Canada’s largest judo competition in Edmonton this weekend


Edmonton: Canada’s largest judo competition will take place in North America’s largest shopping mall, March 11, 12 and 13.

The 11th annual Edmonton International Judo Championship (EIJC) will feature more than 730 competitors in all age groups, both male and female, from across Canada and internationally. It will take place at West Edmonton Mall, Friday through Sunday.

Sponsored by the Edmonton Yudanshakai Judo Society, the weekend long event will be held in the covered West Edmonton Mall Ice Palace. It is a Judo Canada sanctioned A-level tournament and a National Team Points tournament.

“It’s a really action packed event that in reality is probably three times the size of the Pan Am Judo Championships,” said Tournament Director Mark Hicks. “There will be kids through adults, veterans, beginners and black belt divisions, as well as Kata.”

Some well known people in the judo world will be at the EIJC, including:

  • Edmontonians Gord Okamura and Kelly Palmer, both of whom placed fifth in the world in the “Katame no Kata” Kata in 2015;
  • Winnipeg coach Mark Berger, who took home a bronze medal in the 1984 Olympics;
  • Judo Canada Coach Ewan Beaton, who has competed on, coached and managed Olympic teams;
  • Eighth degree black belt Takahama Sensei from Japan, who has been a professional coach all his life.

The Edmonton International Judo Championship is free to watch for the public.

Competitors are expected from all over Alberta (Ft. McMurray, Lethbridge, Lloydminster, Red Deer, Calgary, Airdrie, Drayton Valley, Grande Prairie, Greater Edmonton), throughout Canada (Winnipeg, Brandon, Regina, Saskatoon, Vancouver, Burnaby, Richmond, Kamloops, Kelowna, Prince George, Fredericton, Montreal, Quebec City, Metro Toronto, Thunder Bay) and from Japan.