Judo is most prominent feature is its competitive element, where the object is to either throw or takedown one’s opponent to the ground, immobilize or otherwise subdue one’s opponent with a grappling maneuver, or force an opponent to submit by joint locking or by executing a strangle hold or choke. Strikes and thrusts by hands and feet as well as weapons defences are a part of judo.
Judo is a system of self defence, which makes use of an opponent’s strength to overcome them, meaning that a smaller opponent can defeat a larger opponent.
‘Ju’ means gentleness or giving way, and ‘do’ means way of life, thus making Judo mean literally ‘the gentle way’ or ‘the way of giving way.’ Judo was founded in 1882, in Japan, by Professor Jigoro Kano, who envisioned it as a way of becoming physically and mentally fit through disciplined training.
Judo can be practised by all ages and is a relatively safe sport as it does not involve any kicking or striking techniques. It is an excellent activity to increase physical fitness, boosting key leg and arm muscles, improving agility and flexibility, and developing the body’s cardiovascular system.
Judo is open and accessible to participants with a wide variety of disabilities. Because of the close contact involved in judo it is the ideal sport for the blind or visually impaired.
In 1964 at the Tokyo Olympic Games, men’s judo was included in the Games at the request of the host country Japan. In 1988 women’s judo was a demonstration event and in 1992 became a full medal event.
If you fancy taking to the mat and trying your hand at judo, then it is best to start with Eagle Martial Art who provide professionally qualified coaches.