojo Seniors’ Scrimmage scheduled for Sunday 6 March at Hollywood Judo Dojo from 12:00 pm-2:00 pm. The format will be much like the last scrimmage. All entries and matches will be completed by the Saturday of the same weekend. Instead of white and blue belts for scoring, white and red sashes will be used this time.

This week, Miska and Jeff just joined the rest of Sawtelle Judo group already going to this scrimmage; Emma, George, Maurice, Miguel, Brian, and Dmitriy are already planning in competing at the February scrimmage. Does anyone else want to test their skills at this event?

If you are interested in participating in this scrimmage, please RSVP to, with your rank, age, and weight. Mark your calendars.

Beach workout

Do you want to build your stamina and leg muscles? This Saturday 12 February @ 10:00 am, we will have out beach workout from 10:00-12:00 am at Santa Monica Beach, at lifeguard Tower 24, off Hollister Ave. and the middle hourly parking lot directly in front of Tower 24. Please RSVP to confirm your attendance and for more information to or text 310 463-4962.

Referees’ Clinic by Gary Takemoto Sensei, former IJF A-Referee

NEW IJF  COMPETITION RULES CLINIC for parents. Competitors, and coaches

USA JUDO, Inc. Sanction #00119

Date: February 12, 2022

Time: 3pm to 6pm

Purpose: To provide an overview of the new IJF rules, and common modifications for local and regional tournaments.

Clinician: Gary Takemoto, IJF-A Olympic Referee

Costs: $25 for one or $40 for 1 Family Clinic Fee

Where: San Gabriel Judo Dojo 5019 Encinita Ave, Temple City, CA 91780

Attire: Business Casual

Hosted by: San Gabriel Judo Dojo

• All participants must provide proof of current membership to USA Judo, USJF, USJA, and ATJA.

• Face masks must be worn at all times when inside the facility.

• Proof of vaccination or Negative Covid Test Results must be presented upon arrival.

• Limited Capacity. Please pre-register by February 10th to

For competitors, coaches, & instructors, here is a spoiler alert on some of the new referee signals and IJF Judogi inspections

New refereeing gestures that you might first see our Senseis performing at tournaments, maybe at our Juniors’ In-house tournament.

Here is the IJF Judo Rules for the Olympic cycle, 2022-2024

Here is another IJF video regarding Judogi regulations. The Judogi regulations exist for giving no tactical advantage

International Judo Federation on Instagram: “IMPORTANT: new judo referee gestures for shido (penalties) 2022-2024”

Parker Mesa Overlook Hike

Do you need some fresh air, peace and quiet and a good leg workout? Well, come and join us for our next group hike this Sunday 13 February to Parker Mesa Overlook in Topanga Canyon starting at 10:00 am.

Since our Judo calendar has become increasingly full of clinics and other activities, I wanted to schedule another hike for this Sunday to Parker Mesa Overlook in Topanga Canyon. This six-mile, round trip hike begins at the Trippet Ranch where we started up Musch Trail back in September. However, instead of heading further inland, we will head towards the south on this fire road trail and be rewarded with views of the Pacific Ocean from the Parker Mesa Overlook area.

Parking is $10 for the day.

No dogs are permitted on this trail.

Sunday’s weather is sunny with high temperatures in the 80’s.

Bring water, food, a hat and sunscreen since there will be very little tree cover on this trail.

Please RSVP to confirm your attendance and for more information to or text 310 463-4962.

Hollywood Judo Dojo Coaching Clinic

On the following Sunday 20 February, Hollywood Judo Dojo will be hosting an United States Judo Association (USJA) Coaching Clinic, Level 1. Morotti Sensei will be conducting this seminar and provide his insights on training regimens, diet, physical and mental fitness and share his personal experience as a coach. He was a former Swedish national team member for many, many years. You must be a member of the USJA.

1st JUDO TOURNAMENT for 2022

Taishi Judo Club has scheduled its 11th Anniversary Invitational Judo Tournament at Westminster High School on Sunday 13 March 2022. The next update for this tournament will be on 28 February. We will need volunteers to assist at one of the score tables to make this tournament possible.

Judo schedule

ZOOM Workouts on Monday, Wednesday, & Friday until further notice

Senior Practice, every Saturday @ Hollywood Judo Dojo from 1:00-2:00 pm

NEW IJF  COMPETITION RULES CLINIC by Gary Takemoto, former IJF A-Referee Saturday 12 February @ 3:00-6:00 pm PDT at San Gabriel Judo Club, San Gabriel, CA

Parker Mesa Overlook, Topanga Canyon, Sunday 13 February @ 10:00 am

Kata practice Saturday, 19 February from 9:30 am-12:00 pm @ Anaconda Academy

Hollywood Judo Coaching Clinic, Sunday 20 February, Hollywood Judo Dojo

First Juniors’ In-House tournament 2022, Friday 25 February, starts with warmups @ 6:00 pm

-This event will be LIVE STREAMED on TWITCH @

Goshin Jutsu Kata Clinic hosted by Osugi Sensei, Sunday 27 February from 9:00-5:00 pm

USA Judo Coaching Clinic by Tony Mojica, Mojica Judo Club

On Saturday, 5 March from 10:00 am-12:00 noon

At the Esther Snyder Community Center, Baldwin Park, CA

Hollywood Judo Scrimmage, Sunday 6 March, Hollywood Judo Dojo

Taishi Judo Club Invitational Judo Tournament, Sunday 13 March, Westminster High School, Westminster, CA

“The way one takes care of how one looks and dresses in daily life, the same care and attention are required when we put on a judogi to practice judo, whether it’s for physical exercise, randori, or in a competition.”
“At every moment it’s important to be as flawless as possible.” “Whenever a randori ends, before greeting and thanking the partner, and as a sign of respect to him or her, we must ensure that the judogi and belt are in order.”

“This habit allows us to be ready to greet our next companion in a proper way.”
-Maestro Hiroshi Katanishi – 8th DAN- during Tre Torri International Judo Summer Camp.


New for 2022

Because of our agreement with the Japanese Institute of Sawtelle, animals are no longer permitted on the school grounds.

Important!! Wearing your Judogi and belt

For our Juniors, here is a video showing how to properly wear your Judogi and tie your Judo belt, plus moving your footwear after getting onto the mat. We expect you do this properly during practice within 10 seconds. It is easy. Just practice it until you can do it with your eyes closed. This is also a helpful review for the rest of our members.

For our Juniors

This is a reminder to bring your Judo notebook, and pen/pencil to each class. Write down what you learned in class. Write down anything new that you learned in class and write it down right after class. Otherwise, you will soon forget what you have learned. In your Judo notebook, write down your Judo and school goals so that you will always know what they are. Write down a plan on what you will do every day or week to reach your goal. Practice your duck walks, bunny hops, and squat exercises every day.

For our Adaptive Judo students

Be able to tie your own belt and put on your Judogi properly and as quickly as possible by yourself. Here is our YouTube video showing how to tie your Judo belt. So, look your best.

Know the names of the following techniques

O Soto Gari

O Goshi

Tai Otoshi

De Ashi Barai

Okuri Ashi Barai

Ko Uchi Gari

Kuzure Kesa Gatame

Yoko Shiho Gatame

You will be constantly evaluated on this.

Stretch your bodies daily.

And a message from Sensei Mike Trelinski originally addressed to our Adaptive Judo students, but this applies to everyone.:

“There is no denying that there is a strong competitive aspect to Judo. When you go to compete, your job is to win. If you win, that is ok. And if you lose, that is ok, too. You should learn from it either way.

When we are in the Dojo try to resist the urge to compete against one another. Instead, try to set goals for yourself that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-boxed and measure yourself (or compete with yourself) against them.

In Randori, the outcome of who threw who should not be a focus. How many throws did you plan to do? How many of them were successful? At the end of the day, do not to think about “I beat him 3 times” or “You really squeezed the ramen out of him on the ground” and instead reflect on what you plan to do before class and how far you came toward accomplishing it.

Try to enjoy the ride and not worry about how much you win, or you lose. If you were playing chess, would you let a win or a loss bleed over into the rest of your week? Of course not! Just clear the board and play again.”

For our Seniors

When you come to practice, have a plan and goal for the evening to work on a perfecting a single technique, instead of randomly just trying to throw your uke. Write down your vision and goal for yourself practicing Judo. Write down what you want to accomplish, how you will accomplish it, and by when? The more detailed, and rich your plan is, the more likely that you will reach your goals. Your goal is important. But moreover, who you become in the process be part of you for the rest of your life? Like any major endeavor in life, going to college, finding a career, getting married, and starting a business, you need a plan. Otherwise, you could be wasting valuable time, energy, and resources. You plan what you will buy at the grocery store, don’t you? Then, why not, going to Judo practice?

Stay warm after practice

On the way home from practice, wear warm, dry clothes as you leave our Dojo. The weather is getting cooler at night and there is no need to get sick. With that said, if you are feeling sick or are sick stay home until you have fully recovered. Stay hydrated throughout the day. Keep your feet clean before you arrive to practice. When you are off the mat, wear your footwear and do not walk barefoot on the floor.

Vaccination status

As we plan to return to in-person Judo practice, please update your vaccination information status with our Dojo.

Have you received your booster shot? Which vaccine and when did you receive your shot? Please forward your digital QR code or vaccination card for our records and verification.

Has your child been vaccinated?

Please forward their digital QR code or vaccination card for our records and verification.

Have you had COVID-19? If so, when?

Neil Adams Goal Setting & All Things Judo 2022

The venerable Neil Adams, the voice of IJF Judo, presented an hour-long seminar on the importance of goal setting. He also reviewed the latest 2022 IJF rule changes. To view this ZOOM recording, simply register and login. It is free.

Neil Adams Effective Fighting (

Name the 53 techniques

Forward your answers to Osugi Sensei at

This for our Sawtelle Judo Dojo students, Green belt and above. This is to test your judo technique knowledge. I found this video of 53 ippon collections recorded during world competition in 2021. This video is one of the few that did not provide the names of the techniques.

Most of you, including instructors, will have a tough time since the actions go very quick and you re viewing from one angle. Do the best you can. Black Belts don’t be shy, you can participate too.

Please number your answers from 1 to 53, 1 being the first technique shown in the video, and 53 being the last. If you don’t know the answer, do not skip the number, just leave the name of the technique blank. Several are so close I answered with two names.

All the techniques are excellent, some are brilliant. At our first opportunity, we can discuss your answers and my assessment. Remember, what is important is how you used your knowledge to construct your opinion.  Hey, the whole video is just under 4 minutes.

Good luck, let’s have fun and here’s the URL:

95 years and still going

Sawtelle Judo Dojo celebrates its 95th anniversary this year. COVID has disrupted our practices. That is still nothing for our Dojo. Be patient. Worse things have happened before. But that is history. We look forward and we are now just five years away from 100 years in existence. We will have many exciting years ahead.

“Judo should be as free as art and science from external influences – political, national, racial, financial or any other organised interest. And all things connected with it should be directed to its ultimate object, the benefit of humanity.”

-Jigoro Kano-

“Two things define you: Your patience when you have nothing and your attitude when you have everything.”

-George Bernard Shaw-

“Develop success from failure. Discouragement and failure are two of the surest steppingstones to success.”

-Dale Carnegie, renowned writer/lecturer-

For your reference

New from the USJF-their member portal

New for 2022, the USJF (United States Judo Federation) introduces their membership portal. It features the following.


In the membership portal you will have access to your USJF membership card, which can be downloaded and printed or kept on your smart device as a digital document. There is also information related to your current rank and certifications, along with past accomplishments.


For dojo use, each dojo or club will have unique membership access with specific and relevant information related to the dojo. The same is for each Yudanshakai, with a unique access to relevant information specific to your needs.


To access the Membership Portal, use your email address as indicated on your membership application.


You will need to set up your account with a current and active email address, as a confirmation email will be sent to you prior to accessing the membership portal.

To login, go to the membership portal page, and simply create your login ID using your email address that you used to register your USJF membership with a password. To view your “Member Detail,” click “Members,” and then click the search icon, to open. You may view your personal information, certifications, rank promotions, member history, and Yudanshakai (Black Belt Association) service. Please check your member details for accuracy. You may edit your personal information. Otherwise, contact the USJF regarding any questions about your USJF membership, certifications, rank promotions, and Yudanshakai service.

The USJF is our sanctioning body promoting, governing, and regulating Grassroots Judo in the US since 1952. Nanka Judo Yudanshakai is our local Judo Black Belt Association established in 1928. We are one of the original Dojos of Nanka Judo Yudanshakai founded by Kikuchi Tadashi Sensei in 1927. Kikuchi Sensei was a remarkably busy man also running Hollywood Judo Dojo back in the day. There probably was not any traffic back then as now.

Judo precepts

Jita Kyoei, 自他虚栄mutual welfare and benefit or in another words

“I scratch your back and you scratch my back, and we will both be happier.”

-Ed Osugi, former head instructor and President of Sawtelle Judo Dojo-

Seiryoku Zenyo, 精力善用maximum efficient use of energy

Jiko no Kansei, 自己の完成  self-completion, or “striving for self-perfection” in the context of Judo

New rules for our Dojo-PROHIBITED TECHNIQUES

This is a clarification on techniques that we do not allow in our Dojo during practice or randori or to minimize serious injuries, and for the safety and well-being of our membership. The following techniques are prohibited to minimize severe injury, leg, knee, shoulder, back, spine, neck, and head. Done improperly significantly risks the likelihood of significant injury. No one wants to out of work or not be able to go about the daily routine because of injury.

All techniques and behaviors banned by the International Judo Federation, USA Judo and Nanka Judo Yudanshakai will not be tolerated at Sawtelle Judo Dojo. This especially applies to those of you with previous martial arts or wrestling experience may have been taught certain techniques.

For IJF rules, please read, IJF SOR, Sport and Organization Rules.

Beyond the IJF rules, here at Sawtelle, we ban following throwing processes and methods. 

  • Any throwing techniques that use the arm or arms to wrap around the neck or the head that has a chance of driving the head into the ground or the Torii landing on top of Uke. Examples are Koshi Guruma, “Drop Knee” Seoi Nage or “Guillotine” headlock.
  • Any throwing processes that have a chance of locking the ankle, knee or hip joints and pulling the Uke into the ground by the use of your body weight. Examples are Tani Otoshi, Ura Nage, Yagura Gaeshi, or Kari Gaeshi.
  • Any throwing processes that Tori throwing backwards, sideways or forwards causing the Uke fall directly on the head or to inhibit the Uke to perform Ukemi. Examples are Ura Nage, Daki Age or Yagura Nage

 Non-compliance will result in your expulsion from our Dojo permanently.

The latest IJF Judo Rules

The IJF recently released the latest Judo Rules for the next Olympic cycle, 2022-2024, by the venerable Neil Adams.

In this video, Neil Adams reviewed the following.

Olympic qualifications

Judogi controls 

Continuation of techniques

Waza-Ari landing 

Landing on Elbows and Hands

Rollover techniques

Reverse Seoi Nage

Gripping under the belt in the End Phase

Lapel & Collar Grip

Unconventional Grip

Gripping breaking penalties 

Arranging of the Judogi or hair 

Head diving

For those of you unfamiliar with Judo match rules, here are sources to review the current IJF Judo regulations. I will include this in our newsletter for everyone to study. These regulations may change in 2022 given that after each Olympics, the International Judo Federation (IJF) commission conducts a thorough review of Judo competition over the last Olympic cycle in order to enhance “positive” Judo for the competitors, and the viewing audience.

International Judo Federation (IJF) Sport and Organization Rules (SOR)

IJF Refereeing, Sport and Education Seminar Doha 2020 – Day 1

New IJF rule breakdown by the IJF

Published in 2014, this brief video captures most of the significant rules. Some of the rules have been modified since then.

The Rules of JUDODon’t do this!

An entertaining look at Judo rules and what not to do. You will remember what not to do. Performed by Hiroyuki Akimoto, 2010 World Champion, 73 kg.

Kodokan Judo YouTube Channel videos

For your reference, here is the link for the Kodokan Judo YouTube Channel with a large assortment of Judo demonstration videos. Learn to associate the names of each technique with the actual execution of each technique.

Follow us on social media

Mostly on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and now Twitch

-comment, share, repost, or tagged us

Please watch this video about Sawtelle Judo Dojo and listen to Osugi Sensei’s commitment to his students along with his late father’s, Ed Osugi.

January 25, 2022

Belt Rank Promotions & Acknowledgements

Congratulations to everyone for their rank promotions. Congratulations to our annual awards winners. Keep up you great work on improving yourselves. Be consistent, do your best, and learn something new every day. Thank you very much to our membership for their participation, dedication and support of our Dojo, especially over the last two years. We owe a debt of gratitude to our instructors, assistants, board members, parents and other volunteers for keeping our Dojo running in the spirit of mutual welfare and benefit, Jita Kyoei, 自他虚栄。We celebrate our 95th anniversary this year. Let’s make it a very memorable one for our community-based, volunteer organization.

Belt Rank Promotions

Promotions during shutdown 17 March 2020-15 June 2021

Juniors’ promotions

Ian Zhang-Orange (Orange w/red stripe) 12 December 2021, age 9

Isabella Barron-Yellow (Yellow w/orange stripe) 12 December 2021, age 9

Erik Euler-Bravo-Yellow 12 December 2021, age 9

Enzo Euler-Bravo-Yellow 12 December 2021, age 5-1/2

Brandon Monzon-Yellow 16 September 2021, age 6

Emma Kobata-Yellow w/white stripe (Yellow) 12 December 2021, age 8

Jake Kobata-Yellow w/white stripe (Yellow) 12 December 2021, age 6

Jonas Akhavan-Yellow w/white stripe (Yellow) 1 November 2021, age 6

Ally Leang-White (Yellow) 12 December 2021, age 9

Eugene Edouarzin-White (Yellow) 12 December 2021, age 7

Micah Shur-White (Yellow) 12 December 2021, age 6

James Mackin-White (Yellow w/white stripe) 12 December 2021, age 9

Dan Gilbert-Katz-White (Yellow) 12 December 2021, age 9

Naceur Ben Yedder-White (Yellow w/white stripe), age 8

Quinn Contractor-White 12 December 2021, age 6

Felipe Millan-White 12 December 2021, age 5-1/2

Seniors’ promotions

Jennifer Ly-Yonkyu (Green) 22 November 2021

JP Flaherty-Yonkyu (Green) 16 September 2021

David Luttrell-Yonkyu (Green) 16 September 2021

Emma Chacon-Yonkyu (Green) 16 September 2021

Miska Kajanus-Yonkyu (Green) 22 November 2021

Niko Stavropoulos-Yonkyu (Green) 22 November 2021

Jeff Suzuki-Yonkyu (Green) 3 December 2021

Miguel Maia-Yonkyu (Green) 3 December 2021

Tae Ho Kim-Yonkyu (Green) 3 December 2021

Kevin Watanabe-Purple 22 November 2021

Downey Kim-Sankyu Purple 22 November 2021

Dmitriy Karpov-Sankyu 20 March 2021

Stefano Cossu-Sankyu 20 March 2021

Erkki Forster-Sankyu 20 March 2021

Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales-Sankyu 21 June 2021

Brian Selem-Sankyu 29 October 2021

Tan Chau –Sankyu 22 November 2021

Damian Castellanos-Sankyu 24 November 2021

Aili Forster-Sankyu 29 November 2021

Nick Sidman-Nikyu 2 October 2021

Luchia Torro-Ikkyu 20 July 2020

George Ishii-Ikkyu 20 March 2021

Luchia Torro-Shodan 5 April 2021

Lee Pasteris-Nidan 15 June 2020

Marisol Torro-Nidan 20 July 2020

Mike Trelinski-Nidan 7 September 2021

Fred Dagdagan-Sandan 15 June 2020

Jerry Hazemoto-Sandan 24 March 2021

Doug Baba-Yondan 9 September 2020


Rookie 1 Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Rookie Male

Jake Kobata

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

2nd Place Attendance Award- Rookie Male

Jonas Akhavan

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

3rd Place Attendance Award- Rookie Male

James Mackin

Rookie 2 Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Rookie Male

Brandon Monzon

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

2nd Place Attendance Award- Rookie Male

Micah Shur

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

3rd Place Attendance Award- Rookie Male

Eugene Edouarzin


Rookie Female

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Rookie Female

Emma Kobata

Novice Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Novice Male

Ian Zhang

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

2nd Place Attendance Award- Novice Male

Erik Euler-Bravo

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

3rd Place Attendance Award- Novice Male

Dan Gilbert-Katz

Novice Female

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Novice Female

Isabella Barron

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

2nd Place Attendance Award- Novice Female

Ally Leang

Advanced Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Advanced Male

Erkki Forster

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

2nd Place Attendance Award- Advanced Male

Kevin Watanabe

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

3rd Place Attendance Award- Advanced Male

Damian Castellanos

Advanced Female

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

1st Place Attendance Award- Advanced Female

Aili Forster

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2020-2021

2nd Place Attendance Award- Advanced Female

Konatsu Horinouchi

Monthly In-House Tournament

Rookie 1 Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

1st Place Monthly Tournament Award- Rookie Male

Quinn Contractor

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

2nd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Rookie Male

Jonas Akhavan

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

3rd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Rookie Male

James Mackin

Rookie 2 Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

1st Place Monthly Tournament Award- Rookie Male

Micah Shur

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

2nd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Rookie Male

Eugene Edouarzin

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

3rd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Rookie Male

Brandon Monzon

Novice Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

1st Place Monthly Tournament Award- Novice Male

Erik Euler-Bravo

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

2nd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Novice Male

Dan Gilbert- Katz

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

3rd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Novice Male

Naceur Ben Yedder

Monthly In-House Tournament

Novice Female

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

1st Place Monthly Tournament Award- Novice Female

Ally Leang

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

2nd Place Monthly Tournament Award- Novice Female

Isabella Barron

Most Improved Athlete Award

Advanced Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Most Improved Athlete Award- Advanced Male

Erkki Forster

Advanced Female

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Most Improved Athlete Award- Advanced Female

Aili Forster

Novice Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Most Improved Athlete Award- Novice Male

Ian Zhang

Novice Female

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Most Improved Athlete Award- Novice Female

Isabella Barron

Rookie Male

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Most Improved Athlete Award- Rookie Male

Brandon Monzon

Adaptive Judo

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Jiko no Kansei Award (for continuing improvement)

Bobby Holtz

Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Jiko no Kansei Award (for continuing improvement)

Christopher D’Angelo-Gonzalez


Sawtelle Judo Dojo 2021

Jita Kyoei Award- Senior

(Valuable contributions to our Dojo)

Sikiru Hamzat

Gabin Jomie

Richard Jimenez

Max Cohen

Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales

Outside tournaments

IJF Junior 2021

Marisol Torro

IJF Cadet 2021

Luchia Torro

ZOOM acknowledgements

To everyone who either taught or participated in our ZOOM classes. We continued our Dojo for over 15 months. Thank you for being part of it.

Black Belt Instructors during ZOOM

Jerry Hazemoto-Adaptive, Juniors, & Seniors

Kohsei Imada-Adaptive

Hunter Nagai-Seniors

Kenji Osugi-Head Instructor

Doug Penick-Seniors

Keiya Saiki-Seniors

Luchia Torro-Adaptive

Marisol Torro-Adaptive

Mike Trelinski-Adaptive, Juniors, & Seniors

Justin Winn-Seniors

Seniors’ Class during ZOOM

Stefano Cossu

Dmitriy Karpov

Scott Maccarone

Brian Selem

Konatsu Horinouchi

Curtis Minami

Marcelo Verdugo

Bella Knight

Erkki Forster

Aili Forster

George Ishii

Dr. Michael Damavandi

Ian Gomez

Emily Gomez

Damian Castellanos

Kevin Watanabe

Max Cohen

Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales

Korbyn Clarke

Lee Pasteris

JP Flaherty

Mark Franco

Joe LoCicero

Marlon Mercado

Regina Ho

Jason Pollock

Alex Yang

Emma Sandoval

Emmanuel Rodriguez

Reza Sabahi

Yuna Park

Eric Kachurka

George Brauneck

Juniors’ Class during ZOOM

Isabella Barron

Ian Zhang

Emma Kobata

Jake Kobata

Camil Al-Hashim

Chad Al-Hashim

Kenyon Erfetai

Nadia Eisenbrei

Siena Ruiz

Jonas Zambeck

Ivri Beifield

Romilly Ralph

Jasper Ralph

Leila Mahdavi

Little Kids’ Class during ZOOM

Brandon Monzon

Tanis Cobb

Emma Kobata

Jake Kobata

Natalie Zokaeim

Adaptive Needs Class during ZOOM

Henry Maguire

Steven Fujimoto

Bobby Holtz

Christopher D’Angelo-Gonzalez

Administrative support

Sawtelle Judo Dojo Board Members

Julius Bhang

Dr. Michael Damavandi-Medical Advisor

Jerry Hazemoto-President

Matt Kobata-Finance

Norikazu Maeda-Advisor

Reiko Maeda-Advisor

Kenji Osugi-Head Instructor

Mike Trelinski-Secretary

Parents’ Association leadership

Daisy Lin-President

Ashen Akhavan

Dojo Mat Setup (volunteers who arrive 90 minutes to two hours before our first class setting up the mats and canvas cover, three times a week)

Jess Bakken

Max Cohen

Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales

Sikiru Hamzat

Jerry Hazemoto

Richard Jimenez

Gabin Jomie


Doug Baba

Jerry Hazemoto


Mike Trelinski

Kenji Osugi

Marisol Torro

Medical (assisting at local tournaments or advising on COVID issues)

Dr. Michael Damavandi

Dr. James Fry

Dr. Jeffrey Fujimoto

Dr. Uziel Sauceda


Kenji Osugi

Einhard Schmidt

Lee Pasteris

Fred Dagdagan

Pamela Moye


Jerry Hazemoto


Matt Kobata

Jerry Hazemoto

Julius Bhang


Mike Trelinski


Stefano Cossu

Mike Trelinski

Jerry Hazemoto


Jerry Hazemoto

  • Active membership


  1. Jonas Akhavan
  2. Isabella Barron
  3. Naceur Ben Yedder
  4. Quinn Contractor
  5. Eugene Edourazin
  6. Enzo Euler-Bravo
  7. Erik Euler-Bravo
  8. Dan Gilbert-Katz
  9. Emma Kobata
  10. Jake Kobata
  11. Ally Leang
  12. James Mackin
  13. Felipe Millan
  14. Brandon Monzon
  15. Micah Shur
  16. Ian Zhang


  1. Brice Burman
  2. Emma Chacon
  3. Adam Chamas
  4. Tan Chau
  5. Korbyn Clarke
  6. Tricia Claus
  7. Stefano Cossu
  8. Dr. Michael Damavandi
  9. Jordan Decker
  10. JP Flaherty
  11. Aili Forster
  12. Erkki Forster
  13. Dr. James Fry
  14. Sikiru Hamzat
  15. Konatsu Horinouch
  16. Ian Hulgan
  17. George Ishii
  18. Richard Jimenez
  19. Gabin Jomie  
  20. Miska Kajanus
  21. Dmitriy Karpov
  22. Tae Ho Kim
  23. Andrew Kurth
  24. Dan Levi
  25. Pearl Levi
  26. Zerui Liu
  27. Jennifer Ly
  28. David Luttrell
  29. Scott Maccarone
  30. Miguel Maia
  31. Curtis Minami
  32. Harry Morris
  33. Gabriel Parrado
  34. Greg Pawin
  35. Jason Pollock
  36. Kayvon Sabourian
  37. Ronin Sakurai
  38. Brian Selem
  39. Nick Sidman
  40. Niko Stavropoulos
  41. Jeff Suzuki
  42.  Kevin Watanabe

Adaptive Judo

  1. Christopher D’Angelo-Gonzalez
  2. Bobby Holtz

Instructors (Sensei)

  1. Julius Bhang
  2. Yazmin Bojaca
  3. Jerry Hazemoto
  4. Hunter Nagai
  5. Kenji Osugi
  6. Einhard Schmidt
  7. Marisol Torro
  8. Mike Trelinski

Black Belts

  1. Fred Dagdagan
  2. Makkana Kabkhuntod
  3. Shane Pan
  4. Lee Pasteris
  5. Duang Ratanachan
  6. Hugo Rey
  7. Robert Tanaka
  8. Luchia Torro

January 22, 2022

London’s Budowai celebrates its 100th anniversary



Brian N. Watson

January 26, 2018, marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Budway, also known as GK House, by Gunji Koizumi in 1918. The following are thoughts on some of the notable events and the inspirational leaders who spearheaded the critical development of the Budokwai and judo throughout the UK and Europe over the past century.

Jigoro Kano, born on 28th October 1860, started to study jujutsu in his teens and became a master of this art. He went on to create a new outgrowth of jujutsu stressing its moral and spiritual value and named it ‘Kodokan judo.’ After graduation from Tokyo Imperial University, he first became a lecturer, then at age 25, a professor of political science and economics. In the late 1880s, he and his leading students began the promotion of judo throughout Japan. From the early 1900s, however, Kodokan experts were increasingly sent abroad, most at the behest of Kano. Shortly thereafter his career began to span out: he was elected the first chairman of the Japan Amateur Sports Association; he later headed two important colleges, became a politician, and served on the International Olympic Committee for some 20 years. 

Jujutsu expert Yukio Tani (1881-1950) arrived in Britain in 1900 at the invitation of one of his students, Edward William Barton-Wright (1861-1951). Barton-Wright was an engineer, who had studied jujutsu in Japan from 1895 to 1898, while employed on the construction of a railway. Standing 5ft 2ins. and 50 kilos in weight, ‘Little Tani’ as he was called soon became a household-name, especially throughout and following the boom period from 1902 to 1912.

Jujutsu became a sensation. Most members of the general public were mesmerized when seeing such a small man defeat heavyweight, for it seemed to them like magic. Tani for years had huge success by trouncing his opponents of any weight in UK music hall prizefights. 

In 1902 Kano sent Yoshitsugu Yamashita (1865-1935) to the US where he instructed for some five years at Harvard University and at the US Naval Academy. President Theodore Roosevelt, Yamashita’s most famous student, had a purpose-built dojo constructed at the White House where he took lessons. Mrs. Yamashita was also involved in teaching and gave judo tuition to American women. Among others heavily focused on the dissemination of judo overseas was the incredible Mitsuyo Maeda (1878-1941). He was born in Funasawa, Aomori prefecture, this area is now known as Hirosaki City. Maeda was given sumo lessons in boyhood by his father who was a keen amateur sumo man. He later went to Tokyo to attend the Tokyo Senmon School for his general education and began the practice of Tenjin Shinyo-ryu jujutsu. Because he knew that Jigoro Kano was an expert in this particular style of jujutsu, Maeda decided to enroll at Kano’s Kodokan. He soon grew adept at judo. Maeda was subsequently appointed judo team captain at Waseda University. He left Japan after graduating from Waseda and became active in the 1900s in North, Central, South America, and particularly so in Cuba and other countries. He finally settled in Brazil, where he trained among others Carlos Gracie (1902-1994). Maeda became especially renowned in the Americas for his winning over 2,000 prizefights during his long and well-paid career. 

Although Kano and his foremost instructors strove to make judo popular abroad, they were confronted with difficulties, one being that many foreigners were not so much interested in judo training as such, they merely wished to learn judo self-defense techniques. Furthermore, a number of the early Japanese experts were more experienced in jujutsu than in judo, and by using their jujutsu skills in prizefights, they gained lucrative income. 

Although some Japanese were said to have given jujutsu lessons in the UK in 1900, the first dojo in the UK to be constructed as such was at Trinity College, Cambridge University. This amateur dojo was opened in 1906 by Mr. Evelyn Charles Donaldson Rawlins. He was born in 1884 and served for a time as president of this dojo. An expert linguist, Rawlins was said to have attained fluency in several foreign languages, a decided asset that no doubt served him well throughout his diplomatic career (1907-1940), which culminated in service as Minister to Bolivia (1937-1939). The dojo was private, however, and was used initially for the teaching of 25 members of Cambridge University. Since membership soon increased, Yukio Tani, Gunji Koizumi and Masutaro Otani were each requested to travel periodically from London to Cambridge in order to give instruction. 

Gunji Koizumi, often referred to as the ‘Father of British Judo,’ was a tenant farmer’s son, born on July 8th, 1885, in Komatsuka Oaza, a village north of Tokyo that is now part of Ibaraki Prefecture. His experience of budo was instigated with kendo lessons from the age of 12 to 15. Years later he said, ‘At the time I did not fully realize it, but I owe much to this kendo master. The force of his personality and the kendo training had a strong influence in molding my ego.’ Koizumi also started to study English under the tutelage of a neighbor who had spent time in the United States. At 15 he left home and headed to Tokyo for training to become a telegraphist. At 16 he began to learn Tenjin Shinyo ryu jujutsu. Shortly after qualifying as a telegraphist, he secured initial employment in Tokyo for a while before going to Korea where he worked for a railroad company.

In 1904, Koizumi sailed to the US with the intention of studying electrical engineering. He worked his passage travelling via Shanghai, Hong Kong, Singapore, and India. 

Sometime later Koizumi left America for Britain and reportedly arrived penniless in May of 1906. He first stayed for one year in Liverpool where he gave instruction at the Kara Ashikaga School of Jujutsu. In 1907, he moved to London where he collaborated with famed prizefighter Sadakazu Uyenishi (Raku) a teacher at a jujutsu school in Piccadilly Circus. Koizumi was engaged as a jujutsu trainer for a time at the London Polytechnic and at the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, following which he again went to the USA in 1907 where he found employment at the Newark Public Service Railroad Company. Unhappy with life in America, he returned to London in 1910 and attempted to set up an electrical appliance business. He met with little success, however, owing to insufficient capital.

In 1912 he opened a lacquer ware studio at 83, Ebury Street, London, and fared somewhat better, for six years afterwards, at the age of 32, he founded the Budokwai which opened its doors on 26th January 1918. Shortly thereafter Koizumi engaged Yukio Tani as chief instructor. Tuition was initially offered in jujutsu, kendo, and other kindred Japanese martial arts. Koizumi had long desired to operate a dojo for the study of martial arts and their related cultural aspects. This was based upon a twofold premise: to further interest in the martial arts, their philosophy and Japanese culture, and to repay his adopted country for its hospitality towards himself and his fellow compatriots. Unlike the privately-run Trinity College dojo, the Budokwai was reportedly the first judo club in the whole of Europe to accept members of the general public. The original 36 students, however, were all Japanese. The 37th applicant was an Englishman who joined in March 1918. In the early days, famous judo instructors such as Hideichi Nagaoka (1876-1952), Sumiyuki Kotani (1903-1991), Ichiro Hata (1906-1983), and Kano’s son-in-law who was the 1930 All Japan Judo Champion, Masami Takasaki, and others from Kano’s Kodokan, all taught for a time at the Budokwai. 

The relationship between Kano and Koizumi seems to have been a close and cordial one for Kano visited the Budokwai on six occasions and was usually accompanied by high-grade instructors. For instance, Kano arrived in 1933 with two 6th Dan grade holders, Sumiyuki Kotani and Masami Takasaki. Judging from Kano’s comments and actions at that time it would appear that Kano wanted Kodokan branch dojos to be set up not only in Japan but also in principal cities around the world. On his 1933 August 26th visit, Professor Kano announced that he wished to merge the Budokwai with the Kodokan, thus in effect creating a London branch of the Kodokan. A general meeting was called, and it was agreed without any dissent that the Budokwai would become a provisional branch of the Kodokan. Prior to Kano’s departure, arrangements were made for Kotani to remain in London as judo master. Unfortunately, Kotani was recalled by his employer, the Manchurian Railway Company, sooner than expected, nevertheless, he was able to instruct for three months during his leave of absence. 

In the summer of 1934, Kano was again in London, this time accompanied by the illustrious 58- year-old Hideichi Nagaoka, 9th Dan. Talks continued regarding the setting up of a Kodokan London branch. On July 24, 1934, Kano convened a meeting attended by Hideichi Nagaoka, Gunji Koizumi, Yukio Tani, Masutaro Otani (1896-1977), Marcus Kaye, Harold and Norman Hyde, Harold Tricker and Miss Woolhouse, with the intention of forming a Kodokan Yudanshakai (black belt association) of Great Britain. Following this gathering, Nagaoka remained to teach for some three or four weeks. However, this ambitious proposal by Kano for a Kodokan branch to take over the Budokwai, ultimately failed to materialize. This was mainly due to the deteriorating international situation that eventually led to worldwide hostilities. 

Kano’s demise on May 4th, 1938, was followed by great international upheaval caused by the Second World War (1939-1945). As a result, there was precious little progress made in further promotion of judo until the mid-1940s.

On July 26, 1948, at the Imperial College Union, Prince Consort Road, London, the European Judo Union was founded by a dedicated group of enthusiasts led by Gunji Koizumi. In attendance were Trevor Pryce Leggett, John Barnes, Dr. Feldenkrais, and F. Kauert representing Britain; P. Buchelli and F. Limfuhr on behalf of Austria; L. Thieme representing Holland; Signor Castella representing Italy and L. de Jarmy from France. During this meeting, Leggett was elected first chairman of the European Judo Union. 

Teizo Kawamura (1922-2003) a 6th Dan, arrived in 1953, and was the first post-war Japanese instructor to be engaged at the Budokwai where he gave coaching until his return to Japan in 1955. In order to help popularize judo in response to the sporadic lackluster recruitment periods, annual martial arts displays were instigated by the Budokwai membership from around 1930 until 1968. These well-attended demonstrations in later years attracted hundreds of curious spectators to such large London venues as Seymour Hall and the Royal Albert Hall. 

Kano’s endorsement of judo was life-long and resolute for he strove long and hard to scatter as much as possible the seeds of judo internationally. These seeds started to sprout 100 years after his birth when in 1960, in Rome, Italy; the International Olympic Committee announced that judo was to be included in the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games. This declaration initiated a sudden and globally determined rush by sports administrators to assemble, train and foster contestants for the initial upcoming weight category events at the 1964 Games. Also, the reputation of judo in the early 1960s was given a significant boost following international championship successes by non-Japanese judoka, in particular by Dutchman, Anton Geesink (1934-2010) who at the age of 27 stunned the global judo fraternity by his overwhelming of leading Japanese opponents when he captured the World Judo Championship in Paris in December 1961. He subsequently gained the Tokyo Olympic Open Weight gold medal in October 1964 and the +80-kilo category World Judo Championship in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in October 1965, following which he retired from contest judo at the age of 31. 

After the hugely successful 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games, judo gained ever more rapid exposure from a powerful source. Judo techniques, often performed by an actress pitching a man in retaliation for harassment, were very much in vogue in movies and in TV drama scenes. Such throws were famously featured in the trendy ‘James Bond’ movies of the day. Thanks to this wide-reaching exposure, 1960 to 1970 was the decade that many women as well as men started to take a keen interest in the practice of judo. Likewise, succeeding decades saw other oriental fighting systems take the spotlight as they too achieved universal fame largely due to the movie exploits of stars such as Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan. 

In closing, I wish to highlight the significance of this venerable institution, for the Budokwai is much more than a dojo. It’s a cultural asset, a symbol of the salient link that binds the budo tradition to British society and as such will, I’m sure, prove increasingly of benefit by the future promotion of this strong bilateral relationship, as long as the Budokwai remains at its current location that is. Also, we must remember that the British judo fraternity owes a debt of gratitude to the memory of all those many staunch enthusiasts, both British and Japanese, who have gone before.

They, through dint of hard work and dedication, have helped the Budokwai reach this important 100-year milestone. But above all, we should remember in particular the four ardent members who built and maintained the solid foundations that enabled the Budokwai to survive during its critical years. These four adherents, who played crucial roles, were Yukio Tani (1881-1950), Gunji Koizumi (1885-1965), Enid Russell-Smith, OBE, (1903-1989) and Trevor Pryce Leggett (1914-2000). 

Yukio Tani arrived in Britain, according to Richard Bowen’s research, in September 1900 and soon achieved eminence as a jujutsu superstar. The diminutive Tani, toured the profitable music hall circuit issuing challenges for prize money to boxers and wrestlers of any weight. He was renowned in particular for his many surprising ‘David versus Goliath’ victories, against heavyweight opponents, and reportedly earned some 250,000 pounds in the process, a vast sum in those days. 

Tani taught at the Budokwai from the early days. He suffered a stroke, however, in 1937 at the age of 57 putting an end to much of his active career. He did, nonetheless, continue to teach from the sidelines until a second stroke in 1950 led to his passing at the age of 69. He was married to Mary Alice Fearon. Their daughter, born in 1920, became Moya Ward upon marriage. Moya also trained in judo and taught British women at the Anglo-Japanese Judo Club in Strathmore Gardens, London, in the mid-1930s. This club was founded in 1901 by Tani’s jujutsu collaborator Sadakazu Uyenishi who together with Tani successfully toured the music hall circuit as a prizefighter for a time, before returning to Japan. 

The first authoritative UK judo periodical to be issued regularly was the Budokwai Quarterly Bulletin, published throughout the 1940s and 1950s under the very capable editorship of Enid Russell-Smith, OBE, who was, incidentally, one of the first British females to gain a judo 3rd Dan. She carried out this important editorial task and other Budokwai clerical duties despite her heavy engagement in busy and essential work at the Ministry of Health from 1925 until retirement in 1963.

Dame Enid was subsequently appointed Principal of St. Aidan’s College at Durham University where she served until 1970. She died on 12 July 1989 aged 86. In similar vein, mention should be made of the sterling efforts of G. A. Edwards and A. R. Menzies who for many years regularly issued the highly informative monthly magazine Judo. Without this valuable communicative organ, the dissemination of judo-related matters would have been severely handicapped. 

Trevor Pryce Leggett (1914-2000) was another of the Budokwai stalwarts. He started judo at the age of 16 under the guidance of Yukio Tani and Gunji Koizumi. He earned a degree in law from London University in 1934. A fanatically disciplined person, Leggett took to his training wholeheartedly and quickly gained promotion to 3rd Dan before leaving in 1939 at the age of 25 for Tokyo where he was employed at the British embassy. He trained at Chuo University and the Kodokan. He was later awarded 5th Dan, then 6th Dan, reportedly the first non-Japanese to achieve this grade.

Interned in Japan following the outbreak of the Pacific War in 1941, he was repatriated along with other embassy staff and left Japan in July 1942 aboard the Tatsuta Maru of the NYK Line. Once back in the UK, he entered the Ministry of Information and saw service in India as a British army major working in counterintelligence where part of his duties was to interrogate Japanese POWs.

From 1946 he worked at the BBC and in this same year at the age of 32 he suffered a stroke and was advised by his doctor to give up judo. Nevertheless, he continued judo practice. In later years he was promoted head of the BBC Japanese Service. In 1959, at his own expense, Leggett founded the Renshuden Judo Academy, situated near Regents Park, London, where he led a number of young 5th Dan experts; namely, Saburo Matsushita, Kisaburo Watanabe and British 4th Dans John Newman and George Kerr in the training of the members, who were mostly British international contest men. The Renshuden, however, after more than a decade eventually closed its doors. From the 1950s to the early 1960s Leggett trained many leading British judoka; especially those who were privileged to attend his much celebrated but physically demanding and exhaustive ‘Sunday Class’ at the Budokwai. Leggett retired from the BBC in 1969.

He then turned more of his attention to writing and published some 30 full-length books covering subjects such as judo, Zen, yoga, Buddhism, and budo. In 1984 Leggett was awarded the Order of the Sacred Treasure by the government of Japan for his contributions in helping to introduce Japanese culture to Britain. He, like Kano, was a man devoted to learning and to self-improvement, and saw judo as training for life. Leggett died of a stroke on 2nd August 2000, aged 86. 

Gunji Koizumi was another remarkable man, who largely self-taught, managed to achieve some success in business and a high level of fluency in both spoken and written English. In April 1912 he married Ida Celine Winstanley. They had one child, a daughter, Hana, who later married judo instructor Percy Sekine. Koizumi was a man conscious of social ethics. As a result of German aerial bombardment of London during the First World War, Koizumi and other Japanese formed a volunteer ambulance unit, and supplied all the necessary equipment themselves. Also, at this time, Koizumi served as General Secretary of the charitable ‘Kyosai Kai’ (Mutual Aid Society) that was set up mainly by him in 1919 at an office in the Budokwai. The Japanese community wanted to be totally self-sufficient and had no wish for any distressed Japanese person to be a burden on the host British society. The Kyosai Kai, therefore, sought to provide medical, employment and housing assistance and also secured a communal burial area at Hendon Cemetery, London, for those among the thousand or so Japanese community residents in the UK who were at times in need. Britain became Koizumi’s country of residence, for after his return from the US in 1910, he remained in the UK for the rest of his life. Koizumi taught judo as a method of character training in which he stressed both the moral and spiritual aspects. His judo career spanned some 64 years. During that time, he served in many capacities, including terms as president and as national coach to the British Judo Association. Koizumi wrote the following in the April 1945 issue of the Budokwai Quarterly Bulletin, ‘One day it (judo) will be recognized as the best form of mental and physical education and health – giving exercise.’ 

His days were mainly split between business interests as an art dealer and the Budokwai. Moreover, he wrote extensively not only on judo and related matters but also as a consultant on Chinese and Japanese lacquer ware for the Victoria and Albert Museum. He penned Lacquer Work: A Practical Exposition published by Sir Isaac Pitman & Sons in 1923 and My Study of Judo, issued by Foulsham, in 1960. It was Koizumi who often paid the bills from his own pocket to prevent the Budokwai from sliding into bankruptcy, especially so prior to and during the Second World War (1939-1945) when funds dried up with so many members away on wartime service. At one stage the Budokwai owed Koizumi over 500 pounds, a considerable sum in those days. Years later he received an 8th Dan grade from the Kodokan in recognition for his life-long efforts. On April 15, 1965, he died by his own hand. He was 79. Mrs. Koizumi, his wife for some 34 years, had died earlier in 1947. The following is the message that he left for the UK coroner:

To the Coroner, and whom it may concern,

This is my true testimony that the action I am about to take, to effect permanent rest to my physical life, is purely to accord to my philosophical conviction.

In spiritual sense, the process of human life clearly indicates that the Divine Wisdom for creation was founded on the principle of progression and continuity, and each individual life is endowed with specific faculty to serve specific part in the Divine plan. Thus, the tenure of one’s life depends on one’s capacity for that service. 

Approaching to the 80th birthday, by the progressive and irretrievable state of mental and physical debilities, I have been persuaded to realize that the term of my service to the cause of life has now come to an end, and to linger on the futile existence is not only against my conviction but an evil burden to my friends and society. Hence this action.

I am sorry to be a cause of wasteful nuisance to you all, but I hope it will be taken as a lesser evil.

Many thanks,

G. Koizumi

Finally, I hope that the great services that he rendered with such unremitting devotion to judo, to Japanese and British society and to his support of the Budokwai, will not be forgotten, for Gunji Koizumi was without doubt a credit to his race – THE HUMAN RACE. 

Brian N. Watson

Tokyo, Japan

January 20, 2018

December 7, 2021

6 December 2021 newsletter

Seniors’ class promotion testing
Our Seniors’ rank promotion testing continues this week and continue through the remainder of the year. Last week, the following people passed their promotion testing and were awarded their new belts by Osugi Sensei.

Jeff Suzuki-Yonkyu (Green Belt)
Tae Ho Kim-Yonkyu (Green Belt)
Miguel Maia-Yonkyu (Green Belt)

Congratulations again on your promotions! (video) Your next milestone is Sankyu (3rd rank Brown Belt). Focus on improving your technique, attending class, and look forward to more competitions next year. This also goes applies to our Juniors as well. We will keep an eagle-eye on you, your progress, your character, and attendance. Do your best! It is your own journey.

First and only In-House Juniors’ tournament
We had our first Juniors’ In-House Tournament last Friday 3 December.

In each division, the matches were in a round-robin format. Like our mock tournament matches that we have been practicing over the last few weeks, awards will be given out for the best performances. Congratulations for participating in the first of many competitions! Win or lose, there is always sometime to learn from and improve.

The results
Rookie 1
Quinn Contractor
Jonas Akhavan-1st
James Mackin-2nd
Felipe Millan-3rd

Rookie 2
Micah Shur-1st
Eugene Eduoarzin-2nd
Brandon Monzon-3rd

Ally Leang-1st
Erik Euler-Bravo-2nd**
Dan Gilbert-Katz-3rd**
Isabella Barron

**-Correction-in their match, Dan was mistakenly awarded the win over Erik. Erik actually receives 2nd place and Dan receives 3rd place.

Thank you to the parents for their support and thank you to our Senior members for running this tournament.

Kenji Osugi Sensei
Mike Trelinski Sensei
George Ishii
Yazmin Bojaca Sensei

Stefano Cossu
Brian Selem
Doug Baba Sensei

Jerry Hazemoto Sensei

The TWITCH recording of our Juniors’ In-House Tournament can be seen here.(video)

Dojo to Dojo scrimmage @ Hollywood Judo Dojo
Head Instructor, Phillippe Morotti and Hollywood Judo Dojo hosted a Dojo-to-Dojo scrimmage at their Dojo and Goltz Judo Club from Claremont, and Ronin Judo Club from Vandenburg AFB.

Representing Sawtelle Judo Dojo
Emma Chacon
Curtis Minami
Brian Selem
Maurice Axel Cruz-Morales
George Ishii
Jeff Suzuki
Miguel Maia
Stefano Cossu
Tae Ho Kim
Eduardo Medrano

For some of them, our newly minted Green Belts, it was their first competition and valuable shiai experience. For our experienced Brown Belts, it was their first matches in over 21 months. Naturally, some were nervous. They all learned lessons that they will bring back to our Dojo and work to improve their Judo skills. Here are scrimmage highlights.(video)

Overall, it was great Judo community event.

The results from Sawtelle
Kenji Osugi
Mike Trelinski

Other Senseis in attendance
Julius Bhang
Yazmin Bojaca
Jerry Hazemoto

After the scrimmage, Curtis Minami and Stefano Cossu performed an impromptu Nage no Kata demonstration. (video) The pair have learning and practicing Nage no Kata over the last few weeks. This is the first of seven Katas, or forms, which are required for rank promotion starting with Shodan, 1st degree Black Belt. It is a series of fifteen techniques executed right and left-handed, in sequence. Performing this improves your Judo as the basics hand and body movements are essential in executing these techniques with precision. Kata competitions, a judged event, are regularly held throughout the world.

After the kata, Hollywood Judo Dojo provided pizza and drinks.

Hollywood Judo Dojo
3929 Middlebury St.
Los Angeles, CA 90004
323 666-8146

Unfortunately, we had technical difficulties with the TWITCH live stream this afternoon.

For our Seniors, remember that Hollywood Judo Dojo holds open mat randori practice on Saturday 1:00-2:30 pm. You are invited to practice there. Let us know before you visit.

Year-end Holiday Beach Party Signup Genius
Now, just a week away, we will have our first-ever outdoor Annual Holiday Party on the beach on Sunday from 12:00 pm-4:00 pm, 12 December on Dockweiler Beach, off Imperial Highway. It will be an outdoor BBQ/Potluck party combined with our regular awards and promotion ceremony acknowledging everyone’s’ accomplishments and contributions to our Dojo. Being a La Nina year, we may have a warm, dry, and sunny day on the beach on this Sunday with temperatures in the 60’s.

We will have lunch on the beach, while we will congregate around the firepits on this beach to stay warm as the polar bears, take a plunge in the surf. After our official ceremonies end, we could have games and races on the beach like our beach workouts.

We will be transporting awnings, tarps, tables, and supplies to the beach. Setup on the beach will begin @ 10:00 am.

Another email will be sent out by Wednesday with more details and reminders for our annual holiday party.

IJF Lisbon World Championship Kata 2021
By Lee Pasteris and Fred Dagdagan Senseis

The 2021 World Kata Championship was a unique experience this year in Lisbon, Portugal. Last year, the tournament was cancelled due to the pandemic. There were many forms and paperwork to fill out for COVID protocols and PCR tests that were required. Eight days before our departure then 72 hours before our arrival. Athletes were required to be tested upon arrival at hotel check-in and, more test before the event and a final PCR test at the day before departure from Portugal. Six total eye-watering nose swabs for the entire trip.

The event hotel was a bubble for all participants and were required to stay within the hotel property. The venue was located close to the hotel and all athletes were required to take the event bus to and from the gymnasium at a nearby university.

There was one small practice room available at the hotel. No practice was available at the venue except for the 15 minutes before the beginning of competition.

Four USA Kata teams from across the country competed in Nage No Kata, Kime No Kata, Katame No Kata and Ju No Kata. USA had five Kata judges attend. The kata team had a team manager and coach to support the US Team competitors. Overall, 206 competitors from 25 countries and 4 continents.

This was our second World Kata Championship, we competed in 2018 in Cancun, Mexico, in 2019, only the top three teams in the US competed in Korea. The 2020 tournament was cancelled.

The day of competition.

The format for the competition is that every Kata is one division, whereas previously there was a men’s team, a women’s team, and a mix team. This year every Kata was one division. We were competing against the best in the World. There were 20 teams in Juno Kata, which were divided into two pools. The top three finishers go on to compete in the final.

There were three mats set up for the two-day event. We were the fourth team in Pool A to compete. The competition area was a 10m x 10m mat. In the US, we practice and compete on an 8m x 8m mat. In the 15 minutes before the competition, we practiced our distancing among the other 206 athletes.

Before stepping onto the mat, there was disarray at the queuing area for belt checks, Covid sanitizing baskets and protocols. At the start of our Ju No Kata, we missed the bow-in mark which threw our first set off.

However, upon settling in, the second and third set went smoothly. Then we again missed the bow-out mark. It was very disappointing.

We are encouraged by our USA team athletes and coaches to keep fine tuning our Kata and gain competitive experience. We are now looking forward to next year where the World Kata Championship with be in Poland, the Pan Am in Brazil and the US Senior Nationals in Florida.

Our other teams fared better. In Kime, our team finished first in their pool, but finished last in the finals. Our Nage and Katame teams finished in the middle of the first pool of competition.

Post competition.

We took advantage of being in Portugal and traveled throughout the country for five days. It is a small country, about the same size as Indiana or five times smaller than California. We traveled from Lisbon to Porto, the largest northernmost city by a high-speed train taking 3 hours. We spent a couple of days in Duuro Valley, their wine country and then by car all the way down south to Barrocal for another two days. We then toured Lisbon for a day before flying back home. It is a very beautiful country. We will definitely go back there again.

 A message from Osugi Sensei on Kata practice
Hi to all kata enthusiasts and those who do kata for promotions,

I guess that is all that I wish to let you know that this Saturday, December 4th, is the last kata session for this year. If you miss this Saturday’s session, you will have to wait ‘til next year before you have opportunity to learn kata. Oh BTW, it is the last free session, next year, we will start charging fees again, fee details to follow.

The first session for 2022 is January 15th. We will continue to have sessions on first, third and fifth Saturdays of the month if there is fifth Saturday. We are also planning to do a Kata Clinic on Saturday, January 22nd, or Sunday January 23rd. Kata subject, place, and time TBD.

The January clinic is in preparation for the USJF promotion board. The USJF promotion board will meet in mid-April. Remember, all promotion paperwork must be into USJF six (6) weeks prior to the USJF promotion meeting. Also remember all promotion must be approved by Nanka before they are submitted to USJF. Don’t wait ‘til the last minute to get everything completed.

Please review the new promotion form 20 for new promotion requirements, especially for rokudan and above. It is time to ask Santa for kata certifications.

Good Luck and see you at the kata practice,

Kenji Osugi

IJF Rules
For those of you unfamiliar with Judo match rules, here are sources to review the current IJF Judo regulations. I will include this in our newsletter for everyone to study. These regulations may change in 2022 given that after each Olympics, the International Judo Federation (IJF) commission conducts a thorough review of Judo competition over the last Olympic cycle in order to enhance “positive” Judo for the competitors, and the viewing audience.

The Do’s and Dunst’s in Learning Judo (some words of wisdom)
By Yoshitsugu (Yoshiaki) Yamashita, 16 February 1865 –26 October 1935
The 1st 10th Degree Black Belt (posthumously)

1. Study the correct way of applying the throws. Throwing with brute force is not the correct way of winning in JUDO. The most important point is to win with technique.

2. First learn offensive. You will see that defense is included in offensive. You will make no progress learning defense first.

3. Do not dislike falling. Learn the timing of the throw while you are being thrown.

4. Practice your throws by moving your body freely as possible in all directions. Do not lean to one side or get stiff. A great deal of repetition in a throw will be rewarded with a good throw.

5. Increase the number of practices and contests. You will never make any progress without accumulating a number of practices.

6. Do not select your opponents (which means do not say that you do or do not like to practice with a certain person). Everyone has his own specialty. You must try to learn all of them and make them your own.

7. Never neglect to improve the finer points. Practicing without any effort to improve will result in slow progress. Always recall your habits, as well as those of your opponent, while making improvement.

8. In practice put your heart and soul into it. It will interfere with your progress in practice if you keep on without this spirit.

9. Never forget what your instructor or higher-ranking members teach you. During practice you will make great progress if you keep in mind what they have said to you.

10. Try to continue your practice as much as possible. Applying half-way will result in a very grave situation in your progress.

11. Watch and study throws as much as possible when trying to improve and advance. The technique and mind are just like the front and back of one’s hand, meaning they are very closely related.

12. Refrain from overeating and drinking. Remember that overeating and drinking will bring an end to your practice and JUDO.

13. Always try to think of improvement, and do not think that you are too good. The latter is very easy to do while learning JUDO.

14. There is no end in learning JUDO.

May 17, 2021

New weekly Blog feature

From on now, we will post blogs on a weekly basis. We will include stories, tournament news and other Dojo-related information. Stay tuned on our Dojo’s pending re-opening in the next few weeks. We shall return.

Sawtelle Judo Dojo’s newest members

Please welcome our newest members to our Seniors’ class, Scott Maccarone and Jennifer Ly.

Beach Run

Our beach runs continue at Tower 24, Santa Monica Beach from 10:00-11:30 am. Bring water and be on time. We will warm up with a long, slow distance jog. Then, perform sprint intervals with a series of calisthenics each time through the soft sand for the next hour.

From now on, we will alternate the beach run days for Saturday and Sunday mornings from 10:00-11:30 am, a full 90-minute, high heart rate, HIIT workout. Here is the beach run/hike schedule for through the end of June.

Sunday 24 May @ 10:00 am

Saturday/Sunday 30/31 May no beach

Sunday 6 June @ 10:00 am Mesa Peak hike

Saturday 12 June @ 12:00 am

Sunday 20 June @ 10:00 am

Saturday 26 June @ 10:00 am

Bring your own water, and snacks. If it is hot, bring your swimwear and take a dip in the ocean for a cooldown. Be advised that the parking lot will fill quicker as the weather and water gets warmer. There is street parking, some metered and some not. You can walk 10-15 minutes into the neighborhood to park above Main St. for free on the busy, summer weekends. GoogleMap “Perry’s Café and Beach Rentals 2600.”


We will return to Mesa Peak on Sunday 6 June. We had a good turnout last month with eleven making out to Malibu on a nice day. The starting point would be Castro Crest Trailhead off Corral Canyon Rd.

Upcoming tournaments

International Judo Federation (IJF) World Judo Championships Seniors-6-13 June, Budapest, Hungary

This will be the penultimate tune-up before the Summer Games in Tokyo, Japan in late July as the World’s best Judokas vie for a Gold medal in the Worlds. This will set the stage and give the victors momentum into the Games.

This is livestreamed on Ippon.TV or on YouTube.

Always leave this world a better place than how you found it.

“Good habits formed at youth make all the difference.”-Aristotle.

“Greasing your Groove”-Pavel Tsatsouline

Jita Kyoei– “Mutual welfare and benefit”

Seiryoku Zenyo– “Maximum efficient use of energy”

Jiko no Kansei- “Strive for perfection.”