Black belt guest visits Southwest Judo Club

Virden club hosts annual rice cake ceremony

The Virden-based Southwest Judo Club held its annual Japanese rice cake ceremony on Saturday at Mary Montgomery School. Students of Sensei Mike Bergman demonstrated their skills, received new belts they’d earned, and participated in the Kagami-Biraki or rice cake cutting ceremony.

This year’s event was extra special because a black belt sensei from Winnipeg was on hand to do some training with the young judo students.

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James Currie is chief instructor at the St. Boniface Judo Club in Winnipeg where he once studied with Bergman.

In an impactful exercise, he asked student James Kreutzer to jump up and down in front of him while holding each other’s jackets. Currie showed how easy it is to topple an opponent by kicking his feet to the side while in midair.

About a dozen parents came to the open house to watch their children, join them in some games, and have lunch together.

© Virden Empire-Advance