Pan American Games

On November 5th and 6th 2015 USA Judo brought 46 competitors to Cordoba Argentina to compete in the Infantile Pan American Games and then competed in The South American Continental Championship on November 7th. In order to qualify to compete, you had to be ranked # 1 or 2 in the country in your division.

Erica Paccione of Kodokan Judo of Cape Coral is ranked # 1 in the Nation in her division Juvinile A 58- Kilograms competed in this Event and then competed on Saturday the November 7th in The South American Continental Championship.

Erica fought 4 times on Friday the 6th defeating 2 of her opponents with a half point on the throw and then a half point on the hold to equal a full point. Erica Paccione placed third in The Pan American Games.

On Saturday Erica Defeated 2 of her opponents with Ippon on the throw and scored a Bronze Medal in this event as well. Out of the 46 competitors the USA scored 26 medals on behalf of the United States and Erica is proud to have represented her country.

Posted in News

What is the USJA? by Marc Cohen

What is the USJA?


Like many of our members, I am a veteran of the USJA. Like most people my age, I began my study and association with judo in the early 1960s with the local Black Belt organization of the USJF. Through them I reached Yudanshi level and then moved to the USJA in 1981 along with my Judo club, 37 years ago.


I’ve had time to think about who and what the United States Judo Association is and wanted to share my perspective with all of you.


The USJA is principally a small nonprofit corporation that survives with the support of the members. Above all, we are a credentialing organization whose mission is to serve the membership and to develop and maintain standards. We accomplish this mission in a variety of ways under the agreed upon Bylaws of the organization. In this small snapshot of who and what we are, there are those of differing opinions about how the organization is run, but by keeping the definition in mind, it narrows the scope of what our overall mission should be.


In practical terms, we register members, issue appropriate ranks in Judo and Jujitsu, charter schools and sanction events. In addition, we maintain communication with our members and with the larger Judo community in the United States and throughout the world with emails, phone calls, website presence and social media.


We are a service organization and because of that we resolve issues and maintain a steady stream of correspondence and communications between the members and the professional staff.


In order to continue to function, we need to continuously monitor revenue streams to pay the expenses of the corporation including daily work, professional services and operating overhead. Although the overall governance of the organization is through a volunteer effort, we do maintain a staff of people who work through a vendor to initiate and maintain the data infrastructure of the corporation and offer one on one service to the members. The related expenses are a necessary cost of doing business and we constantly monitor the financial health of the corporation.


Make no mistake in thinking of the USJA as a small group like a Dojo, we are a business and we need to maintain the financial, physical and data integrity of our organization so that we can continue to offer the support and services that our members have come to expect.


When all is said and done, we will be the largest and best Judo organization in this country and arguably in the world. We will offer more services at reasonable costs and innovate the most modern technologies in order to accomplish our short and long term mission. We will, however honor our heritage and the history of Judo for the past 113 years and offer personal service and flexibility where and when needed.


The USJA is a strong and vibrant organization that will continue to grow with the demand of the times and the membership. We will be here for many decades to come doing what we can for the members and for Judo.




Marc Cohen

President, USJA

Posted in News

Concussion injuries

Concussion injuries are a top news story, but more importantly, concussions are a very serious health issue that impacts Judo. Our coach education courses does an excellent job making our coaches, students and parents aware of the consequences of concussion accidents, however not every dojo instructor , student or parent is certified though our Coach Certificate program.

In order to bring more attention to this serious issue, we would like to point your attention to the U.S. Center of Disease Control’s (CDC) informative on line offering of concussion information. The course is called Heads Up to Youth: Online Training and it discusses the cause, detection and appropriate actions taken if a potential or actual concussion injury occurs. The CDC course is informative and is a must for anyone involved in teaching or participating in Judo.

The CDC course is free to take and leads to a certificate upon the completion. We urge all members of the USJA to take advantage of this timely and important opportunity. You can go on to the CDC website and review, sign up and take the course at the following URL:

While the course is not mandatory at this time, it is possible that our insurance company will require every chartered club leader to become certified in the future as a condition of having the USJA charter your club.

Posted in News

2014 Financial Statements

United States Judo Association
2014 Financial Commentary

Dear Members of the USJA:

The 2014 Financial Statements prepared by Wyckoff & Associates details much of what we already knew and expected: 2014 was a very difficult year for the USJA. Operating revenues for 2014 amounted to $480k, with combined costs of operating revenues and expenses amounting to $488k. Clearly, our expenses ballooned out of control, stemming mainly from payroll, which amounted to over +40% of our total operating expense. Thankfully, through personnel changes and cost cutting measures, we have made great strides towards improving the financial health of the USJA.

Since February, the USJA has reduced expenses, improved office efficiency, and regained lost revenue through an improved membership retention system. These efforts combined have allowed us to achieve cash on hand of almost $55k through the end of August, which is already an 8% increase over our year ending balance in December. So far, 2015 has been financially profitable and through continued focus on cost control and membership growth, the remainder of the year should prove to be successful.

As with any company experiencing significant change, our short term profitability this year may feel fragile. However, the underlying expense controls and overall management have afforded the USJA the ability to weather the ups and downs of everyday business. By following our improved business changes, the USJA is on track to have a great 2015 and beyond.


Mark Tamulionis
USJA – Treasurer

2014 USJA Financials Commentary

2014_1231 FS Signed USJA

Posted in News

Membership Incentives

We are pleased to announce that the USJA Board of Directors has decided to kick start the new year by offering our Life Membership which normally sells for $400 for $250. This will include our newly released highly sought after USJA Judo Technical Manual and Study Guide with Senior Rank Promotion System which sells for $50 with shipping. The offer will be valid till March 31st of this year.

We have also just approved these additional ongoing membership incentives:

  • $35.00 per year Annual Membership Fee for Active Duty Military and Reservist / Guardsmen on Active Duty for Operational Support
  •  A Multi-Year Annual Membership Discount of:
    • 2 year 10% off (2nd year $95) = $95
    • 3 year 10% off (2nd 15% off 3rd $137) = $137
    • 4 year 10% off (2nd 15% off 3rd 20% off 4th) = $177
  • A SLM (Sustaining Life Membership) Multi-Year Discount of:
    • 2 Year $57
    • 3 Year $82
    • 4 year $105

These incentives as well as the Life Membership Special are all effective immediately.

Thank you for your continue support!

Posted in News

USJA Scholastic Judo Committee Formed

The relationship of judo and its place in a school based setting can be traced back to the founder, Jigoro Kano. Since that time, there have been school based judo classes in America and around the world. The USJA is going to revisit the role of judo in America’s elementary, middle and high schools. With this in mind, the USJA is pleased to announce the formation of the USJA Scholastic Judo Committee.

The purpose of this committee is two-fold. First, to examine the role of judo in the lives of school aged children and teens. Areas to be examined include recruitment and retention, individual learning styles, instructional methods, the role of the family, and external variables that impact student interest. Secondly, the committee will examine the process of developing partnerships with elementary, middle and high schools with suggestions for implementing judo in local schools in the spirit of “mutual welfare and benefit”. This will include a review of curricula, certification, funding, liability, mats, intramural leagues and in-service training.

Deliverables include a position paper with policy recommendations for review by the USJA Board of Directors. The work of the committee during the first year will be primarily by telephone and email.

Experience has shown us that kids that are in judo are better students, have better attendance, fewer encounters with law enforcement, less of a likelihood to be involved with substance abuse or bullying. This is not an accident. The values and behaviors we help kids with are referred to as “protective factors that promote resilience”, by researchers.

Call for Committee Members:

Raymond Conte of the St. Mary’s institute Judo Club in New York has agreed to serve as Chair. He brings many years of Administrative experience in children’s judo and continues to teach children, including his own grandchildren, in a school based setting.

We are actively seeking qualified black belt volunteers with current or prior experience teaching judo to children grades K-12 in a public, private or parochial school. We are also seeking black belts that are currently employed as school teachers in schools where judo is not currently available.

If you have experience in either or both of these areas, and would like to help kids, please contact Raymond Conte, Committee Chair at, thanks.

Posted in News

Professional Judo Committee Formed

The USJA recognizes that there are many different reasons that people run Judo programs. Just like there is a need and place for those who want to run community based programs there is also a need for full-time, professional judo instructors who run commercial, for-profit judo programs. With this in mind the USJA is pleased to announce the formation of the Professional Judo Committee.

The mission of the Professional Judo Committee is to gather, create, and distribute information and resources that are beneficial to those individuals wanting to open new schools or transition existing programs into full-time, paying, commercial martial arts schools. Members of the Professional Judo Committee are individuals with a proven track record of managing professional, for-profit schools. These individuals share resources and ideas that have proven successful in their own schools and are available for seminars and small group training sessions with you and your assistant instructors for a nominal fee.

Call for Committee Members:

We are actively seeking qualified volunteers to serve on this committee.

The criteria is as follows:

  1. Should be Active USJA Club Leaders (Black Belt Level) who currently run a successful for -profit judo program.
  2. Must be willing to share their thoughts, ideas and strategies with other coaches in the interest of helping to grow Judo in the US.
  3. Must be willing to provide seminars/small group training to interested coaches in their region.

If you think you have what it takes and are willing to play an active role in the formation of this new Committee please respond to this message with some basic info on yourself and your school/program, thanks.

Please e-mail replies to:

James Wall


Posted in News

New USJA Judo Technical Manual and Study Guide with Senior Rank Promotion System

It’s here! The new USJA Judo Technical Manual and Study Guide with Senior Rank Promotion System

USJA Senior Manual 9-14 1

It’s been three years in the making and the new USJA Judo Technical Manual and Study Guide with Senior Rank Promotion System, is now complete. The new Guide has gone through multiple versions, re-writes and editing and has been unanimously approved by your Board of Directors and the USJA Promotion Board.

The new Guide has a completely updated promotion system that will look familiar but has fundamental changes that every senior member needs to know about and every member needs for their upcoming senior promotions.  There are changes in testing standards and test content as well as time in grade requirements with reduced TIG for those who are extremely active with our organization.

USJA Senior Manual 9-14 2

The new Guide is a departure from the manual that we have used for nearly four decades.  It has a new cover, the paper is a thick coated stock enclosed in a soft permanent binding that is 3-hole punched for use in standard 3-ring binder. This is so when updated pages are created, they can be downloaded from our website and simply inserted into your new Guide.

We anticipate adding a new Junior Guide & Manual in the near future and so both of the books can be neatly stored together in a single 3-ring binder.

Each book is serial numbered beginning with 000001 and will continue through the numbers as they are printed.  Only a limited number of books have been ordered for immediate release (1 through 125) and so the lower numbered books will be considered first editions and will gain in value through the years.

The revised promotion system will become permanent on March 15, 2015 and until that time; the current system will still be accepted.  After March 15, 2015, the old system will no longer be accepted for senior promotions and will be returned to the member for re-processing.  A new Request for Promotion (RFP) form will be posted to the download page of the USJA website in the next two weeks, the new RFP will strictly conform to revised and updated system.

USJA Senior Manual 9-14 3

Certified Rank Examiners (CRE) of all levels will be expected to obtain a copy of the new Guide and familiarize themselves with every aspect.  Each Certified Rank Examiner will then asked to update their certification with the purchase the manual.  The re-certification process will be addressed in detail with a subsequent notice from the Promotion Board.

We have arranged for book numbers 126 and over to be digitally printed on demand and sent to the member that requests it directly by the printer and for that reason; the USJA will not incur inventory charges.  All orders for the books over 125 will take an extra few days to ship from the printer and so you should anticipate a longer period to receive the books ordered on the print on demand schedule.

Order your copy from our online store or by calling the USJA office today.  The regular price is $50.00 which includes shipping, thanks.

USJA Board of Directors                              USJA Promotion Board:

Gary Goltz, President                                         Ernie Smith, Chairman

Marc Cohen, Vice President                                Walter Dean, Vice Chair

John Paccione, Treasurer                                   Gary Monto, Secretary

Dave Goodwin, Secretary                                   Dr. Ronald Allan Charles

Sparky Bollinger, Director                                  Jesse Goldstein

Michelle Holtze, Director                                    Sanders Ishisaka

Brian Money, Director                                        Hayward Nishioka

———————–                                                 Lynn Roethke

Download a copy of this announcement

Posted in News

USJA Statement of Support for Fallen NYPD Officers


The recent tragic loss of two NYPD officers brings to mind the danger that is ever present in our society.  The USJA has a long history of supporting and honoring the men and women who serve our great nation and its communities.  Many of our members and clubs are associated with law enforcement through community programs and charitable non-profit Police Activities Leagues.  

Please keep our nation’s law enforcement officers in your thoughts and prayers as they continue to protect our communities with their lives – and remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Posted in News

Yoshisada Yonezuka Passes Away


We are sad to announce that Yoshisada Yonezuka, 9th Dan passed away on late Saturday afternoon, October 18, 2014.

Yoshisada Yonezuka ‘Yone’ was born May 19, 1937 in Nakasato, Aomori, Japan.  He began to train in sumo and judo in 1954, becoming the Northern Japan High School Champion in 1955.   Yonezuka entered Nihon University in 1956. After defeating nine 2nd degree black belts in succession at the Kodokan, he received a special promotion to 3rd degree black belt. He also began studying several styles of karate; shorinji-kempo, wado ryu, and shito-ryu.  In 1959, he was a member of his university team winning the team championship.  In 1956 he graduated Nihon University with a degree in business.

Following his childhood dream he came to the United States and began teaching judo at West Point Military Academy. In 1960 he moved to  the United States.  In 1962, Yonezuka founded the Cranford Judo Karate Center. He was also the founding coach of the Judo program at New  Jersey Institute of Technology (then known as Newark College of Engineering) during the mid-60s. Additionally, he served as an instructor  at the Jerome Mackey Judo Schools.  Yonezuka was twice chosen to serve as head coach of the United States at the Olympics Judo Team, and  he coached three U.S. World Judo Championships Teams as well.  He is also founder, former President and current Executive Director of the  U.S. Sumo Federation. He was awarded the Kudan which is the Ninth Degree in judo in 2007. He also held an 8th Degree Black Belt in Karate  and is 5th Black Belt in Sumo.

Earlier this year he was diagnosed of Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) the same diagnosis as Robin Roberts of Good Morning America.   MDS are a group of diseases that affect the bone marrow and blood. In MDS, the blood-forming cells in the marrow slow down, or even stop, making the three types of blood cells. Most patients with MDS will develop anemia (low numbers of red blood cells) and may need blood transfusions.

Our heartfelt condolences go out his family, friends, and judo students. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Yoshisada Yonezuka Memorial Fund, 107 South Ave., Cranford, N.J. 07016.

Painting by Andor P-Jobb 

Posted in News

Contact Us

Need help with something?

United States Judo Association, Inc.

2005 Merrick Road #313
Merrick, NY 11566
NY: (516) 366-3311
FL: (727) 937-7120
CA: (213) 260-9200
Fax: (888) 276-3432

We look forward to speaking with you.

Send us mail

Or follow us on Facebook