Today was our last day of teaching in Turkey. It has been a hectic two weeks, with a lot of hurry up and wait. I have learnt three very important things about Turkey. Firstly when you are told 5 minutes they mean one hour, this is very frustrating but it seems to be the norm. Secondly, when you’re told “everything is okay” they mean, “I am going to try and blag this and it will probably go wrong.” Lastly, it is not always hot in Turkey, it has been freezing all week!
We have had another two days of lectures in the Olympic training centre, these went well although the students were every tired from the four days at the stadium. We had lectures on performance analysis, jita kyoei, judo tactics, reflective practice and some others. The people at the Turkish Olympic centre were fantastic, really looked after us.
Today we were on the mat. We went to a sports centre that seems to specialise in combat sports, they had five very large dojo’s (six mat areas in each), one for judo, one for wrestling and one for taekwondo and I didn’t see the others so I am not sure what they were. The morning session was with EJU vice president and former world champion, Danial Lascau who did an excellent mat based session on Seiryoku Zenyo. We then had student assessments that were mat based. We had several Turkish coaches join us for this session, including the national womens coach and the famous Tataroglu (4 x world medallist, 4 x European Champion & 12 x European medallist in total).
We finished the day teaching some Turkish judo players, one group took the junior national squad players that included u23 world and European medallists. The other group took a large group of children who were fairly new to judo. This was great.
Tomorrow is a well earned day off and then we fly back early Friday.