What is Judo?

Brief History of Judo

Judo is a modern Japanese martial art, sport, and self-defense system. It was created in 1882 by Jigoro Kano (嘉納 治五郎, 1860–1938), who blended the principles of traditional Jujutsu with his own philosophy. The word Judo literally means "gentle way".

Kano began studying Jujutsu as a way to improve his physical strength and self-defense skills. However, he was not satisfied with traditional Jujutsu, which he felt was too violent and impractical. He began to develop his own system of Jujutsu, which he called Judo.

Judo emphasized the use of leverage and technique over strength. Kano would later describe this principle as "seiryoku zen'you" meaning "maximum efficiency, minimum effort". He also stressed the importance of self-improvement and character development. Judo quickly became popular in Japan, and Kano founded the Kodokan Judo Institute in 1882.

At the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo Judo became the first martial art included as an official Olympic sport. Judo has since become one of the most popular sports in the world, practiced in over 170 countries with tens of millions of practitioners worldwide.

Benefits of Judo

Judoka receive numerous benefits through their study of Judo.  These benefits stay with them throughout their lives and ultimately allow them to contribute to society at the highest levels.  The list of famous / successful Judoka is long and constantly growing.  It includes Ronda Rousey, "Judo" Gene LeBell, Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Theodore Roosevelt, Pierre Trudeau, Kayla Harrison, and Jeremy Glick to name just a few.  Benefits of practicing Judo include:

Techniques of Judo

Judo is derived of various "Waza" or techniques.  These include throwing and grappling techniques.  Overall, the Kodokan recognizes 68 unique throwing and 32 unique grappling techniques.  These waza are organized as follows:

Judo at its highest level.