Judo coaches learn from the experts in Chichester

There was a good turnout for the coaching event at Chichester Ronin Judo Club
There was a good turnout for the coaching event at Chichester Ronin Judo Club

Chichester Ronin Judo Club hosted a ‘truly inspiring’ coach revalidation event for the southern area.

The afternoon – aimed at those who practise on nage and katame no kata – saw 25 judoka expertly guided through the nuances of the two styles by Dennis Penfold and his wife Tina.

Kata breaks down techniques and is one of the best ways to learn and grasp the principles of judo such as kuzushi (breaking balance), shizentai (posture) or tai sabaki (body management). Kata will help a judoka develop his or her techniques and overall understanding of judo.

The accomplished duo are the only kata judges in Britain accredited by the International Judo Federation, the sport’s governing body.

Dennis, 79, is a vastly-experienced coach and competitor, learning his trade at the Budokwai before becoming a founder member of Portsmouth Judo club in 1948. Dennis achieved a European silver medal, a remarkable feat as there were no strict weight categories at the time.

Tina, 68, is regularly sought out by judoka in other countries to hone their skills and is widely respected as a coach.

Karen French, British Judo’s London development manager and a former player at Chichester Judo Club, was full of praise for the event.

“Dennis and Tina showed why techniques are taught in certain ways and gave an explanation of the applications using anecdotes and succinct reasoning,” she said.

“I thought it was a truly inspiring event as the participants were totally engrossed and were treated to video clips including being introduced to a less known form of kata called go no kata or the “lost” kata of strength.

“Expert demonstrations in juno kata (forms of gentleness) were also given by Chichester and Portsmouth members Helen and Kathryn Cartwright as well as Simon Holland and Matthew Levy who demonstrated Kodokan Goshin Jutsu.”

The participants ranged from beginner to fifth dan black belt and everyone expressed their intentions to utilise the kata skills for their own grading and competing purposes.

Dennis and Tina were also accompanied by southern area president Mick Leigh, who addressed the group and gave his thanks on behalf of the candidates to Dennis and Tina, who study kata every day and run regular sessions at Fort Purbrook in Portsmouth on Mondays.

Other courses to be held by the southern area are in the pipeline and will be confirmed in due course.