Judo – The Game and its Development in Other Parts of the World

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Judo, the Japanese martial art, was first developed by Dr. Kano Jigoro in 1882. Dr. Kano Jigoro was a frail person and to overcome his physical negativity, he took the help of Jujutsu. During his learning period, Dr. Kano accumulated lots of knowledge about different ways of performing the martial art, Jujutsu. He was taught both the free style approach and the set approach towards the sport. Later on with the help of all the experience which he gained, he developed a new form of the sport which was later called as Judo. Judo was developed by Dr. Kano as a means of developing the whole personality of a person mentally and emotionally.

When Dr. Kano became the member of the Olympic Association in 1908, he started propagating Judo and taught Judo to many people across the world during his travel. His disciples and his assistants helped him too in this task and used to teach many people when they used to travel abroad. Certain techniques were also created and developed so as to help the Judokas to play the game without any difficulty.

Judo gained popularity in America through Yamashita, Tsunejiro Tomita, Mitsuyo Maeda and Tomita by the encouragement by President Theodore Roosevelt while it gained popularity in Brazil through the teaching of Maeda. It spread to England in 1905 through Yukio Tani and in France in 1924 through Hikoichi Aida and Keishichi Ishiguro. It was introduced In Hungary in 1906 by Yoshisaburo Sasaki and in Germany by Aida. It gained popularity in France in 1926 through Kazuzo Kudo and Sumio Imai. In Italy the Italian Judo Federation was discovered in 1924 by Youtarou Sugimura. In 1929 Shinzo Takagaki introduced Judo to India, Nepal and Afghanistan.

Unfortunately the World War II stopped any further growth of Judo and after the death of Dr. Kano, the game was stopped completely due to the war. It was later revived after the war through the encouragement by two Americans, Generals Thomas Powers and Curtis LeMay. Judo gained entry into the Olympics in 1964 and Japan still produces the best Judokas in the world. Countries giving touch competition for the Judokas from Japan are Korea, Russia, China, Brazil and Cuba.

International Judo Foundation consisting of countries from Europe was found in 1951 and this foundation set the rules for all the competitions being held. Many countries have their own Judo Foundation like the Bahamas Judo Federation, Judo Federation in India, the European Judo Union, the British Judo Association United States Judo Federation, Japanese Judo federation. The Japanese Judo Federation or the JJF was formed by Risei Kano, son of Dr. Kano Jigoro and he now presides over the Kodokan.

World Judo Championship and the Olympic competition is the highest level of competition for Judo. The first World champion was Shokichi Natsui, Japanese.

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