During the last IJF congress, held in Budapest in June 2021, Florin Daniel Lascau moved to form part of the new team of Head Refereeing Directors. One of the changes will be that Florin Daniel Lascau will no longer be Sports Director with the IJF Academy, a position that he has held for many years. As of January 2022, the 1991 world champion will concentrate on refereeing. He will still be in contact with the IJF Academy, working on the formation and delivery of education programmes for referees though, even if his new pressing duties will no longer allow him to be the head of the sports section for the Academy.
Florin Daniel Lascau during an IJF refereeing seminar

Mark Huizinga, Olympic champion in 2000, will bridge the gap, taking on some of Mr Lascau's primary responsibilities on the mat. Mark is a senior IJF Academy expert who has been with the Academy for many years. He will coordinate the practical programmes with other established IJF experts Udo Quellmalz, Daniela Krukower and Giulia Quintavalle.

Envic Galea, Chair of the Academy said, “The team will miss Daniel. Over the past eight years we spent more than eighty weeks together, all over the five continents, sometimes in very tricky conditions. We value his judo knowledge, which has been crucial to developing the current technical standards that the Academy enjoys internationally." Envic added that thanks to the careful development Daniel constructed for the IJF Academy experts, the transition will be smooth.

Tibor Kozsla,IJF Academy Education Director said, "Daniel’s contribution in structuring the judo technical teaching material was invaluable. Thanks to his professional support, the documents have been updated periodically to guarantee a smooth accreditation process. All judo technical documents produced by Daniel are finished and will be used long term."

From left to right: Tibor Kozsla, Envic Galea, Florin Daniel Lascau and Slavisa Bradic

Florin Daniel Lascau commented, “The IJF Academy started in 2013 and until December 2021 we managed to deliver content on 85 courses and to around 1500 students.

Following the vision of the IJF President to improve judo worldwide and in cooperation with the Kodokan, we developed practical courses to improve the teaching and understanding of judo techniques, the combinations and transitions relevant at cadet level, the progression and training of judo techniques important at junior level and we did the review of Nage-no-kata and Katame-no-kata, known also as Randori-no-kata.

Starting with a few courses a year, the IJF Academy became more and more active throughout the five continents. It was covering a large part of our yearly calendar. 

Working together with Mr Galea and Dr Kozsla, continuously improving the IJF Academy curriculum and the practical courses was a great pleasure and honour. We adapted and took into consideration the particularities of each country and region we visited, to foster the conditions needed for the development of judo knowledge and the culture of our students, always in cooperation with Kodokan experts and Olympic and world champions.

Florin Daniel Lascau with Kodokan President Haruki Uemura

It was and it is still phenomenal to see how students add value to their judo during the IJF Academy courses, how hard they work, train and prepare for the delivery of their examination presentations, finishing with confidence, ready to teach and train judoka in their respective national federations.

In 2016, in addition to the IJF Academy, my activity as IJF Supervisor started. It was a challenging application of technical knowledge in competition. Step by step the activity in refereeing increased and during the IJF Congress in 2021, together with Mr Jeon and  Mr Bagdasarov, we were elected as IJF Head Refereeing Directors.

The responsibility and time required in the refereeing role limits activity in other fields. It is not possible to cover two large projects such as the IJF Academy and IJF refereeing. Therefore, beginning in 2022, I would like to say thank you to all my colleagues and experts of the IJF Academy for the experience and for the incredible moments we have shared. Now I would like to put my concentration and energy into the development and running of the IJF refereeing team."

As Florin Daniel Lascau moves to the Referee Commission, the IJF Executive Committee also decided that the IJF Academy instructor certification will become mandatory for all coaches attending IJF international competitions, as of 2023. Therefore, the Academy expects a substantial influx of applications by February, before the first semester of the Academy begins on 3rd March 2022.

Good luck to Florin Daniel Lascau in his new position and missions. His incredible, valuable knowledge of judo will help to ensure the development of our sport.

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