I competed at the 2011 Northeastern Judo Championship last weekend. It was run very well by Camal Judo. Winners of the black division were awarded $250 which was perhaps part of the reason why some of the best U.S. judoka showed up to compete.
In other words, I didn’t just get to fight, but I also got a chance to watch some elite-level judo.
It’s funny but I completely didn’t remember how many matches I had until I went back and watched the video of the matches. I only had 6 matches. It felt like more, partially because many of them went into overtime, but mostly because I was there from 10am till 6pm. For those of you that compete, you know the drained feeling of having to wait all day with long (sometimes over an hour) breaks between matches.
Technically speaking, this was one of my worst performances in judo in recent history in terms of wins and losses, but in fact in terms of the actual judo, it was a good day. Judo for me has become much less about winning and much more about learning and enjoying myself. (The story is quite different for BJJ and no-gi).
I’m a little upset with myself how lazy I got as the day progressed. The two matches I lost towards the end were purely due to me being so relaxed that if my opponent wasn’t holding me up, I’d fall over into an instant nap. I have to change that. It’s good to stay relaxed, but when it’s match time, you have to wake up!
Here’s a video blog of the experience, that includes video of some matches between top U.S. judoka including Travis Stevens, Nick Delpopolo, Edwin Vallejo, and Carlos Moran: