Latest News Uniformed Hero nominee – Jonathan Norbury

Uniformed Hero nominee – Jonathan Norbury

9 June 2024

Uniformed Hero nominee – Jonathan Norbury

Paramedic Jonathan Norbury dedicates his free time to teaching children martial arts, self-defence and essential life skills.

The 43-year-old from Kingsley, who is the over-40s world champion in Ju Jitsu, teaches at the non-profit organisation Tatsu Dojo in Draycott. He has won numerous accolades for his work raising awareness of mental health and self-defence as well as passing on skills in the sport he is so passionate about.

His story began 39 years ago when he caught the martial arts bug from his father. 12 years later, aged 16, he decided to become a coach and pass on his expertise to others.

His coaching led him to relocate to Surrey where he coached at the Youth Games. He was awarded Coach of the Year in 2004. Since then, and alongside a return to Staffordshire, he has coached numerous people to both national and international levels.

It’s not only high-performance athletes who Jonathan supports, quite the opposite. He and his team have made it part of their remit to support all those who want to get into martial arts.

He said: “A lot of clubs focus on the elite athletes, whereas we try and have an open-door policy for everyone. We find where people’s interests lie, what they are good at, and harness that interest by supporting them regardless of their level.

“What we teach are the fundamentals so that if there is a dangerous situation, we will have educated them to a standard where they would be able to defend themselves. I think these skills are vital in the modern day.”

All of this work is against the backdrop of his full-time job as a paramedic.

He said: “It can get pretty exhausting inevitably; however, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m not only passionate about martial arts but also about those who I directly impact through my coaching.”

Tara Burndred teaches martial arts alongside Jonathan and has nominated him for a Your Heroes Award.

She said: “Jonathan is helping children learn skills to stay safe and overcome lack of confidence, self-esteem and bullying. He has been invaluable to the Tatsu team and we think he deserves this recognition.”

Jonathan added: “It’s always nice to be recognised; however this isn’t why I do what I do. I have knowledge, skills and expertise and I only think it’s right that I should share that with the future generation.”