Within a few years of coaching, Coach Lafon became disillusioned with traditional training methods and began searching for a more effective pedagogical system. Fortunately, at an opportune time in his career he was greatly influenced by British “new Judo” innovator Geof Gleeson, whose ideas were introduced to him by American coaches Phil Porter and Bill Montgomery.
While Gleeson filled in many of the blanks and answered many of his misgivings, he was still not completely satisfied with the information that was available from within the Judo community. So he researched the more scientifically developed sports training programs throughout the world to confirm what he thought was lacking with traditional Judo methods.
After hundreds of articles, dozens of books, many discussions with progressive colleagues, and countless bouts of trial and error, Coach Lafon developed an effective training philosophy that revolves around the following tenets:
- Train the way you intend to perform
- Dynamic moving drills, not static uchi komi, to develop effective Judo skills
- Gymnastics skills to prevent being scored upon
- Early study of effective international Judo rather than reliance on classical Judo
- Use of situational drills to mimic actual situations in randori and competition
- Constant and immediate skill analysis and feedback to the athletes
- Sequential and terminal Judo based on combinations, counters and transitions
- Emphasis on biomechanically sound skills
- Training based on scientific research not tradition or myths
- Quality training rather than quantity
- Creative games and warm-ups to develop basic psychomotor skills
This is Judo, the Judo America way!