Just another WordPress.com site

Posts tagged “Hartlepool College of FE

Karate Coaching Qualifications


Late last year our club organised another English Karate Federation Coaching course. It was run by Sensei Harold Stephenson, aided by Teesside University Lecturer Sensei Ciaron Flood, both from the TASK association. I think having an assessor come in from another association worked really well, it gave us a fresh perspective and for me personally (as the admin for the club) it was like being audited – were we doing everything we should be? I don’t think an in-house assessment has the same effect.

The event was just a refresher for the five senior club instructors (But we still learned a lot!) but it also allowed us to get two of our up and coming guys qualified as Level 1 Coaches. We’ve now got seven fully qualified Karate instructors at Hartlepool Wadokai.

The instructors are:

Lynne Jorgeson, 4th Dan; Michael Jorgeson, 2nd Dan; Carl Jorgeson, 3rd Dan; Amy Jorgeson, 2nd Dan; Vince Dawkins, 1st Dan; Beth Gray, 1st Dan; Roy Salmons, 2nd Kyu.

We’ve also got a number of junior instructors at the club too, though they are too young to take the EKF qualifications at the moment.

I know that some of the ‘old boys’ of Karate think that these types of qualifications are worthless in the dojo and to some extent I do actually agree with them. Will these pieces of paper make any of our club coaches better? probably not. Though our club has a very thorough coach development system in place and a very strong partnership with the Hartlepool College of Further Education and The Hartlepool Sporting Association, two of our coaches have also got degrees  in Sports Coaching – so I’d say we’re ahead of the curve when it comes to best practise etc…

What these qualifications do though, is ensure that Karate clubs are meeting a minimum safe standard and are operating properly and this can’t be a bad thing for Karate. It also ensures that coaches have the basic tools to teach – If we can’t pass on what we know effectively then the Martial Art/Sport is dead. I think every ‘Sensei’ should achieve these qualifications as a minimum and hope to see more of these courses run in the future by the EKF.

Having a black belt around your waist doesn’t mean you know how to teach and it certainly isn’t a coaching qualification.

This aspect of Karate training is just as important as the technical side so don’t neglect it!




Hartlepool Wadokai Beginners Karate Championships

Saturday 23rd June 2012 – Hartlepool College of Further Education

This was only our second ever competition exclusively for our beginners. The event was held to be a stepping stone to some of our bigger competitions that we now run annually and was designed to be a low key affair, with none of the bells and whistles that we usually have at our events. We didn’t want to intimidate our inexperienced competitors. The event was also used as a training opportunity for our cadets to get some judging practise in. They all worked hard throughout the day and we’d like to thank them once again for their efforts.

The event started at 11am with Sensei Amy putting all the competitors through their paces, going over the kata moves they would need during the day. Overall the competition was quite relaxed, and we took our time between categories so that the young competitors could get themselves ready. Before the Kumite (fighting) categories started, we had an exhibition match between two of our Wadokai England squad members, Lewis and Phil. And Chris gave a demo of the Kick Master Kumite too.


It was great to see some great potential in the young-lings, with some as young as five years old already moving around the mat like they own the place. I think the future is bright for our club.



KA1 – Kata, White Belts, White & Red Belts

1st – Harry Newbury

2nd – Alfie Ogden

3rd – Sarah Shears

3rd – AJ Murray


KA2 – Kata, Red Belts

1st – Connor Shepherd

2nd – Tyler Vaughan

3rd – Jacob Hodgson

3rd – Leyton Davis


KA3 – Kata, Yellow Belts, Orange Belts

1st – Oakley Lindridge

2nd – Khushru Khasimai

3rd – Jack Solomon

3rd – Joseph Flounders


KA4 – Kata, Seniors

1st – Chris Lindridge

2nd – Roy Salmons


KM1 – Kick Master Kumite,

White & Red Belts

1st – Joshua Martindale

2nd – Alfie Ogden

3rd – AJ Murray

3rd – Will Davidson


KM2 – Kick Master Kumite, Red Belts, Yellow Belts, Orange Belts

1st –  Rebecca Caygill

2nd – Joseph Flounders

3rd – Leyton Davis

3rd – Khushru Khasimai


KU1 – Kumite, White Belts,

White & Red Belts

1st – Harry Nebury

2nd – Harvey Allicante

3rd – Sarah Shears

3rd – AJ Murray


KU2 – Kumite, Red Belts

1st – Callum Pedley

2nd – Connor Shepherd

3rd – Jacob Hodgson

3rd – Tyler Vaughan


KU3 – Kumite, Yellow Belts, Orange Belts

1st – Oakley Lindridge

2nd – Abby Laidler

3rd – Rebecca Caygill

3rd – Khushru Khasimai


I know that some of the kids were disappointed that they didn’t manage to get medals, or they didn’t get as far as they’d hoped, but sadly, not everyone can win. I personally think that you can learn just as much from losing as you can from winning, perhaps even more and I was sure to remind all the competitors of this before we let them go home.


Finally, I’d like to thank all of the parents and students for entering the competition (especially on the same weekend as a club grading!), and all of the club officials and volunteers who helped fetch and carry the equipment (the dedicated few!) and also the Hartlepool Sporting Association and Hartlepool College of Further Education for the use of a fantastic venue.

1st EKF Kyu Grade Karate Championships

We left Hartlepool two hours before dawn (approx 6am) on a very cold, wet and windy Sunday morning (22nd Jan). Ponds Forge in Sheffield was the venue of the 1st English Karate Federation Kyu Grade Karate Championships so, Sheffield was where we were heading!

Apart from being unable to find somewhere to park the mini-bus (gratefully borrowed from Hartlepool College of Further Education) the journey was uneventful. The competitors signed in and got changed, the parents tried to get comfortable on the seating and Lynne and Carl reported to the chief referee to find out where we would be working (Judging) all day. Amy (coach) then briefed the competitors and made sure they were ready for the day.

The day was pretty well organised and was done and dusted in about 9 hours, not bad for such a large entry! I think we could have easily shaved at least an hour off the day if it wasn’t for the usual time-wasting issues at competitions: kids not turning up when they’re supposed to, with incorrect equipment, occasional admin errors etc… but no competition is ever perfect.

This was the second time I’d helped judge at an EKF comp and a first for Lynne and we both thoroughly enjoyed it, even though it was like working in an oven – for 9 hours!!

The three competitors (Lewis, Phil, Bailey) that entered from our club did very well in Kata and Kumite despite the fact that this was the first EKF competition any of them had entered. We entered expecting zero medals, we just wanted to get some competitors on the mat as early as possible so that we had something to work on early in the season.

Results are as follows: 

Phil Salmons: 3rd Place  –  Team Kumite, Boys 12-13yrs

Lewis Muldown: 3rd Place  –  Team Kumite, Boys 12-13yrs

Lewis Muldown: 3rd Place  –  Individual Kumite, Boys 12-13yrs -45kg

Bailey Reed: 3rd Place  –  Team Kumite, Boys 12-13yrs

Bailey Reed: 3rd Place  –  Individual Kata, Boys 12-13yrs

Bailey Reed: 2nd Place  –  Individual Kumite, Boys 12-13yrs +45kg


We got back to Hartlepool at about 9.30pm making it a mammoth 15.5 hour day and the longest ‘Karate day’ our trio of competitors have faced so far.

Key Learnings: The competitors need to work on keeping energy and hydration levels constant throughout the day by eating and drinking correctly to ensure peak performance.

Next Event: Wadokai England Squad Training, Saturday 28th January – Leicester; EKF Referee Training, Sunday 29th January, Barnsley

Summary: We were a little disappointed to only field 3 competitors at this event despite having a pretty big club, those that didn’t attend missed a great opportunity to get some time on the mats. There is still a lot of work to do with all three competitors in Kata & Kumite but each performed well and if they keep up the hard work and enthusiasm then the future should be bright for them.


As part of my Sports Coaching & Exercise Degree at Hartlepool College of FE I get access to the very latest scientific research etc… but every so often (like about 10 mins ago) you come across a journal that was published years ago but still identifies with today.

The journal in question is ‘Phsyical Activity and Intrinsic Motivation‘ by James R. Whitehead, which was published in 1993.

The name is self explanatory, and the journal starts with a great quote which I’ve copied below:

‘Children are born intrinsically motivated to be physically active . That motivation —if kept alive by physical success, freedom, and fun—will do more than promote the fitness behaviors that add years to life. It will maintain the physical zest that adds life to the years’

I particularly liked the ‘Applying Theory to Practise’ paragraphs as they are simple snippets of information that can make a massive difference to us as instructors/coaches/Sensei when delivering sessions.

1. DO try to emphasise individual mastery

This comes from an internal need to be able ‘ to do something’ competently. It stands to reason that if we find something too difficult to learn, then many people will just give up. If these negative experiences happen in our dojo/training halls in  those all important ‘early years’ then we could inadvertently be ‘turning people off’ sport for life.

2. DON’T overemphasise peer comparisons of performance
Does your grading criteria compare between students? or is it based upon individual performances? Do you say things like ‘why can’t you just do it correct like {insert name here}’. That said, I’m a fair believer in competition and I encourage even our youngest students to give competition a go – I couldn’t care less if they win, lose or draw but I like to see them giving their best and trying. They’re a great ‘head fake’ (Pausch, 2007).

3. DO promote perceptions of choice
People like to feel like they have a ‘say’ in their lives, especially kids! I’m not saying you should give up all your authority and let the kids run riot but you could ask them ‘what would you like to do today at training?’. You could also just give students the choice between a number of options, if they don’t choose what you’d like them to you could always build that subject into future sessions.

4. DON’T undermine an intrinsic focus by misusing extrinsic rewards
How do you answer the ‘why are we doing this’ question? Do you answer with ‘because I told you so’ or because you could get a shiny medal? or do you explain the inherent benefits of the skill, the traditional art that they are slowly mastering… something to think about.

 5. DO promote the intrinsic fun and excitement of exercise
This should be an easy win.

6. DON’T turn exercise into a bore or a chore
I KNOW that I’ve done this in some of my sessions but hopefully not all the time! I like the authors comparison with a ‘diet’ of physical activity and sport. Imagine how bored you’d be if you had to do the same technique every lesson, week in, week out. Again, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be practising our basics, every lesson if needed, but I’m sure we can at least attempt to keep it fresh and interesting.

7. DO promote a sense of purpose by teaching the value of physical activity to health, optimum function, and quality of life
This links in well with no. 6, if students know why they are performing a particular drill or technique then they are much more likely to work through the ‘boring stuff’.

I had a similar experience a few weeks ago in one of our sessions… we had our students working on one of the basic partner drills and you could see they weren’t particularly excited about it. We had to persevere with it as they had the chance of grading soon. I  showed them the application of the key skills  they’d been learning (in this case Kuzushi/balance breaking) in a ‘practical’ setting. Opponent attacks, I un-balance them and they end up on the floor with very little effort. I then broke down what I did and that it came from what they had just been practising. It was like a EUREKA moment, you could actually see things dropping into place with the students.   

8. DON’T create amotivation by spreading fitness misinformation
This again should be a no-brainer. As a coach we don’t want to be endorsing products or services that don’t work, simple really. This includes fad diets and the use of supplements.

I’m not a perfect coach, and probably never will be but I do wholeheartedly believe that you don’t improve in anything without some sort of intention to and the effort that goes with the intention. Continuously. This philosophy is built into our club at every level, every journey begins with the first step. How are you going to improve yourself this year?

The full journal can be accessed here for free: http://www.fitness.gov/publications/digests/intrinsic.pdf for those who would like to read it. I’m sure you can download it and read it on your kindle!

Fitness testing Part 2


Tonight we carried out a number of sport science tests on our competitors. These tests form part of Sensei Carl’s ‘Analysis of Sports Performance’ module in his Sports Coaching & Exercise Degree at Hartlepool College Of Further Education.

The tests were as follows:

The ‘illinois agility run test‘, Power on an electronic shield with Gyakuzuki (reverse punch). And finally we recorded a number of kumite matches from each fighter. This will be analysed by the clubs referee’s over the holidays for favourite techniques used, scoring techniques, movement patterns etc… and areas of improvement.

All this data will be used as part of the 2012 squad training program for our competitors.

(Special thanks to Mikaela White for working the video camera)

Committee Meeting Highlights – Important pricing information –

Thursday 15th September 2011,

The club committee were given a tour of the new £53million college campus by Head of Sport, Mr Shaun Hope and we are very grateful. After the tour we sat down in one of the very smart new conference rooms for a committee meeting. Highlights of the meeting:

  • The success of the club fundraising team, over £2000 raised so far this year (Up to September) for various charities including the Japan Tsunami Relief, Clic Sargent and Sport/Comic Relief.
  • Fundraising for the club has allowed us to pay for almost all travelling to external training courses/events so far this year (Over £3000 so far)
  • Hall Hire Increases at Belle Vue Sports Centre & General increases in operating costs (due in part to the 20% vat rate) have led to a slight increase in lesson prices, effective from 1st October. 1 hour = £3.50(+50p) / 1.5 hours = £4.00 (+50p) / 2 hours = £5.00 (+£1.50). Pay Monthly will continue to be offered as a reward to those who wish to train more frequently.
  • Committee Personnel – The club is now looking for additional volunteers to help out, and perhaps become members of the committee, please speak to Julie Salmons for more information.
  • AGM – set for Wednesday 9th November at Owton Manor Primary School, 7-9pm. All items for the agenda must be submitted in writing/via email no later than Friday 21st October.
  • Lesson Plans are continuing to be used effectively, we’ve now adopted a streamlined ‘schedule of work’ which simplifies the process significantly. For more information on this please speak to an instructor.
  • Grading Application Forms: These are now compulsory for ALL students wishing to take a belt test.
  • 2012 Events – Some HW dates have been set already, we are awaiting confirmation of event dates from Aiwakai to finalise the rest.
After the meeting, the committee headed to Marco Polo restaurant for a delicious, and well deserved meal.

Hartlepool Wadokai Events Calendar download

Feel free to download the latest edition of the Hartlepool Wadokai Club Calendar. Also don’t forget to pass it on to anyone who may be interested.

HW Calendar 2011 – CLUB COPY – SEPTEMBER – PDF 164kb

HW Calendar 2011 – CLUB COPY – SEPTEMBER – MSWord 282kb

HSA Membership ‘Introductory Offer’ Fitness Suite Membership


Tonight some members of the club visited the town’s brand new £53m Hartlepool College of Further Education. The college has only been opened to the public for 3 days so everything is still shiny, and they are still receiving deliveries of some of the kit that will make the place truly world class.

How many college’s have their own aircraft hanger? or Cryospa – as used by the New York Jets and AC Milan?

The building is truly breathtaking and is ideally placed in the centre of town – the views from the top floor are great!

Anyway, as our Karate club is a member of the Hartlepool Sporting Association we have been offered exclusive membership rates to the brand new gym at the college – The Luminary.

The deal is £120.00 annual membership (Paid over 6 monthly direct debit instalments of £20 for the first 6 months), the offer is available until 30th September 2011.

This also includes a free induction, individual training plans, group exercise classes and discounts on Sports Therapy and Beauty Therapy sessions at the college.

This offer is available to EVERY member over 14 years old, and their parents*. For more information please speak to Carl or Vince.


*Under the terms of our club constitution, parents of students under 16yrs old are classed as members.