June 8, 2018 11:09:49 AM
An Olympic medalist will teach judo on Saturday at a Starkville martial arts school.
Downtown Martial Arts Academy, located on Lynn Lane in Starkville, will host Marti Malloy Saturday. Malloy won a bronze medal as a member of the U.S. Judo Team at the 2012 Olympics.
Doug Bedsaul, owner of Downtown Martial Arts Academy, said the academy teaches judo, and some of the students have gotten competitive in it and traveled to tournaments in a five-state area across the South.
He wanted to give the students exposure to high-level instruction, so he reached out to several martial artists who have competed in the Olympics to see what it would take to get them to come to Starkville. Things worked out with Malloy, he said, so she's coming to teach two classes.
Malloy will teach a class for children, 12 years old and under, from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday. She will teach an adult class from 1-3 p.m. Saturday. Classes are $60, and Bedsaul said pre-registration is preferred, but registration will be available at the door.
He said the academy is expecting a big influx of people for Malloy's classes.
"We've got people coming from the coast, Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia -- someone of this level does not come to the Southeast very often," he said. "Because of that sort of rarity we've already got 75 people pre-registered and there may be more that come in on the day."
Bedsault said Malloy will have complete freedom in determining what she wants to teach in her classes.
"It'll be totally up to her," he said. " I'm not going to step on her toes. I have seen some videos online of what she's taught at other clinics so I have some idea of what she might cover, but that will totally be up to her."
So far, the event has generated a significant amount of interest, and Bedsaul said the academy will host a Friday afternoon work out session for the clubs that are traveling to attend Malloy's classes.
He said this is not only a chance to learn from Malloy, but for the clubs to learn from each other.
"We're able to bring in a lot of people who we normally only see in a competitive atmosphere," Bedsaul said. "Now we'll be able to work out with them, learn from them, which adds a different sort of layer to the relationship we have with different clubs and different competitors.
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