This is the Judo blog of Lance Wicks. In this blog I cover mainly Judo and related topics. My Personal blog is over at where I cover more geeky topics. Please do leave comments on what you read or use the Contact Me form to send me an email with your thoughts and ideas.

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Exclamation mark Blog by Lance Wicks



April 2005 

April 22, 2005
Gmail File System for Windows

By LanceW

Finally I have tracked down a windows app that allows you to use your google gmail account (2gb) as part of your systems normal drives.

I've been aware of Linux options for a while and had found some utilities such as filebunker that allowed you to backup to gmail, but finally I've found one that allows you to use gmail easily from windows explorer.

Go to: ... sion.shtml

And you'll be able to download the installer for the system for free, then once installed you will see under "My COmputer" a Gmail Drive at the bottom of the list.
Click on this and it will ask for your login details and then as if by magic an empty 2GB folder will appear which you can fill with files.


P.s. If you have not yet got a gmail account, do let me know and I can send you an invitation.

* Posted on: Fri, Apr 22 2005 7:38 AM

April 21, 2005
All too quiet

By LanceW

Sorry for the silence folks, have been busy busy busy since I returned from Bath.

I have now secured the services of three people to do my course work assessments with. (thanks folks!) and am presently finalising the paperwork that I need them to fill in.

Also I have been working on the statistics assignment and have this pretty much sorted and the outline for the report written, so it is a matter of "fleshing it out" with actual content now.

Also very busy work-wise, finalising the design for two training room's technical equipment.

Last but not least, my father has been visiting from NZ, so I have been trying to spend sometime with him in the evenings rather than sitting glueed to the computer.

So... expect more posts as the workload declines,


* Posted on: Thu, Apr 21 2005 2:18 PM

April 11, 2005
Thoughts on "weight cycling"

By LanceW

Following on from the very good Nutrition & Hydration lectures we had on the FDSc course at Bath, I am thinking about how we might effect a culture change in Judo to better manage weights for weigh-in.

Basically, all the science says that the Judo standard weight loss methods of food and fluid restriction are dumb! That doing it affects the athletes badly and can have serious long-term consequences.

The science bods also suggested that Judoka should prepare at a weight about 2-3 kilo UNDER their existing weight and then try and boost the weight up with Glycogen stores via carbo loading to the upper weight limit.

This has the benefits of making sure the athletes are hydrated and also that their energy stores are at maximum. It's a "no-brainer" that this is what we "should" be doing.
But the big question is how do we ensure this happens? How do we change the culture of our sport?

Ideas anyone?

* Posted on: Mon, Apr 11 2005 3:05 PM

Back to reality

By LanceW

Well, Monday is here and I am back at work after the most amazing two weeks at University of Bath. The course is quite simply the best Judo and/or coaching course I have ever encountered. Despite what some may think (based on my disagreements in regard to the gym session), I have found the views and teachings of all the tutors fantastically valueable. So the hard work starts now, getting those assignments done! I am hoping to redemn myself after completely mucking up my part of the group presentation, sorry team. Luckily, the rest of the guys did so well that we still came out number one.

* Posted on: Mon, Apr 11 2005 8:16 AM

April 8, 2005
Day two - a mixed bag

By LanceW

Day two over and to be honest not a good day. Our computer/stats session was great, a wonderful exercise in analysis. Most folks working on Athens results to discover trends in the numbers. For example average age of heavy weights. As a Kiwi I took the "path less trodden" and instead decided to discover who NZ's best -73kg senior man was. Using South Island, North Island & National champs results. I think I will possibly tie this to the good info on the site. Sadly though, not a lot of info on us kiwis there. (I used to feature, but no longer)

UPDATE: 8 April 2005

My post here in regard to the gym session has been the subject of great debate and I have received considerable feedback on it. After taking some of the feedback into consideration I am updating the post, as I appreciate my forthright style can raise the hackles of many people.

The gym session by Tony McConnell was in my opinion very bad.

Before writing my original post, I spoke with other course members and with the course administrator. If It had been a case of my simply disagreeing with hium, I would not have posted anything. (We all have opinions and I firmly believe that we should express them)

HOWEVER.... the session in question was very bad, and it was inappropriate for a course of this calibre. I am not a weights expert and if I am out of order I would appreciate someone pointing it out.

That said, only one person I have spoken to has come to Tony's defence in regard to the session itself. Many people have questioned my expressing my opinion so publically on this blog, but virtually no one has actually stated that what I said was wrong, just how I said it.

On this topis, I have appreciated the valid criticisms by those who actually read what I wrote, thought about it and them responded. Sadly not everyone did so, I have to say that those who have commented without reading this blog have annoyed me, two wrongs do not make a right.


Basically, the issue is not with Tony, or with much of what he had to share. It was and remains only the weights session that in my opinion was bad and dangerous.

The final two exercises were awful.
Bent arm pullovers and the Cheating dumbell curls, are in my opinion dangerous exercises and to have them taught on a course of this type is dreadful.

Doing these exercises in the upward pyramid system suggested is a recipe for injury.

The final exercise goes against all the science that I have been taught. It involves allowing the quite heavy weights to swing, whilst also asking the player to move there whole body in twisting movements of the spine.

This is dangerous and also goes against the principle of specificity in weight training.

It should not have been taught, in my opinion.

I was embarrassed to stand there and watch whilst standing in an excellent gym full of experiences athletes and gym instructors.

Tony has a valid place on the course, his earlier talks on his history and some of the factoprs of elite performance were great, but I repeat what I wrote in my notebook on the day.

"This man should not be allowed in a gym"

Sorry but I do feel VERY strongly on this one.

* Posted on: Fri, Apr 8 2005 10:47 AM

Day 9

By LanceW

Today all the groups made their presentations, really interesting to see where people went with their presentations. Our Presentation was on "Situations & Solutions". Being what we decided all elite players displayed, an ability to identify & create solutions for contest situations. I really enjoyed working on it as it fitted very well with my personal feelings about a coaches role. Also it relates back to my thoughts on how a modern coach should not be prescribing techniques rather assisting the players to find their "own way". I really enjoyed working with our team, and it felt very much like we worked together on one idea. The other big plus about our presentation was that it was a whole solution which is directly applicable to coaches. The demos we gave I hope showed the practical application of how one might take our concept and use it the dojo. We all await feedback on how we did from Mike & Roy. Interestingly, I think everyone started to look at the presentations in terms of who was number one. You can take the playerr out of competitions but not the competition out of the player! Interestingly, we were the only group that focussed on a single factor. Ah well, enough of that. This evening we have the course dinner at Coombe Grove Manor. Should be a good night out, like any of them havn't been so far!

* Posted on: Fri, Apr 8 2005 7:57 AM

April 7, 2005
Day 8 - "Karaoke!"

By LanceW

The day started with Judo in the Dojo with Roy. Lots going through various modern techniques. Then Graham Randall & Kate Howey took us briefly through their favourite throws. (Sumigaeshi & Morote Gari respectively) Despite having watched, fought (I bounced of the tamami if you must know) and trained with Graham in the past I have never really "learned" his Sumigaeshi before. I wish I had, it very very good. Very smooth, even when I was doing it, honest. :) Kates Morotegari was more than a little too rough for me. Very interesting to watch a throw that we would normally consider "skill less" done at such a elite level. Later we had our final nutrition sessions, getting into energy tracking such as recording your diet and also energy expenditure. All good stuff. The afternoon was spent finalising our group presentation, which I think we are all very confident with now. In the evening we had Randori which was mainly younger players. Some potential there, though perhaps some egos need checking and some players might want to do moree throwing and less grip fighting. Afterwards we went into town for a meal and a few beverages. After we ended up in a local Karaoke bar which was hilarious. I did not sing, not wise with my inability sing in tune. Happily it seems that I was not alone in this affliction and some of the Judo girls attempted to clear the bar with a rendition of "Total eclipse of the Heart" that was to be generous... awful!! I have not laughed so hard in a long time!! Thank you ladies for a fun night out! Thursday is presentations day, ulp! We are last hence my allowing myself to go out so late. Honest. ;)

* Posted on: Thu, Apr 7 2005 12:12 PM

April 5, 2005

By LanceW

Today was a good day, this morning we had Judo first thing. Later we had more nutrition which was very good. Later we had a session on eating disorders. Interesting and relevant to Judo. So far all the sports scientists have been very VERY concerned about the losing weight we do for weigh-ins. I agree so much! Large culture changes need to take place in our sport. Later, Roy Inman gave some really great insights into being coach at a senior level. Nothing like hearing some real experiences. Lastly we went through some great modern techniques in the dojo. I spent some time training with Daniel Lascau, fantastic. I was a touch worried to start with but I soon realised he is one of those guys that you can train with safely and enjoyably. (well excepting the whole prank with getting me to fall backwards onto a crash mat, which was taken away!). Daniel is a "character" and a huge prankster! A very good day all in all, so much good stuff to take away. A large amount I would love to see incorporated into national systems back home in New Zealand.

* Posted on: Tue, Apr 5 2005 6:06 PM

April 4, 2005
Days 5 & 6 (second attempt)

By LanceW

Back at Bath after a weekend with my Whanau (family). Very sad and very happy to be here all at the same time. Last Friday was a good day with a great lecture on lifestyle management. Today (Monday) has probably been the best day so far. Two good sessions in the Dojo, with World Champions (Adams and Nakamura). Also the first nutrition lecture and a fascinating talk from Kenzo Nakamura about his Judo career and thoughts on Judo. In a cunning ploy, I arranged for Nakamura San to be in the same "flat" as me, so a fascintating "chat" followed Judo. Also did the Randori session, first serious session in quite literally years. Fought pretty well considering my state of fitness and exhaustion. Was fantastic fun. After Randori, we had a few beers in the uni bar. Interesting of course. Interestingly, Nakamura San's translator also lived in the same town as me in Japan. Seemingly I am the New Zealander that went AWOL. Small world Judo eh!? Have our group presentation sorted, just have to sort my individual section for Thursday. Am finding this evening quite lonely now, missing my twins! The course itself has settled and I am very pleased with the quality. It is a terrific opportunity for all of us. I keep feeling that the things I am picking up need Kiwi application. So many great things that we could apply and improve our lot. Ah well, had better get off to bed!

* Posted on: Mon, Apr 4 2005 10:55 PM

[ view entry ] ( 2099 views ) permalink

March 2005 

March 31, 2005
Day Four - Science is fab!

By LanceW

Lunchtime now so a quick update on how the morning went. Judo first thing with Neil Adams, not bad, but unclear what the learning outcomes were supposed to be. The second session was a lecture by Debbie Palmer on energy systems. Another good lecture, I love sports science. Shame that their research is not published yet, but will be at Cairo apparently. This afternoon, we continued work on the stats project. Working myself on identifying the NZ #1 -73kg fighter, really interesting especially when trying to factor in things that would affect the outcomes. Specifically, top players being out of NZ competing, and worse then not showing up on international results as they did not place. Also factors like is winning the South Island champs worth the same as the NZ champs or North Island champs. Friday looks good as we have Simon Hicks talking about fight notation methodology and video analysis.

* Posted on: Thu, Mar 31 2005 4:55 PM

March 30, 2005
Day three - Improving

By LanceW

Hi all, Pleased to say that the FDSc course is improving. Today we had an excellent lecture from Debbie Palmer on hydration and on weight loss. Confirming what we all know that the classic dehydration way of making weight is very bad in both the short and longterm for Judoka. The evidence she presented showed clearly the immediate performance degradation (with a quite typical Judoka weight loss through dehydration creating a near 20% decrease in performance in strength and cardiac output. Of course with every high there is a low. Oh crikey the library session hurt!! Bored to the painful level. Neil Adams took the Judo segment, which was interesting-ish. Judo-wise very much what we would expect roll over arm lock etc. But the plus was the personal perspectives which were refreshingly honest. Also his emphasis on skill being paramount for elite Judoka and movement and momentum being key in regard to actual tachi (and ne) waza. Finally, that dodgy Daniel Lascou hid my damn Pizza and worse attempted to interfere with my ingestion of a pint of much needed beer! :)

* Posted on: Wed, Mar 30 2005 9:36 PM

March 28, 2005
Day One Part 2

By LanceW

Well, the second Judo session with Tony McConnell was well okay. Abit much training and not enough teaching for me but kets let time be the judge. I know I am not the only person to share some reservations about todays sessions. Overall, so far the coaches have seemed to agree generally with what I have been saying on Which is nice, sad in ways that it seems to be being presented as the latest thought in the Judo world. All in all a good opening day, the next few days will decide if it was worth attending I suppose. This evening was the typical Judo evening out. FANTASTIC! Such a diverse group of Judoka all out and having fun! So, the morning brings a Judo session with Roy Inman and Weights with zTony Mcconnell. Hmmm. Then later in the week sessions with Neil Adams and Kenzo Nakamura, should be good. Please emailme your thoughts.

* Posted on: Mon, Mar 28 2005 11:19 PM

Day One

By LanceW

Have now completed the first lecture and Judo session with Roy Inman. Very happy with the lecture, focussing on what elite level coaching is all about. That being to give support and structure to your player. Interesting review of Japanese methods. Judo session was interesting, mainly work on combinations and counters. So combination in the same or similar directions and those in opposite directions. Counters focussing, on those that are reaction based and those that are traps set for the opponent. All good stuff though less interesting as it is repetition of stuff you learn as a player. (Or should learn) All in all good stuff.

* Posted on: Mon, Mar 28 2005 2:29 PM

March 27, 2005
Arrived at Bath

By LanceW

Well, I have arrived and settled into the "Athletes Training Village" here at University of Bath. Not really done much more than get a room and card etc. But am hoping to catch up with some others and head out for a meal. Tommorow the course starts in earnest with four "Sports Performance" sessions with Roy Inman and Tony Macconnell. Am looking forward to it greatly!

* Posted on: Sun, Mar 27 2005 6:20 PM

March 22, 2005
Degree coaching course in Bath

By LanceW

Much to my suprise and joy, I have somehow earned a place on the three year coaching course at University of Bath in association with the European Judo Union!

This is an amazing opportunity for me, the calibre of teaching and fellow students is really impressive and I look forward to seeing if it lives up to my expectations. I do worry a little about the course as I have a deep down worry about the attitude towards coaching by a heck of a lot of people I see doing the job.

I have a 2 week residential block starting on the 28th of March, which is followed by "homework" assignments and another two weeks later in the year. With the same process happening over all three years.

I intend to Blog quite heavily about the course as
1) I think its interesting to the Judo community and
2) It will help me crystalise what I learn.

* Posted on: Tue, Mar 22 2005 10:50 AM

Buddy Buzz

By LanceW hosts a wonderful bit of software for your Java enabled phone. I've been using it for a while now and found it really good.

BuddyBuzz is a great bit of software that displays text on your mobile really fast. So you can speed read basically. The rate starts at about 300 words per minute but you can speed it up or down to suit yourself.

There are some interesting articles there automatically, but better you can upload your own text and read that. Recently I read an article about a similar type of service in Japan where you can read books, well this is a great FREE way to do it yourself.

The project seems to be dead/slow/??? but the software is working and easy to use. It seems that hardly anyone is using it, so I thought I'd plug it here a bit. Give it a go!

* Posted on: Tue, Mar 22 2005 10:43 AM

March 16, 2005
iPod shuffle

By LanceW

Just to catch me out, my wife bought me a 1GB iPod shuffle!
So I guess I won't be keeping as many MP3s on my phone now!

The shuffle is tiny!!
So far, I am loving it!!

* Posted on: Wed, Mar 16 2005 2:50 PM

Nokia 9500 - Good first impression

By LanceW

I have recently purchased a Nokia 9500 communicator mobile phone and am really happy with it so far!

As with all new toys I have had a few problems and made a fewe messes but on the whole it has been one of my better purchases.

So what to say about this "beast".
First up, my situation. I have in the past used PDAs but was using a paper based system. I had a SE T610 mobile and an old Rio 300PMP MP3 player.
So the 9500 seemed a good way to do some convergence. I have always liked the idea of the communicator and the addition of 802.11b wireless really clinched it for me. So off I went and got one.

I have mine on Vodafone (although they come open for any network), as part of my goal is/was to get away from O2 who I can say are awful!!

So after initially getting the phone to collect my personal emails I also have it collect my work ones. It was all really simple and works over wifi or GPRS without any hassle.

After some good searching I also have the following apps installed:
AgileMessenger - Which allows me to have instant messaging anywhere!
AutoMail - Which solves the one negative about emails on the 9500. This app, downloads your emails every hour automatically.
BuddyBuzz - Which is a fab speed reading tool!
VNC - So I can see remote desktops

I tried to install Putty for the 9500 so I could SSH into machines, but couldn't get it to work.

There is less software/freeware available for the 9500 than I might like. The series 80 OS is less popular than Series 60, so their is less software.

The 9500 has a solid calender software which I am now happily using.
MP3s can be played, although the interface is a bit ugly and lacking in features. It works perfectly though.
You can also watch videos via Real Player (and some other althernatives) which is handy for Judo videos. My next project is to put some gokyo clips on it.

So... My phone, diary, contacts, emails, instant messages, Music & videos are all available to me anywhere now!

Well worth the effort!!

I shall blog more on this as I progress.

* Posted on: Wed, Mar 16 2005 2:48 PM

March 9, 2005
Fame Academy Addict!

By LanceW

I've been keeping this quiet, but I have to come clean!

I am a Fame Academy Addict!!!!!!!!

Primarily because Adrian Edmondson is a comic genius, its all for a good cause so spend a bit a dosh of keeping him in there!!
Vote for him by calling 09011 211 206 OR text "VOTE ADRIAN" to 60077

(UK only)

* Posted on: Wed, Mar 9 2005 9:05 PM

March 7, 2005
1 week coaching programme.

By LanceW

When you get an assignment to coach a team for a week, leading up to a tournament, what can you do in that time?

What you can't do is teach them any new throws. In fact this is often the worst thing you can do as they might be foolish enough to try it in the competition!

You can't just "work them hard" as if they are sore, tired or worse yet injured you have made things worse!

So... what do you do?
Share some different perspectives on Judo, and assist them to develop a "game plan" for the competition. This will hopefully allow the players to teach themselves somethings about their own Judo and also focus them on the competition ahead, building their confidence and feeling of being prepared.

This sort of environment is not the place to be an "instructor" and try and teach the players new exciting techniques you know. You need to put your "coach" hat on and focus on trying to get the players to improve their way of fighting.

In my recent stint with the Royal Navy I shared several ideas and new perspectives all built around the idea of encouraging the players to adopt a simple plan/strategy for each (and every) fight.
The strategy is as follows:

* Bow
* Grip
* Move
* Attack1
* Attack2
* Ne-waza follow-up

It is a simple plan, which is applicable to the mix of levels in attendance. During the week we covered various movement patterns and throwing theories. But the backbone was the strategy above.

Although I demonstrated with primarily Taio, I was not actually ever teaching Taio or any other throw, grip or ne-waza technique. I was trying to expose the team to a variety of methods and styles which they then could adopt.

By adopting a approach of opening up new ideas, we were able to help the players to discover refinements to their existing techniques. These added to what they already had much practise at and hence were not dangerous new techniques they were not overly familiar with.

Ideally, the concepts would be introduced earlier and with more repetition over time. As we discussed during the week, the idea was to get the players to create their own unique sequence of techniques from Grip to Ne-waza. This technique would be second nature to them, so that with 30 seconds on the clock, in a state of exhaustion and possible concussion, they would excecute the strategy almost on auto-pilot.

Obviously over the course of one short week it is not possible to fully embed this idea. But you can plant the seeds whilst some refinements are made to existing technique.
Also, the work on a planned sequence and strategy builds confidence, which is an essential fuel to victory.

So... there you have it.
COmments are as always welcomed!

* Posted on: Mon, Mar 7 2005 2:01 PM

March 6, 2005
Royal Navy Judo

By LanceW

Well folks,
Back after a week at HMS Nelson with the Royal Navy Judo Team. A enjoyable rewarding week with a great bunch of people!

The inter-services competition was held on Saturday and although the Navy team didn't do as well as one might have hoped I was pleased that everyone gave it their all and performed really well!

The training itself focussed on development rather than trying to teach them stuff they already knew. Over the next week I shall write a couple of things on...

1) What we worked on and
2) The abismal referees at the competition!

Finally to the RN Team, many thanks, I really enjoyed getting to know you all and look forward to seeing you again. (Sorry I missed the social!)


* Posted on: Sun, Mar 6 2005 2:46 PM

[ view entry ] ( 1877 views ) permalink

February 2005 

February 26, 2005
A wee test

By LanceW

Who Links Here

* Posted on: Sat, Feb 26 2005 8:08 PM

Politics at its best!

By LanceW

Below is a link to the final speech of MP Brian Sedgemore in parliament on the 23rd of Feb 2005. ... -21_spnew0

A labour MP, who attacks the government and Tony Blair directly as he disagrees with the way the country is heading.

Good on him!!

Here are some highlights:

As this will almost certainly be my last speech in Parliament, I shall try hard not to upset anyone. However...

I am reminded that our fathers fought and died for liberty—my own father literally—believing that these things should not happen here, and we would never allow them to happen here. But now we know better. The unthinkable, the unimaginable, is happening here.

How on earth did a Labour Government get to the point of creating what was described in the House of Lords hearing as a "gulag" at Belmarsh? I remind my hon. Friends that a gulag is a black hole into which people are forcibly directed without hope of ever getting out. Despite savage criticisms by nine Law Lords in 250 paragraphs, all of which I have read and understood, about the creation of the gulag, I have heard not one word of apology from the Prime Minister or the Home Secretary. Worse, I have heard no word of apology from those Back Benchers who voted to establish the gulag.

Have we all, individually and collectively, no shame? I suppose that once one has shown contempt for liberty by voting against it in the Lobby, it becomes easier to do it a second time and after that, a third time.

Many Members have gone nap on the matter. They voted: first, to abolish trial by jury in less serious cases; secondly, to abolish trial by jury in more serious cases; thirdly, to approve an unlawful war; fourthly, to create a gulag at Belmarsh; and fifthly, to lock up innocent people in their homes. It is truly terrifying to imagine what those Members of Parliament will vote for next.I can describe all that only as new Labour's descent into hell, which is not a place where I want to be.

It is a foul calumny that we do today. Not since the Act of Settlement 1701 has Parliament usurped the powers of the judiciary and allowed the Executive to lock up people without trial in times of peace. May the Government be damned for it.

* Posted on: Sat, Feb 26 2005 9:52 AM

February 24, 2005 again - Pop-up Radio

By LanceW

Above are links to a pop up radio station based on my musical preferences gleamed from Audioscrobbler/

Experimental, try it an let me know!


* Posted on: Thu, Feb 24 2005 3:58 PM

Feedburner Tests

By LanceW

I am playing with feedburner, to see what functionality it brings me.

* Posted on: Thu, Feb 24 2005 3:48 PM

My Technocrati Profile link

By LanceW

Technorati Profile

* Posted on: Thu, Feb 24 2005 9:05 AM

February 23, 2005
Developing a "far view"

By LanceW

As most of you will be aware, I am coaching the Royal Navy Judo Squad soon.

It is an interesting project, as it is a mix of skill levels and I don't know them well. So I undertook to do some research on them before I arrived and have been developing my sessions based on what I have found.

Where did I look?

* The Navy Judo Champs
* The 2004 All Japan Champs
* The 2005 Olympic Judo competition
* The recent Judo videos/dvds. (Namely Extreme Judo, Koga and Jeon)

The process of watching the footage was very interesting, when you have to watch this much video over time you take notes and notice quite a bit. Whilst watching the Navy Champs I took notes on each fight and soon found myself repeating the same comments. (which I will keep to myself, sorry)
The same happened watching the other videos, interestingly the comments showed some patterns to me that I think I would have missed otherwise.

How does that relate to developing sessions?
Well, reviewing the Navy Champs helped a heck of a lot in terms of identifying patterns in Judo style, technique, attitude etc. When comparing that to say Suzuki winning the All Japans you really see the differences.
These differences I noticed were not so much in technique, but in application and "feel".

Knowing these differences, it helps me develop sessions that address these subtle areas. Areas that I would most likely not have noticed had I not prepared by watching hours of Judo, with my finger on PAUSE and the other hand scribbling notes.

It really reminded me that as a coach I need to take a "far view" as well as a close view of players. I need to see them in context with their peers and as in this example, those well above them.
Having this far view, you can identify the areas where your player(s) can develop. Especially outside the scope of technique.

Technique Teaching Versus Coaching
Where I am heading (returning) is to the idea that we must differentiate between coaching and instructing.
I can/could/might go to the Navy training and try and "teach" them some technique I think will help them. Or teach then Suzukis amazing Hiza Guruma or Koga's Seoi or Jeon's Gripping strategies.


With good preparation I think I'll try and coach them on the aspects of their Judo that my "Far view" revels to me. I can draw them along the train of thought I have and they can make improvements based on this.

I in effect do nothing, they do it themselves. I don't teach them something, I help them learn something. This is COACHING!

So what are the Navy getting?
I couldn't possibly tell you! :)

* Posted on: Wed, Feb 23 2005 11:56 AM

February 20, 2005
Audioscrobbler info

By LanceW

I am having a little play with and so far really interesting.

Try my personal radio station if you like.

* Posted on: Sun, Feb 20 2005 6:01 PM

February 15, 2005
Book Published!!

By LanceW

Not mine unfortunately, but I am very pleased to announce that my step-father-in-law's book has been published!

* Posted on: Tue, Feb 15 2005 6:38 PM

Running Club Website

By LanceW

I have thrown together a small web page for the running club.

It is at:

Let me know what you think!

* Posted on: Tue, Feb 15 2005 6:38 PM

February 9, 2005
Ouch, Ouch, Ouch!!

By LanceW

I am really pleased to be really sore this morning!

Last night the Running Club had it's first run together.
There were 10 people in the group and they dragged my sorry butt 3.8 miles around the village! (In 47 minutes !)

So this morning my legs are expressing their disatisfaction at not being allowed to sit in front of the TV last night! Nothing injury feeling, just good old fashioned "you've worked me hard!" ache.

It is interesting that the distance I ran is much more than I have run to date, yet it felt only slightly harder. The power of a group to carry you along. Fantastic!

I am going to try and go out again on Friday, hopefully with a bit more comfort!

Can't wait till next Tuesdays run!

* Posted on: Wed, Feb 9 2005 11:36 AM

February 7, 2005
Running CLub is GO!

By LanceW

After Saturdays meeting with about a doxen poeple attending the Fair Oak & Horton Heath Running Club is now of the drawing board and into reality!

We all decided to meet once a week, any one from the village is welcome.

Meetings are:
Tuesdays, 7PM
At the Pavilion on Pavilion Close (by Wyvern College)

I suspect we will split into 2 groups, one for experienced people and one for people like me just getting into running properly. There is a broad mix of ages, genders and ability levels, so everyone should find their level we hope.

Having got it this far, I will actually have to follow through and go running now!!!

I only have one more comment at this point, "OH Grief, what have I done!!"


* Posted on: Mon, Feb 7 2005 4:48 PM

February 4, 2005
Judo is Honesty article

By LanceW

I am not 100% happy with this piece, consider it a work in progress perhaps.

The link below is to a PDF file describing that moment when you take a grip with someone on the Judo mat and instantly know what level they are at and if you are better or worse than them.

Judo is Honesty!

Please email me any comments,


* Posted on: Fri, Feb 4 2005 10:38 PM

Judo coaching programmes are not so awful?

By LanceW

As a result of my prevuos post I have had some great discussions on the subject of Coaching programmes in Judo.

(some of which can be seen at ... topic=3889 on the wonderful website )

My intentionally inflammatory comments have resulted in some good comments highlighting the improvements being made to the BJA system and elsewhere. I am still interested in everyones comments, so email away!


* Posted on: Fri, Feb 4 2005 11:55 AM

Should we pull out of the Olympics?

By LanceW

The Huardian has a piece on the state of Athens post the Olympics, that makes some interesting reading. ... .html?=rss

I have had this discussion before, but perhaps Judo should pull out of the Olympic movement untill the Olympic movement comes back to its ideals.

It sounds like Athens got very little from holding the Olympics. Judo got very little from what I have seen from it.

From a Judo perspective, I hate the fact that smaller countries have to qualify to fight. The quota system is awful, 1 person from Oceania per category (or something like that).
So we end up with only the big countries and the best players. No chance for the suprise upset win by the unknown. No great Olympic moment for someone from a small country to represent their country.

I personaly think it is a disgrace that professional athletes like Andre Agassi & Michael Jordan have been allowed to go to the Olympics when people I know personally can't. Every country should be allowed to send it's best players, even if they get beaten in every fight!

Thoughts all?

* Posted on: Fri, Feb 4 2005 11:33 AM

[ view entry ] ( 2209 views ) permalink

January 2005 

January 31, 2005
Coaching programmes are awful!

By LanceW

I have been chatting to people about coaching standards and it has ended up on more than one occasion with me fuming about how cr*p coaching programmes are in Judo (and elsewhere I am sure).

As many of you will know I amd both a coach in New Zealand and in the UK (BJA Senior Club Coach). And I have to state first off that the NZ system is better (or at least was when I was last there) than the UK one.

I remember attending a coaching course in Manchester run by the BJA. It was great fun! I fought Udo Quellmaltz and got Neil Adams to throw me with his Taio Toshi! I learnt stuff from Neil, Udo and some others, excellent stuff!
Then they basically re-ratified everyones coaching qualification, which was the point of the weekend.

Sounds good, but hold the phone, where was the coaching?!?!?!?!

Perhaps we were supposed to learn by osmosis or example, I don't know. But I did not come away from the event having learned anything but the latest tricks/techniques/styles of the chosen instructors.

Did I have a fuller understanding of the processes that people I might coach would go through when learning a technique? Did I now know a little more about child protection?
Had I been exposed to the latest scientific research on what stretches to do or to avoid?
Did anyone once talk about how the BJA considered you should teach Judo?

The answer to all the above is NO!

And that is my issue. National bodies need to be more involved in promoting good methods rather than good Judo techniques. Knowing how Udo did his Taio was valkuable to me as a player, but unless the perscribed sylabus in clubs is to mimic Udo then it was a waste of time!

In recent conversation I have mentioned the lack of quality child protection processes in Judo. Are all the coaches working with kids in the BJA police checked first annually?
Are they even made aware of the risks they face?
The same goes for health and safety issues. I once taught in a local council Judo club, where their official health and safety documentation prohibitted "horseplay" and "rough housing" along with many other things. Which actually meant that anyone teaching Judo there was technically infringing on the policy and as such was legally in a bad BAD place!

Although it is each instructor/coaches responsibility to personally be up to date with all these things. It is the national coaching programme that should ensure that this actually happens.

They don't, it is awful, It annoys me, enough said!


* Posted on: Mon, Jan 31 2005 12:41 PM

January 28, 2005
Judo for Parents

By LanceW

Hi all,

Just a quick note to say I have created a small "Judo for Parents" page on the website. Basically it is just a host page for my soon to be completed book/eBook.

"Judo for Parents", is a guide I have been writing for parents of children who want to or have started Judo. Unlike everything else I have seen out there it is aimed at the parent and is not a "this is how to do Judo book".

The book covers the basics of:
What is Judo, its history, etc.
What to expect from a club
What to expect at a competition or grading
What do do when Johnny/Julie gets hurt
What are the principles of Judo etc.

I shall soon have either a final draft or the finished version available for electronic and hopefully paper publishing! I am happy to share some early drafts with people as long as you don't mind giving feedbakc and potrentially some quotes.


* Posted on: Fri, Jan 28 2005 3:04 PM

January 26, 2005
0900 service

By LanceW

AlloPass, micropayment for all Webmasters !
The banner above takes you to the quite clever AlloPass service.
It allows virtually anyone to setup micropayemnts via their website.

* Posted on: Wed, Jan 26 2005 12:03 PM

January 25, 2005
NZ Flag Petition!

By LanceW

Go to this site, fill in the petition, do it, NOW!


Why are you still here? Go fill in the petition!

* Posted on: Tue, Jan 25 2005 8:45 AM

January 24, 2005
Motivation Judo published

By LanceW

My Article on motivation aimed at business, based on Judo methods has been published in The Aziz Corporation's newsletter E-Communiqué.

Here is a Link to it, should you fancy reading the final version.


* Posted on: Mon, Jan 24 2005 5:30 PM

January 22, 2005
Woodworking classes from school have paid off!

By LanceW

Well, the workworking classes my parents paid extra for when I was about 12 have paid off!

Today I built a bannister in my house, which included copious chiselling and use of a mallet. WOOT!

Ayywho, here are some piccies of my creation. (Please do not critique!)

* Posted on: Sat, Jan 22 2005 7:32 PM

January 21, 2005
Running Vs. Walking (FUN)

By LanceW

The link below takes you to a piece on the effectiveness of Running versus Walking as a form of exercise. Particularly interesting to me as I have just started trying to get back into running recently.


* Posted on: Fri, Jan 21 2005 11:31 AM

Short Judo promo video

By LanceW

I came across the following video file I made some time ago as part of a project I was working on. I felt then and still feel today that it shows more of what we want/need to be presenting to the media.


It is modern, exciting a bit scifi.
I am not saying this is the absolute image we should be selling, but it is a seriously different one to the way we saw at Athens or Sydney. More in line with the Europa Cup video.

Anyway, it was just me playing about, but thought you might enjoy it!


* Posted on: Fri, Jan 21 2005 12:52 AM

January 19, 2005

By LanceW

Please consider making a small donation if you have found anything on my website useful, it would help keep the site online.

* Posted on: Wed, Jan 19 2005 9:38 PM

Wheres my....?

By LanceW

I was looking through my wardrobe last night and looking at my Judogi.I was suddenly thinking wheres my Blue Coke Gi?

Years ago at a trial for Blue Gi for the IJF, Coca-Cola via Elephant (the manufacturer), via the IJF provided blue suits to all the compeditors so everyone would have one, to see how blue suits worked in compedtitions.

I had one, and brought it with me to the UK, but where is it now?

So.... if anyone spots a faded blue suit with "Coca-Cola" embroidered on the sleeves do let me know.


* Posted on: Wed, Jan 19 2005 3:30 PM

January 11, 2005
DRAFT article on Motivation

By LanceW

The text below is a draft of an article I am writing on motivation, any comments/corrections would be appreciated.


Motivation Judo

By Sensei Lance Wicks

Judo is a Martial Art and Sport born of the ancient fighting arts of Feudal Japan, is also and arguably most importantly a “way” of doing things Judo players are recognised as highly motivated individuals, few would argue that the famous British fighters Brian Jacks and Neil Adams were not well motivated. Neil Adams was considered one of the fittest (read hardworking) athletes on the Olympic squad, whilst Brians’ “Superstars” records still stand today.

Goals, Focus, Encouragement and rewards are generally regarded as the primary factors affecting motivation. We shall explore these four areas, how Judo successfully harnesses these factors and how you can do the same.

Most of us are familiar with goal setting and goal setting methodologies such as SMART, SCORE and the IGS calculation. These methods all tell us that we need big objectives, broken into smaller realistic quantifiable goals. In Judo the obvious example is the coveted “Black Belt”. Reaching your black belt is done by first getting your white, yellow, orange, blue, then brown belts.

Being able to stay focussed on the smaller goals and the bigger objective is essential to motivation and performance. Judo clubs promote a culture that encourages focus. Classes start with formalises bowing and training can often consist of practising the techniques required for the next belt. The focus on the goals/belts drives the activity of repeating techniques in classes.

As a Judo coach, my job often consists of nothing more than shouting. I know from experience and from scientific research that encouragement improves motivation. A 2002 study found that a significant improvement on motivation and performance can be achieved in subjects running on a treadmill simply be encouraging them verbally every 20-30 seconds.

Judo is full of rewards. We get medals at competitions, belts, certificates, team selections, etc. We get invited to attend “advanced classes” or to compete in prestigious events. Less tangible rewards are there also; throwing someone on their back is always better than being thrown yourself.

Applying these Judo methods to motivation can assist you in getting the most from your team or from yourself.

Do you have a “big objective”? Is it clear and understood? Have you created smaller goals that take you to your big objective? What is your “Black Belt”, what “belt” are you working for right now?

Does your team have a culture that encourages you to focus on the goals? In Judo beginners are encouraged to train with Black Belts. This serves two purposes, one it reminds the beginner what the big objective is by “feeling” what it is like to be thrown by a Black Belt. It also allows the Black Belt to help the beginner towards the smaller goal by working with them on the techniques required. Do your Black Belts help your yellow belts?

Who is shouting at you? How often are you encouraging those around you? In Japanese Judo clubs, the highest graded player will often shout “FIGHT ON!” (In Japanese of course) to a responding guttural shout from all if they feel motivation/energy is slipping. This Japanese example also highlights that encouragement is required not only from above, but from peers and subordinates as well.

Lastly, who in your team has earned a black belt? Have they been awarded it in a big ceremony with corresponding certificate? Did someone else earn a blue belt with a similar but lesser ceremony? Were the two linked to highlight that one leads to the other?

The “DO” in Judo is translated into English as “way of doing”. If you can bring some Judo into your team the improvements in motivation and performance will become apparent. Having a goal based, focused, rewarding, encouraging “way of doing” things in your team will generate black belts of your own.

HAJIME!!! (Begin) and Arigato (thanks)

* Posted on: Tue, Jan 11 2005 12:29 PM

January 6, 2005
Transport Direct

By LanceW


Transport direct is a interesting site/project.
The aim is to make available all the travel information options into a single site, for easy comparision.

It looks quite useful, although it is still in Beta test mode.

Try it out.


* Posted on: Thu, Jan 6 2005 2:45 PM

Navy Judo weekend cancelled

By LanceW

Sadly, I have just discovered that the weekend training session with the Navy Judo Squad this month has now been cancelled.

The week-long training in Feb/March is still going ahead however, so I look forward to attending that and helping prep the team for the inter-services competition that follows it.

If anyone has anything they want me to do the weekend of January 22 & 23 shout out now!

* Posted on: Thu, Jan 6 2005 12:16 PM

January 3, 2005
Online bookmarks

By LanceW

Hi all,

I am sure many of you have had the same problem as me, too many website to keep track of in too many places. In my case I have a problem with my links at home and those I have at work.

Today I have been trying and foxylicious as a solution and find it quite good.

Basically, is a social bookmarks site, which allows you to put links to websites online. Foxy, then syncs these links into your browsers bookmarks.

using the javascript link I add links to then with foxy they sync to both my weork and home pcs. sorted.

* Posted on: Mon, Jan 3 2005 2:09 AM

[ view entry ] ( 1783 views ) permalink

December 2004 

December 22, 2004
Software Patents

By LanceW

Just to encourage visitors to this blog to go here.
Happily POland saved us on this one today and the vote on this bit of EU legislation was postponed, but the struggle continues!

* Posted on: Wed, Dec 22 2004 12:44 AM

December 21, 2004
effing virus attacks!

By LanceW

One of the servers I look after is being hit pretty hard by the Zafi.d virus at the moment!

At present 40% of the emails it is dealing with are just Zafi ones! Thanks to the magic of open source and Linux it is catching them fine through ClamAV, but what a pain.

Strangely it only seems to happen between 10am and 6pm. SO am thinking it is a specific machine in somewhere GMT-1. Am about to start on some forensics to see if I can track down where they are coming from.

Also, time for a user dance!
Users, when your IT person says to be "cautious" as there are lots of "nasties" going around at the moment, please do not ignore the new thing in your task bar called "FunBox" that when you click on it has some rather distasteful keywords in it!


* Posted on: Tue, Dec 21 2004 3:56 PM

P.C. Seasonal greetings...

By LanceW

Received this via the Hants LUG mailing list this morning and it made me chuckle. Thought I'd share it:

Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, our best wishes
for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low stress,
non addictive, gender neutral celebration of the winter solstice
holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the
religious persuasion of your choice, or the secular practices of your
choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasions and/or
traditions of others not to practice religious or secular traditions
at all.

In addition, please also accept our best wishes for a fiscally
successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated
recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year
200X, but not without the due respect for the calendars of choice of
other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make this
country great (not to imply that this country is necessarily greater
than any other country or area of choice), and without regard to
race, creed, colour, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual
orientation of the wishers.

This is limited to the customary and usual good tidings for a period
of one year, or until the issuance of a subsequent holiday greeting,
whichever comes first. "Holiday" is not intended, nor shall it be
considered, limited to the usual Judeo-Christian celebrations or
observances, or to such activities of any of any organized or ad hoc
religious community, group, individual or belief (or lack thereof ).

Note: By accepting this greeting you are accepting these terms. This
greeting is subject to clarification or withdrawal, and is revocable
at the sole discretion of the wisher at any time, for any reason or
for no reason at all. This greeting freely is transferable with no
alteration to the original greeting. This greeting implies no promise
by the wisher to actually implement and of the wishes for the wisher
her/himself or others, or responsibility for the consequences which
may arise from the implementation or non implementation of it.

This greeting is void where prohibited by law.


* Posted on: Tue, Dec 21 2004 3:13 PM

December 20, 2004
On databases...

By LanceW

Further to my previous entry, but specifically about sales databases and the like.

A database is only as good as the information within it.
A database equally is only as good as the use of the information within it!

If a database does not contain accurate information or you are unable to use this information your database is sick! And needs urgent medical care!

Try this exercise...
Get a list of your clients who have (or have not) bought something in the last 12 months. How long does it take to get this information? How accurate is the list?

Exercise two...
Find out when the last time you contacted a contact on your sales database? Again, how long did it take.

Exercise three...
Repeat exercise two, but for everyone on your database. How long did that take?

Exercise four...
How many people do you need to contact this week? How easy and how long did it take to get this information?

Exercise five...
Who are you best 10 clients?

Exercise six...
Who are your worst 10 clients?

For all the exercises above, it should take seconds to get useful information from your sales database. If it takes too long, or the information is inaccurate or difficult to access then the database needs attention!

If your database is "ill", I would strongly advise dumping it! Print out the contact details for all your contacts, one per page. Then manage everything manually using a 42 folder system or similar.

If it is sick, it is a bigger drain on your company than you probably realise.


* Posted on: Mon, Dec 20 2004 2:57 PM

If it don't work on paper...

By LanceW

Okay, it's been a week since my last entry, so I thought I had better write something new.

It's a rant,
it's about computer systems and users.

Basically, my core thought here is "If it doesn't work on paper, it won't work on a computer".

By this I am refering to application design or system integration. Too often I get asked about buying a piece of software or changing this or that for people who don't have a working paper based system.

Take for example a Sales database.
If you don't have a working "system", and by system I mean actual physical way of doing your sales management; then buying a database package is not going to help you!

I am as many poeple know, a bit mad for documentation of procedures. This is because I strongly believe that if you can't write it down then you don't know what you are doing.
Generally, my documentation for technical things is step by step, click by click. The idea being that almost anyone could follow it. When I worked for a fund managers I wrote the monthly IT procedures document. How did I test it?
By getting the helpdesk admin lady to do them. I.e. a completely non-technical person was able to do our important IT procedures just using the documentation.

Over kill perhaps, but the process fo getting the system that well documented helped us clearly see what we did and why. The result was we really looked hard at what we were doing and were able to cut out things that were really not needed and add things that we were missing.

In terms of a sales database, you really need to write down what your salesteam are actually doing on a day-to-day basis and document the strategies, methods and steps in your process.
You need to do this long before buying a CRM package.

If this does not happen prior to looking at CRM software, experience tells me that the software implementation will be a disaster! Trust me on this! Document reality first, then try and make computers do it for you.


* Posted on: Mon, Dec 20 2004 10:31 AM

December 13, 2004
Article on communicating with IT people - DRAFT

By LanceW

Geeks vs. Business people
(Draft for The Aziz Corporation E-Communiqué newsletter)
By Lance Wicks.

As the IT manager for The Aziz Corporation I am caught between two worlds, that of geeks, programmers and other IT people and that of business leaders through our consultants’ efforts to help them improve their communication skills

On a day-to-day basis I will communicate with other geeks worldwide. I do this via email, instant messaging, newsgroups, mailing lists, website and more. What I do not often do is pick up the phone and speak to someone or heaven forbid talk face to face with a fellow geek.

However, working where I do I have been forced (kicking and screaming) to communicate with people in the real world. It is often an uncomfortable, painful and just plain annoying!
I am not alone in this sensation and as Britain becomes more and more reliant on knowledge workers (geeks), business people need to change the way they operate to suit the geeks rather than the other way around.

Change One: Communicate in “big picture” terms, leave out the details
When speaking with your IT people, don’t be tempted to try and talk details. Stick to the bigger picture. Talk about what you want to achieve, what you “see” happening. Let your geek translate that into technical details.

Change Two: Manage using metrics and deliverables
Meetings are “geeks bane”; avoid dragging your geeks into a room to talk about what they are doing. This of course infuriates most business people who like to “catch-up” regularly. Try setting procedures in place that make reporting automatic.

Change Three: Everything is either a 1 or a 0.
Computing is a yes or no, black or white industry, IT people struggle with gray areas or communication that is not clear. Ensure that when communicating with your IT people that you make sure everything is either one thing or the other.

Change Four: Ethics DO matter.
Your IT Geek could do bad things. In seconds flat they could delete all your files, post your salary on the company intranet or send the client database to the competition. They don’t! Given this ability, geeks react badly to managers who do not behave ethically. Little white lies, half-truths and office politics will not be appreciated.

Change Five: You know less than they do.
Geeks are not called “knowledge workers” for nothing; they know more about all the technical aspects, take that as fact. Never assume you know more about something than your geeks. Ask them what they know about something, not IF they know about something.

Change Six: Respect your Geeks opinion.
IT people think logically and understand very complex technical systems. This does translate into being able to look at real world business situations and apply the same skills. Listen; really listen, to what your geeks say.

So there you have it, six small changes in approach that will help you cope with the geeks in your day. Finally I would ask that you should also forgive their messy desks, their obsession with gadgets and penguins, their musical tastes and their dress sense.

Remember, modern business relies on their idiosyncrasies to make technology do wonderful things. So, when communicating with your geeks you need to allow for these same quirks, as they are what make them valuable to your organization. If you try to change or stop the quirks you are trying to remove what makes them valuable, you need to change not them.

(C)2004, Lance Wicks. All Rights Reserved.

* Posted on: Mon, Dec 13 2004 5:30 PM - LPW

By LanceW

I attended the London Perl Mongers, London Perl Workshop on Saturday at Imperial College.

It was very good I thought. Although being the first such thing I have attended I don't know how much weight people should put in my opinion.

I attended all the "Learning Perl" talks and they varied both in terms of presentation style and quality and technical level quite substantially.

Working as I do with the UK's leading training company for presentation skills, I could not help but notice the different "styles" employed and how well or badly it worked. Given the audience, I suspect they all got their message across, but in a corporate environment I can see why we "geeks" often struggle to be regarded seriously. seems well regarde worldwide and presumably shows a fairly high level in Perl circles. And I wondered sitting there with serious brain overload at one point if this was why Perl often struggles for corporate acceptance.

Perl has a "hacker" image that Java & C++/C# do not. It is more fun and perhaps this is why it is not taken as seriously as these other languages perhaps?
Java for example just "feels" corporate, so the average manager I suspect would approve a Java project before a Perl one based purely on awareness and if they are better informed perceived seriousness. Ie. Java "feels" more serious and corporate than Perl.

Just a thought.

The slides for the talks will soon be available and I shall link to them.

* Posted on: Mon, Dec 13 2004 11:46 AM

December 10, 2004
Google Suggest

By LanceW

Googl Suggest

Google do it again with another great beta test service.
This time as you typein your search, google will "suggest" a search for you. Try it to really understand what I mean.

* Posted on: Fri, Dec 10 2004 4:50 PM


By LanceW

Pricenoia is a brilliant internet site, that does a straight price comparison across all the Amazon sites worldwide and shows you the equivalent costs.

So if you are paranoid about that book or DVD being cheaper in the States, then you can easily check.

Particularly cool is the toolbar plug-in. Drag it to your browsers toolbar and then when browsing through Amazon's site you can click on the button and see right away what the relative costs are worldwide.

* Posted on: Fri, Dec 10 2004 3:23 PM

Professionalism in Judo

By LanceW

Found this site today

It is Jimmy Pedro's website.
I know my web design efforts are poor, but this is terrible!
The site looks like it was made in the early 1990s. And this is what the US public see when they search for their sole surviving Judoka of note!

At least he has a site I suppose. But is he trying to convey a sense of prefessionalism?

My reaction to his site got me thinking about the standard of Judo and the bodies supporting it, the standards for coaching, tournament administration, coaching, promotion etc.

And the result of my contemplation...
The level is low on most aspects of Judo.

How well does Judo promote itself? Badly.
How well does Judo encourage quality in clubs? Badly.
How well does Judo promote professional standards? Badly.
How well does Judo assess its weaknesses? Badly.
How well does Judo support elite players? Badly.
How well does Judo promote normal players? Badly.
And so on....

I know, I know. It is easy to stand here on the sideline and criticise. But hard to make improvements, yes I know this and I feel your pain.

But in the big bad world out there (like on the tatami) all that really matters is results. Intentions, plans, projects, good efforts count for zip, nada, nothing at all.

If you are a member of any organisation and you are reading this, what is your reaction?
Are you already mentally calling me a rude ignorant fool?
Or are you asking yourself why? how can I make a change? How did it get this bad?

If you are in either category give me a call/drop me an email, I want to help!

* Posted on: Fri, Dec 10 2004 10:20 AM

December 9, 2004
Worth1000 comp- fab!

By LanceW


A great contest, public service posters... some are very funny.

* Posted on: Thu, Dec 9 2004 11:41 AM

December 8, 2004

By LanceW

For some while I have had the wikipedized version of the BBC news site on my bookmarks. (

Today I found which does the same thing to text on other pages say on blog entries like this one.

Still playing with it but was keen to spread the word.

* Posted on: Wed, Dec 8 2004 5:02 PM

Judo Paperwork

By LanceW

There is one thing I have noticed about Judoka worldwide, a bad thing, one which I remember being bad for as a compeditor also.

That thing is paperwork!

I am yet to meet a compeditive Judoka who is good at doing their paperwork. Ask any tournament organiser about when entries come in and I am sure they will back me up.

Now I don't know why Judoka are so bad at paperwork and the point I am about to make is that basically I don't care! And if you are a compeditor you should not care either!

Why? You ask.
Because you (the compeditor) should not have to worry about paperwork. You have enough to worry about just getting prepared and performing.

But what about the paperwork?
Get someone else to do it, that is the best answer I have for you. If you are a serious athlete, you need to be thorough in your paperwork and administration. You should find someone who can and will do your paperwork for you.

What I am suggesting is getting some Judo Management.
I'll expand on my thoughts on this in a later entry but for now I will concentrate on it from a paperwork perspective.

The paperwork is important, when I moved to the UK I had already pretty much stopped fighting seriously. But being a Judoka I entered lots of competitions for the social element and the fun.
I forwarded every contest draw and result etc to the New Zealand Judo Federation office. Anecdotally I know I was the only player in the entire NZJF doing this for every event.
The result was I got bumped up from my position somewhere at the bottom of the list to being in the number two squad below the olympians! This was despite being 100% open about the fact I was getting drunk the night before I competed as well as the evening afterwards and not taking things seriously.
They had to up my "ranking" because I was doing the paperwork. They had evidence that I was fighting and getting results. More evidence (again anecdoctally) of performance than my more talented, dedicated and better performing colleagues. But I had proof, they didn't.

Can you and do you prove to everyone that you deserve to be taken seriously?

Do you get your entries for competitions in months or weeks in advance?

Does your national body, your club, your friends, your coach know that you are working hard and doing well?

If not why not? Because you are a Judoka and cr*p at paperwork I suspect. In which case, find someone who will do it for you!

* Posted on: Wed, Dec 8 2004 11:01 AM

December 6, 2004
NZ Security gets thumbs up!

By LanceW

Bruce Schneier's Website

Security guru Bruce Schneier blog mentions an article in the NZ Herald about security and approves of some of the thinking coming from our little island.

* Posted on: Mon, Dec 6 2004 10:26 AM

December 3, 2004
Take that Console online!

By LanceW

Xlink Kai

I have as some know been on the Sony Playstation2 online beta trial programme since it started here in the UK.

Today I discovered XLink Kai's website, and can't wait to get home and try it out!!
Kai, reading the site, is a free tool that you run on your PC, that allows you to play console games over the web. Which doesn't sound exciting until you realise that they are talking about letting you play any game that has system link! Cool!

It apparently works for XBox, PS2 and Gamecube and does not need a modded console.
Sadly Gamecube only seemed to have 3 supported games and the PS2 12. But XBOX has plenty, which is perhaps not suprising as MS charge you to their online services, so a free alternative makes sense to me.

I shall definitely be trying it out over the weekend and shall report back.

* Posted on: Fri, Dec 3 2004 10:01 AM

December 2, 2004
Training for Judo - addendum

By LanceW

After writing the previous entry, I fired up a spreadsheet and did some simple math, here it is a comparison between the East & West.

Now obviously the figures are rubbish, we don't spend 100% of our session throwing or doing uchi komi, but I was giving you all the benefit of the doubt.

You can see from this very basic computation that what say a Japanese player does is 2 weeks, will take us 9 weeks.
If we assume (and assume probably correctly) that the Eastern player would spend a greater perscntage of their time actually doing techniques, then our figures would look even less positive.

If you have a better calculation I'd like to see it, perhaps as a "group exercise" we can expand the calculation to give a more real answer?

* Posted on: Thu, Dec 2 2004 2:26 PM

XMOO - Virtual Stockmarket

By LanceW

From the same people that run iClod is XMOO a virtual stock exchange.

Try it and see.

* Posted on: Thu, Dec 2 2004 2:26 PM

Training for Judo

By LanceW

All Judo players, like all athletes need to train.

The hard question is always where to invest your time and energy when it comes to training. Do you pop down to the Gym, go for a run or train at a local Judo club?

It depends of course on the individual.
Different forms of training give different benefits and you and your coach need to know what the benefits (and costs) are and choose accordingly.

If you are an elite level Judoka (Olympic/World medalist or at least in the top 5 or 10), then it makes a huge impact on if you win or lose.

For the rest of us, the impact is much reduced and the choices easier to make.

We can simplify our choices to running, gym or Judo.

Running is great, it builds your cardio-vascular fitness, making you fitter and more able to endure a days competition. It takes a long time to do and to get good at. There are some serious risks to consider like traffic, weather, shin splints, etc.
Running works, its easy to do and costs very little.
(p.s. I hate running, but I at one stage in my career was running twice a day everyday)

Gyms are great, cardio machines weights, etc. Here I focus on weights. Gym work helps build your strength. Giving you the power to pick someone up and dump them on their back. Without adequate strength you'll get beaten by those who do have it.
That said its not cheap (generally) and you need to know what you are doing. Also it's easy to lose perspective and do too much weights and get too strong, affecting your Judo skills.

Last but absolutely not least is doing Judo.
This IMNSHO (In My Not So Humble Opinion) is the best training for Judo. If you need to choose between Judo and some other form of training, choose Judo.
Especially in the West, we spend far too little time doing Judo compared to say our Japanese counterparts, where 3 hour sessions everyday are what school kids do. I leave it to you to imagine what the competition players and elite do!
Typically a western Judoka will do two 1-2 hour sessons a week. More advanced people might do 3-5 sessions and perhaps train for two or more hours.
But the match still puts us behind the east. So more Judo time is required to compete against the likes of the dominant Judo nation of the moment (and of history) Japan.

More Judo improves your fitness and strength, but more importantly it improves your techniques / skills.

An old instructor of mine once said it took 5,000 uchi komi repititions of a throw before it was "usable". how many uchi komi dis you do this week?

Judo is about throwing people, thats how you win.
How many times did you throw someone for Ippon this week?
How many times did you let someone throw you?
How many times did you get someone to attack you so you could defend against the attack?

5,000 times?

If so, please pat yourself on the back. pick up the phone and call me as I want you as my training partner.

If not, then consider your training programme and if it has enough Judo time in there. Are you getting fit and strong but neglecting to practise the real nuts and bolts of Judo? 5,000 may be a random number dreampt up by a coach trying to motivate me, but the idea is sound.

More Judo equals better Judo.


* Posted on: Thu, Dec 2 2004 12:43 PM

December 1, 2004
Fierce Conversations - Slacker Manager

By LanceW

Fierce Conversations

The above link takes you to an interesting article on the Slacker Manager site. (the site is quickly becoming a favourite)

It's an article on how to converse with others, interesting reading for business people and for coaching.

* Posted on: Wed, Dec 1 2004 11:35 AM

10 Most Wanted Design Bugs

By LanceW

10 Most Wanted Design Bugs

The above link takes you to the AskTog website of Bruce Tognazzini, where he lists his top ten Computer faults along with some relevant comment on dealing with them.

* Posted on: Wed, Dec 1 2004 11:28 AM

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