The 53rd Northwest Open took place in the Longtower Youth Club on Saturday 23rd November with over 150 entries taking part in the competition, which is longest running Judo event in Ireland.

From team events to Pre-Cadets through to Masters, the mats were buzzing with great techniques throughout the day.

The Longtower Youth club was the venue for the 53rd Northwest Open

The event also contained an adaptive section which welcomed players of all levels on to the mats.


Jim Toland, Event Organiser said:

“Events like the Northwest Open don’t just happen; it takes a lot of effort from a lot of people and I would like to extend my thanks to everyone involved from the build up to the execution of the event.

Your support is very much appreciated and the competition on the day reflected how hard everyone worked to bring a great event to the Longtower. I would like to thank the Longtower Youth Club for their continued support too.

On a personal note for me as Head Coach of the club, it was fantastic to see the homegrown team from Longtower winning the teams event as well, which was the icing on the cake from a great day. We look forward to the continued success of the event and Judo in the North West in 2020.”


As well as the Northwest Open, we had a visit from a Judo Superstar and another event in Lisburn over the weekend.

Chris Skelley (BJA Paralympian) came across the water to educate players on what it is like to compete at an elite level with a disability by taking a master class to 35 people.

On Sunday, the Lisburn Judo Festival then welcomed players onto the mats from various invited clubs for an event that focused on the younger age groups.

Lady Mary Peters was also on hand to make presentations of medals on the day as well.


Mark Montgomery from Simply Judo said:

“It was a terrific weekend of Judo with World Number 1 & Double Paralympian Chris Skelley joining us on Saturday at the Lisburn Leisureplex to educate 35 coaches and players what is was like to be an Adaptive recreational Judoka, through to becoming a High Performance full-time athlete at the BJA Centre of Excellence in Walsall as he builds towards Tokyo 2020.

In addition, this was also a BJA Coaching Revalidation Event which is fantastic for all.  We were also delighted to welcome Peggy Magee & Danny Nolan who were representing the NIJF Inclusive Focus Group.

Chris stayed with us for The Lisburn Judo Festival on Sunday and joined Lady Mary Peters in presenting medals to the 130 children taking part of our invitational event.

This is was our 3rd year including an adaptive section at the event and we have seen a steady increase in players with adaptive and sensory needs taking part, which is brilliant as we build towards the Northern Ireland Adaptive Open in February next year.

For Simply Judo it was a great weekend of inclusive Judo showing that everyone is welcome on the mats”


Judo welcomes everyone to come and try the sport and all you need is an old tracksuit to get started. To find your nearest NIJF club you can click here.