Welsh Judoka Oliver secures selection for Junior Europeans and World Championships

The Welsh judoka has been based at British Judo since April 2019 after he was selected onto the Full Time Elite Development Squad.  He certainly finished the year on a high, coming away with a bronze medal in the men's heavyweight +100 kg at the African Open in Dakar.

Ollie told us when he first returned to training it was unusual adapting to the ‘new normal’. With the social distance measure British Judo put in place to follow in order to reduce the risk of spreading the virus, including changing groups and having specific training partners in individual clusters, he said it “took some getting used to.”

Over the initial lockdown period Ollie said physically he was able to take advantage of not having judo to be able to develop his strength and conditioning work, being able to increase strength and fitness levels in order to reap the benefits when returning to the mat. Mentally things were a little tougher, “In the initial lockdown period, mentally I found it a bit harder not knowing when the next time we could do judo and the uncertainty of how long lockdown would last,” he said. However, when it came to adapting, Ollie credits the values that judo has taught him over the years. “One of the main judo values that has helped me adapt to the new normal is discipline.” This helped him maintain a routine, albeit a slightly different one.

Fast forward to the past few months, as restrictions have been eased, Barratt has been training partner to the Paralympic judoka who will represent Team GB at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. He will head to Tokyo with the team ahead of their final preparations.

Join us in wishing Ollie the best of luck in what is set to be an exciting year leading up to the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham next year.

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