MMA, martial arts

Japanese MMA Federation to roll out coach education, to host 1st National Amateur MMA Championships

Reo Yamaguchi

Reo Yamaguchi

The Japanese Mixed Martial Arts Federation has announced ambitious plans to consolidate the development of amateur MMA as a sport in Japan and take it to the next level operationally. It has held a series of meetings with key stake holders and engaged a range of experts to enable the effective development of the amateur sport.

Recently, International Mixed Martial Arts Federation director of development Andrew Moshanov visited Japan. He shared, “IMMAF’s MMA Coaching Pathways and Progression Scheme have been introduced for JMMAF at the right time.”

“The Japanese Sports Association is currently revising its coaching standards and wants to see coaches’ competency expanded in areas such as coach-athlete communication and presentation skills, sports science and sports training methodology,” Moshanov continued. “Though JMMAF has an exceptional range of coaches, many of them successful pro-fighters, it is recognized that a good athlete does not always make a good coach, if they lack education in teaching.”

During the IMMAF course weekend, the first wave of JMMAF coaches were trained, tested and received their official IMMAF coaching qualification. Five young trainees commenced studying towards coaching qualification Level 1 under the supervision of JMMAF head coach Yoichi  Suzuki.

“There has never been any coaching syllabus for MMA since day one in Japan and the sport has always been presented to students so that they might learn intuitively,” Suzuki stated. “We are happy to receive these guidelines from IMMAF and are keen to work in this direction.”

Including Suzuki, there are 11 first JMMAF licensed coaches. The others are ONE Championship referee Yoshinori Umeki, Hide Miyoshi, Yutaro Muramoto, Takasuke Kume, Hisaki Kato, Hatsu Hioki, Kohei Maeda, Sho Sekihara, Shun Miyakawa and Stewart Fulton.

Among the plans of the JMMAF are the introduction of training for referees and officials and the hosting of its first All-Japan National Amateur MMA championships on September 2, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan. IMMAF president Kerrith Brown is excited and is looking forward to seeing more successful Japanese athletes like IMMAF World and European Junior Silver medallist Reo Yamaguchi on the IMMAF-World Mixed Martial Arts Association platform.

Get more details on IMMAF. Meanwhile, here is a clip featuring Yamaguchi:

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