Jim Hrbek

Healthy Aging

Mentally, martial arts reduces stress and anxiety while also producing a positive self-image and building confidence.

Regular stretching and joint movement exercises common to most martial arts maximize the range of motion of joints and the ability to freely and loosely move as you age.

(Note: With Jim's permission, this article is open to the public)

 

Traditional Martial Arts Training

Traditional martial arts training refers to training in a martial art that is rooted in the tenets set forth by the original master of the art.

As such, traditional martial arts training implies that a student uphold the philosophical principles of the art and practice its techniques in a fashion similar to the founder’s or in the style’s natural progression.

Judo: In its original format -- Jigoro Kano’s stated main goal was to create a comprehensive method of physical education for an evolving, modern society.

Judo was the first Japanese martial art to gain widespread international recognition, and the first to become an official sport.

 

Jim Hrbek

Jim started his martial arts training in 1969 at the advanced age of 19!

In Judo you learn skills that enable you to throw opponents to the ground.

This sets Judo apart from other martial arts. There are no kicky, punchy elements to Judo at all.

Reference: http://www.universaljudo.com/

 

Interview with Jim

How did you get started?

I started at the Capital District Judo & Karate Institute in Albany with Mr. Tomoji Kidachi.

I opened my first club, called Samurai Athletic Club on Main St. in Ravena and then later in the old Coeymans School - in 1975.

I was fortunate to know three State Troopers who were running a Judo program through the Town of Guilderland Recreation Department - they were ready to phase out in 1976 and asked if I wanted to take it over. I did.

I stayed there from 1976 to 1995 and produced National Champions, and World and Olympic medalists using that as the starting point.

During many of those years, I also had programs at College of St Rose and at SUNY.


Judo America ran continuously from 1995 to 2006 when I retired from the NYS Insurance Department and, having decided I didn't want to be cold any more, decided to move to San Antonio, Texas.Conflicts with school schedules and other programs competing for Town space led me to decide to open my own club in Colonie and eventually in Schenectady - that ran as Judo America and we again produced multiple National and International medalists.

When we went to Texas, people who were looking for me kept getting re-directed to Schenectady whenever they googled Judo America - so I did one more name change - we have been Universal Judo since 2007.

 

 

This was difficult since moving to a new state meant starting over from scratch - now it has worked that we have again produced a long list of National and International medalists and we have a crew of young men and women with their eyes on the 2016 and even 2020 Olympics.

 

 

When and why did you become a coach - opening Universal Judo?

This was kind of a surprise - when I took my first group of students to an event, I hoped we would win a few matches. Instead, we brought home a basket of medals.

Within five years, I had produced my first Senior National Champion. It was at that point I was invited to Coach internationally and that was when I was really hooked.

I was privileged to be part of the Coaching Staff at the 1988 Olympics and to be Head Coach for the Women's Team in 1992. I have worked with more than a dozen World Teams in Judo and one in the related Russian sport of Sambo.

 

 

 

Were you a competitor before you became a coach?

My competitive success was not on a par with the success of the athletes that I have trained.

I placed in YMCA Nationals and USJA Nationals in the late 70s early 80s - but my great pride and biggest sense of accomplishment in this sport has been Coaching.

 

Do you teach Judo as a means of self-defense, means of physical fitness, or fun/family activity or as a sport (Olympics)?

If you learn Judo well, and train correctly, it is great for self defense, physical fitness and a life long sport - there are a lot more people in their 50s doing Judo than playing football.

 

 

Today, Judo is practiced for fun, fitness, recreation, self-defense and competition throughout the world by millions of people. Judo has found its way into the school systems of many European and Asian countries. At the Olympic level, Judo's popularity is so great that it's usually the first sport to completely sell out.

Judo is a better form of physical education, especially for children. Judo training is tougher, so your body is better prepared mentally and physically to withstand the rigors of an assault. It's more complete because it has standing and ground fighting skills. It provides a better sense of true accomplishments because there is no "make believe" in its training. It's an excellent sport to cross-train in because it offers great development in balance, kinesthetic awareness, coordination and ruggedness.

Reference: http://www.universaljudo.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congratulations Jim Hrbek

2011 USOC COACH OF THE YEAR

Developmental Coach of the Year
The Developmental Coach of the Year is presented to a coach at the youth club, high school or junior level, or a coach who is directly responsible for training athletes to reach the junior and/or elite level.

Developmental Coach of the Year – James Hrbek
Devoted to building the sport of judo in the United States, Hrbek scours the world to find unique judo tournaments and training opportunities for young Americans to gain international experience.

In 2011, he coordinated the entire junior program for USA Judo, which fielded U.S. teams for dozens of national and international tournaments and assembled U.S. contingents of more than 50 people. As chairman of USA Judo's Junior Athlete Performance Committee, Hrbek created a database of parents, coaches and athletes that can be used in various judo activities.

It is his belief that if properly educated, U.S. junior athletes will have the knowledge to one day become successful coaches themselves, an essential step in building the sport nationally.

Reference:
http://www.usacycling.org/us-olympic-committee-names-henderson-amongst-top-coaches.htm

 

Reconnect with Jim!

Reconnect with Jim here and/or on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/hrbek.judo

 

Jim's Personal Coaching Record

Coach Hrbek's athletes have earned more than 450 National/International places garnered by dozens of individuals at nearly 300 events including the Olympic Games, World Championships (Men), World Championships (Women), Jr. World Championships, Pan American Games, Paris International, Fukuoka Women's Championship, Kano Cup, Sung Gook(Korea), German Open, Guido Sieni (Italy), Soviet Women's Championship, Tblissi Open (USSR Men), Pacific Rim, Austrian Open, Polish Open, Hungarian Open, Dutch Open, Cuba, Irish Open and Czech Open in addition to other domestic National and International events

Certifications

USA Judo International Gold Level Coach
US Judo Association Master Coach
US Judo Association Master Rank Examiner

Previous Administrative Positions

Member USJI National Coaching Staff 1983-present
Chairman, Coaching and Training Committee of USJudo, Inc (1983-1992 and 1996-1997)
Co-ordinator for Women's Judo, USJudo, Inc (1986- 1992)
Chairman, Women's Selection Committee, USJudo, Inc (1986-1992)
Member, USJudo Inc Development Committee (1986- 1992)
Member USJudo, Inc Junior Committee (1988-1992)
Member USJudo Association Board of Directors (1980- 1984 approx.)
First President/ Founder of New York State Judo, Inc (1980-1982 approx.)

Reference: http://www.universaljudo.com/

 

8th Degree Black Belt - USA Judo

Join Jim on Facebook where he has posted MANY PICTURES!

     

Previous Appointed Coaching Positions

1981
Coach, USJudo,Inc Team to British Open (London, England)

1983
Coach, USJudo,Inc Team to Women's Dutch Open, (The Hague, Netherlands)

1984
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Austrian Open, (Leonding, Austria)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Women's French Open, (Paris, France)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Women's World Championships (Vienna, Austria)

1985
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pan American Judo Union Championship (Havana, Cuba)

Coach, USJudo, Inc Jr (20 and under) Men's Team to Jr. Pan American Championships (Mexico City, Mexico)

Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to North American Confederation Team Championship (Colorado Springs, CO)

Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Fukuoka International Women's Championship (Fukuoka, Japan)

1986
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to First Soviet Women's Invitational (Moscow, USSR)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Austrian Open (Leonding, Austria)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Women's Dutch Open (Bunnik, Netherlands)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Women's World Championships (Maastricht, Netherlands)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to North American Confederation Team Championships, (Colorado Springs, CO)

1987
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Women's Polish Open (Kielce, Poland)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women'sTeam to West German Open (Essen, West Germany)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pan American Games (Indianapolis, IN)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pacific Rim Championship (Colorado Springs, CO)
Coach Staff, USJudo, Inc Men's & Women's Team to World Championships (Essen, West Germany)

1987
Coach USJudo, Inc Women's Team to European Judo Union Training Camp (Aix-en-Provence, France)

1988
Coach, USJudo Inc Team to Soviet Women's Invitational (Kaunas, USSR)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Women's Dutch Open (Bunnik, Netherlands)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to British Open (London, England)
Coach, USJudo Inc Men & Women Team to Austrian Open (Leonding, Austria)
Coach Staff (USJudo, Inc funded)-Men & Women- Olympic Games (Seoul, South Korea)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Fukuoka International Women's Championship (Fukuoka, Japan)

1989
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pacific Rim Championships (Beijing, People's Republic of China)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to European Judo Union Training Camp (Sophia Antipoles, France)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to World Championships (Belgrade, Yugoslavia)

1990
Coach USJudo, Inc Men's and Women's Team to Paris International (Paris, France)
Coach USJudo, Inc Team to Soviet Women's Invitational (Kiev, USSR)
Coach USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pan American Judo Union Championship (Caracas, Venezuela)

1991
Coach USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pacific Rim Championship (Honolulu, HI)
Coach USJudo, Inc Women's Team to World Championships (Barcelona, Spain)

1992
Coach USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Paris International (Paris, France)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to West German Open (Munich, West Germany)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Dutch Open (s'Gravenhage, Netherlands)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Pan American Judo Union Championships (Ontario, Canada)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Women's Team to Olympic Games (Barcelona, Spain)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Canada Cup (Montreal, Canada)

1997
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Paris International (Paris France)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Hungarian Open (Budapest, Hungary)

2000
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to RendezVous Canada (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

2001 Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to Benito Juarez Tournament (Mexico City, Mexico)
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to RendezVous Canada (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

2002
Coach - Sr British Open (London, England)
Coach Jr Pan American Championships (Brasilia, Brazil)
Coach USJudo, Inc Team to RendezVous Canada (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)
Coach - Jr World Championships Jeju Island, Korea

2003
Coach, USJudo, Inc Team to RendezVous Canada (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

2004
Coach - Tokyo International Juvenile Judo Championship (Tokyo, Japan)
Coach - Belgian Ladies' Open (Arlon, Belgium)
Coach - Jr Pan American Championships (Carolina, Puerto Rico)
Coach - Junior World Championships (Budapest, Hungary)
Team Leader - Juvenile Pan American Championships (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic)

2005
Head Coach - USA Judo Training Tour - China Liaoning, Peoples' Republic of China
Coach - US Team - RendezVous International Championship - Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Coordinator - USJA Team for Ocean State Invitational - Providence, RI

2006
Belgian Ladies' Open Arlon, Belgium
Head Coach - USA Judo Training Tour - China Liaoning, Peoples' Republic of China
Staff - Junior World Championships Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

2007
Belgian Ladies' Open Arlon, Belgium
Cuba - Rodriguez & Judoguis Dorados Havana, Cuba

2008
Cuba - Rodriguez & Judoguis Dorados Havana, Cuba

2009
Head Coach Cadet World Championships – Budapest, Hungary

2010
Belgian Junior Open Sint-Truiden, Belgium
Head Coach Infantil Pan American Championship – Panama City, Panama

Cuba - Rodriguez & Judoguis Dorados Havana, Cuba

2011
Head Coach Sport Sambo World Championships – Vilnius, Lithuania
French Junior Open  Harnes, France

2012
French Junior Open  Lanester, France

2013
Cuba – Senior Competition / Training  Havana, Cuba

 

CONGRATULATIONS, JIM -- from your classmates -- RCS Class of 1967

 

(1964) Row 1: Beverly Jones; Vicki Houck; Dorothy Logan; Kathy Logan; S. Krzykowski; - Row 2: Dave Irwin; Kathy Loucks; Scott Hunter; Donna Jones; Robert Knox; Cheryl Kaherl; Frank Irwin; - Row 3: Tony Kittle; Charles Irving; Tom Hotaling; Ross Kruppenbacher; Glen MacDonald; Frank Macarilla; R. Kier; Jim Hrbek

 

(1965) Row 1: Jim Hrbek; Tony Kittle; Michele Hamlin; Judy Palmer; C. Helm; Darlene Gross; Carol Kahler; Legrand Irwin; R. Keir; - Row 2: Helen Holley; Beverly Jones; S. Krzykowski; Sharilyn Holliday; Donna Jones; Florence Holley; Vicki Houck; Jeanne Hagan; - Row 3: Charles Irving; Jackie Gombel; Scott Hunter; Robert Knox; Tom Hotaling; David Hillman; Frank Irwin; David Irwin

 

 

(1966) Row 1: John Gallogly; L. Gladney; Nancy Groesbeck; Michele Hamlin; Helen Holley; Florence Holley; Darlene Gross; Richard Fuhrman - Row 2: Mary Giovannetti; Jeanne Hagan; Vicki Houck; C. Helm; Sharilyn Holliday; Marjorie Hamilton; Kathy Frances; Judi Franken; - Row 3: Dennis Fink; Jim Hrbek; Scott Hunter; Ron Garrow; Charlie Grant; Don Garrow; Dave Irwin; Lynn Gifford; Chris Gallagher