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Judo Alberta Yudansha Grading


Fort Saskatchewan


June 4, 2016 Saturday

Starting Time:

9:00 am


Dow Centennial Centre Dojo (84 Street & 87 Avenue)

Go to the Judo Alberta website http://www.judoalberta.com/index.php/forms-publications/ and download the Dan Grading excel file for complete instructions and forms. The Dan Grading Syllabus can also be downloaded if needed. Please note that a Judo Canada Passport is required and candidates must apply directly to Judo Canada and bring it to the Grading.

Please send all properly completed forms to Gord Okamura (Grading Secretary) at:
11247 – 59 Avenue
Edmonton, AB
T6H 1G2

All forms postmarked AFTER May 19, 2016 WILL NOT be accepted for this Grading. (No handwritten)

Thank you,

Joe Meli – Grading Chair

cc: Gord Okamura

New Inter-provincial Training Camp Schedule

Hello everyone due to the number of athletes that have registered for the camp we will need to adjust the schedule so we can effectively run the camp to benefit everyone.

Group 1 All Female & U14/U16 Males*
Group 2 U18/U21/SR/Veteran Males

*If you have U16 male athletes who compete in both U18 and U16 in competitions or at the nationals then they can participate in the Group 2 trainings.

Mat Set-up:

3:30PM to 5:00PM

Friday April 15, 2016

Group 1 5:00PM to 6:45PM
Group 2 6:45PM to 8:30PM

Saturday April 16, 2016

Everyone Physical Training 8:00AM
Group 1 9:30AM to 11:00AM
Group 2 11:00AM to 12:30PM
Lunch 12:00PM to 1:10PM
Group 1 3:30PM to 5:30PM
Group 2 5:30PM to 7:30PM
Supper 6:00PM to 8:00

Sunday: April 17, 2016

Group 1 8:00AM to 9:30AM Judo / Group 2 8:00AM to 9:00AM – Physical training
Group 2 9:30AM to 11:00AM – Judo / Group 1 10:00AM to 11:00AM – Physical training
11:00AM Mat removal

Ewan Beaton
Judo Canada Regional Training Center Coach Lethbridge / Judo Canada Regional Training Center Manager

Elite Athlete Funding Announcement

The Judo Alberta coaching staff has released the Elite Athlete funding application.
This application is for funding for Judo Alberta/ Judo Canada events that have taken or will take place between: December 14, 2015 to April 02, 2016


A) Athletes Selected by Judo Canada to participate in International Events
B) International Events recognized by Judo Canada (National Team Handbook) & Judo Canada RTC International Competitions/Tours
C) National Point Events and Training Camps
D) Special Provincial Training Camps

The elite athlete funding is for athletes in age divisions U18, U21, and Senior that are travelling out of province for tournaments or training camps at a national or international level.

The Judo Alberta coaching staff is allocating $6,000.00 towards this part of the season for elite level athletes. The whole funds may or may not be completely used depending on the number of applicants and events.
Applying for this funding does not guarantee that funds will be issued to you. The coaching staff are looking for athletes that have shown dedication to their own judo training, tournament participation, and training camp participation. Also the coaching staff are looking for athletes that are planning for future goals in the sport.

Please see a list of example tournaments that we will fund on the Elite athlete funding policy.

The coaching staff do want the athletes to have full support from their personal coach/ head sensei/club before applying for funds.

The deadline to apply for this round of funding is:

April 16, 2016

Please submit funding applications to Ewan Beaton: ewan@judoalberta.com
Judo Alberta will only accept applications by email

Thank you
Judo Alberta Coaching Staff

To view the Application Form please click here.

Canadian Open Judo Championship Volunteers


2016 Rocky Mountain Invitational

The 2016 Rocky Mountain Invitational will be held on April 2nd, 2016 in Calgary, AB.

To view the tournament technical package please click here.

U10-U12 Registration Spread Sheet
Registration Spread Sheet

The deadline to register is March 25, 2016.

Whether fighting on the mat or for someone’s life, judoka Rashad Chin loves the high stakes


Stepping on to the judo mat can give a person a huge adrenalin rush as they get set to battle one-on-one against a fierce competitor.

But for Rashad Chin, the feeling of adrenalin is something he experiences on a daily basis.

When he’s not trying to throw his opponent on the mat and score big points, he’s doing his best to save lives and bring people back to strong health as an emergency-room doctor at the University of Alberta Hospital.

“That’s the hardest question for me to answer because I enjoy both so much,” Dr. Chin said. “It’s a different type of adrenalin and I wouldn’t give up either of them.

“Stepping on the mat and competing, you’re in the spotlight. There’s nobody there to back you up and you have to rely on everything you learned in training, and I love going against a competitor that is out to beat you.

“In the emergency room, the stakes are high, but I love that feeling of being able to help someone who may be fighting for their life.”

Dr. Chin won the silver medal in the senior men’s brown- and black-belt 60 kg division at the Edmonton International Judo Championships at West Edmonton Mall on Sunday afternoon.

He’s been involved with judo for 25 years. He trains and teaches students at the Kodokwai Judo Club in west Edmonton.

In the past, he’s helped organize disaster relief efforts in the Philippines, Haiti and Pakistan.

So how does an ER doctor in one of the busiest hospitals in the province find the time to still compete in judo at a high level?

“Time is demanding on everyone. But things that are important in your life, you have to make time for them,” said Dr. Chin, who finished medical school in 2008 and his residency at the U of A hospital in 2013.

“As long as you prioritize your time properly, you can find ways to make time for things that are important in your life and judo is one of them for me. It gives me that stress relief away from the hospital.

“I’ve been doing judo for so many years now that I think that many of the qualities that make someone excel in life, I learned from judo. Hard work, dedication and learning how to win and be a champion, but also learn to come back stronger after you’ve been beaten.”

While his career as a doctor has taken him around the world, so has judo. He’s won back-to-back silver medals at the last two Canadian senior national championships and he recently won bronze at the Pan-American Championships.

When he was younger, he competed in tournaments in Spain, Korea, Europe, the United States and South America.

He won junior nationals in 1998 and in ’99 he won gold at the Canada Winter Games.

“It seems like ages ago, but I still enjoy it. I have so many fond memories of competing,” said Dr. Chin. “I probably could’ve reached different levels in judo, but I didn’t have enough time to dedicate to it to get somewhere like the Olympics because it’s so demanding. But it never crossed my mind to give up judo completely.

“This is a sport that will be with me for all my life.”


Fort Saskatchewan’s Alexandra Gagnon has dreams of being one of the best female judo athletes one day, and the 16-year-old is pulling out all the stops to try and accomplish that dream — even if it means moving away from home.

She relocated to Lethbridge this year to take part in Judo Canada’s first-ever Regional Training Centre and she’s getting the opportunity to learn from some of Canada’s best judo athletes and instructors.

She had a very productive weekend at the 2016 Edmonton International Judo Championships, earning a gold medal in the U-18 category and silver in the 54 kg senior women’s division.

“I’m thankful for the opportunities I’ve been given,” said Gagnon. “I’m living with Lorraine Methot, who is one of the best athletes to come out of Judo Canada, and she’s really helped mentor me and help me with the transition.

“I’ve learned a lot of responsibility this year being on my own, but I’ve always been that independent person. My whole focus is on school and judo.”

Gagnon is the youngest athlete to train out of the regional centre. This is the first year that the centre has been operating, and it’s the largest of its kind in Western Canada.

She has participated in four junior national championships, winning a bronze medal her first time there.

She hopes to compete in her first senior national championship this year, and the competition she faced on Sunday included many of the top senior level competitors.

“Competing at the senior level is a pretty new experience for me, but I’m really happy with my performance today even though I wasn’t able to come out on top, I beat some of the girls that train out of the national training centre out of Quebec and have won senior nationals before,” said Gagnon, who lost to Quebec’s Camelia Pitsilis in the gold-medal match.

“This is a big year for me. I’m shooting for a U-18 national championship gold medal, and I would like to get on the podium for senior nationals.

“Moving away from home was a hard decision, but it was something I knew I needed to do to get to that next level.”

Gagnon also received the Stephanie Kerr Award for hard work, dedication and spirit. Kerr, who was from Edmonton, was an outstanding judo athlete who died in a car accident in 2005.

“Being given an award like that … I know the impact she made on judo here in Edmonton and her passing was tragic,” said Gagnon. “And it really hit home for me being an Edmonton girl.”


Blind since birth, Nolan Morris overcomes opponents, disability on the judo mat


Nolan Morris may not be able to see his opponent, but the feeling he gets from competing on the judo mat is filled with passion for the sport he took up just 18 months ago.

The eight-year-old from Dawson Creek, B.C., who was born without sight, competed in his very first judo tournament this weekend at the Edmonton International Judo tournament and earned a gold medal after winning all three of his matches in the U-10 category.

“This is the best feeling in the world. I did all the hard work as a white belt, got my yellow belt and worked so hard for this day to finally compete in a tournament,” said Morris, who was born with Libras Congenital Fibrosis.

“When someone grabs a hold of me, I can feel them moving, and I just tell myself that they’re not going to knock me down.”

When Nolan stepped out on to the mat Saturday morning his father Myles, mother Jennifer, brother Liam and sister Iya looked on with great joy.

“When he first walked on to the mat, I had tears in my eyes, I was so proud,” said his father Myles.

“He was diagnosed at four months old, after we started to notice he had no light perception and no vision. It’s been a learning experience for us every day.”

Despite his disability, Nolan was eager to learn and play a sport that he could compete in against able-bodied kids his own age. His parents tried him in various sports, but couldn’t find a fit.

One day at the local recreation centre in Dawson Creek, they met sensei Bruce Sydnam, a long-time judo instructor at Norther Warrior Academy, who encouraged them to give judo a try.

Now you can’t keep Nolan off the mat.

“To be able to bring an opportunity like this to a young man who is visually impaired is quite an honour … it’s a real gift and a shining moment in my near 50 years of teaching judo,” said Sydnam.

“Competition can help us define who we are and where we stand if not within society, but within ourselves and this gives him a chance to fight one-on-one with visually intact people, and he’s been absolutely incredible to teach.

“This is a tremendous opportunity to teach him drive, worth ethic, how to handle adversity, get thrown and get back up, because he’s done that his whole life.”

Training in judo can become a person’s lifestyle. It’s a form a martial art that people of all ages can learn and compete in well into their adult life.

For Nolan, it’s also helped him live a more stable life.

“He had pretty poor balance and body movement in tight spaces and it’s improved leaps and bounds in terms of stability and his ability to move through the world,” said Myles.

“It’s been remarkable to see. This has been the best therapy he could’ve ever had. Judo’s meant a lot to us.”

Nolan won’t be the only member of his family competing this weekend. After seeing how much fun his son was having, Myles decided to take up the sport as well, taking part in the adult classes after Nolan’s finished training. Both he and Nolan are making their tournament debuts.

“This is something we can do together all throughout life,” said Myles, who will compete in the adult division on Sunday.

“I know without a doubt, I’m the more nervous one competing this weekend … not even close. But this whole weekend has given me a huge amount of pride. This experience for him has been everything we could’ve imagined and more.”


The Edmonton International Judo Championships has grown to become a global event and it’s one of the largest judo competitions of its kind.

“This is our 11th year,” said tournament director Mark Hicks.

“We have 740 competitors and 112 black belts competing (this year). It’s a big tournament we have people from all over North America and Japan competing. This is three times the size of the Pan-American championships, so it gives you an idea how big this tournament has become.”

The tournament is held at West Edmonton Mall, and that allows the event to be showcased in a different setting in hopes of growing the sport.

Judo has become a very popular sport in Canada. Competitors from nine different provinces and two territories are taking part this weekend.

It’s also used as a training ground for coaches, referees and volunteers.

“It’s almost become a judo symposium,” said Hicks.

“We run seminars on coaching, refereeing and how to run the computer software for tournaments. This tournament has almost become a strong educational tool for us.”

Over the years, the tournament has had many former national and world champions compete, so the competition is strong, but it also has young athletes just learning the sport taking part, too.

“It’s a full skill tournament. Some places only hold tournaments for kids, or just adults. We cover all the bases. It’s a tournament for all ages,” said Hicks.

“We have a lot of family involvement where we get generations of families competing and this is very much a family sport.”



Pacific International Judo Tournament Results

2016 Pacific International Judo Tournament, March 05-06, 2016 – Steveston, BC

The 2016 Pacific International Judo Tournament is one of the most important competitions on the Judo Canada competition circuit with 350 athletes from USA, Japan and across Canada competing at this prestigious event. This competition is a national team ranking competition where athletes gain valuable points and standards in effort to progress them onto national teams.

Alberta won 40 medals over all on the weekend; winning 18 gold medals, 10 silver medals and 12 bronze medals. Team Alberta was represented by clubs from Edmonton, Fort Saskatchewan, Spruce Groves, Airdrie, Calgary, Pincher Creek and Edmonton.

There were several outstanding performances during the weekend with Taeya Koliaska, Joel Demaere and Hana Varsanyi from Lethbridge winning two different age divisions over the weekend.

Quote Ewan Beaton, Judo Alberta HP Coach, 2x Olympian & 2004 Olympic Coach

“The Judo Alberta athletes represented themselves well at this important national level event. Many of the young athletes took big steps winning in older age divisions with spectacular throwing techniques. Dawson Mandal, Ali Briggs, Taeya Koliaska and Hana Varsanyi from Lethbridge won gold medals in the senior divisions for the first time which helps them gain valuable ranking points for the national team.”

“The depth of judo is growing in Alberta with gold medals coming from many different regions and different clubs in the province. When you have gold medals coming from smaller communities like Spruce Groves (Declan Harding) and Fort Saskatchewan (Alexandra & Nicholas Gagnon) this is a good sign for the future of the sport in Alberta.”

The next stop on the Judo Canada competition circuit is the Edmonton International Judo Championships running from March 11-13, 2016 at the West Edmonton Mall with over 750 athletes participating from across Canada and the USA.

To view the tournament results please click here!

Ewan Beaton HP Judo Alberta Coach
Phone: (306) 370-7412
E-mail: ewan@judoalberta.com
Judo Alberta Website: http://www.judoalberta.com/
Judo Alberta Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/judoalberta

2016 Female Training Camp and Sleepover

Featured Female Training Camp Instructor:

Amy Cotton

Amy was raised in Cape Breton Nova Scotia where she started judo with her family at the age of 6. She won her first Junior Nationals at 15 years old and also placed 3rd that same year at the Senior Nationals. At 19 years of age she moved to Quebec to train and qualify for the Olympic Games. She attended the 2004 and 2010 Olympic games. Amy has won 4 Senior National Championships, 2 gold medals at Pan Am Championships as well as over 50 medals Internationally. Amy retired in the fall of 2013 and is now the High Performance Coach for Judo Saskatchewan. Judo Alberta is pleased that Amy is coming back for a second time to our female training camp. Her first time was back in 2005 in Airdrie. To this date it is still the highest attended female camp.


Saturday April 23, 2016 Registration and welcome is from 11:30-12:30pm, Pick-up time is:
12pm on Sunday April 24.


1) $40 per participant (this will include food, lodging, activities and gift)
2) $25 per chaperone (If you are not a judoka but want to chaperone for the weekend)
3) Release form must be filled out and sent with payment
4) Payment due with release forms.

Please make cheques payable to Judo Alberta

There are no age or belt restrictions so long as you are a member in good standing with Judo Alberta or another provincial judo association. Judo techniques and strategies will be presented from a female perspective. As well, this is a great opportunity for girls to get to know each other and spend some time with other female athletes.

Registration Deadline:

Friday April 15th, 2016

Mail Release and payment to:

Tammy Thornton
48 Howson Cres
Edmonton, AB, T5A 4T6

Please e-mail club registrations forms and any inquiries to: Mrst@telusplanet.net
Or call Tammy at: (780) 717-1797

To view the camp registration form please click here.

female logo

2016 Florence Senda Junior Tournament


Saturday, April 9, 2016


Lethbridge Judo Club Dojo
775 – 28th Ave. South
Lethbridge, AB. T1K 7L6


Club coach/representative meeting 10:00 a.m.
Tournament: 10:30 a.m. (U10)
U12 and U14 start times will be posted after weigh in.


Saturday, April 9, 2015 (8:00 – 9:30 a.m.)

Tournament Director:

Guy Pomahac (guy.pomahac@lethsd.ab.ca)

Registration Coordinator:

Vickie Nakagama (nakav@hotmail.com)

Entry Fee:

$40.00 per contestant; (All fees are non-refundable unless event is cancelled)



Open to all members of Provincial Judo Associations, Judo Canada and IJF Associations
All competitors must be prepared to present their judo documentation.
Minimum rank – yellow belt

U14: Boys / Girls: born 2003 – 2004 (2 min. match duration)
U12: Boys / Girls: born 2005 – 2006 (2 min. randori format)
U10: Mixed Gender: born 2007 – 2008 (2 min. randori format)


• A U14 team competition will be held following the completion of the U14 divisions.
• There is no additional fee for participation.
• Team format and weight groupings will be announced at the Coach/representative meeting (10:00 AM)
• Teams may be created from more than 1 club
• Clubs may have more than 1 team


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