Creston Judo Club surpasses its weight – Creston Valley Forward

From Creston Judo Club

Creston Judo Club’s judokas and their teachers have been busy on and off the mat since last fall.

The Post Turkey Throwdown Showdown and Pre-Reindeer Rumble are two in-house tournaments that are fun times for all involved. Judo athletes are constantly learning and perfecting throwing and pressing techniques. Through these competitions, they have the opportunity to use these moves in a competition setting.

Two Creston Judo Club alumni, Brae Booth and Kaeden Rendeck, both earned black belts in judo and were able to share their skills and knowledge with other students during practice sessions.

There are also some disappointments. The 2022 BC Winter Olympics, where several judo athletes spent months training, were postponed only a few weeks ago. Although disappointed, the judokas continued to train and it paid off.

A training session at the Invermere Judo Club in February gave seven judo athletes and Sensei Laura Knudsen the opportunity to practice with others outside the local club for the first time in nearly two years.

Spring also brings a series of events from the Creston Judo Club.

The otherwise sparse racing season consisted of two races in April. Teacher Laura and nine judo athletes trek to Kelowna for a practice match. The Okanagan Open is a fun and friendly competition with over 70 athletes from 17 clubs across the province. Not only do judo athletes compete, some also get the chance to practice refereeing. The contest ends with medals and candies for all contestants.

The Edmonton International Judo Championship follows the Okanagan Open. Three Creston judoists, accompanied by Sensei Laura, and more than 900 others from Canada, the United States, Europe and Japan gathered at the West Edmonton Mall for Canada’s largest judo championship. It was the first match between Kaitlyn Sandoval and Tiang Tanapima and the second match for Elijah Bayley. All three had impressive performances on the podium. Kaitlyn took bronze, Elijah took silver and Tiang took gold.

Creston Judo Club is fortunate to have sponsors who play a key role in helping our judokas excel at these competitions. Thanks to the internal brewery workers union Local 308, Canfor and Pealow’s. Thanks also to everyone who supports us through our annual cash calendar and bottle fundraiser.

What’s next for Creston Judo Club? Sensei Laura will be taking her black belt certification this June. The whole club is rooting for her and looking forward to celebrating with her.

Creston Valley Local Sports

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