Judo Strength And Technique For Optimal Performance
Judo is a sport that is becoming increasingly popular in the United States and is officially recognized by the Amateur Athletic Union and the Judo Black Belt Federation of the United States. It is a martial art that focuses on throwing, grappling, and submission techniques.
Judo is a great way to stay active and fit and can also be used for self-defense. Many schools and organizations offer classes and programs focusing on teaching Judo fundamentals.
There is a growing emphasis on sporting excellence as a competitive event. To excel, students must practice and perfect the various throws, counter-throws, combinations, and grappling techniques. Many books and resources are available to help students understand and practice these techniques.
It is essential to understand the basic preparation of the body and training methods to excel at Judo. Without this, you will not reach the full potential of your Judo technique. Therefore, focus on the process and physical preparation.
Body And Training Methods To Excel At Judo
Welcome to the TTF Traditional Judo Course! We will discuss basic preparations and training methods that have helped develop past champions in Judo. We will also explore the concept of the application of weight training methods to Judo. This may be an excellent way to improve your judo skills and take your training to the next level. Let’s start!
Kodokan Judo, founded in principle by the late Dr. Jigoro Kano in 1882, is a system of training mind and body for the most efficient use of mental and physical power. It is likewise an art of contention, of personal control, reflecting purposeful movement. Judo practitioners are vitally interested in this calculated movement, giving undivided attention to obtaining, improving, and maintaining it.
It is necessary to have a thorough understanding of the proper methods of physical preparation and training to reach the highest level of performance in Judo. Your Judo training cannot remain stagnant. It must be constantly reviewed and improved to make small but significant gains in speed, strength, and efficiency. Athletes must be willing to modify their training program to maximize their potential to achieve optimal performance.
What Judo Really Means
Judo’s success relies on a combination of expert technique and physical strength. While most practitioners agree that skill is key, there is a common misconception that strength is not essential. This misunderstanding is based on a faulty understanding of Judo, its dynamics, and the concept of strength. In reality, strength is vital if you want to succeed in Judo. Without it, the technique will only get you so far.
Judo is a traditional Japanese martial art, and its name is derived from two Japanese characters: JU and DO. While the precise meaning of these characters is difficult to interpret, it is generally accepted that JU is associated with the idea of softness and DO with the notion of the way or path. In practice, this means Judo is about using others’ strength against them rather than relying on physical force. In essence, Judo can be seen as a physical and mental discipline requiring an understanding of its philosophy and principles rather than just brute strength.
The term Ju in the context of Judo has been commonly translated as gentle, soft, gentleness, and softness. Unfortunately, these translations have caused many people to misunderstand the fundamental physical principles of Judo and have led to improper training practices.
To clarify, Ju is best understood as the idea of using a person’s energy against them rather than relying on brute strength. Judo practitioners should focus on using the power and momentum of their opponent against them rather than relying solely on their strength. Ultimately the key to mastering Judo is to use others’ energy to your advantage.
Developing Body And Spirit
Many Western instructors have unintentionally limited their students’ ability to practice Judo as it is done in Japan, as they insist on a very soft and almost delicate approach to the sport. Unfortunately, these instructors have not had the chance to experience Judo in its native environment, meaning they don’t have the full picture.
Visiting a Judo dojo would be a great way to get a better understanding of the martial art and its practice. It would provide an opportunity to observe the methods and intensity of Judo firsthand rather than trusting inaccurate preconceptions of the art being gentle.
Dr. Kano saw Judo as an opportunity to use physical exercise to develop strength of body and spirit. Through practicing Judo, you can gain physical strength while also learning how to properly use this strength in a combat situation. In simpler terms, Judo was meant to help individuals gain physical and mental strength by training their minds and bodies to be effective in a fight.
To avoid being accused of disrespectfully criticizing the Kodokan school of Judo or distorting the teachings of its founder, Jigoro Kano, I will refer to his words.
The art of Jujutsu or Judo is based on nonresistance and using energy to your advantage. For example, if someone tries to lift you, it may be hard to resist them due to the difference in strength. Instead, you can use their energy to your advantage by going with the motion and pulling them in a definite direction, causing them to lose their balance while you lay your body on the ground. In this way, you can throw them effortlessly.
It is possible to defeat a person without engaging them directly. This can be performed by outsmarting them or taking advantage of their weaknesses or mistakes. For example, if you were to be attacked, you could use deception or misdirection to divert the attack away from you.
Similarly, you could use clever negotiation tactics to get your attacker to agree to a deal favorable to your interests. These are just a few examples of beating others without actively engaging them. However, there are some cases where this strategy will not work, and direct action may be required.
If someone grabs your wrist and not letting go, nonresistance or passive resistance is not the best approach. Instead, use your arm to counter the pressure of the grip. This is using your strength to break free rather than relying on the other person to let go. By using your strength, you are more likely to be successful in freeing yourself if your power is greater than the other person’s.
To achieve maximum efficiency in our use of our mind and body, we must practice nonresistance – that is, not fighting against our thoughts and feelings. In other words, we should accept ourselves, our circumstances, and our condition and use our resources in the most effective way possible. This will enable us to make the most of our lives and help us to achieve our goals.
Judo’s Principal Concept
The principal concept of physical Judo is getting the most out of your physical and mental energy. This means that sometimes you should not use force to get your point across, but there are times when you should. In either situation, the goal is to use your resources in the most efficient way possible that is in line with the values of Kodokan Judo. This is not to say that strength is wrong, but that it should be used when and where it is needed to get the best results.
Dr. Kano’s philosophy of Judo was not to avoid using strength, but rather to use it in the most efficient way possible. His famous quote, “best use of energy,” emphasize the importance of conserving physical energy when practicing Judo.
Therefore, it is inaccurate to say that Judo is only about nonresistance, and should also be noted that there is an element of resistance involved. In simpler terms, Dr. Kano believed that Judo should be practiced in a thoughtful, economical way, rather than with unnecessary force.
Does actual Judo appear as a “gentle” movement?
No, the action of a Judo competition does not appear as a “gentle” movement. In the heat of competition, two Judokas are attempting to outmaneuver each other, often involving physical contact and a considerable amount of force. Though it may look chaotic, the movements are highly precise and strategic. Judo is often referred to as a “gentle” martial art due to the emphasis on using your opponent’s momentum and energy to your advantage rather than relying solely on physical strength. This allows practitioners of Judo to protect themselves while still being able to take down their rivals.
A Judo match between two Judokas does not involve “gentleness” or “softness”; rather, it requires the use of body strength to execute or resist a throw. In this action, a Judoka exploits his competitor’s momentary imbalance to bring them to the mat with a properly executed technique. The intensity of a top-level championship match makes it clear that there is no “soft” attack in Judo.
A Judoka took down by a powerful and skillful move involving a throw results in a loss for him.
In Judo competitions, the Kodokan Judo rules stipulate that an ‘Ippon’ (one point) should be awarded based on certain conditions. These conditions include:
The Nage-Waza Throwing Technique
In Judo, a powerful throw is necessary for a competitor to win a match. This involves throwing a person down onto the mat with enough force so the referee is satisfied and awards the point. A successful throw will usually be met with the referee’s call of “mo sukoshi” (a little more), indicating that it was powerful enough to be awarded.
The term “supple” or “flexible” is often used by the Japanese when referring to the founder’s ideas and has been adopted by French Judo practitioners to accurately express his ideals. This term implies that the practitioner should be able to adapt and respond to others with agility and grace, displaying a certain level of flexibility.
At the right time, it is beneficial to give in to an opponent’s superior strength, using their momentum against them. Alternatively, you can use their strength to redirect their actions to your advantage. This can be visualized as a way to use the right amount of resistance or nonresistance at the right time to achieve a favorable outcome.
Physical Attributes For Judo
Judo relies on a combination of physical attributes, including flexibility, agility, speed, and strength, to perform its techniques. Contrary to popular belief, strength is a key factor in the successful execution of Judo. Without the combination of these physical attributes, it would be impossible to perform Judo properly.
Many Judo practitioners believe that strength does not play a significant role in the effectiveness of martial art, and they may look down upon those who rely on strength rather than technique. However, this is established on a misunderstanding that strength and muscle are the same. In reality, power is more than just having large muscles because the proper technique can help utilize power most effectively.
Having muscular strength does not mean that someone will use it negatively. In other words, just because someone is physically strong does not mean they will use that strength in a harmful or inappropriate manner.
Using Judo Techniques Efficiently
When it comes to Judo, it is not considered a true technique to use more force than is necessary to defeat your opponent. If an individual is capable of using 75 pounds of force when only 35 is necessary, then such use of energy is deemed unnecessary and wasteful. Having the ability to execute such a large amount of force may be beneficial in different scenarios, but those who cannot use this amount may be at a disadvantage when it comes to decisive action.
Using more force than necessary to defeat your opponent does not demonstrate true skill in Judo. You need to understand the basics of the Judo technique and be able to apply it in a variety of situations rather than relying on brute strength alone. Those who demonstrate proper technique in more demanding situations will be better prepared to respond to tough challenges.
It requires more physical strength to throw your opponent who weighs 225 pounds than it does to throw an opponent who weighs 145 pounds, even if the technique used is correct. This can be observed in scenarios where lighter individuals, such as young women or elderly men, are unable to generate enough power to successfully throw their heavier opponents, despite executing the technique properly.
British Judo practitioners mocked those who advocated for a “no strength” version of Judo. They often recounted a story about a Judo teacher teaching the fundamentals to his new class. He suggested that they hold the Judogi, the Judo uniform, lightly with three fingers of each hand and use enough strength to unbalance their opponent as if they had the might of King Kong.
Physical And Mental Strength
Strength is a concept that has both physical and mental components. Physically, it is the ability to exert force for some time without becoming too fatigued. Mentally, it is the capacity to overcome resistance, whether it is external or internal. In essence, it is the capacity to keep going in the face of adversity. In everyday language, strength is often referred to as “muscle”, but it is much more than that; it is the physical and mental fitness of an individual.
The human body is an extraordinary system made up of many precise components. No invention of human engineering can compare to the complexities of the human body. To put it simply, the human body is an amazing and intricate machine.
Machines have been designed to be bigger, stronger, and faster than ever before, but there are limits to what can be achieved. In other words, it is not possible to infinitely increase the size, strength, and speed of a machine.
Maximizing The Body’s Performance
The human body is the only machine that can perform tasks such as walking, climbing, throwing, lifting, striking, twisting, or bending, as the situation requires. No other existing or likely-to-be-produced machine can do this. This is why Professor Wilbur Pardon Bowen, who was an expert in physical education, said that we should appreciate the amazing capabilities of our bodies. In other words, our bodies are incredibly powerful and capable of doing things that no other machine can do.
No matter how advanced our technology and culture become, people will always need to use their muscles to get things done. Muscles are the only way we can make we will happen in the real world. Even if we use machines to do work for us, we still depend on our muscle power in some way. In other words, no matter how much we refine our civilization, muscle power is still essential.
To maximize their performance, Judo practitioners must effectively use strength. This type of strength is known as “Godo” in Japanese and involves using technique and body strength together. Uncontrolled use of strength without technique is not effective and should be avoided.
Judoka Size And Strength
Power Judo is a term used to describe a type of Judo competition that relies heavily on strength. This style of Judo is seen as being less than ideal, as it does not emphasize the other elements of the sport such as technique, balance, and positioning.
Judo is not just about physical strength, but also about using the right technique at the right time in the right direction. It requires knowledge and skill to be done correctly, and cannot be achieved through brute force alone.
Judo is a sport that requires more than just sheer brute strength. Although strength is an important factor in a successful Judo performance, it is not the only factor. Other elements such as technique, strategy, and timing are also necessary for achieving success on the Judo mat.
Eventually, the stronger Judo competitor will typically have an advantage over the weaker competitor, assuming all other aspects of their performances are roughly equal.
The success of Japanese Judo Champions, such as Matsumoto, Kimura, Ishikawa, Yoshimatsu, and Daigo, and other former champions like Hirose, Hatori, Hosokawa, and Ito, demonstrate the importance of having a strong physique coupled with effective Judo technique. In other words, strength and technique go hand in hand to achieve success in Judo.
Some of the most renowned judokas in history include Natsui, Sone, lnokuma, Kaminaga, Shigematsu, Koga, Watanabe, Kawano, Yamashiki, Oda, Takahashi, and Ito. Each of these individuals is renowned for their exceptional skill and physical strength. Through their hard work and dedication, they have achieved mastery of the martial art of judo and have set a high standard for future judokas to strive towards.
In recent times, the champions of Judo, a martial art originating in Japan, have been individuals of considerable size and strength. These individuals, usually weighing in at 175 pounds or more, are capable of executing quick and powerful techniques with remarkable skill. In comparison, Judo practitioners of the past were typically smaller and the concept of a “big” Judo practitioner was uncommon.
Osawa was a legendary Judo technician who was renowned for his extraordinary speed, clever tactics, and fierce competitive spirit. He was one of the most talented martial artists of his time and was a serious contender for the All-Japan championship title. His remarkable skills and determination saw him defeat all challengers, cementing his name in the history of Judo.
Despite his skill and expertise, Osawa was never able to reach the highest level of the championship due to his smaller size in comparison to his opponents. In particular, against Yoshimatsu who weighed around 240 pounds, Osawa’s 145 pounds posed an insurmountable challenge. Yoshimatsu was able to take advantage of this size difference and execute a powerful technique called osotogari, which ultimately turned the tide of the match in his favor. In other words, Osawa’s size disadvantage prevented him from competing on an equal footing with his heavier opponents.
Jigoro Kano, the founder of Judo, was a strong proponent of the idea that athletes should compete in weight classes and use weight-training exercises to improve their performance. This idea was strongly supported by Osawa, who believed that weight training was an important part of Judo training. This belief still has a strong influence on the sport today, where athletes compete in weight classes and use weight-training exercises to improve their performance.
Small Judo Practitioners
Although the techniques of smaller judoka such as Iwata, Yoneda, and Shinohara were similar to those of Osawa, their relatively small size meant that they faced an uphill battle to reach championship levels.
Small Judo practitioners have impressive physical strength and capabilities, even compared to those who have not trained in Judo. However, due to their smaller body size, they are not able to generate the same amount of power and strength that larger individuals can.
In Japan, a gradual recognition of the importance of size and strength in sports was becoming evident, particularly among college and university teams. This was highlighted in the university championship team matches between Meiji University, which was usually the champion, and highly-rated Nihon University. Meiji decided to change its usual captain, the small Shinohara, by bringing in a substitute captain who was significantly larger, weighing approximately 200 pounds. This showed the importance of size and strength in terms of being successful in the sport.
The Meiji team decided not to risk their title chances by having their more skilled competitor, Shinohara, face the larger and more dangerous Nihon team captain. This was done to protect their chances of winning against the physically imposing opponent.
Judokas With Power And Skill
Judo practitioners from Europe (DeHerdt, Geesink, and Pariset) and North America (Lebell, Harris, Imamura, and Williams) have demonstrated the superiority of having a powerful and skillful body compared to those who are less physically capable.
Two former North American champions, Hunt and Osako, had strong physiques, though not as strong as those of their successors.
A group of influential figures from Europe highlighted the need for a strong organization. This included Bourgoin, Collonges, Palmer, Grabber, Bloss, Dazzi, Young, Dupre, Gruel, Collard, Grossain, Legay, Rabut, Reymond, Ryan, Maynard, Petherbridge, Tempesta, Guldemont, Vallauri, and Bluming. In simpler terms, these people stressed the importance of creating something that could bring everyone together.
Courtine and Outelet improved their physical strength, combining it with their already skillful Judo technique, becoming some of the most formidable competitors in Europe. In other words, as they increased their physical capabilities, they became even stronger contenders in Judo competitions.
A group of prominent individuals from North America, such as Leszczynski, V. Tamura, Kato, Campbell, Alseika, Nishi, and Colgan, were notably strong and resilient.
Strength Is Essential For Success In Judo
Kawakami was a renowned judo practitioner in South America, renowned for his speed and agility despite his relatively small size of 150 pounds. However, when matched against Judokas who were either equally skilled or stronger, his chances of winning were not as favorable. In other words, Kawakami was an example of how physical strength can sometimes be an advantage in martial arts, even if skill and speed are also essential.
Kawakami’s success in Latin America was largely due to his exceptional Judo abilities, which were far more advanced than in any other region. As the skill level of Latin American Judo practitioners increased, however, Kawakami and others like him had to work harder to keep their title as champions.
Y. Kanemitsu, 9 Dan, a renowned Judoka master, has shared a story that vividly illustrates the extraordinary physical strength of Judoka practitioners from the past. These martial artists could use their strength to succeed in contests and competitions.
Kanemitsu, a young judoka of 5th dan skill, faced an experienced Judoka of equal ranking, S. Hashimoto, in what was a one-hour struggle with neither gaining an advantage. Kanemitsu, in his enthusiasm, seized an opportunity to grapple tightly and, unfortunately, ended up breaking Hashimoto’s ribs. This ultimately secured the victory for Kanemitsu, who continues to emphasize the importance of strong, skillful grappling techniques. In simpler terms, Kanemitsu won a hard-fought match by using a powerful grappling technique, even though it caused injury to his opponent.
Sakujiro Yokoyama, a renowned master of Judo from the Kodokan, believed that having strength was essential for success in Judo. Even though traditional Jujutsu and Taijutsu taught that having a lot of strength could be more of a hindrance than a help, Yokoyama argued that strength was important for winning. He argued that if all other factors were equal, the stronger person would be more likely to win. In plain language, this means that being physically strong can give a Judo fighter an advantage in competition.
Although having more strength can be beneficial, someone with less strength can be more proficient in their skill, thus making them superior to someone with more strength. In other words, someone with less physical strength can be more effective than someone with more strength due to their greater expertise.
Someone with a lot of physical strength may think that they can rely on it to win every time, but this isn’t the case. If they try to use their power against someone who knows Judo, or someone equally as strong, they won’t be successful. Even if they are fighting someone with less strength, it’s still possible they won’t win. They need to use their power in combination with skillful techniques to succeed.
It is a misconception that having a lot of strength makes someone a great martial artist. In reality, it is the quality of training and coaching that makes someone successful. If martial artists do not receive adequate coaching and instead rely on their strengths, they can develop bad habits that will impede their progress. This is why having power alone is not enough to make someone a great martial artist.
If a person puts in sufficient effort to master the techniques of Judo, they will not just rely on their strength but instead use it most effectively. This will ensure they are not taken advantage of due to their strength, as they will know to use their power correctly. The result of this dedication and focus is that their progress in Judo will be steady and unimpeded. In simpler terms, if a person puts in the time and effort, they can be an effective Judo practitioner, even if they are naturally strong.
Strength is an essential part of becoming a successful Judoka. While skill is important, having the strength to use the proper posture and apply practical techniques to your opponent is critical. Therefore, Judo students should work to develop their strengths to maximize their potential. In simpler terms, strength is necessary to get into the correct positions, break your opponent’s posture, and use your moves to win.
Indeed, it is frequently stated that “a good big man is better than a good little man” in competitive Judo, but we should not forget the importance of being “good” in all cases. No matter what size they may be, all Judo competitors should strive to do their best and uphold a high standard of excellence.
Athletes need to maximize their potential through dedicated training. This means that they should strive to improve their physical condition and develop their skills with a focus on achieving the highest level of performance possible. Unfortunately, some competitors may be viewed as relying too heavily on strength and power over technique, which can lead to criticism. To avoid this, athletes should strive to use a combination of strength and technique to achieve the best results.
Finally, Judo is a sport that is accessible to everyone regardless of size or builds. The only way to prove who is the better judoka is to compete and show your skills.