7th Annual USJF National Kata Clinic

7th Annual USJF National Kata Clinic
By Keoni Lima

 Known as the “Premier Kata Clinic,” the National Kata Clinic is sponsored by the USJF Kata Development & Certification Committee wherein kata experts gather annually to share their expertise and knowledge of the forms. This year’s 7th Annual USJF National Kata Clinic was held August 17th-19th, 2007, in beautiful Boise, Idaho and was sponsored by the Treasure Valley Judo Club of the Intermountain Yudanshakai. The venue was Capital High School, a local high school which offered every amenity necessary to produce a perfect event.

Three of the nations leading experts in judo kata were this year’s kata clinicians: Mrs. Eiko Shepherd, Head Clinician (7th Dan & USJF Kata Development & Certification Chairperson); Mr. Noboru Saito, Clinician (7th Dan & Past USJF President); and Mrs. Frances Glaze, Clinician (5th Dan & PJU Kata Champion). Each of them brought a wealth of knowledge and expertise, which was successfully demonstrated in the participant’s progress throughout the clinic. Prior to the start of the clinic, clinicians arrived to an official welcome from the Mayor of Boise and were also granted a private tour of the Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial.

This year’s National Kata Clinic broke record numbers as participant registration was well above fifty. They ranged from Juniors to Masters and included participants from Idaho, Texas, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Michigan, Ohio, Colorado, South Dakota and Tennessee. Additionally, the clinic was honored to have the presence of several USJF officials such as USJF President Mr. Neil Simon, USJF 2nd Vice-President Mrs. Julie Koyama, and Executive Director Mr. Robert Fukuda.

In addition to testing and certification, clinicians also selected and presented awards for the Most Outstanding Tori and Uke for both Juniors and Seniors. Jenna Seukal (Treasure Valley Judo Club) and Ashton Stark (Ore-Ida Judo Club) were each awarded the Junior awards, while Ajax Tadehara (Idaho State University Judo Club) and Salvador Cruz (Treasure Valley Judo Club) were each awarded the Senior awards. 

The huge success of this year’s clinic was largely due to many coordinators, staffers, volunteers, and supporters who provided their time and service during the planning and execution of this growing event. A special thanks goes to Mr. Rocky Lima, Clinic Coordinator; Mr. Keoni Lima, Assistant Clinic Coordinator; the Treasure Valley Judo Club; and the City of Boise.

The following kata’s were taught and reviewed in detail during the event. All participants had the option to test for kata/judging certification in any kata of their choice for either USJF or USJI accreditation:

  • Friday Aug. 17th: Nage no Kata, Katame no Kata, Introduction to Kodokan Goshin Jitsu
  • Saturday Aug. 18th: Ju no Kata, Kime no Kata, Completion of Kodokan Goshin Jitsu
  • Sunday Aug. 19th: Itsutsu no Kata, Tandoku Renshu (Solo Exercise), Kata Review