Faire du Judo

Would you like to try Judo?

“Faire du judo” in France is a very popular activity

Last Saturday was the day on which we had to sign up for any evening classes or Wednesday activities. It is only possible to sign up for classes, clubs, or activities on ONE day at the Forum d’Association. If you miss it, tant pis, you have to wait until next year. The rules are the rules! This year, the Forum d’Association was held at Porcaro. The small village of Porcaro was brought to a standstill as everyone in the area searched for parking spots in this one-road village and then jostled to look at the stands to check out what was on offer. Small boys were pulling reluctant fathers to the football stands, tired women were trying to look enthusiastically at the aerobics classes and the taxidermy stand was very quiet apart from a stuffed fox.

Iona and Joe are keen to try judo this year. The only judo they have seen is Honk Kong Phooey so where this fascination has come from I have no idea. We made our way to the judo stand and joined the queue. It appears that judo is very popular in Brittany and there is a sports hall just outside of Guer dedicated to judo. We sign up, but before any judo can commence they both need to provide a ‘certificat medical’, we need to take out insurance in case they injure themselves or someone else(!) and they need to provide photos so that they can be registered with the national Judo club. As with everything in France even signing children up for an after-school judo club has masses of red tape!

Insurances are arranged, photos taken, and appointments are made with the doctor. They both receive a full medical which is, our doctor tells me, a requirement for any sport undertaken outside school. They both receive their medical certificates so all they need now are the white kimonos and trousers and then let the martial art commence…

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