Judo is a traditional Japanese martial art which has developed into a very popular modern Olympic sport practiced all over the world.
It is a dynamic sport which can be separated into two sections, ‘standing’ judo where a player tries to throw their opponent and ‘ground work’ where players grapple one another, aiming to pin their opponent on their back. There is no striking or kicking in judo.
It is a great sport to develop physical fitness, strength, flexibility, coordination and discipline, but it also exercises the mind. Students are encouraged to think about how and why various techniques are effective and what can be done to improve their own performance.
Players wear a white cotton judo suit and practice on a soft mat surface. Large crash mats are also used for throwing practice. Judo is a little different to most conventional team sports in that is focuses on the individual, but is practiced in a group situation.
The English translation of judo is “the gentle way”and the sport is based on the principle of using an opponent’s movement and strength combined with your own skill and technique to overcome them.
These are just a few of the reasons that judo has become such a successful sport all over the world.
Introduced as on Olympic sport in 1964, judo can be practiced at a competitive level, or simply for the many benefits it provides. it is inexpensive, can be practiced all year round and its benefits can be enjoyed by both boys and girls from as young as 5 years through to seniors and beyond.