Important announcement for USJF registered dojos and clubs

The USJF Board of Directors has waived the USJF dojo/club registration fee for Fiscal Year 2021 (9/1/2020-8/31/2021).

You do not have to pay the USJF portion of the dojo/club registration fee ($25). Please check with your yudanshakai regarding your yudanshakai’s dojo/club registration fee to see if they are making any changes/adjustments in their dojo/club registration fees for FY 2021.

Insurance is an important part of the USJF dojo/club registration, and many rely on the certificate of insurance from the USJF office. Please ensure you have completed the USJF Club Registration & Insurance Application (USJF form 509) as well as your dojo/club registration renewal.

We realize that many/most dojos are closed and/or prohibited by public health edicts/guidance to ease operations, we encourage you to get your dojo/club registration in now. It puts you in position for quick/immediate start up when the opportunity presents itself.

Please see the full text of this announcement here.

Luchia speaks about coronavirus

Noboru Saito sent this message

Hi Sensei Saito,

I’m asking for your help to “like” Luchia’s science video on Facebook.

Luchia’s coronavirus video made it into the semifinals for the 2020 Breakthrough Junior Challenge (partnered with the Khan Academy). She can win the Popular Vote if people Like, Share or give a positive reaction before the September 20 deadline. If she wins the popular vote, her video will automatically advance to the final judging round where the winner is selected.

You can see it on this facebook page.

Thanks so much for your help!

Lori Quon

Revised COVID-19 Guidance

A revised statement of practice has been issued on 31 August 2020. The full text is here and it includes the USOPC statement. The major additions to the document are below.

  • Insurance Coverage Update:
    On September 1, 2020, our new insurance policies for the new 2021 Fiscal Year, become effective. There are some major changes and they are briefly outlined here.

    COVID-19 Liability:
    Our liability policies DO NOT provide liability coverage for epidemic & pandemic diseases. The current COVID-19 crisis has been declared a pandemic by both the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Therefore, any claims/lawsuits brought against you due to COVID-19: infection, illness, injury, disability, death, economic loss, etc. WILL NOT BE DEFENDED BY THE LIABLITY INSURANCE POLICIES.
    COVID-19 Accident Medical:
    Our accident medical policy does not provide coverage for any COVID-19 pandemic related: infection, illness, injury, disability, death, economic loss, etc.

    The policy is intended to respond to accidental injuries incurred while doing sanctioned or approved judo. For example: sprains, broken limbs, dislocations, etc. It does NOT respond to claims arising from allergies, usual colds and flu, COVID-19, chickenpox and other communicable disease illness. The accident medical policy is NOT a replacement for your own health insurance/coverage. It is NOT a primary coverage policy and responds on a secondary basis in conjunction with your own health insurance.
  • Return To Activity/Training After COVID-19 Infection:
    There can be many lingering side effects of having had a COVID-19 infection. One of them is the development of myocarditis – an inflammation of the heart muscle. Due to the dangers of myocarditis and other lingering COVID-19 damage/symptoms, any athlete who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, MUST be medically cleared with written authorization/clearance for strenuous physical activities such as judo BEFORE returning to judo activities from a physician, nurse practitioner, or physician’s assistant.
  • Phase Four had been split in two
    Phase 4a: Public health authorities allow public training facilities to open WITH limitations on group size.
    Dojos/clubs may OPEN for individual training in small groups only if social distancing and masking are maintained. DIRECT CONTACT IS NOT ALLOWED.
    Phase 4b: Public health authorities allow public training facilities to open, no limitations on group size.
    Dojos/clubs may OPEN. Direct contact allowed to resume during this phase.

Wataru Namba, hibakusha

Dear all,

There was story with the headline, “Wataru Namba, 93, is among an estimated 3,000 Japanese American hibakusha, survivors of the U.S. atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.” I was asked by Barbara Shimizu Sensei whether this is the same Wataru Namba Sensei that we had learned under when I first started refereeing. Through confirmation by Senseis Gary Takemoto and Richie Endow, we found that indeed this is the same Wataru Namba Sensei.

Continue reading “Wataru Namba, hibakusha”

Revised COVID-19 Guidance

A revised statement of practice has been issued on 15 July 2020. The full text is here and it includes the USOPC statement. The major additions to the document are below.

  • Though some states may have relaxed their restrictions and moved into higher phases and more allowable activities, many states are experiencing a resurgence in COVID-19 cases. This may lead to a return to lower phases and renewed restrictions. Please keep abreast of the latest developments in your area/jurisdiction and maintain proper observance and compliance with the phase status and guidance. You must be sure to move with the change in phases and adjust activities accordingly.
  • Please remember, the COVID-19 pandemic is very fluid. This makes the phase and situation in your area/jurisdiction very fluid too. You must be fluid in your planning and activities for your athletes to properly protect them and maintain compliance with local regulations/restrictions.
  • Please remember, our insurance coverages require compliance with regulations and accepted standard practices. Please be compliant to protect your students and yourselves. Please be compliant to ensure that insurance coverage is intact.

Please know the current phase in your local area/jurisdiction, apply, and adhere to it.

Visitor Log

    If your dojo/club is OPEN or hosting/conducting any activities, please use a visitor log to have a listing of everyone who comes into the dojo/club. This includes: vendors, guests, visitors, parents, friends, relatives, potential students, students, athletes, and instructional staff.

    Basically, ANYONE who walks in the door. You should capture: the date that they were there, the person’s name, a contact telephone number, and their temperature. A sample visitor log can be found on the last page of this document. Please feel free to make copies and use it.

    If someone in the dojo tests positive for COVID-19, you should call everyone who has been exposed to let them know of the exposure so that they can take appropriate action. If someone tests positive, it is very likely that the local public health department will follow-up and conduct some contact tracing. Having good visitor logs will help facilitate their contact tracing efforts.

    Here’s a link to the CDC page on contract tracing

We are extending this recommendation through August 31, 2020.

If your jurisdiction does allow for judo activities. We highly recommend that athletes should have a limited number of training partners each practice or series of practices. Limiting the number of training partners will help to limit potential exposure to COVID-19. It is important that all training partners are behaving judiciously and limit their general activities. Remember, if someone is exposed to the virus, their exposure exposes all training partners to the virus too. This may not be practical for all dojos/clubs or possible at every practice, but it will present an extra layer of safety if someone ends up testing COVID-19 positive after attending class(es).

Use Face Masks:

We encourage the use of face masks. Especially during the times when appropriate to do so: bowing in and out at the start and end of the class/practice, during times when there is group instruction, during lectures/talks. Furthermore, we encourage the use of face masks by all family, friends, guests, and visitors while they are inside of the dojo.

It is obviously a bit problematic to require the wearing of face masks while engaged in tachiwaza or newaza randori. It is certainly reasonable to require the wearing of face masks when engaged in less than rigorous activities. It helps to keep everyone mindful of the current pandemic and public health guidelines. The additional efforts to be diligent will likely be helpful in creating a safer and thoughtful environment for your current and potentially new members.

Notice: Extension to George Balch 2020 Scholarship Application Deadline

Notice to all high school seniors and graduates intending to continue judo and attend college – In the light of the disruption to both academics and judo due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the application deadline for the 2020 George Balch Scholarship has been extended to August 15, 2020. This year, in addition to funding the one continuing scholarship awardee, the Committee will strive to fund at least one additional scholarship. Please read the qualifications and application form on the Scholarship Fund webpage carefully and be sure to provide the required information.

Thank you.

Click here to see the Balch Scholarship Fund webpage

Pete Catlos
George C. Balch Scholarship Committee
Telephone: (810) 300-3639