You may have seen that the Iai Bu have made some changes to both the Iai squad training and squad selection policy. As we have in the past held joint events we thought we needed to clarify how the Jodo Bu would be working next year in regards to our intensive training sessions as the Iai policy obviously affects the Jodo Bu. As some of you may be aware the new qualifying point system used at the iai STS will not be awarding points to any person who does not do a full iaido day practice, it is also no longer possible to share a hall. The Jodo Bu do not wish our members to have to choose between their arts therefore the Jodo squad faculty have decided to separate our intensive trainings from the Iai Bu’s squad training sessions. However we recognise that there is already a considerable burden on members who practice both arts and we do not wish to exhaust either you or your wallets. So for next year we will only hold one Jodo intensive training and this will be in the Midlands to try to make it as fair as possible for everyone. We will also hold our usual final “squad” training session just before the Europeans where attendance priority will be given to those selected for the British Team.
There are two possible dates for the Midlands intensive training session either on the 4th March (the weekend after the Scottish Iai Squad session) or Saturday 22nd April (the day before the Northampton Iai Squad session). We know people are traveling long distances so if you let us know your preference by Sunday 8th January we will try to go with the majority preference. Email Ally on firstname.lastname@example.org
All other elements of the Jodo Squad selection policy remain the same and we have 10 other qualifying UK events plus we would like to encourage those who are particularly enthusiastic and/or are hopeful for squad selection to consider some of the seminars in Europe that are being held next year. It can only help to improve our performance if we gain input from some of our excellent European Sensei and train with the competition! I don’t know but it is quite possibly easier for some members to get a cheap flight to Amsterdam or Gothenburg than to drive for a day to get to a UK seminar (although we hope you would do both) If anyone is interested please mail Ally and we can send you a list of recommended European seminars.
The Jodo Bu are committed to improving the quality of Jodo in the UK but with an increasingly packed calendar we cannot do this by simply adding ever more seminar dates; we need to train smartly, think creatively and use the time we have to our best advantage. Looking to the future we would be delighted to hear any ideas you may have about how we can achieve this. Please remember that our intensive training sessions are open to all and not just those interested in taikai.
With best wishes for the New Year
Stojanka, Ally and Harry
The Jodo Squad Faculty