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A summary of the weekend and first thoughts on the new BJA syllabus. 

Hi everyone, well I had a great(ish) weekend and I hope you all did too.
Saturday was Judo day, all day at HMS Collingwood and the night at the 40th Birthday party of Paul Jones.

I recorded quite a bit of the day at HMS Collingwood and some of it is posted via Qik at . Now I was showing primarily movement stuff as part of my University assignment work on fundamental Judo technical skills. I hope it comes out okay as it has to be in at the end of the week.

Derek (the other coach of the day) spent quite a bit of time going through the new BJA syllabus which I wanted to comment on.

So, what is the first technique for novice players? What would you choose?
The BJA has choosen Osoto‐otoshi, with Osoto‐otoshi to Kesa Gatame.
Now I need this explained to me, but are both these techniques not a dead end? These are the sorts of techniques that you go into and never change to anything else. And Osoto‐otoshi, dude why do we want to teach a bad O Soto Gari to novice players?
I really want this expained.

So, anyway, whats next...? De Ashi Barai!?
Now this one watching the session I almost believe in, sure the kids didn't get it to start with, but after 10-15 minutes they almost knew where to put there feet. Unlike say a taio or seoi which kids "get" in about 20 seconds?

Now, thats the start what about around green/blue belt?
Yoko-soto-kata-guruma and Kata‐hiza‐te‐ouchi‐gake‐ashi‐dori, you may be struggling to remember what those two are, for a start the names are way long! Also they are new "contest" techniques care of Roy Inman's new classifications. My issue here is why on earth would we want to teach contest variations to kyu grades?!

I am worried about the new syllabus, not least of all, because it seems to have been dumped on the membership and I am not convinced that the technique selection is right. More to the point, I worry that the implementation is what seems to be becoming BJA standard forcing it without consultation with those "in the trenches".

Not one of the people I study with on the EJU level 5 coaching course was consulted as far as I am aware. Which seems weird seeing as these are some of the top coaches in the country.

For example, the few full-time coaches I know that are working with kids already work outside of the syllabus, let alone this new syllabus which from my initial feedback from these people does not fit at all with what their experience tells them kids work with.

And hey, not only is the technical elements that are changing the structure and way players get there grades (competitive grades are out). And it was all dropped in on April 1st, without a single coach being able to look at it before hand I understand. So not only a BIG/HUGE change but now lead in time or gradual implementation.

Increasingly I sense a feeling of frustration from coaches that the BJA is not in touch with what they want, with what they do, with what they need. The UKCC, the grading syllabus, the expensive insurance and expensive mats. More and more examples of the BJA not being an asset to coaches/clubs rather a bother or an expensive alternative.

Not good at a time when the BJA needs more support as London 2012 is just around the corner. I struggle to see how the BJA will be able to ask more of the membership to help prepare for 2012, when the membership is reaching it's limit of patience with the BJA.

Any way, check out the new BJA syllabus here: ... us_002.pdf and let me know what you think.


P.s. the new BJA Beijing site sux!

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