Usjjf nationals

J

JDenz

Guest
The usjjf nationals were held last weekend in Ohio and I just want to say it was the worst tournament I was ever at. Just so you guys don't think I am bitter about losing I went undefeated at the tournament and won my class. First off we get to the wieghins the day before the tournament about 5 minutes late, (the weighin's were on the 5th floor and on there website they said the lobby) at first they were not going to let us win but our coach a returning national champ got us in. I was in for a big shock since what we weighed in on was a dial bathroom scale and they barly looked at it. To top off the whole weighin thing, after they were about to send us home without being able to compete (we drove four hours) they let other people weigh in the morning of the tournament.
We arrived at the building where the tournament was being held at about quarter to 8, they said make sure you are there by 8 because they wanted to start propley at 8:30 Well there was also a karate tournament going on and they wouldn't let us in till the head people from the tournament got there which was about 8:15. By the time we were allowed on the floor to warm up it was about 9:30. They had two mats but only ran one. So by the time they stopped us at 10:15 for opening ceramoneys it was about 2 matches into the tournament. Well the tournament was supposed to be double elimination so in there mind that meant that every one had to lose twice to be out of the tournament even the first and second place guys.
Finally my instructer got to fight. The guy he was fighting is a pro kickboxer and a 5th degree blackbelt in Judo, but also more significley he is on the board of the usjjf so he is friends with everyone that is someone involved with scoring and reffing the tournament. To make a long story short my coach got screwed he was hit in the face so many times his face looked like a ballon when he came off the mat and he was repedley hit on the ground. In Usjj it is legal to strike but the face and ground striking are illegal, it is like point karate and bjj mixed together. Every chance the ref got he stuck it to my coach they penalized him for not bowing before he left the mat (NO ONE ELSE DID AT ANY POINT IN THE TOURNAMENT) At the point that Primo (my instructer) was very close in the scoring.
On the ground where Primo is best the kept restarting the fight on the feet, twice while Primo had good submissions applied in tow diffrent fights. At one point Primo had a triangle the guy stood up and Primo switched off to arm bar they stopped the fight and restarted them on the feet nothing for Primo it was sicking to watch.
Since they were running out of time it was about 5 oclock by the time they got to our division they decided they no longer had time to go double eliminition for us so one loss and you were out and oh ya they started running a second ring, on top of that they made Primo a ref and he was a ref for my trianing partner Bill who was also a Primo student. Now I have to say if anything Primo was harder on Bill for scoring then a regular ref would be but still this is supposed to be the national championships. Bill won but If I was that guy I would protest (even though that was the best reffing I saw at the whole tournament) By the time my match came almost all the karate mats were tore up and they were starting to tear up the USJJF mats I think they would have skipped over my match if I didn't make such a stink. Anyways they were going to dq me before the match even started because I was pacing around and I looked "like I was ready for a fight not a compition" Agian Primo talked them out of dqing me. In my fight I counted I took 9 face shots my oppent ending up getting dq after I was repeditily told not to street fight, ( I only through punches to the chest I think he didn't like my body lock takedowns)
I have to say this was the worst tournament I have even been to in 15 years of competing in sports, and they are being considered for a spot in the olympics at a time where they are considering eliminating a stlye of wrestling give me a break. That was the biggest waste of money ever, The only thing good about the whole weekend was watching Bill win his first tournament and hanging out with the team.
Jeff Denz
 
OP
J

JDenz

Guest
I would definitly recomend not competing in the Usjjf at a national level if you are a grappler it was a very un rewarding event
 

Robert Carver

Orange Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
79
Reaction score
6
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
I am the VP and Webmaster of the USJJF. I was not at the tournament, so I cannot comment on, nor give any excuses for the lack of professionalism that you saw. However, I can assure you that there are lots of "after-action" discussions going on behind the scenes with the intent of learning from the mistakes of this tournament. One problem was the lack of people to organize the event. Many who who had promised to be there to help were not. Another was the lack of certified referees on hand. These problems are being considered and corrective action will happen.

For the information of others that are reading this thread, I received via email the list of winners in the various divisions. These will be posted soon to the USJJF website, along with photos. Mr. Primo placed third in MEN'S Weight Class 69<77 kg (153-170 lbs.) I have NOT however, been able to find Mr. Jeff Denz as placing in ANY division at the Nationals.
 
OP
J

JDenz

Guest
I placed first in the novice division 171 I think to 187 lbs division
 

Robert Carver

Orange Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
79
Reaction score
6
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
Mr. Denz:

Thank you for your reply. I have just shot an email to the National HQ for verification of your claim. Should it be verified, I will acknowledge it here in this forum.
 

Robert Carver

Orange Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
79
Reaction score
6
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
Just got a reply (that was quick) on my inquiry concerning Mr. Denz. He did indeed place 1st in the Novice division.

Also, JJIF Ju-Jitsu is NOT being considered for a spot in the Olympics. Rather, is it ALREADY a World Games Sport. Since the World Games is now under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee, it is already in the "Olympic Family". However, with the elimination of several sports from the Olympics pending, we will probably not be seeing Ju-Jitsu as an Olympic sport anytime soon.

For more information on the International side of the sport, go to http://www.jjifweb.com/ or http://www.usjujitsu.net/news/world_games/akita_photos.htm for a few photos from the last World Games, and to http://www.worldgames2005.org/ for the 2005 World Games web site.
 
OP
J

JDenz

Guest
If you have any trouble at all I have all of our fights on tape, not that I thought I would have to prove to you that I was actually there competing. http://www.kenposchool.com/pages/NYS2002.html
that is the link to my state title in the open division since they didn't split them like they did at nationals. Since obviously no one cares about the lower belts but cares enough to list 5 pages of womens stats who never fought there (meaning that they listed the weights and divisions just that they were blank) I have nothing but the tape to prove I was there and won but anyone on our team will verifiy it as well.
 

arnisador

Sr. Grandmaster
MTS Alumni
Joined
Aug 28, 2001
Messages
44,573
Reaction score
456
Location
Terre Haute, IN
It's great of Mr. Carver to come here to discuss this issue in such a forthright manner. Good luck to the USJJF in its after-action review.

Mr. Denz, sorry to hear you had a poor experience. Give my regards to your instructor. He's a ball of energy!
 
OP
J

JDenz

Guest
No I didn't and Primo is fine and kicking he should be fighting in his second MMA fight in November.
I have a few suggestions to make your tournaments run a little smoother. First of All if you are going to have weighins the day day before the tournament only don't ruin the integrety of the contest by letting people weighin the day of the tournament and weigh us on a real scale. I have been involved in wrestling up through collage levels, I coach the kids club I have been to Naga I have never seen anyone weigh in on a dial bathroom scale.
Second Rule changes adjustments. You should not have to pay to find out what the rule adjustments are. I mean they didn't go over any of the rule changes that they did not update on the web. (SPecificly when a guy is on section three on the ground and they go out of bounds they drag them back in this time) Everyone that went out got startd back on the feet, even if they go out of bounds to escape a submission or to escape section three. same thing happend in the clinch guys would go out of bounds to escape the clinch. So you could totally stay away from any ground work. When we talked to Mr. B Bethers he said that we should have come to the rules meeting the day before. Well that meating cost I think 35 dollars. Added to the ninty it cost me to compete (50 for the tournament, 40 for the card) that is 125 dollars to compete in one event withoout adding an extra days hotel and food. I mean it would be one thing if they wern't changing rules day of event due to time constraints, with all the time we spent sitting around waiting they had time to tell us the changes.
Third they had two mats they should have been running them that way. It was redicules the amount of time we spent waiting around we were there from 8am to after 600 p.m for about 35 competitors (no actual numbers just a guess) It was insane how slow it was. I mean naga had about 550 competitors and 8 mats so you figure 35 divided by two is about 18 people to a mat compared to about 69 people a mat for Naga, the naga event took about 8 hours, the usjjf took 10 hours and the shortest Naga match is the same length as the Usjjf with the higher skill levels being longer matches.
 

Robert Carver

Orange Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
79
Reaction score
6
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
Mr. Denz:

First, please consider typing your replies into a word processing program like MS Word, and then run the spelling and grammar check. I had to read your post several times in order to comprehend portions of your reply. You can then copy and paste the text into the form field in order to make your reply.

Second, I am surprised that bathroom scales were used. I agree that proper scales should have been used.

Third, it was my impression that JJIF rules were used. As such, there should have been no "adjustments" per say. Are you familiar with JJIF rules? If not, then you will find them confusing.

Fourth, the rules meeting was just that... a meeting. The $35 that you harped about was for the REFEREES CLINIC. Since you are ranked below black belt level, technically you cannot referee at a National event. Rank of Shodan and above are required for referees officiating at this level.

Fifth, JJIF rules call for breaking the action and returning the fighters to their feet when neither competitor is gaining an advantage. The only time the action is paused and competitors are dragged back on the mat is if one is gaining the advantage and the other simply runs for the out of bounds. Further, the person running out of bounds should have received a warning or even a penalty point again him. JJIF rules are not "grappling" or "rassling" rules.

Sixth, you cannot win by submission in JJIF rules. You merely gain points depending upon the phase of competition you are presently in. Again, this is NOT the typical grappling or rassling rules.

Familiarity with the rules is essential in competing any any tournament. Perhaps a more thorough review of the rules prior to the competition and training under those rules would benefit you and your club mates. At the very least, a rules clinic the day of the competition would be helpful.

I appreciate your input and will pass them along to the proper folks for next year.
 
OP
J

JDenz

Guest
When we emailed the usjjf president this is the repley we got about us attending the referee seminor to find out the rule changes that have been made that are not posted on the usjjf website.
"USJJF competition uses JJIF rules. We held a referees course the day before
the tournament where all of these particulars were discussed in detail. I
encourage all clubs to attend a current referees course and help us make the
USJJF grow."

Michael Piaser

So what you guys are saying is come spend 35 dollars to see a course that you shouldn't see because you are not a black belt, but you should see because this is when we tell you what rules are diffrent from the rule book?? Whats that?
 

Robert Carver

Orange Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
79
Reaction score
6
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
In order to be a class C or above referee, you must be a black belt. Michael Paiser or Mr. Bethers may not have been aware that your club did not have any black belts. Yes, the referee course is a real class, where you learn how to be a real and certified referee. If you note Mr. Paiser's reply, he does not state anything about changes or amendments to the rules. It states that the competition uses JJIF rules. It is incumbent upon competitors to be familiar with the rules that they will compete under. It is not the job of those at the tournament to familiarize those that do not know the rules. It is simply expected that you should know them. The JJIF rules are used worldwide for many years (like twenty plus) and have been published in multiple languages and formats.

However, if there are changes to those rules, then that should be covered in a pre-competition briefing to all competitors. If this was not done, then shames on us. I will definitely bring this up to the powers that be. Also, since USJJF competitions will draw a number of persons outside the USJJF and maybe not as familiar with the rules as we would expect, I would definitely recommend that a rules briefing be conducted even if we use non-modified JJIF rules.
 
OP
L

LeeKrol

Guest
I have had the pleasure, or actually, the "displeasure", of seeing a video of the USJJF Nationals in Ohio. Having attended two NAGA Battle at the Beach Tournaments in Wildwood, NJ I can safely say that the quality of the USJJF National tournament is very subpar with that of a real organization like NAGA. The USJJF should take the time to visit a Kip Kollar event and see how it is done. 550+ competitors, weighed in, competing, with trophy presentations and a 25 minute superfight in 8 hours. There were also 200+ spectators as well in the arena. All this was done on 8 mats. There is no comparison.

I am no professional promoter or event organizer, but I can offer some advice to help pull the USJJF out of the gutter:

1) I have never seen a tournament where the rules were not discussed at the beginning of the event. This takes 15 minutes at most and really helps to keep the referees, judges, and competitors on the same page. It also helps to prevent controversy with rules disputes.

2) Put together a format and stick with it. Do not promote double elimination and then back out halfway through the tournament. That will make the USJJF look like a garbage organization instead of the real deal.

3) Weigh-ins at the event. This is not a difficult task. Buy two digital scales and conduct weigh-ins at the tournament. Any wrestler can tell you that with weigh-ins not immediately before the event, an individual can change their weight significantly if they've been cutting down.

I don't think this is all that difficult, in fact, it seems like common sense to me.

I have also been reading some of these posts and would like to put in a few personal comments. I am strongly opposed to "pulling rank". Only black belts should attend the rules meetings? I am not sure about you but I would take a collegiate wrestler with 3 months of kickboxing training against any of your karate, judo, or kenpo black belts any day. A Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu blue belt or purple belt would probably wipe the floor with any of your black belts as well. Pulling rank is really holding the martial arts back as a community. I have like I said before watched a video of this tournament and would like to say that the referee job was brutal and very inconsistent. Coaches ref matches with their own students in? That is brutal. I saw repeated head shots not penalized, which is not in the JJIF rules as far as I know.

Personal slams shouldn't be here as well. If Mr. Denz is not the greatest speller so what. Slams like Mr. Carver only lead to mud-slinging contests which put message boards into the dirt. The "rasslin" comment was highly disrespectful in my opinion. WRESTLING is as much a martial art as Tai Chi, Kung Fu, Tae Kwon Do and the rest. If you don't believe me, maybe we've all heard of Mark Coleman, Dan Severn, Randy Couture, and Mark Kerr? I know many a "Shodan" have run into these guys and gotten destroyed. Martial arts needs to grow as a family and slams like this have no place.

Thanks for your time.

Lee M. Krol
 

Robert Carver

Orange Belt
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
79
Reaction score
6
Location
Baton Rouge, LA
Mr. Krol:

I am not going to get into a who can beat up who debate, that is non-productive. I was not at the event in Ohio, but based on past events, and the planning that went into the event (which quickly went to heck from what I understand), I can at least tell you and Mr. Denz what should have happened. If it did not happen, then shame on us. You learn my doing and by making mistakes. Hopefully we will learn from these and promote a better event in the future.

My remarks concerning Mr. Denzs spelling and grammar was an attempt to provide feedback on how to further discussion in a manner that was clear and concise. If I cannot understand the comments made, then I cannot response adequately. I did not call Mr. Denz an idiot, nor make any comments with regard to his education or intelligence. If it came across this way, then I apologize to him and to you.

The JJIF rules concerning competition and referee certification is not mine, not the USJJFs. These rules and policies are handled down by the International organization that we belong to. We do not have any discretion on changing these and still conduct an event that is sanctioned by that organization.

Contrary to what opinion may be held, the JJIF/USJJF competition is not a typical MMA/Grappling competition. It is not intended to be, and it never will be. We do welcome practitioners of others styles, but the reality is that they will have to bend to our way of competing, and not the other way around. Like I said previously, we belong to a larger International organization, and we do not have that discretion. JJIF competition is not a mix of point karate and BJJ, as was previously stated. It is more closely aligned to a mix of WUKO style karate competition and IJF Judo. The idea is that a competitor should be well rounded and able to fight effectively in all phases of the match. So if you are one dimensional, such as a BJJ practitioner, you cannot expect to fare well. Likewise, if you are a Karateka, then the same applies. JuJitsu, is all about being well rounded.

My comments about rassling was intended to draw a comparison between JJIF rules and that of a grappling type tournament. I was a HS wrestler, but mostly did the Judo competition thing. My son is a wrestler, and I indeed have the highest respect for wrestling and those that compete in it. However, JJIF competition is not intended to allow for competitors to fight the entire match on the ground. Rather, under most circumstances when neither competitor has gained an advantage, then they are returned to their feet. That is just a difference in the rules and type of competition compared to the other forms out there.

Overall Mr. Krol, I highly agree with your comments and your suggestions. I certainly see no fault in any of them and will suggest their implementation. Thank you for your suggestions, and I hope that we can continue this discussion in a mature and thoughtful manner.
 

ace

Master of Arts
Joined
May 26, 2002
Messages
1,573
Reaction score
16
Location
N.Y.
My Name is Primo Luciano
I have been involved with the USJJF since Sept. 2000
In 2001 I won 2 opean & the N.Y.State title
I also won The Nationals & best Technique award in 137-152
I also Won The JJIF North American Title 2001 in 137-152
In 2002 i again won State & opean titles.

I have trained 2 state Champs & 2 National Champs
1 National Silver meadalist.
\
Mr Carver Have U competed in any USJJF/JJIF turaments??
I agree with Mr. Denz The 2002 nationals were awful!
I watched As competiters avoided sections 2 & 3
I watched as Competiters went out of bounds to get
a restart on the feet.

I decided to challenge my self this year.
I gaind 11 1/2 ponunds to compete in the 153 to 170
I took over 20 shots to my face & a head but.
When i tried to get the Ref's attetion
I had points taken away for talkin.

I have Ref. at States & even this years Nationals
Guess What I have no license to do so i did cause i was asked to.
My primary Art is Modern Arnis.
I practise Submisson Grappling & Wrestling

This years Turnament was awful & verry poor by any
Martial Arts Standards.

Mr. Carver since when does A black belt have any thing to do with ones Opion.
Mr. Denz spoke the truth.
This years Turnament was awful.
I am ashamed that I incoraged People to make That long Drive.
 

Bob Hubbard

Retired
MT Mentor
Founding Member
Lifetime Supporting Member
MTS Alumni
Joined
Aug 4, 2001
Messages
47,245
Reaction score
772
Location
Land of the Free
Side note on the spelling issue : See our support forum for a plugin for IE that'll help out. (I know my spellings not the greatest, especially when I get rolling, that fatfinger syndrome :) )
 
OP
J

JDenz

Guest
Mr Carver,
I think you are misunderstanding are many complaints about this tournament. This is your national tournament this tournament is supposed to be the best that you can do and if that is the USJJF's best then I think you should seriously look into hiring some consultants to help you plan and exucute a tournament.
I feel that were were well versed in the rules as I have stated it was not my first USJJF event. Any competition that does not allow closed guard is alot diffrent then any kind of BJJ. We understand the rules as they are written on your website of updated rules it cleary states that Sonomama was supposed to be used but at the tournament they said that that is no longer the practice that if you go out of bounds then you start back on the feet. They were also allowing people to stand up and even if they were in a submission hold at the time they started the competitors on the feet.
I for one feel that Primo is one of the best trainers for this tournament he has been a very good fighter in the USJJF and he has trained some good fighters.
If you think we are the only ones complaining about the rule enforcement and changes of rules Shihan Ernest G. McPeek (who had just won an award for his tournaments) has a list of 21 complaints he is taking to Mr. Bethers.
I think the biggest problem with this event was when you host a nationals it is supposed to be the best tournament of the year everything should run smooth. I mean it takes less the 15 minutes to go over the rules briefly.
And if you think "rassling" is not a vaild martial art that is your openion but I tell you any wrestler that is on a national or international team would come in and throw around your guys under these rules espically since you can just stand up to aviod section 3.
 

Datu Tim Hartman

Senior Master
Founding Member
Lifetime Supporting Member
MTS Alumni
Joined
Aug 26, 2001
Messages
2,236
Reaction score
116
Location
Buffalo, NY USA
To whom it may concern,

My name is Datu Tim Hartman (President of the World Modern Arnis Alliance), Primo Luciano is my student. I could not attend the Nationals due to the fact that I'm currently teaching a two week seminar tour in Denmark and Sweden. I heard what happened to Primo. When I get back I will look at what ever tapes are available. If I see any truth to what has been written on this forum I will file complaints threw the proper channels. I think that it is important to do things by the numbers.

I know how tournaments can go. Things go wrong. The USJJF needs to be given the chance to do the right thing. If the official did abuse the rules for his son and nothing is done about it I will be forced to take matters into my own hands. If I were present at the event this might not have happened. I think it would be best for everyone to count to ten before doing anything.

Mr. Carver, I will be back in the country this Monday. Feel free to call me on my cell phone (716-432-0600) when you have the time. I feel that things can be worked out.

Respectfully yours,
Datu Tim Hartman
President World Modern Arnis Alliance
www.wmarnis.com

:asian:
 
OP
L

LeeKrol

Guest
A note on the ref job for this year's USJJF Nationals:

From what I saw on the videos, here are some things for the USJJF to look into when they brief their referees for the next tournament. I saw several strikes on the feet that were BLOCKED, but were still scored. How does that work?

If the "idea is that a competitor should be well rounded and able to fight effectively in all phases of the match", then why are competitors allowed to run out of the ring to avoid Sections 2 and 3? Why are competitors allowed to squirm and roll out of bounds for a restart on the feet? Why are submissions broken up without points if a competitor stands up at all? You can accuse me of being a grappler "mark", but the rules enforced at this year's Nationals clearly supported Section 1 only. It almost seemed as grapplers were vilipended at this tournament even though every one of the competitors that I saw who actually wanted to grapple (and there were not many) at least respected the rules and threw a few strikes.

Favortism is going to happen to a small degree at any tournament, but the Nationals were blatant. Referees running matches with their own students involved? Competitors with parents in the upper ranks of USJJF? It is called "Conflict of Interests".

According to the USJJF rules, head shots are illegal. However, head shots thrown at the tournament were SCORED FOR POINTS. Inconsistencies like this are what lead to controversy and ill-word being spread about the USJJF. If you score head shots, you are encouraging them. I suppose it will take someone getting a broken nose or a concussion for the USJJF to adhere to their own rules.

This is supposed to be the flagship tournament for the USJJF, and things aren't looking good for them if this is their best foot forward. I'm not trying to be sarcastic, but the head members of USJJF should honestly attend the next NAGA tournament run by Kip Kollar. The website is http://www.nagafighter.com These tournaments are a model for organization and class. I would also recommend talking to Mr. Kollar and maybe get a framework for how he puts his shows together and what you can do to make yours better.

I know that this message thread seems like nothing more than a slam-fest on the USJJF, but please don't misunderstand. We're all martial artists here who would like to see tournaments around the nation get better. Forums like this with stern critiques of "National level" tournaments should help not only the organzation under fire, but other organizations who read these posts. I hope that the USJJF reads this thread and takes everything posted here very seriously. USJJF's credibility and reputation are under scrutiny here. I do hope they can rebound.
 
Top