School_2_DojoJanuary 31 - The British Judo Association's Enjoy Judo and School 2 Dojo programmes are paying off in the east of England as the initiatives continue to drive growth in the sport among young people.

In Suffolk, both Ipswich Judo Club and their Felixstowe counterparts have been heavily involved in Enjoy Judo – which introduces children to the sport through classes such as after school - and School 2 Dojo, which offers a high-quality community club outlet for budding judoka.

Ipswich Judo Club, which recently re-established School 2 Dojo links with Claydon Primary and Kesgrave High school, recently held its annual club championships.

Three members of Claydon Primary school, who regularly attend their Friday Enjoy Judo session, excelled in the competition with 9th Mon pair Thomas Martin and Charlie Pearse, along with 6th Mon Luke Minns, all coming away with gold medals.

The promising Thomas Martin, son of Felixstowe Judo Club founder and coach David Martin, was also in action at the Eastern Area closed in Thetford where he added a bronze medal to his ever-growing collection.

Fellow Suffolk outfit Felixstowe Judo Club staged their own annual schools competition with several schools represented including judoka from Claydon and Kesgrave school clubs.

Deben High topped the medal table as they finished ahead of Causton, with Kesgrave, Claydon, Trimley St Martin and Orwell all producing gold medallists.

Felixstowe Judo Club and Enjoy Judo coach Martin said: "I'd like to thank all the Enjoy Judo players for taking part in the recent competitions."

Martin is also an international A-licensed referee - which is recognised by the International Judo Federation - and has all the credentials to develop young players and officials.

"For many judoka this was their first taste of competitive judo and they all did excellently," said Martin.

"In particular, special thanks should go to Aaron and Jarreth Hawkins, Charlie Pearse, Thomas Martin and Ben Caldwell as well as all junior referees who officiated at the Ipswich and Felixstowe junior competitions.

"I would also like to thank Charles Clayton, Ian Caldwell and Lee Unwin, who also helped to make the Felixstowe schools competition run smoothly, for giving up their free time after school to help out."

Martin, who took charge at the high profile Korea World Cup in December, added: "Enjoy Judo school judoka, who have now taken the next step in training with Ipswich and Felixstowe community judo clubs, are showing a growing confidence and some are achieving medal success outside their school club, which is fantastic."

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