Ishin Ryu Ju-Jitsu held its seventh British Championships at the Thetford Leisure Centre, Thetford Norfolk. Infants, juniors & teenagers from as far as Yorkshire and London travelled to compete in their weight division to become British Champion 2016.
Referees, time keepers, helpers & administration staff arrived very early in the morning whilst most people would have still been in their beds in preparation for what was to be a mammoth event. The eager infants started to arrive from 9am am to register so they could get weighed. Excited and nervous students with even more excited and anxious parents waited to enter the main hall.
With well over 80 infants competing throughout the morning for bronze, silver and gold medals it was going to be a very exciting and busy Sunday morning. Not only did their parents come, but some brought their brothers, sisters, uncles and more. As parents entered into the championship arena, they were greeted by the instructors and coaches in federation dress, and very smart everyone looked as well.
All students were expected to behave respectfully to the referees and their competitors throughout the event, and did so brilliantly. The referees were led by the founder and chief instructor, Kevin Pell Sensei, Black Belt 9th Dan and the National Coach for Children’s Training & Development, Trevor Steward Black Belt 5th Dan.
The infants were competing in ten different weight divisions. Many of the infants who were between four and seven years old were very nervous before their competition and needed a little bit of TLC to help them prepare for their first round. Despite initial nerves, there were some fantastic contests between the infants and they demonstrated great skills. The levels of throws were at a high standard with excellent hold downs to submission.
It was wonderful to hear and see parents cheering their sons/daughters on throughout the competition, and the applause that followed each round just added to the tremendous atmosphere. Some of the students were so happy they had won that they forgot about their etiquette and raced off the Tatami with a big grin straight into their parent’s arms. Of course, in true Ishin Ryu style they were made to come back into the arena to bow to their partner, shake hands then bow to the top table and the referee!
Highlights of the day were captured by professional sports photographers De Photo, who photographed competitors during their contests to catch that special moment. It gave the parents the opportunity to buy that winning photo of their child competing in competition for the first time. It was great for the parents to be able to see the confidence and the skills that their children had developed whilst training at their clubs.
All children had to work really hard to compete against children from different clubs, who all equally wanted to win! But there was always the respectful shake of hands and bow to each other at the end of the contest.
It was a very rewarding morning and a truly inspirational atmosphere right from the start of the day to the end of their championships. The students and parents waited nervously to find out who won in their weight divisions. The winners stepped forward and stood on the podium in bronze, silver or gold position and were presented with their medals by the deputy Major of Cambridge, who was truly amazed by the whole event. It was a very heart-warming moment for parents to see their children on the podium with their little faces smiling and so happy with themselves.
Following a well-deserved lunch, the juniors & intermediates starting arriving well before their pre-weigh in, this is always a good sign that they are keen to get started.
The referees had to judge well over 200 fights during the afternoon, so there was plenty of coffee being made for them. Many parents who had never seen their child enter a competition or even seen them training were over whelmed by their confidence and ability to deal with their opponent during the contest and no matter how aggressive and hard their contest was everyone showed each other complete respect at the end of each contest with a bow and shake of hands.
With over 150 students competing in the afternoon, it was going to be a fantastic afternoon of true fighting spirit. It was truly amazing to watch the student put their heart and soul into their fights. There were so many amazing fights throughout the championship.
It was then the junior’s time to find out who had won bronze, silver or Gold. The day finished with an official photograph following the official ceremonial close.
If you would like to find out more about our clubs in Norfolk and throughout the UK you can contact the National Registrar Teresa Paginton on 01953 483795 or visit our web site.www.ishinryu.com
Please visit our website www.ishinryu.com as much as possible as I submit reports every month about the students training during the previous month. This is a great opportunity to see if you have been mentioned or appear in a photo.
We also have the new calendar page where you can have a look at upcoming events so you can plan ahead. You can also leave feedback on each of the reports or comment on your son/daughters club and share them to your Facebook pages.
If you have any questions or you are unsure of anything, please catch me at the club where I will be happy to help!
If you are on Facebook, please can you send me and Kevin Pell a friend request so if we need to pass on information quickly I can contact you, and when the reports go up I can share it to your Facebook page so you get it straight away.