1. #1

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Boston, Massachusetts
    Cage Fu

    Newton Judo Club

    Adult classes are on Tuesdays (7:30PM-9:30PM), Thursdays(7:30PM-9:30PM), and Sundays(5:00PM-7:00PM). Junior classes are held on Thursdays(6:00PM-7:30PM) and Sundays(3:00PM-5:00PM).

    The Dojo is located within a small gymnasium (size of a basketball court, not including storage space), and enough mats to cover nearly the entire floor. We use a wrestling mat as the core space, and have a lot of 3x2 'tatami' mats which come together. While these mats are harder than the wrestling mat, they still do the job. Plus, they have a rubber bottom, which eliminates sliding completely. If put together with care, there will be no dangerous cracks in the mat. The club also possesses a single crash mat.

    The Newton Judo Club is led by three instructors -- Ron Viavattene, Joseph Smith, and Noel Layman -- each possessing several decades of experience. Noel is a referee with a vast wealth of knowledge concerning the intricacies of the sport. Joe is an extremely technical Judoka, who puts an insane amount of emphasis on footwork and angles. His style, and what he teaches, is rather unorthodox compared to the other instructor(s). And Ron... is almost never there.

    The atmosphere is very informal. We bow in at the beginning and end of each class, and that is the extent of the traditional formalities. Even addressing the instructors as 'sensei' is optional. The students are generally very respectful to one another and newcomers feel at home in no time.

    We train frequently in both standing techniques and groundwork. It is balanced out pretty evenly (55:45 ratio). Almost every session includes groundwork and there have been weeks where I've encountered more ne waza than tachi waza. While the overall quality of instruction is quite good, I've subtracted a point because of a rather dated policy: no one under the rank of brownbelt may practice armlocks during Joe's classes. A couple times a month, Noel runs the adult classes by himself. During that time armbars are allowed for anybody over the age of 17, if both parties agree to it.

    There is a mix between static and live drills. Some drills are very static (usually the beginning ones), which progress into excercises with limited resistance. From there, it goes into randori. The last 30-40 minutes of class are spent doing randori. Also, people will often stay for an additional 20-30 minutes of open mat.

    It costs $30 a month for adults and $10 a month for juniors (under 18).

    Anyone who is interested in tournaments will usually be brought to a local one by Noel.

    Last edited by strikistanian; 11/28/2007 1:47pm at .

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Medford, MA
    Karate/Wing Chun/Judo
    I'm not sure how to use the rating tools, but this is where I was first introduced to judo, and I found the instruction to be top-notch. It was no-BS training, but safe for a newbie, and the only reason I didn't go there full time is because Newton is million miles away from anywhere.

    Definitely a quality place.


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