A Message from the Chairman
Dear Members of the A.J.A
I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself as the new Chairman of the National A.J.A. Committee with a very brief history of my judo life.
My interest in judo began in September 1964, when a judo coach came to my class at school asking if anyone would be interested in learning Judo. The following Saturday I went along to the class which was held at Loughborough College. Two years later I gained my Yellow belt 2 Orange tabs. This was when I took out my membership with the A.J.A.
The East Midlands area was very strong at the time. At eighteen I also joined the Loughborough University Judo Club, we had a Japanese instructor who was only ever known as Foo. I travelled to many interesting venues with the university during my teen years.
Judo became a big part of my life, but only as a hobby fitting round my working life. Never the less I trained every night I could and attended competitions at the weekends.
I was there at the start of Loughborough Judo Club with Mr Keith Hudson. We trained together for the best part of nineteen years. I later went to coach along with Paul Bennett and his wife Jean at Market Bosworth Judo Club. We had a very successful club and held many competitions always in June and attracting over 300 competitors; some of the older judoka may remember these times. I later took over sole running of the club.
I took up coaching in the 1980’s coaching at several clubs around the East Midland Area. I also coached at a BJC Club in Shepshed for many years.
I became a member of the A.J.A. East Midland Area Committee as club representative, I later became East Midlands Area Coach promoting my interest in the Judo Kata’s. I have spent the last fifteen years as NEC Officer for the East Midland Area and before that attended many AGM’s .
In 2014 I was promoted to my present grade of Yodan (4th Dan) by Mr Roger Downs at the NEC.
Mr Downs sadly passed away in 2017 and I was approached at the beginning of 2018 asking if I would be interested in the position of Chairman of the A.J.A. I said I would be happy to accept the position if I was elected by the members.
I currently run Loughborough Judo Club after the founder Mr Keith Hudson retired due to ill health. I have a very good team surrounding me at Loughborough.
I look forward to being a part of the continued success of the A.J.A.
Yours in Judo Keith Kendall