Hello, my name is George Kerr, 10th dan. Welcome to the website for my new book, My Journey to the Tenth Dan, which is due to be published in September and goes on sale at the 2017 World Judo Championships in Budapest, shortly after my 80th birthday.My purpose in writing this book is to tell my story, the story of my life in judo. But it is much more than just my autobiography and I am sure you will find it very interesting reading. To make this journey more memorable, rather than just tell my story, I have chosen to illustrate it with a wide range of photographs that depict some of the scenes I have witnessed, in seven decades of involvement in judo.
The book describes my own humble beginnings and how after training in London under Trevor Leggett as a special student I made my own personal odyssey to Japan,where I studied judo at Nichidai University and the Kodokan for four years.I give a detailed account of my time in Japan learning from great Japanese judo masters like Daigo, Osawa and Inokuma.
There is a chapter on my return to the UK to compete in the European Championships and win the first ever British Open Championships.I recount the highlights of my contest career, my hopes and aspirations, the medals won and lost in the course of my efforts to become European Champion and some of my battles with Anton Gessink, Dave Starbrook and Brian Jacks among others.
Read the story of judo politics and my relationship with Charles Palmer who banned me from going to the Tokyo Olympics in 1964, for which I never forgave him, then becoming British wrestling champion in 1965 and the way I had my revenge, not on the mat, but in the arena of international judo politics fifteen years later.
I got my contest fifth dan in judo in 1968, almost fifty years ago and many people have asked what it takes to be awarded the grade of tenth dan. This book answers that question, but you will have to read it to know what the answer is.
Enjoy a selection of my personal photographs along with Eddie Ferrie’s superb shots of top level judo, events I attended as National coach of the Austrian team when I coached Peter Seisenbacher to two consecutive Olympic gold medals in 1984 and 1988.
Read about my role in the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games when I was Chairman of the British Judo Association, that last time that a British man won an Olympic medal in judo.
This book features over four hundred photographs including many of the unforgettable techniques used by great champions to win World and Olympic gold medals.
Discover my own tried and tested method for developing judo champions and study the pictures that are the perfect backdrop, a kind of gallery depicting my own experiences of the evolution of judo technique. I offer some analysis of why these techniques have proven successful time and time again.
See the Olympics through my eyes when I attended as President of the BJA in 2004 and 2012 and as technical adviser to the International Judo Federation.
My Journey to the Tenth Dan is a historical document and forms part of the story of judo from the nineteen sixties to the present day. If you love judo as I do you will find them fascinating. In this beautiful book I explain the situation in international judo politics, the thinking behind rule changes and reveal the special relationship I have built up over the years between my Edinburgh Club and Tokai University, my meetings with Nobuyuki Sato, the remarkable Dr. Shiegyoshi Matsumae, Yasuhiro Yamashita and Kose Inoue.
Discover the part I played in building bridges and healing rifts in world judo and how my efforts on behalf of judo led to my being honoured by the IJF, Emperor Akihito of Japan and Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Learn how to build a successful judo club by fostering the right kind of judo values as well as teaching technique.
This is a numbered, signed, limited first edition of five hundred books. The book has 288 pages and is lavishly illustrated with over 400 photographs, case-bound by hand, in red leatherette with a gold blocked cover and printed on high quality 160 gram gloss paper.
It is my belief that it will become a sought-after classic.