Judo is one of the most popular Martial Arts. It is enjoyed by people of different ages and abilities all over the world. But, how did Judo come about, what are the rules of this famous sport and how can you get involved? The team here at Blitz take a closer look.
The History of Judo
The history of Judo dates back to the late 19th century. Japanese polymath and educator, Jigoro Kano, grew frustrated when trying to find a Jujitsu teacher. Kano eventually found a teacher in Fukuda Hachinosuke and when he died, Kano was given the densho (scrolls) of the Fukuda dojo. This paved the way for the foundation of modern Judo.
The founder of the Martial Art set up his first school and dojo in February 1882 at a Buddhist temple. However, it took two years to take the name Kodokan. Among the first judo competitions was the biannual Red and White Tournament, which Kano launched in 1884.
Judo’s popularity spread throughout the east and around the world; it became an Olympic sport for men in 1964, and for women in 1992.
The Rules of Judo
The rules of Judo can seem incredibly complex to those who are new to the Martial Art. Judo’s scoring aims to reward skills rather than hurting an opponent. This is central to the rules of the Martial Art.
To win at Judo, a participant must complete a throw that puts the opponent on their back with impetus and control. This score is called an ippon (a full point) and this signifies the winner or end of a contest.
Lesser throws are scored as a waza-ari, two of which are equal to an ippon. A throw that results in the opponent being on their side is called a yuko. But, these are only considered in the event of a tied match. In total, there are 66 throwing and 29 grappling techniques in Judo.
Judo participants can be penalised for fouls such as preventing progress in the match, using prohibited techniques or behaving against the spirit of Judo.
Etiquette is also important in Judo – as in all Martial Arts – and contestants in a bout should bow before they step onto the mat. Inappropriate behaviour, which may include bodily gestures and foul language, is not tolerated in Judo.
How to Get Involved in Judo
Now you’ve learnt a little bit about the history and rules of this amazing Martial Art, how about getting involved with the sport?
Although it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to master Judo, it is relatively easy to get started as a beginner. Judo is suitable for people of all shapes, sizes and ages. The British Judo Association is a good place to start to find a local club. A licence will eventually be required by Judo participants and this provides the insurance that is required to join and take part in competitions.
Judo is widely believed to be good for the mind as well as the body, with the sport helping to build self-confidence and self-discipline. As clubs train in groups, Judo is also a good way to improve communication and social skills. Get started by finding your local club online today.
Remember, if you need any Judo or Martial Arts clothing, accessories or equipment, then take a look at the Blitz product range.
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