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  • Barry Southam posted an update 3 years, 4 months ago

    Is the Martial Art Aspect of Kodokan Judo Alive and well in the USA ? Short answer: No
    Judo has something for everyone from the very young through young adult, middle age and older. Those interested in sport competition can find many quality schools to train in. However, the martial art /self defense aspect is hardly mentioned by major groups or included for rank advancement with the main focus on sport. Judo is a marital art first with sport competition a secondary benefit in my humble opinion. Judo offers a wide range of responses to an attack from mild to severe depending on the variables and situation. It gives the individual flexibility in response based on the techniques and principles within the system .You do not have to injure the assailant in most situations and thus only have destructive options at your disposal. Judo is excellent for youth, parents seeking rape prevention programs for themselves or children, law enforcement, social workers, teachers, etc., etc.,. But you do not here this in many organizations or read on websites. If organizations would display Judo as an effective means of self defense for all ages and ABILITIES in addition to being an Olympic sport. Then they will be able to meet the needs of everyone and not just the young athletic individual but those who are not physically fit, people my age 65 , those just wanting to learn an art from Japan, etc. ,etc.,. There are plenty of good sport schools available but we need more schools adding to their curriculum in addition to sport the following: blocking and striking tech., joint locks beyond just elbow, defense against clubs,long sticks, one or multiple attackers,Kata,etc.,etc. and more. If you, like me, are just interested in one aspect of Judo ( martial art ). Then also tell students it is also a sport. While others tell students it is also an effective martial art. You may do both which is good for you .Having self defense class one day a week isn’t teaching Judo as a martial art. If you concentrate Judo as a self defense system then you teach every class that way in my opinion. People do not have to walk ass a Judo dojo and join the local karate school to meet their self defense needs. We can provide it and meet the needs of most everyone whether they want sport or self defense or both. As I said our art gives flexibility in response to assaults that many others don’t. Two little boys fighting and one grabs the other in a simple wrist grab with the response being a punch or kick. The child is injured because the defender did not have options to choose from. Judo organizations need to provide for all its members and then they can say we are here for all seeking Judo and we are truly keeping Kodokan Judo alive. We all learn Osoto Gari but it is our secondary interest that is different. One leans towards shiai application while others towards self defense application. We are all Judoka

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