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Judo is a traditional program that teaches the original style that was developed in Japan called Kodokan Judo



What is Judo?


Judo translates as “the gentle way,” a concept that reflects both the use of minimal force to defend oneself and the gentle nature attained by a person who masters the art. Don’t be fooled by the name, though. It’s a rough and tumble activity with very rigorous workouts!

The art was officially formed in Japan in 1882 by Dr. Jigoro Kano and has been evolving ever since. At the end of the Samurai era, techniques of the ancient Japanese art of Jiu Jitsu were modified by Dr. Kano to create a safe form of self-defense that could also serve as a form of physical education. Dr. Kano insisted that perfect judo meant doing a technique with “maximum efficiency” and that there must be “mutual benefit and welfare” to everyone involved. Rules for practicing it as a combat sport were developed to provide a safe means of challenging each other’s skills through competition. Students train to defeat an opponent using the skilled application of throws, chokes, pins, and armlocks.


A Way Of Life

Judo is the way to the most effective use of both physical and spiritual strength. By training you in attacks and defenses it refines your body and your soul and helps you make the spiritual essence of judo a part of your very being. In this way you are able to perfect yourself and contribute something of value to the world. This is the final goal of judo discipline.

– Dr. Jigoro Kano

Dr. Jigoro Kano
– The Founder of Judo

Who Can Practice?

Judo is practiced by men and women of all ages. Shinsei has a program for young men and women (ages 13 and older). Students of varying sizes and skill levels practice and learn together. Absolute beginners should not be intimidated by being in a class surrounded by black belts. Students learn much faster, and more safely, when practicing with highly skilled partners.

What to Expect

As a beginning student you will be led step-by-step through simple falling exercises called ukemi. Learning the techniques of ukemi will allow you to fall safely when thrown by your training partner. You will be introduced to basic off-balancing concepts and carefully learn some basic throws. You will also be introduced to the basic pinning and escaping techniques used in ground fighting. You will quickly find that it’s a great workout and you’ll be getting in great shape! The knowledgeable black belt instructors at Shinsei will be training right along with you as they encourage you in your pursuit of Judo.

Randori – The Game of Judo

The skills all come together in an exercise called “Randori,” which is judo’s version of sparring. Players start by facing each other in a standing position. They grab hold of each other’s uniforms and try to trip or throw each other to the ground. If a person gets thrown in a tournament they instantly lose the match. In randori, they just keep going! When the players end up on the ground they begin a ground-fighting game which consists of moves similar to wrestling and Jiu Jitsu. They try to apply pins, chokes, or armlocks on each other. Any of these techniques can be used to win a match, but no one keeps score in randori. They just keep going!

Randori is a great way to improve skills, and an incredibly fun and exhausting workout. Students on a “Randori Night” at Shinsei will often go 30 – 45 minutes without taking a break. The feeling of total exhaustion is exhilarating. Join us for a free week of classes if randori sounds fun to you!

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