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Itosu-ryu Club Championships in Scotland

Itosu-kai Scotland

On Sunday 3rd December the Itosu-ryu Scotland branch held the Itosu-ryu club championships at one of our venues . Unlike most competitions this tournament is run to encourage our younger members to take part in both kata and kumite and as such we ensure that all competitors receive a prize, but more importantly to encourage fairness at these early levels we use one of the very oldest competition set ups. In kumite there is only a small disparity in height between each group of competitors and in kata the sections are split into grades structures. Although this means a lot more groups we aim to encourage fairness and enjoyment rather than simply winning for this level of children .

The tournament went well and many parents turned up to spectate, we were fortunate in that an Asian camera crew were present and recorded some of the tournament which got aired on Asia T,V. that night. Here in Glasgow we have a large population of Asian people and our association has many Asian children attending classes so it was nice to have it shown on T,V.

As we are in partnership with Glasgow Life here in Glasgow which is a local governing council set up to encourage children into sport every year Glasgow Life gives out three awards to our championships , the first is for Most Positive person award and this year Amber Mac Cleod won this award . The second was for Most Coachable Person Award and Safa Khan won this award and the third was for Best Effort Award which went to Heather Watson.

Also at our championships in remembrance of my mentor and teacher in karate Brian Docherty there is the Brian Docherty memorial shield. This is given to the best performer in both kata and kumite this has been going for nearly thirty years now and this year Joe Bell exceled in both events and became 2017 Champion .

The tournament would not function without helpers and officials and Itosu-ryu Scotland is fortunate in that nearly all our senior students go forward to train at judges and referees levels within Itosu-ryu Scotland over the year to keep their skills level up ,although I am a Scottish referee grade 1 over the years I have not participated at national levels anymore, but i still keep my hand in within our group. We have younger black belt members now staring to go down that road and their help at this tournament is also very grateful.

As a thank you to all the helpers on the day I take them out for an evening meal to unwind and discus the days events and sort out any difficulties for next year , so we went to my favourite Indian restaurant the Anakali and have a nice meal to unwind.

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