Revelstoke Judo Club hosts “grassroots” event

Judo sensei Cornelius Suchy instructs visiting students before a practice spar. Laura Stovel photo

By Laura Stovel

Judo enthusiasts from Creston, Salmo, Invermere, Salmon Arm and Vernon gathered at the Revelstoke Legion on Saturday for a randori (practice competition) hosted by the Revelstoke Judo Club.

Revelstoke sensei (teacher) Cornelius Suchy described the event as a novel, grassroots initiative. New national judo regulations prevent students with white and yellow belts from participating in full competitions. This was an effort to introduce children to the rules of competition and to give them a chance to practice with others in their weight categories.

Sensei Sandy Sydnam of Salmo said the randori is important because “smaller people don’t always have others to fight with in our club.”

Suchy, who has been teaching judo in Revelstoke since 2002, described judo as “the last non-commercial martial art.”

“No one gets paid and fees are low,” he said. “It’s open to people who cannot afford to ski (or do other, more expensive sports.) People from all walks of life participate.”

Here are some additional photos from the event:

Revelstoke’s Caine McCabe wrestles with his opponent. Laura Stovel photo
Jack Callaghan of Revelstoke and Isabelle Gelina of Salmo spar in a very fast and exciting match. Laura Stovel photo
Nicholas Suchy of Revelstoke holds his own with Graham Campbell-Kuipers of Salmo. Laura Stovel photo
Judo students aim to pin down their opponent on the mat in order to win the match. Laura Stovel photo