"It was just a normal, recreational judo club," said Harrison. "Most people went there looking for a workout."
When Mark took a job in the Capital District four years ago, the Hattons joined the Jason Morris Judo Center. At that time, the Glenville center's reputation as a top-notch training facility had grown nationally.
"[The move] was work for the most part, but if we were going to keep doing judo, what better place to do it than here?" said Harrison.
"We wanted more than [a recreational club]," said Jack. "That's why we searched for a place like this."
The Hattons said that the competitive nature of training with some of the top judo athletes in the nation helped them become better at the sport.
"Seeing how consistently hard they work makes me want to do that," said Harrison.
"They take a beating [in training sessions], especially since they are in that transitional phase between the junior and senior levels," said Morris. "So, they get to work with Brad Bolen and Nick Kossor and Tony Sangimino on a regular basis."
Jack has taken his judo talents to the high school wrestling mat, too. He competed for the BH-BL wrestling team this past winter and was looking at qualifying for the state tournament before he broke his arm late in the regular season.
"When I wrestle, I'm doing judo," said Jack.
Ultimately, though, the Hattons see judo as a sport that they can continue to excel in beyond their junior level days.
"When you get to that [senior] level, that's when the real judo starts," said Harrison.
"Just to see Nick Kossor and Brad Bolen " a couple of seniors members who are ranked No. 1 in the country " nothing tells me that I can't do that," said Jack.""