Kevin Tamai (Rokudan)

Kevin Tamai (Rokudan)

Sensei Kevin Tamai is the current Head Sensei of Hui-O Judo Beltsville. He is currently a Rokudan, sixth degree black belt. He has practiced judo over 40 years. He is the oldest son of our founder, Kenneth B Tamai, who started Hui-O Judo in Berwyn Heights Maryland as a family based club teaching Kodokan Judo. Kevin officially started judo when he was 6 years old, studying under the careful direction of his father. However, he was always on the mat, Sensei Kevin grew up with mats in their basement to practice on. He was taught good fundamental judo, the building blocks of good judo techniques. Judo was helping each other to become better. As a young competitor he traveled often with a Hui-O team to various tournaments. His parents home has shelves full of trophies and medals from various tournaments.  One of his best memories of young competitions was to winning gold at the National Junior Olympics. In 1980, Hui-O Judo outgrew the Berwyn Heights Community Center, they moved to a larger facility at the Beltsville Community Center.  Sensei Kevin achieved his Shodan, first degree black  belt in 1984. Sensei Tamai did the administrative work for Shufu Yudanshakai and ran most of the local tournaments. Sensei Kevin continues that work.  To Sensei Kevin, judo is much more than competitions, it is building character and teaching life lessons. Judo teaches you respect, self confidence, balance, coordination, humbleness, agility, socialization and courage.  He focuses on the development of each person, to make them the best they can be. The focus in not just on physical conditioning but also mental, emotional and spiritual development. He believes that building character and developing judoka in to fully rounded people who contribute to the community is much more important than medals or trophies. He teaches the judoka respect, discipline, honor and character. To Sensei Kevin, judo is always family. He builds that in feeling of friendship into all of his judoka.

The Tamai family is very involved in the judo community. Sensei Tamai had 6 children, all of whom
were active competitors in judo. Sensei Kurt and Sensei Karl now run their own very successful judo
club at the College Park Community Center. Sensei Diane is one of highest ranked kata champions
for US Judo. She also practices at Hui-O. Sensei Margie is an administrative support and technical
official for Shufu and is associated with Hui-O Judo.

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