This is the Judo blog of Lance Wicks. In this blog I cover mainly Judo and related topics. My Personal blog is over at where I cover more geeky topics. Please do leave comments on what you read or use the Contact Me form to send me an email with your thoughts and ideas.

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Podcast on the way - Emerson Franchini 

Hi all, been a bit quiet, sorry folks. But I am pleased to say that I have recorded and started editing a new podcast with Emerson Franchini from Sau Paulo, Brazil!

Emerson is a University lecturer and Judo researcher as well as a conditioning and fitness coach. He has done considerable research on the elite players of Brazil, including those who competed in the Athens Olympic games.

We discuss his work with our very first podcast guest, Stanislaw Sterkowicz. He also in the second half of the interview gives some really practical and useful tips on fitness training for Judo athletes based on what he has learned from his work with athletes and his research.

Unfortunately the audio was a little bad. Partly because of techincal reasons and partially because it was raining heavily in Brazil when we were recording. (Okay... yes it was raining here in the UK also.)

So, I shall hopefully have that completed tomorrow night on the podcast!


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this weekend I took my family to Bournemouth.
I noticed a bunch of "youth" hanging around near the pier. Which sadly, is not that unusual in most places. They just hang about on corners doing very little. They get bored and then, end up causing trouble, drinking, smoking, etc etc.

Not these kids though!
As I was wandering about I suddenly caught the sight of a young lad somersaulting off the walkway onto the sand. Then I saw some kids running up and flipping backwards off a wall. WHOAH!!! Way cool!!!!

On closer examination I noticed that some of these "kids" were wearing South Coast Parkour t-shirts.

Parkour or Free-Running, is getting quite big and originates I undetstand in the suburbs of Paris. It's now showing up in movies adverts, etc.

I was impressed tosee kids just playing as teens. Physically playing. Bleeding awesome! So rather than just standing about, these young people were playing and learning how to do excellent gymnastic feats!

I appreciate that much like skateboarding Parkour probably has a rubbish reputation and is bound to be hated by parish councils. BUT, I'd rather have the local kids in my neighbourhood doing something cool like Parkour, rather than hanging around on corners doing nothing!

Anyway... check our South Coast Parkours website:

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Steve Ealey on Vista 

Oh man this is way to funny!

Vista is evil go Tux!


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Tudor Bompa on Judo training. 

Below is an exerpt from a site called which has an interview with Tudor Bompa who is the leading light in areas such as periodisation of training. You should be reading this guys work okay! We on the University of Bath course probably reference his work in almost every assignment! :)

Anyway, part way through the interview with Professor Bompa, he talks (briefly) about Judo!!! He says:

Take judo for instance. Once I listened to a presentation regarding strength training for judo. The speaker was your typical Olympic lifting coach. He went over snatches and the clean and jerk! When the organizers asked my opinion, I simply said that the whole idea is wrong because judo involves primarily the flexor muscles of the hips, abdominals, and trunk, not the extensors normally targeted by Olympic lifting moves. The lifting coach became very upset when he heard me say this and left the room!

Agree? Disagree?
Let me know.

The article is here:

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Training resources for Judo athletes. 

The resources for athletes within our sport seem sparce. perhaps the "Elite" players are getting better conditioning training than is immediately apparent from within the rest of the sport.

I have worked out in gyms since I was in my teens, working with international players and coaches. I also have the advantage of having lived in New Zealand, where IMHO the general knowledge and application of sport science is higher than many other countries.

Yet, recently I have found myself reading more and more on strength & conditioning training. I have caught myself realising how badly I have understood the principles, theories and application of good training.

Worse, I have found that there is very little easily found quality information and resources out there for us.

I am a porker, never was overly slim, but now rather heavier than I should be both for participation in Judo or for my general health. So, in recent months I have been looking at myself and working on my fitness.

I have been experimenting with heart rate monitor training, which has been enlightening. I have been reading up on resistance training etc.

My primary finding is that for many many years I have been training like a mad man! I see now that I have been working hard, not smart. I notice that when I wear my heart rate monitor, I see that the levels I was training at have been wrong for the goal of the session. A HR monitor has been really useful to me as it has been educating me as to where I really should be working at to achieve my goals.

The same is true of my return to the gym and weights.
Perhaps because as a youth I was tiny, perhaps because of my personality, I again, work way too hard! I have taken the time to find my one rep max, to work out what weights, reps and sets and importantly my RIs (rest intervals) I need for my objectives.
Again, its a remarkable difference to my previous experiences and thoughts on where I should be training.


I have been looking for good solid resources for training and specifically for our sport, Judo. There is very little available on the WEB that is easy to find. And nothing as good as spending the money to buy a book by the likes of Tudor Bompa.

Similarly tools to assist me are hard to find Brian Mac's website is about the most useful. ( ) So, I've been doing this all from widely spreadout info and mainly manually.

I also thoroughly recommend the works of the Houston Texans (American Football) team. Try their execellent training manual here ... 010703.pdf. is great but it's not really aimed at athletes.

We could do with better resources.
or are there some that you are familiar with? please let me know if you have some good resources.

It may become a project to develop some tools.


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