It’s a wrap! 2023 WAKO Yokoso Dutch Open (YDO) is over and the SCKA Weapons team is ready to share all about the ‘friendly tournament’.
On March 26th a red LED light on the outside of Sporthallen Zuid greeted the athletes in the true spirit of this competition: YOKOSO is in fact a Japanese word that means Welcome!
If inclusion and sportsmanship were the goals of this event we can confirm they have been reached and exceeded. The atmosphere, although being busier than any other year, was buzzing with the energy of new talented kids and the comeback of some incredible martial artists from all over Europe.
This was the first post-pandemic edition and it was an amazing success in terms of participants. Around 300 registrations for forms divisions with some tough decisions to be made by the judging panel, such was the level brought by the competitors.
The day started off with the traditional Katas (open hands and weapons) followed by the impaired athletes performances.
YDO is one of the few WAKO tournaments to offer also these categories!
The morning continued with the creative forms where we could appreciate the style of each participant and their weapons skills.
Later on in the afternoon we have seen the extreme divisions with some amazing show offs of solid basic karate techniques and powerful tricking moves.
The day ended with the most awaited divisions: the grand champion and the tricking and weapons battles with a beautiful representation of each athletes’ passion, attitude, hard work and vision, the core values of every martial artist.
Each champion received the YDO prize together with our own SCKA merchandise, in our mission to support the karate and tricking community.
We as a team were motivated also by the incredible teaching skills of Mason Bumba who previously on Friday had delivered a truly insightful freestyle bo-staff seminar including strikes, drills and tricks. We love to share and connect and events like these are what keep us inspired.
Congratulations to all of our friends and competitors for showing up and bringing their story to the mats.
We hope to see you all next year.
S for Sharing has never felt so real.
- * Author: Martina Bazzan
- * Pictures courtesy of Rob Batenburg.