2016 OJU Spring Kata Seminar Report

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2016 OJU Spring Kata Seminar 6th ~ 9th September and  2016 OJU & Sydney International Kata Championships 10th September

Kata Seminar – Held at the NSW Judo Dojo, Newington Armory, Silverwater, NSW.


Once again, we were most fortunate to have the Kodokan’s top Sensei to take us, step by step, through the 5 Kodokan Kata; Ju no Kata, Katame no Kata, Nage no Kata, KDK Goshin Jutsu, & Kime no Kata. This year also saw the inclusion of the Jnr Nage no Kata . People came from all over Australia and 2 from NZL to participate.


untitled2It was wonderful to see the familiar & friendly faces of the two Kodokan Kata experts;

  • Toshihiro UTSUGI – 8th Dan on his 3rd visit.
  • Motonari SAMESHIMA – 8th Dan on his 2nd visit.


I would like to thank the Kodokan for sending these excellent Kata experts to instruct at the OJU Spring Kata Course and be guests of honour at the 2016 OJU & Sydney International Kata Championships. We also thank the senseis for their kind help.


The senseis ( Utsugi-sensei, and Sameshima-sensei ) were, as always, exceptional and worked very hard with our Judoka of various levels of knowledge. Their patience in dealing with the long days, especially day 1 as they came directly from the airport.

Each of the senseis took turns in leading and supporting each other in the teaching.

…… At this point, I would like to stress the extra special appeal to these OJU Kata seminars is the fact that you can get ‘one on one’ tuition from the worlds best, and there is English interpretation available from myself and Ernie Wakamatsu. If you were to go to the Kodokan’s Summer Kata course it would be near impossible to get that degree of support …..

Sameshima-sensei, who is the Uke on the KDK DVD for Ju no Kata and is the foremost expert on Ju no Kata & affectionally known to the Lismore club girls as “DVD Sensei”, even donated one his lunch breaks to help out, one on one, with any issues/questions on Ju no Kata. – in a word….. AWESOME!

Each Kata was given 6 hours of tuition and practice time and for the first time Jnr Nage no Kata was introduced and it was great to see youngsters and others there taking advantage of this 3 hrs of extra time to learn and review the first 3 sets of Nage no Kata.


One of the highlights of the seminar was seeing Bianca Tambean (9 yrs old) and her brother Bernhard (13 yrs old) doing Ju no Kata along with everyone else. They had only been taught and practiced the first 2 sets but when it came time for the new techniques of the last set,….. they simply learnt them the same as everyone else.


This is another wonderful example that early teaching of kata is appropriate and fun for children to learn and perform.

I highly recommend starting your children’s kata groups now so that they too can participate and benefit from the next seminar of 2018.


OJU Spring Kata Course Participation                      Numbers

6th Sept         Kime No Kata                                            20

7th Sept         Katame/KDK Goshin                              30

8th Sept         Ju No Kata                                                   29

9th Sept         Nage No Kata                                             45

10th Sept      Jnr Nage No Kata (1st 3 sets)                11

Overall attendees for the 4.5 days –                        57 Judoka

Compared to previous events the numbers were down but the quality of the attendees was very good and the attention of the class never wavered, not even with the children, and all practiced intently and diligently.

So much so that the senseis mentioned it a number of times and Sameshima-sensei even made an open comment to the class that in his experience there is always some one skiving off… but not in Sydney. The senseis were truly impressed and encourged by the focus, making a wonderful atmosphere on the mat, but sadly each class came to its end.

Both senseis emphasized the importance of Uke’s role in that a suitable amount of resistance and defense is paramount to make the Kata real.

Also that if kuzushi is used correctly and sufficiently then it is not so necessary to throw all the time. Those people who know Ju no Kata will understand this very well.

The word ‘Riai’ came up again as did ‘Zanshin’ – Two great words to study 🙂


The theory that Ju no Kata can be done with out a Gi was put to the test when Michael Headland turned up without his Judo-gi due to the airline having lost it.

Michael thought he would miss out on the class but the senseis invited him on mat in his regular clothes.


Interpreters, as in past seminars, were Ernie Wakamatsu and myself – People kindly expressed their appreciation for our efforts and support.



The privileged demonstrators were;

Kime                                     Ernie Wakamatsu/Michael Griffiths

KDK Goshin Jutsu             Mathew Homes / Greg Cadorin

Katame                                Ernie Wakamatsu/Michael Griffiths

Ju                                            Ernie Wakamatsu/Dale Keogh

Nage                                      Drew Evans/Paul Sheean and Simon Read/Eddie Yuen


Being a demonstrator is the most sought after role. As a demonstrator you get the sensei’s most critical eye on you and while it may be hard to provide the perfection demanded, you do get the best lesson.



On the 10th the 2016 OJU & Sydney International Kata Championship was held.

It was very successful, not only for the competitors but also the Judges who were able to be assessed and certified.

16 attended the 2.5 hour judges meeting which was very productive and enlightening. With added input from very experienced people; Mr Ivor Endicott-Davies ex IJF commissioner, Rob Ivers IJF Judge & Rodney Cox IJF Judge the open book exam focused the judges on the task at hand.


Making the time for such meetings is a great and necessary investment in our Kata future and will be done at every opportunity.


Participation in the OJU Competition Competing pairs in each Kata

Ju No Kata              Kime No Kata        Katame No Kata   KDK Goshin Jutsu                 Nage No Kata        Jr Nage

4                                 1                                 4                                 0                                                   5                                 2


The results were published on the Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/131203367284574/ on 11 September.


Final Results
Jr Nage No Kata:
Gold: Bernhard and Biannca Tandean (Budokan Judo Club)
Silver: Lion and Francis Park (Budokan Judo Club)

Nage No Kata:
Gold: Mohan Bam (VIC) and Eddie Yuen (Zenbu Judo Club)
Silver: Paul Sheean and Drew Evans (Jita Kyoei Judo Club)
Bronze: Mathew Kinstler (Rakuen, QLD) and Pez Lugg (SouthWest Judo Academy, WA)

Katame no Kata
Gold: Ernie Wakamatsu (Northern Sydney Judo Club) and Michael Griffiths (jita Kyoei Judo Club)
Silver: Simon Read (SouthWest Judo Academy, WA) and Paul Kendrick (Muchea PCYC, WA)
Bronze: Neisha Brooking (Whakatane Judo Club, New Zealand), and Hilary Rosser (Upper Hutt Judo Club, New Zealand)

Ju no Kata
Gold: Ernie Wakamatsu (NSJC) and Dale Keogh (Budokan)
Silver: Janet Lambert and Jennifer Beaton (VIC)
Bronze: Bernhard and Biannca Tandean (Budokan)

Kime no Kata
Silver (based on score): Ernie Wakamatsu (NCJC) and Michael Griffiths (Jita Kyoei Judo Club)




On the 9th the Senseis were guests of honour at the NSW BBR Gala Dinner, where they presented some of the annual awards.

Of extra special note – Congratulations to Mr. Ivor Endicott-Davies (former OJU Kata Commission Director and founder of this Kata course) who was awarded his JFA 7th Dan following a successful grading demonstration of Koshiki No Kata.

I was also presented with my Kodokan 7th Dan certificate (the grading was 10 months earlier at the Kodokan) which was kindly brought down by the senseis. I was very honoured to have had it presented and read out to me by Sameshima-sensei.


In closing I would like express a special thanks the NSW BBR and namely Ernie Wakamatsu and Michael Griffiths who worked tirelessly in bringing this event together, the President of the OJU Mr Lennie Nitt for his continued support of the running of this very important educational event.

The NSW Judo Association for their Dojo and facilitation, and my OJU Kata

Commission members; Mr. Rob Ivers for his massive efforts at ground zero and Mr. Arnaud Laboube who unfortunately could not make it due to work commitments.


Yours in Judo,

Bill Vincent

Director, OJU Kata Commission

PS: All the competitors scores and Judges scores are recorded and as before are accessible for grading purposes on request. In Australia and NZ the pass mark for Kata in a grading is 65% and the result valid for two years.

The Judges Certifications will be published in the near future.


Here are some pictures of the event:

Sameshima sensei 8D with Bianca Tandean 9yrs old and big brother Bernhard 13 yrs old winner of the Ju no Kata Bronze & Jnr Nage no Kata Gold, with long standing Ju no Kata champions Ernie Wakamatsu 4D & Dale Keogh 6D, Utsugi Sensei 8D.