Competitions - what to expect

Tora Judo Kai hold a range of competitions at different levels throughout the year held under Bushido Budo Kai association judo competition rules and insurance.

Whatever your level of competition experience we are able to facilitate your competitive requirements.

What to expect from your first competition

By the time you are ready for your first real competition you will probably have been through a TJK club or interclub competition so will have had a low level experience of what is involved in a competition.

As Tora Judo Kai we make sure you are well prepared for a competition. There really is nothing to worry about. You will be well supported by your coach/sensei/team captain and other members of Tora Judo Kai.

It is important that you arrive at the competition on time for registration and a weigh in. Make sure you have your licence with you and that it is in date.

Personal hygiene is very important for competition and is detailed in the competition rules. A clean white gi without unpleasant odour and short clean fingernails and toenails are a requirement. No jewellery should be worn and long hair should be tied back with a soft non metallic band. Women and girls are asked to wear plain white t-shirt under their gi jackets long enough to tuck into the trousers. Failure to comply with these rules would result in a competitor being unable to take part.

Typically at a full competition you will be asked to attend a weigh in at a particular time in the morning. This is so the organisers of a competition can group together competitors of similar weights. A weight category will usually be over 5 kgs. Boys and girls will typically not compete in the same category.

Example of possible weight groups

Girls & Boys: under 20 kg, U 25 kg U 30 kg U 35 kg U 40 kg U 45 kg U 50 kg, U 55 kg, U 60 kg, U 65 kg, Over 65kg

Once you have weighed in and registered you can find a spot in the spectators' area (usually with the other members of your club who are competing that day) to sit back and watch the other groups compete. It is advised that you are already changed into you Gi but also have tracksuit top and bottoms on to protect your gi and keep you warm. (Club tracksuits are available on the web shop). We also recommend that you take a packed lunch and plenty of liquid as it can be a long day.

Your name and weight group will be called to attend one of the mats laid out for the competition. It is important to make sure you have warmed up prior to attending the mat as you may not be given the opportunity to do this once you arrive. Your team captain and club coach will be there to support you and make sure you are at the mat on time warmed up and ready to go. One you have been called to a mat make sure you hand in your name to the table officials. It is also important to make sure the table officials have taken you name correctly against each fight you win.

A contest is planned to run from 2 minutes for under 8s up to 7 mins for a Dan Grade final. The length of the competition will be specified by the competition controller or event organisers. The aim is to cleanly throw your opponent onto their backs with speed control and force or to hold them down on the mat in a specified manner for a set time period or (dependent on age and the competition) gain a submission through an arm lock or strangle.

Once the competitors on the mat have been fought off either the referees or the table officials will let you know what happens next. They may tell you that you are through to the next round you have made it to the finals or that you will not be required to take part in any further contest.

Each competition is different but if you have won a medal please make sure you wait to collect it and bring it to your next training session for everyone to see.

The important thing to remember is that Judo is a Martial Art and that either winning or losing should be accepted with good grace. The fact that you have taken part in the right spirit is something to be proud of and is noted and respected by your instructors and all members of the judo community.

Whilst at a competition and all other events you must remember you are representing the club and association and must behave accordingly. Poor behaviour could result in the whole club being asked to leave the competition and your membership revoked.

You can download a full copy of the competition rules from this website and can consult the refereeing section for more detail.

TJK club competitions

TJK club competitions are held during standard lesson time approximately once a quarter and are designed to give members of the club you attend an idea of what a competition is about. This is a chance to compete against fellow club members to hone your techniques and understanding of the format and rules of a competition. We also use these competitions to develop the skills of the referees, corner judges and table officials. Competitors are divided in to groups of similar abilities who then compete against each other in a pool to knockout system. Gold Silver and a Bronze medal are awarded in each group.

TJK interclub competition

The interclub competition is run like a standard competition but involves entries from any of the Tora Judo Kai clubs. Competitors are asked to weigh in before the start of the competition and then put into similar groups. You then compete against each other in a pool to knockout system. Gold Silver and 2 Bronze medals are awarded in each group.

TJK Invitational Low Grade Competition

The TJK Low grade competition is held in October and involves up to 90 competitors. We invite clubs from other associations to attend this competition but restrict entries from 6 to 16 years old and Orange belt and under. This is to give members of Tora Judo Kai a taste of a real competition without the concern of high grades and experienced competitors attending. Gold Silver and 2 Bronze medals are awarded in each weight group.

TJK Invitational Competition

The TJK Invitational competition held in March is the main competitive event of our calendar and is run as a full competition. Juniors over the age of 8 years old through to Black Belt seniors from invited clubs and associations will attend this event. 150 competitors take part. Gold Silver and 2 Bronze medals are awarded in each weight group. Demonstrations of kata and other Martial Arts kick this event off with a bang.

South West Squad Team Competitions

For those really interested in competition we host regular competition training sessions involving friendly clubs from the South West Area. From this we select a South West Squad.

The squad is made up of a boy and a girl in each weight category from U25kgs up to over 60 kgs in 5kg increments. This will then be supported by senior Women’s and Men’s teams to complete the squad.

Our aim is to compete as the South West Squad against teams from other associations.

The team has travelled to many locations and competed under many different assoc rules.

BJA competitions

Tora Judo Kai select members from the Bushido Budo Kai who have a particular talent and interest in competitions and offer them the opportunity to train, develop and compete in sport judo. Our own coaching team hold licences, grades and refereeing awards from the national governing body of sport judo the British Judo Association. We are able to support and develop any players interested in perusing this route through our own coaching network.

We have had members who have gone on to make the England squad and represent their country.

In order to compete in British Judo Association competitions you have to pay for one of their licences.