To celebrate Volunteers' Week, we're saying a big diolch to some of our Welsh Judo volunteers. Here, Wyn Williams of Irfon Judo Club shares his judo and refereeing journey...

How did you get into judo?

I first took up Judo at the age of 5 at Irfon Judo Club (Where I still train today). I first started as my two older sisters were already doing Judo at the club. So, I would be watching off the mat while they trained. When I got old enough, I then got onto the mat and the rest is history.

When and how did you get into refereeing/ officiating?

I first started refereeing as a young referee at the age of 12. I saw on the British Judo Events page a referee’s course for young referees. I met the minimum age and grade requirement and decided to give it a go.  I attended the education module where I completed the theory then a few weeks later took to the mat for the practical assessment. After completing the practical assessment, I had passed my first refereeing award, the Young Referee Bronze award.

What motivates you as a referee/ official?

One thing that motivates me as a referee is performing under pressure. Ensuring that in the moment the match is safe & fair. The other big motivation is getting to watch the best Judo Great Britain has to offer with the best seat in the venue.

What has been your favourite judo memory?

My favourite memories of judo are the achievements I have accomplished thus far in my Judo Journey. With the best highlights being completing my National B refereeing award and obtaining my 1st Dan.

What advice do you have for anyone wanting to get into refereeing / officiating?

My advice would be to get involved and get stuck in. You can’t make a full decision on whether you will enjoy the role without trying it. If you don’t enjoy refereeing, then try officiating and vice versa. Both roles have different challenges and equally their rewards.

A big thank you to Wyn for all he brings to our Welsh Judo community. Find out more about how to get into refereeing and officiating here.

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