How Rachel Tytler Became an Elite Level Judoka

Hi guys, I am Rachel Tytler, I am 22 from Glasgow and my sport is judo. I have done judo since I was about 8years old and I am now on the JudoScotland Squad and British Judo Senior Squad, and have been for the last 5 years. I started my journey in Glasgow at the ProJudo Club where I trained for about 7 years before getting onto the Scottish squad.

Throughout my judo career I have had many successes including being British and Scottish Champion, meddling at the British championships consistently for about 8 years (excluding those missed due to injury), a silver medal at a Spanish European Cup and a 5th place at a Swiss European Cup and becoming Commonwealth Judo Championship gold medalist in 2019, to name a few.

National Squad

The national judo training centre where I train is on the outskirts of Edinburgh at Ratho’s International Climbing Centre, so my daily commute can be strenuous, even before I have done any training! I train at Ratho 5 days a week where I complete at least two sessions a day. My sessions range from strength and conditioning, judo technical and judo fighting. Whilst also having the support of physios, nutritionists, physiologist and psychologists for example.

Training Requirements for Elite Judoka

Our training is usually split into focused monthly blocks where we try to improve on a certain area or improve overall. This year my weekly sessions have included 1x conditioning session, 2x strength sessions, 3x fighting sessions and 2x technical sessions and 2x half technical, half fighting. However, recently with the Coronavirus pandemic having closed all training facilities we have been training from home with an array of equipment to try and improve our conditioning and strength endurance.

At the moment my weekly schedule follows the below layout;
Monday: very heavy conditioning; 30-25-20-15-10, 36kg ball throw over shoulder, TRX, press-up, Russian twist. 100 burpees, 5x (20 aleknas, flutter kicks and press up shoulder touch.
Tuesday: 10km run.
Wednesday: Yoga and shadow work.
Thursday: sprints: 10x 20m, 8x 40m 6x 60m 4x 80m 2x 100m.
Friday: 50-40-30-20-10 skipping, KB deadlift, band pull, over head press and band rotation. Then 50x 36kg ball over shoulder throw.
Saturday: is a session created by a different athlete each week.
Sunday: rest day.

On top of that we have a half hour judo type conditioning session where we train but make the exercises more specific for example grip strength, abs, arms, shoulders and legs.

However, regular gym sessions are heavier with more rest that the circuit styled sessions we have at home. For me Monday morning training starts at 7am so I have to be up at 5:15am! This session is an hour and a half fighting followed by a rest period and a gym session which would consist of deep back squat, bench press, pull-ups, tricep dips, wide grip leg straight leg deadlift, seated row and ab roll outs.

A Wednesday begins at 10am with a judo session split half into technical and half fighting. Followed by a rest and then gym. Wednesdays gym includes deep front squat, eccentric pull-ups, DB chest press, single leg squat, BB shoulder press, DB bend over row and aleknas to finish.

A Friday is the same as Wednesday however after judo I have a conditioning session. That comprises of 4 sets, completed as fast as possible with 4 mins rest between sets.
Set 1: 500m ski erg, 30 BW Squat, 20 Press-ups, 10 judo jacket body row.
Set 2: 500m rowing, 30 reverse lunge, 20 KB clean and press, 10 d-ball @30kg throws over shoulder.
Set 3: 1000m watt bike, 30 skipping ropes, 20 down ups, 10 banded throw turns.
Set 4: 10 shuttles, 30 landmine press @10kg, 20 LB deadlift @32kg, 10 judo turn burpees.
Friday finisher to complete the session: 30 calories on ski erg.

These sessions are just a sample of the different things we do, there are hundreds more exercises that we do but sticking to basics and pushing yourself as hard as you can can be just as, if not more beneficial. I hope with my hard work and dedication I am able in the future to achieve the goals that I strive for. I would loved to win medals at European and World cups, Commonwealth Games and Olympics. For now, they are the goals that I am working towards be it at home or at Ratho, I will keep pushing, training to get closer to accomplishing and achieving all that I desire.


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