One of my core competencies in the Judo world and in the coaching realm is my ability to control the match from the chair.  I, like many other great coaches, are able to control the flow and utilize the art and science of persuasion in the most subtlest of ways.

Coaching is Selling – PERIOD!


As a coach it is ultimately your job to get the athletes, parents, referees, onlookers, potential clients, fans, friends, significant others and hell, even the house pet, to BUY into what you are SELLING.

As coaches we sell excellence.

We sell dreams.

We sell the process.

We sell the journey.

In our profession….. in this business, there are those who, unfortunately, sell what they cannot deliver. Those who sell the lies. Those who talk of a thing for which they do not know.  Those who have not gained the career capital which is necessary in order to do certain things well.  And those who cannot deliver a thing so they speak against others so that they cannot deliver their expertise as well.


In my area, I have a school that constantly speaks negatively about me.  I have NOTHING but wonderful things to say about them.  I think they have done a remarkable job growing judo in the area of Tampa, Florida and I hope that they continue to do so. They have a head instructor who is a legend in the sport and has developed many judoka and trained law enforcement officers and raised people in the sport of judo.  However, what they offer and what I offer are two different products. And do think that we are the same would be disrespectful to them….. and to me. So what I tell people when they ask me about them is this:

They are wonderful at what they do and I am wonderful at what I do.  You are more than welcome to try out my school for 30 days for free or try theirs and see if you’d like it. If you become a member over there and want to visit and pay our mat fee we’d love to have you. I’m just glad that you are giving the sport of Judo a try. 


Because that’s the best approach and in my profession, I know that I’m the best at what I do. And if you are the best in this business, over a period of time, the best athletes will either pass your way or wish they would have. That’s it.  In the United States there are some great Judo coaches and programs.  And if you want to be the best, you will, at one time or another be in the presence of those coaches. Those are the facts. And then you will have to make a decision. Either stay where you are, or go where you can grow.  And any coach that gets upset with that is like a high school football coach getting upset with a college football player for going to college to play football under another coach.  In that sport, it is understood that there are LEVELS TO THIS SH*T.  You can be a multiple time state champion high school coach, but understand that such does not equip you to be a Division 1 Head Football Coach.


Because at the next level, it’s no longer about JUST football. There are NCAA rules, regulations, violations. There are university level issues and different management skills that are necessary at the next level. There’s a different population of people that you are coaching as you have moved from teenagers to young adults. And all of these things require a different skillset that lies OUTSIDE of your basic technical abilities.

It’s STILL football, but it’s NOT the football that you know.

And this brings me to the point of this post. And I’ve said it before:


You have the study the things that allow you and your athletes to become better.

And this video below is a great resource.


Have a great day.

Dedicated to your improvement,

Dr. Rhadi Ferguson
2004 Olympian
4-Time National Judo Champion

P.S. Here are some other GREAT resources:

1. Judo Scouting Reports

2. Enhance or Destroy Your Athletic Career: Relationship Lessons from an Elite Athlete

3. Newaza Excellence