Red Deer Judo Club going strong

The sport of judo has been around for more than a century since its birth in Japan.

In Red Deer, the history isn’t so deep with a judo club around the region for more than 40 years.

“The original sensei I think was a fellow from Britain by the name of John Cousins,” explained Al Schaefer, the current president of the Red Deer Judo Club.

The club numbers about 65 judokas (members) ranging in age from five years old up to 60 and they train out of the former River Glen School.

“The junior class is probably the biggest (5- to 15-year-olds), there’s probably 40 members in that,” he said.

Schaefer says judo is a good sport for kids because it’s dynamic and it’s structured around coordination, movement, a bit of socialization and some fun games.

The word judo translates into ‘gentle way’ but Schaefer says while the sport can be less intimidating for younger kids, some mixed martial artists will add some aspects of judo to their arsenal to use in the octagon where things are a little less gentle.

“We’ve always had a few athletes who have come in to practice judo, specifically because they’re competing in MMA and they learn the grappling techniques,” he said.

“It’s synergistic with a lot of martial arts.”

Judo has been an Olympic sport for more than five decades and will be a part of the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer.

“It’s a sport that is taught to the military and the RCMP as a method of self defense so its popularity is substantial.”

As far as judo within the Central Alberta region Schaefer says the numbers have been steady especially with the younger classes.

“Even if they are in other sports the dynamic fitness model in judo is transferable regardless of the sport they’re doing.”

sports@reddeerexpress.com

Just Posted

Ronnie Dixie gets another chance at life from a liver transplant

Red Deerians invited to annual Stroll for Liver charity walk June 3rd

Trial for man accused of 2006 Eckville murder “unreasonably delayed”

Lacombe’s Shayne Gulka is awaiting trial for the 2006 murder of Bradley Webber

Individuals face 84 criminal charges related to stolen, counterfeit credit cards

Investigation and search warrant executed collaboratively by Red Deer and Sylvan Lake RCMP

Red Deer’s Stephanie Essensa back in the ring May 26th

Essensa joins Dekada lineup in Calgary

Norman Wiebe has registered as a nominee for the UCP in Red Deer South

Hospital and courthouse among pressing concerns to Wiebe

3 survivors after airliner with 110 aboard crashes in Cuba

It was Cuba’s worst aviation disaster in three decades and its third major air accident since 2010

Maskwacis and feds sign historic education agreement

The Maskwacis Education School Commission signed an agreement setting the stage for their education

Plane with 104 on board crashes on takeoff in Cuba

Boeing 737 operated by state airline Cubana crashed on takeoff from Jose Marti International Airport

UPDATED: Gunman opens fire in Texas high school, killing up to 10

Santa Fe High School which went on lockdown around 8 a.m. Friday

Coroner speaks about mix-up of Humboldt Broncos crash victims, release of name

A coroner involved says it wasn’t until an injured player woke up in hospital and said he was a different person that officials realized the mistake

‘Nowhere near close:’ U.S. rebuffs Trudeau hope for quick NAFTA deal

The United States declared the NAFTA countries were nowhere close to a deal in a statement Thursday

Prices at the pump spike as long weekend brings out Canadian drivers

Motorists in many parts of Canada are expected to see rising gasoline prices as they fire up their vehicles for road adventures on the Victoria Day long weekend.

Humboldt Broncos resolve trademark issue with junior hockey league

The Humboldt Broncos hockey club says they will have a team ready to hit the ice for the 2018-19 season.

Most Read