9 June 2024


European Judo Championships Veterans 2024


The European Judo Championships Veterans Sarajevo 2024 is almost over. With that, it was time to discuss the recent developments around the veteran judo community with Dr TOTH Laszlo, President of the European Judo Union.

I believe we have made significant progress. Not only have we increased the number of participants, but we have also organised the first Ne-waza European Championship. The veteran tour’s commencement is an encouraging sign with a promising outcome which is that we had the smallest number of injuries at this year’s veteran Europeans. This means that if we provide veterans with the opportunity to participate in six to seven events during the year, they will not be preparing for just one event. Previously, there was no other competition except the European Championship, so there was no real need for daily training. By having the tour established it changes a lot.

Furthermore on the tour, the feedback was very positive about the tournaments, obviously we had to be flexible because, for example, we started with a two-day competition, but with the current number of people, one day is enough. This is one thing, the other thing is that I see a growing appetite from countries to host these tournaments and now, for example, the Netherlands has also signed up for a veteran competition for end of this year. In Sarajevo, I have seen fantastic progress technically, tactically and in stamina from competitors. Yesterday, there were judoka fighting so fantastically that I think they could hold themselves for example in a Grand Prix competition.

Next year, the veteran European Championships will be in Riga. The fact that we have made so much progress in this sector also includes the level of organisation. Here [in Sarajevo] the organisation has succeeded so well, it is amazing. Huge congratulations to the Bosnia and Herzegovina Judo Federation to host this event which will now follow with the Kata European Championships from tomorrow and the Kodokan Seminar from midweek. Nevertheless, I am confident we will have an outstanding delivery of this event from the Latvian Judo Federation too. Moreover, the French Judo Federation has signed up to organise the 2026 edition. I won’t reveal any secrets by saying that a couple of years ago you had to hunt for a host country for these competitions, now the opposite is happening and I am very satisfied with that. This also reflects on the great development of the veteran community across Europe. It is extraordinary.

Author: Szandra Szogedi