EMJJA Okami Jiu Jitsu Senior Coaches



  • 8th Dan Jiu-jitsu
  • 5th Dan Naifu Jutsu
  • 4th Dan Te bo Juts
  • 4th Dan Uwara bo Jutsu President
  • Founder member, chief instructor and consultant to EMJJA

I started training in Jiu-Jitsu around 1982 at the Danesmoor Dojo which was in the British Godai Association (BGA). I was invited to take my 1st Dan Black Belt in 1984 at Birdholme. I subsequently left the B.G.A to form the Northern Freestyle Association (NFA). After a short period I closed the N.F.A and founded the EMJJA in 1991.

Moments to remember in martial arts

I have lots of memories, one of which would be to see a young student of mine gain Junior Black Belt, his name was James Capstick, the son of actor and radio presenter the late Tony Capstick.

I believe I still hold the world record for smashing 100 tiles on fire at Wingerworth show in 1986. A couple of weeks later I was part of a six man team to smash 1000 tiles at Danesmoor, this I wasn’t going to take part in because my knuckles were still tender from Wingerworth. well I’m so glad I did, otherwise I wouldn’t remember my knuckles being so sore that day 21 years ago!

I have achieved Black Belt of the year and also Black Belt of the Decade, which I am very proud of.

My clubs to name most of them have been Alfreton Leisure Centre, Shirland Miners Welfare, Morton Village Hall, Danesmoor, Ripley Leisure Centre, Sappa (this I ran with Dave Bourne), Eagle Club, Y.M.C.A. and currently Huthwaite Leisure Centre. The Eagle Club I believe is our oldest and is still going strong.


Hi my name is Becky Smith, I am currently a 2nd Dan Black-belt in Jiu-Jitsu. I have been training with the East Midlands Jiu-Jitsu Association for many years now under the instructor Charlie Shaw. Throughout the years I have achieved my level 1, 2 and 3 coaching awards whilst upholding 1st class grading’s, which I am very proud of. We have also done a lot of training with weapons including batons, knives, Bo’s and uwara sticks.

I first joined when i started Secondary school and I wanted a confidence boost as well as wanting to be able to protect myself, Jiu-Jitsu has raised my confidence as well as introducing me to many friends.

Overall I really enjoy training and would recommend it to everyone for a range of different reasons ranging from just general knowledge on self defence to just a confidence boost.

I first started martial arts when I joined a Judo club at University as a way to keep fit without going in the gym. After watching “Nico” with Steven Seagal, I became intriuged with Aikido and found a local Aikido class in Sheffield. Following 4 years hard practise I gained my 1st Dan in Tomiki Aikido in 1992 (under Sensei Barry Vigrass). I continued training under Sensei Peta Bavelja ,but also leaned a lot about body movement and avoidance from Sensei Rupert Atkinson.
After my Aikido club demised I decided to try Ju-Jitsu in 2007 for a new challenge and started again from white belt under Sensei Steve Ainscough.  Following many training sessions I managed to earn my 1st Dan Black Belt in 2010 and then continued training to achieve my 2nd Dan (2013) and my 3rd Dan (2016). Along the way I have also learnt many weapons techniques and Katas (both with weapons and open handed). After Covid restrictions lifted I have restarted training for my 4th Dan with Okami and am also doing some coaching.
My first experience of Jiu Jitsu was with the World Jiu Jitsu Federation when I was a teenager in the late Eighties. I achieved a purple belt grade before going to University and losing touch with my club.

I had a long break from the sport until 2010 where I was reintroduced to Jiu Jitsu by the EMJJA. I immediately found myself hooked again and began my ambition of achieving my Black Belt 1st Dan which eluded me the first time around.

Along the way at EMJJA I have enjoyed competing in inter-club and National Tournaments. More recently, I have passed the BJJA GB Referee and Officials Course and represented our club as an official at a national competition in Walsall, and an International competition at Southend on Sea.

2016 was a great year for me personally as I passed the NGB Coaching Course levels 1,2 & 3 with BJJA GB, and was promoted to the grade of 2nd Dan black belt also under the tuition of Sensei John Rake. I opened the Okami Jiu Jitsu Dronfield Academy in February 2017 with Sensei Becky Smith as assistant coach, which was a great sense of achievement for me as this is where I began my journey with Kyoju John Rake studying Atemi Jiu Jitsu and where my passion for Japanese Jiu Jitsu was rekindled.

More recently in 2022 I passed my 3rd Dan black belt training under Sensei Steve Ainscough. I have also completed my level 4 NGB Coaching course with BJJA GB. I am now enjoying learning my 4th Dan syllabus and coaching in the evenings at our Dronfield, Renishaw and Northwingfield Okami Jiu Jitsu clubs.


I was useless at sport as a youngster.

I was a geek with poor coordination and no confidence in my physical abilities.

I started doing Jiu-Jitsu in 1986, I got my 1st Dan in 1995 and then waited a long time to do my 2nd Dan in 2018 and 3rd Dan with Okami in 2022.

Jiu-jitsu has given me so much in life and I want to pass it on.

I’m still a geek though. Nothing can change that.

Safeguarding Adults Policy

Safeguarding in sport is the process of protecting children and adults from harm by providing a safe space in which to play sport and be active.

The six principles of adult safeguarding are:

  • Empowerment 
  • Prevention 
  • Proportionality 
  • Protection 
  • Partnership 
  • Accountability