“Get ready!” Regional Self-Defence Championships in Hungary

“Get ready!” Regional Self-Defence Championships in Hungary

Sport, exercise and personal safety are an essential part of the proper physical and mental development of young people

The multi-round “Get ready!” Regional Self-Defence Championships were initiated and organised by the President of the Law Enforcement Trainers Federation (RKSZ), Géza Györki, and the Béri Balog Ádám Foundation of the Hungarian Reservists Association (MATASZ), with the support of IBSSA, among others.
The event provided an excellent opportunity to practice, demonstrate and promote effective self-defence techniques, and brought together like-minded people with the same or similar goals. Moreover, the younger students could see great role models in the elder and learn from their example. 

“For the future, we will place more emphasis on reserve organisations, the recruitment of reservists, cadet training and the areas of patriotic and national defence education, which is why we support events that implement national defence-type sports for the youth” - highlighted Dr. Ádám Schmidt, State Secretary responsible for sports at the Hungarian Ministry of Defence (HM), the main patron of the Championships. 

The unique series of self-defence competitions started on the 10th November 2023. Nearly 180 students from 30 schools competed in different categories according to age and skill. They had to successfully cope with various simulated dangerous situations to demonstrate their best knowledge and the most effective self-defence techniques. After the qualifiers held at several locations in Hungary, the best 60 competitors in different age groups made it to the finals. 

On the 27th January 2024, the Kozma István Hungarian Wrestling Academy (KIMBA) in Budapest witnessed an exhilarating finale of the “Get ready!” Regional Self-Defence Championships as the last day of the competitions showcased final matches in all categories, including the team events. 

At the solemn opening of the Final Gala, Dr. István Komáromi ret. pol. brigadier-general, Social President of RKSZ, Chairman of the Béri Balogh Foundation’s board of trustees – also in the name of Ret. brigadier-general Ernő Széles, President of MATASZ, Vice-President of the Defence Sports Association, patron of the championships – welcomed the finalists and warmly greeted the high-ranking invited guests and the audience.

Szilárd Németh, Member of Parliament, President of the KIMBA Foundation, as the host of the event highlighted in his welcome speech: “It always gives us pleasure when we can support a good cause! Patriotic education, cadet and reservist training, as well as self-defence education are of high priority for our country and the youth. The “Get ready!” Regional Self-Defence Championships provided a great opportunity for all of this, so we felt honoured to host this sports event in Csepel, the 21st District of Budapest.”

After the opening remarks, Prof. George Popper, President of IBSSA and President of the International Knightly Order of Security (OoS), took the opportunity to present the Grand Cross Knight of Security award of OoS to three prominent people: Szilárd Németh, István Komáromi and Ernő Széles for their efforts in making the event series a success, as well as in recognition of their outstanding accomplishments in the field of security over the years. 

Following the opening and warm-up, the final competition began. The contestants had to fend off several simulated attacks and then disarm their opponent. Everyone performed exceptionally well, fighting with full dedication and to the best of their ability. Self-defence is a very special discipline, as it requires not only strength, but also quick reaction, precise knowledge of movements, precise execution, and advanced tactical skills. In addition to these, the judges scored the dynamics, proportionality and efficiency of the entire set of movements! 

The Gala was enriched by thrilling showdowns of renowned Hungarian martial artists and associations. In addition to self-defence, the participants could also see Shotokan karate, Aikido, Taekwondo, Hapkido and Police measurement tactics demonstrations, among others.

The Hungarian National Defence was also present at the event, presenting the most modern military equipment and paraded with the latest combat vehicles. Furthermore, at the recruitment point, all interested parties could find out about military, law enforcement and reserve careers, and young people could also try out laser shooting.

The moment of glory arrived with the award ceremony of the Final Gala, when the winners of all categories were announced and the prizes were distributed. In addition to medals, certificates and cups, the champions won KAPPA sportswear gift vouchers worth HUF 150,000 and HUF 100,000. The other winners received Patriots Paintball coupons and gift packages offered by MBH Bank Nyrt. 

The Regional Self-Defence Championships was not only about the competition, but also gave the participants the opportunity to exchange experiences, form friendships and cooperate with the self-defence communities. In addition, it is important to highlight that the Championship did not aim to encourage violence and aggression, but to draw attention to the importance of self-defence. Emphasis is placed on the development of skills that help to maintain a calm state of mind in dangerous situations and, thanks to a quick reaction, these situations can adequately be dealt with. 

The organisers’ main goal was to popularize Hungarian combat sports, motivate young people to exercise, and strengthen the relationship between civil and professional law enforcement agencies. 

Dr. István Komáromi, as one of the main organisers, thanked the participants and team leaders, who spared no time and effort to prepare for the entire competition series, and appreciated the collaboration and support of the referees and judges, especially of the chief judge, Kyoshi Attila Miskolczi, Vice President of the Hungarian Karate Federation, who assured that the championships took place in a sportsmanlike manner and according to the rules. Among others, János Hülber, IBSSA Master Teacher of Self-Defence also actively took part in the duties of referees with his outstanding professional knowledge. Besides, Dr. Komáromi expressed his gratitude to Szilárd Németh, the host of the Final Gala, who made it possible to hold the grand finale in a dignified manner, and also gratefully thanked the cooperating partners for their generous support, as well as all organisers and volunteers for their valuable assistance and efficient help.

For his dedicated and committed work and generous support during the self-defence championship series, as the soul and engine of the event, Szilveszter Tánczos, board member of RKSZ and Vice Chairman of the IBSSA Executive Committee, received the award of MATASZ – of which the Hungarian Minister of Defence Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky is the honorary chairman. The prestigious award was handed over to Mr. Tánczos by ret. brigadier-general Ernő Széles, President of MATASZ.

Concluding the event, Ernő Széles evaluated the championships as successful: “All our goals have been achieved! We saw well-prepared competitors, and noticed that the demand for self-defence is increasing, and more and more schools are interested in training in this direction.” 

Our heartfelt congratulations to all the winners and competitors. We truly hope that this great initiative will continue in the future and that the next “Get ready!” Regional Self-Defence Championships may soon take place so that even more schools, young people and committed competitors can apply for this prestigious event.