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Laurel Faust
Laurel Faust
Nidan
 

Laurel Faust began her study of judo on Valentineís Day 1995. Three months earlier she used judo to win the final match of an international Okinawan goju ryu karate iri kumi competition for the USA womenís team. The USA team coach had studied Laurelís competition and noted frequent use of o soto gari (major outer reap). Laurel already had some experience with ukemi and a little experience with throwing. Her coach prepped her on o soto gaeshi (counter throw to o soto gari) and also on a neutralization of o soto gari by bear hugging her opponent after takedown to prevent a point scoring blow. The USA team took the trophy.

Laurel joined the Newton Judo Club in the Boston area. She beat a brown belt in her first competitive match. Laurel won the Tohoku womenís shiai series two years in a row in 1995 and 1996.

After moving to the D.C. area, Laurel studied for three months at Georgetown Judo. She did judo for about eight years at the NIH Club, performing several shiais, and this is where she was first introduced to kata.

Laurel has competed with five partners in four of the judo katas. She has competed as tori with Steve Poy of the NIH Judo Club and with Sensei Mark Smith of the Hui-o Club. Mark and Laurel went to the Nationals together in 2014 and placed fifth in nage no kata. Laurel competed as uke in nage no kata with Maria Rosciglione Tagliaferri of NIH/Kintora as tori. Laurel and Maria went to the Nationals twice. They placed third in 2000.

Mark and Laurel have competed in katame no kata together, performing both roles and even competing against themselves once with roles reversed. Laurel has teamed up with Margie Tamai Kettl in katame no kata, and Mark and Laurel have competed in kime no kata with Laurel as uke. Laurel also competed many times with Sensei Taffy Turner of NIH in ju no kata with Laurel as uke.

Laurel studied at the Baltimore Judo Club with Sensei John Anderson for several months before earning her shodan in 2001. Laurel joined the Hui-o Judo Club in May 2013 and she earned her nidan in November 2013. Laurel is sandan in Okinawan goju ryu karate.

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