24 September 2021 in Uncategorised

Coaching Judo to children with disabilites – Kingsley School, Bideford

Kingsley School has a long history of promoting and engaging within the sport of Judo. We have achieved many milestones and experienced many National and International successful competition results.

Judo is one of the most participated sports in the world and is also one of the most adaptable to teach to many different age groups and abilities.

So, it’s a natural progression to now set out a plan to introduce an adaptive judo program to support our pupils within the Grenville Centre.

On Friday we welcomed Kerry Tansey who manages the Great Britain Adaptive Judo Team and heads up the education and competition pathways for the British Judo Association.

 Kerry alongside our Kingsley Judo Coach Simon Ward spent the afternoon with around 20 of our pupils, slowly encouraging more participation while creating many Judo movements through a variety of inspiring games, which all related in the pupils challenging themselves while enjoying and having fun in the Dojo with lots of laugher.

So, as we move forward, the adaptive program will allow many of our pupils to access physical activities through Judo. With encouragement this will develop as we continue to build confidence and expand opportunities to enhance participation, enjoyment, and performance of the adaptive and inclusive judo activities.

This development is even more important after research by the University of Central Florida, who are autism and related disabilities disorder specialists. Their study found that children who participated in an adaptive judo program showed that 78% of parents reported a noticeable increase in their child’s confidence, while 56% of them reported that their child became more open to trying new experiences and 78% of parents reported improvements in their child’s social skills.


Our afternoon concluded with a wonderful game where many of the pupils competed against each other or their TA’s. It was the highlight of the session and once again proved that our Judo program can achieve so much more than Judo only being a sport for mainstream pupils.

We look forward to developing this new initiative and watching our Kingsley Pupils thrive in a new way with the aim of integrating both the adaptive program and our mainstream judo club together in the future.

On Sunday Kerry was back with Simon, as she delivered the Adaptive Judo coach education course in the Dojo. We welcomed 15 visiting club coaches who travelled from Cornwall to Gloucester to take part in the course, which was another brilliant opportunity for the coaches to think outside the box and look at ways to deliver our normal judo coaching programs to people with additional needs within our clubs. The course was well attended and once again expertly presented and delivered by Kerry Tansey.