About us

Westerleigh Judokwai is a Main Stream and Special Needs Judo Club that was founded in 1995 by two brothers, Paul and Chris Everest. Since 1995 the Club has grown to the extent of having over a hundred members ranging from 5 years old and over and has gone from strength to strength ranging from producing Area Squad members and European & World SN Champions to being awarded the BJA Club of the Year 2012 and the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in 2015 – the only club to date within the BJA to receive such an award!

Westerleigh bolsters one of the biggest mat area costing over £4000 and has a team volunteers to match! With over 8 Coaches to help train and work with our Mainstream and Special Needs we have the means to get the most out of all our players!

We teach with inclusivity at the forefront of our thoughts through every session and incorporate everyone in to, albeit with some players it might have to be modified slightly, but we expect the same amount of effort to be used!

Are there any entry requirements to join Westerleigh?

We accept everyone from 5 years old and over, and will find a means of working with any Special Needs that come to us immaterial of their actual disability – as Westerleigh there is no such thing as a disability, we will find the strengths of the player and work to them.

What do I need to bring with me?

A drink bottle and yourself is really the only things you need. When you start your first session is free and after that it is just £3.00. We have a supply of Judo Suits (Gi's) that you can borrow, or you can buy your own through our discounted shop. To hire the Gi it is £10.00.

Do I need a licence to practice Judo?

Not right away, when you first start taking lessons, you are placed on a ‘trial period’ to which after 6 weeks you will need to make the decision of whether or not to get a BJA License. This is mainly for insurance purpose and the BJA offer a number of choices to suit your License needs.

What is so Special about Westerleigh Judokwai?

We are a Judo Club with a Difference!

Well firstly, we are closely linked with the Special Olympics organization and so our Coaches are fully trained to work with both Children and Adults with Special Needs. Secondly, all those SN players train alongside our Main Stream players with them being expected to do the same as all the other players, albeit it in some cases being slightly modified for physical disabilities.

Westerleigh is a family run club and has never segregated the Main Stream and SN players. In fact, we believe that we are the only club in Sussex that integrates Main Stream and SN students in this way. At Westerleigh Judokwai we believe that our club is different, because here we're all the same. Everyone trains together in a safe and friendly environment.