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Stephenjudoka
16th March 2001, 15:52
Is Judo a sport?.
To many practioners Judo is purely a sport( Another form of jacket wrestling). To others Judo is not only an art it is a way of life.
What did Kano want Judo to be?.
Who was it who pushed it to be an Olympic sport?.
What do practioners want it to be?.
I look forward to your thoughts and replies.

Thanks

Stephen Sweetlove

TIM BURTON
17th March 2001, 09:09
Hi Steve,
My understanding is that Kano synthesised Kodokan Judo from other available Jujitsu styles. He took the underlying mechanical principles, which allowed control to be affected on another person and formalised them in his system. Kano also underpinned this new martial art with a philosophy, which embodied physical and moral principles. If one delves into the mental side of Judo then phrases such as Seiryoku zenyo (good use of mind and body) and Jitakyoei (mutual welfare and benefit) lead one to the fact that Kano believed a major part of Judo was the development of ourselves through helping others. Three objectives were set for the Judoka, Shobuho (combat), Taiikuho (physical training) and Shushinho (ethical Training). Shushinho can be subdivided into cultivating virtue, training of intellect and the application of Judo principles to ones everyday affairs.
I do not think that during the creation of Kodokan Judo, Kano ever visualised international competition or Olympic status. Instead he was intent on bringing the martial arts into a new century.
However during my consideration on how to answer your question it became clear that my opinion is formed from the teachings I received when being taught Judo. I received tuition from Otani Masutaro 8th Dan in Kyu Shin Do Judo originated by Abbe Kenshiro 8th Dan. In Britain this organisation did not belong to the BJA which had sole Olympic status. If one has only been exposed to a Judo club that trains solely for competition then will the answer be different?
You ask some searching questions, what are your thoughts?
Tim Burton UK

MarkF
17th March 2001, 09:18
Originally posted by Stephenjudoka
Is Judo a sport?.
To many practioners Judo is purely a sport( Another form of jacket wrestling). To others Judo is not only an art it is a way of life.
What did Kano want Judo to be?.
Who was it who pushed it to be an Olympic sport?.
What do practioners want it to be?.
I look forward to your thoughts and replies.

Thanks

Stephen Sweetlove

Stephen,
You ask a lot of questions, so I think you have an opinion and I hope you'll share it with us.

Is there more than one form of Jacket wrestling? (OK, sambo, etc.) I don't think of judo as a sport, but rather sporting. Leaving out all the messy scoring opportunities in shiai today, judo could have very well been distinct form jacketed wrestling, but it is still grappling, taijutsu,

Kano had always maintained, when approached as to judo as a game, as in Olympic games, that "Judo is NOT a game. It is a lifestyle, more important than any game."

Who pushed judo into the Olympics? Well, usually I don't give "money" a name such as people do, but politics, along with money, is a powerful tool, and something not easily refused. While shiai has always been a part of the process, it certainly is a different matter today, particularly in the manner of contests.

The rules of judo have so radically changed even since the early sixties, as to be only jacketed wrestling, it has made katamiwaza so less important (passivity penalties), and scoring with weak attempts (koka) so important, and the rules so complicated that sometimes it is very hard to view a contest without the interference of officials.

However, the IJF, and by way of the IOC, can only suggest rules, they do not need to be played as is down on an international scale. Most don't make it, but that shouldn't be a reason for not trying to get there, but as long as the US reaction to losing is to make getting to the Olympics the goal, and winning second, then the purpose is lost, at least to me. Fight to win and damn the rules.:D

There is, however a move back to the ideals of Kano and the other founders and the great judoka of the time, but it will be some time before most will recognize the problems. Yamashita, kotani, Tani, and particularly, Mifune, played a much different sort of judo, and by Mifune Kyuzo having his own mind and manner of judo, the Kodokan split with this great man simply because he dared to make a difference. The Kodokan's tributes to him have come to little and too late. Mr. Kano was always looking to improve judo, but when Mifune did so, in particular, after Kano's death, the body politic took over. Actually, Kano was only a figure head by 1930 or so, the Kodokan becoming "soke" in its own mind.

As to who "pushed" judo into the Olympics starts with Kano being an innocent dupe of the IOC, and it was with the blessing of Risei Kano hand in hand with the IJF and IOC to push it into the Olympics. Kano certainly had a big hand in putting Japanese sport into the Olympics, but when the goverment saw that no one measured up to them in judo, well, that may have been the entire story. But what happened when one Antonius Geesink won gold in the Olympics in 1964? Newer rules yet made its way into the Olympics, and the end can be seen with the dismissing of the openweight category today. A Japanese coach was fired after the 1996 Olympics because he could manage only one gold medal. STOP THAT!

You can't have everything, so if the players want to do something, they should act. This may not be the spirit of judo, but that has long been of importance to the IJF, and for that matter, the Kodokan.

Participants like to win. This is no sin, but they must be taught not to accept loss. Being a good loser is the polite thing to do, but since winning is everything, no one should be patted on the back who lost.

Speaking with some who were around before WWII, the same theme has been applied: "Judo had never been the same." I believe them, as it hasn't been the same since I was fighting. Hell, I lost to female judoka in my first two tournaments, but since the AAU didn't think it ladylike for girls/women to fight boys/men, that was ended, only to begin again in the seventies.

Well, as of the moment, that's how I see it. It may change tomorrow so stay tuned.:beer:

Mark

MarkF
17th March 2001, 09:33
Hey, Tim,
I suppose we were composing at the same time, and had some trouble answering the question[s] as well.

Nice to see you around!

Mark

TIM BURTON
17th March 2001, 10:18
Thanks Mark,
Nice to speak with you again, hope you are well, I think this could be a good thread, so come on Steve what are your views?
Tim Burton UK

Stephenjudoka
17th March 2001, 11:26
.A great many words,some of them nonsense, have been spoken about the esoteric side of Judo. Some wish to give the impression that Judo is a mixture of Buddhism, Yoga and Shintoism leavened by no more than a trace of sport.
Don't be misled by this. Judo is an art, admittedly, but it is a fighting art with a major element of first class competitive sport.

The mysticism with which it has been popularly endowed comes from its eastern origin when it was exclusively a Japanese pursuit.
Since then the practice of Judo has extended to most countries of the world, where it has become an integral part in the framework of their sporting activities.
Thus, while acknowledging Japan as the originating nation, each country has its own officiating body to regulate and organise the sport within its own boundaries.

For this reason, the names of the throws, locks and holds have passed into languages of the countries practicing them: but only as terms of convenience.
In all serious Judo circles the Japanese terminology is observed, whatever the language of the country. And with excellent reason, for only by retaining a common language can teaching remain standard and universally comprehensible to all the Judo nations of this world.

Other popular generalisations one often hears are "Judo is a gentle art in which strength is not required", "You use your opponents strength" and "The secret is the mental and physical balance".

Having been in many competitions all over the world, in my opinion, this should not be taken to literally. It is true that a concept of Judo is "Giving way to strength", but, given equal skill, it is true that the stronger man will usually win. This would be the same for any other fighting sport.
Strength is, of course, needed, but more important is the knowledge of how to use it.
The secret is to oppose your opponents strength by applying your own in the direction in which he is weakest and least able to combat it.

In my opinion Judo is a sport and an art.
I also see it as a lifestyle.
I was introduced to Judo in 1967. I lived in an area that was impoverished and many people living there had to be on the wrong side of the law to to make ends meet.
I could have been sucked into this way of life but I discovered Judo with all the principles and philosophy of Kano.
I learned the three principles that Tim mentions ,combat,physical training and ethical training.
This kept me out of trouble and brought rules into my life.
I have also been lucky because Judo has taken me all over the world and I have met a great diversity of people and cultures.

I owe a lot to Judo.

Mark,

There are many forms of jacket wrestling.
In England we have a style known as Devon and Cornwall Wrestling that goes back to the Celts.
There is a banner of the Cornish troops in existence dating back to the hundred year war which showed two jacketed wrestlers in action.
In Uzbekistan cave paintings have been found of men wrestling wearing jackets. They have a style known as Kurash and have records of it dating back 1000 years. The legendary 1000 years old epos Alpomish describes Kurash as one of the most respected sports widely practiced by ancient people.

I have to agree with you that there are to many rules in international Judo. In the old days you could win by being the best Judoka, now you can win by being the best tactician and never even attempt a throw.
In the Olympics Judoka were winning by getting their opponents disqualified, where is the fighting skill in that.
There is no better feeling than throwing your opponent flat on their back.

Can I say that Bedford Judo Club (UK) is celebrating its 50th anniversary in October this year. We are searching the world for those who have visited,trained or belonged to the club so that we can invite them to a celebration party 12th October 2001.
If you know anyone from the club please ask them to contact me via e mail. I am trying to compile the history of the club if anyone has information.

Thanks

Stephen Sweetlove.

Stephen Sweetlove

Joseph Svinth
18th March 2001, 02:52
Richard Bowen of the Budokwai might be able to help you with early club history, if only by allowing you access to his collection of the Quarterly Bulletins from that era.

MarkF
18th March 2001, 10:35
Thanks for posting, Stephen. You may say anything you wish.

Some take offense at hearing that judo is "merely" jacketed wrestling. I don't disagree with you much. Competition took about twenty years of my life, though with a great lack of height and weight, it was that which got me to my first dojo in 1963. I haven' a problem with that and agree it is in how you use your strength. I found that I had to be as near perfect as I could in all phases as I regularly fought judoka more than a foot taller than me. In some ways, I had the advantage, but size and strength do matter. I simply think I had little choice than to master as well as I could those nage which worked for me (tokui waza), usually front shoulder throws.

BTW: If you keep reading E-budo, there will be a "Spotlight on Budo" with a western fighting stylist (much as you described, David Cvet, probably within a month, perhaps a little longer. The administrator is in Japan right now, so you probably would be interested in asking some questions.

Mark

Stephenjudoka
18th March 2001, 20:20
Joseph,
Thanks for the contact with Richard Bowen. I have in fact spoken to him and he has passed on to me lots of information on the begingings of my club.
With the internet it has become a small world.

Mark,
It is good to talk to other Judoka.

BTW,
Thanks for the information.

Stephen Sweetlove.

MarkF
20th March 2001, 08:00
So not to get too stretched on the esoteric side of judo, Dr. Karl Koiwai of the USJI, formerly of the USJF (late sixites), and the Kodokan, describes judo as a "combative sport, just as boxing." Joseph Svinth of the Electronic Journal of the Martial arts and Sciences, also describes judo as a combative sport at

http://ejmas.com, in the Journal of Combative Sport at http://ejmas.com/jcs/jcssplash.htm .

As of late there is a slow but noticable return, not to traditional judo, but to original judo, IMO.

I think this is probably due in part, to the International judo scene, particularly the Olympic games.

Mark

Ben Reinhardt
21st March 2001, 14:22
Originally posted by MarkF
So not to get too stretched on the esoteric side of judo, Dr. Karl Koiwai of the USJI, formerly of the USJF (late sixites), and the Kodokan, describes judo as a "combative sport, just as boxing." Joseph Svinth of the Electronic Journal of the Martial arts and Sciences, also describes judo as a combative sport at

http://ejmas.com, in the Journal of Combative Sport at http://ejmas.com/jcs/jcssplash.htm .

As of late there is a slow but noticable return, not to traditional judo, but to original judo, IMO.

I think this is probably due in part, to the International judo scene, particularly the Olympic games.

Mark

Hello Everyone,

I know and respect Dr. Koiwai. Essentially he is repeating the post WW2 Judo definition that the Japanese used to get Judo reinstated (legal to practice openly) in Japan.

I think that Kano stated clearly that Judo was created to be more than a "sport". He also stated (no, I don't have the quote handy...I think it may have been in one of the Budokwai journals mentioned in this thread) that he maintained a "passive" attitude regarding Judo in the Olympics.

However, Judo had taken on a much more sporting attitude in Japan, with big competitions, even when Kano was still extant. Judo became bigger than even the vision of the founder had imagined. It seems to me that once Judo got into the school system in Japan, that's when it really took off, and, began to take on more of a sporting, competitive attitude. Basically, Judo got away from Kano. It's growth was too explosive, too popular, for him to control. I have been told that even one of his closest students, Yamashita, was in favor of Judo competitions.

By their very nature, the koryu budo and bujutsu that Kano studied were insular, isolated and small. By it's very nature, and the direction Kano took it (physical education, combat, and personal development for the good of society) Judo was expansive. He may have misjudged how fast Judo would spread and how popular it would become...but did he really, I always ask myself. Kano was a genius ! How could he, with his education and knowledge of western culture, thought that something as Japanese as budo would survive unchanged in focus and purpose in the western world. Even in Japan competitions became more and more important, with winning the goal. Methinks perhaps he knew something like that would happen.

Think of the Kosen judoka and the fierce competitions held between the "Seven Sisters" universities, and the emphasis on ne waza because it was easier to become proficient in ne waza more quickly than tachi waza...thus easier to win contests. And Kosen came developed first 15 years of the 20th century when Judo was not much over 20 years old.

The oldest Judo didn't have the ne waza we see today. Why ? Who wants to roll around the ground in a fight with weapons, or while in yoroi, in the middle of a battle ? Only after the Kodokan was defeated by Fusen Ryu around 1900 did Kano incorporate the ne waza with which we are so familiar today. Why ? I bet because he recognized that it would be a good addition to "sporting" style matches within Judo !

Anyway, I'm almost done !

It's also important to consider the influence of the Japanese military on Judo and other Japanese arts, and finally, the defeat of Japan in WW2. In order for Judo to survive, the Kodokan basically had to say that Judo was a sport, and reorganize it as such. I understand that at that point a lot of the older teachers at that point quite in disgust, perhaps Kenshiro Abbe was one of them ?

So, in effect, the Japanese themselves, by their own actions, changed the focus in Judo to sport and winning contests. Kano wouldn't have like it (in fact he was opposed to Japanese militarism and using Judo to train soldiers).

Stepping down from soap box now.

Ben Reinhardt

MarkF
22nd March 2001, 06:46
Ben,
I agree that Kano did want the sport in judo, just not judo as a game. He only begain to find fault with randori and ultimately, shiai or "contest judo" with the numbers of judo players simply out numbering the good teachers. His comments, to me, were to return to the "soft" nature of judo. By then, though, he had little to do with it, and judo was being taught to get people into competition quickly. The only way to do this was to learn "hard" judo, with a lot of muscling being ignored (I don't mean as hard as in go no kata).

Otherwise, a fine soap box!:)

Mark

Joseph Svinth
22nd March 2001, 07:58
What almost everyone since the 1920s has emphasized is what Kano called "Judo in the Narrow Sense" rather than "Judo in the Wide Sense." To Kano, judo in the narrow sense equaled combative and sporting applications of judo while judo in the wide sense equaled the philosophy, which could of course be applied to anything, not just fighting and athletics. In this regard, wrote Kano in an article published in Japan in 1928, "It is regrettable that more stress is laid on the improvement of technique than on moral culture."

"It was not till I went to Japan towards the end of the 1930s that I understood why Dr. Kano insisted on this point, and how brave he was in doing so," Britainís Trevor Leggett later wrote. "He wanted to do something to stem the tide of narrow nationalism that was then becoming stronger and stronger in Japan. He saw that Japanís future role would be to contribute to world culture, and not regard itself as a closed and superior society. I realized clearly the nature of that nationalism, high-minded though it undoubtedly was, when I heard Admiral [Jiro] Nango give an address at the [Kodokanís] dojo-biraki in 1940. He said that though Dr. Kano had seemed sometimes to say that kendo and budo in general were applications of judo, it would be truer to say that judo, like the other branches of budo, were in fact manifestations of the Japanese spirit of Yamato damashii."

Ben Reinhardt
22nd March 2001, 13:17
Originally posted by MarkF
Ben,
I agree that Kano did want the sport in judo, just not judo as a game. He only begain to find fault with randori and ultimately, shiai or "contest judo" with the numbers of judo players simply out numbering the good teachers. His comments, to me, were to return to the "soft" nature of judo. By then, though, he had little to do with it, and judo was being taught to get people into competition quickly. The only way to do this was to learn "hard" judo, with a lot of muscling being ignored (I don't mean as hard as in go no kata).

Otherwise, a fine soap box!:)

Mark

Mark,

I think that Judo encompasses both "hard" and "soft" aspects. One of the underlying principles of Judo, and Japanese martial arts in general is (and bear with the spelling) "kobo itchi". I think this means basically that offense and defense are the same, or that one does what is appropriate at any given time and circumstance. Be it "hard" or "soft", the response is what is most appropriate for the circumstance. Don't get me wrong, I do not believe in using excessive strength in Judo, nor do I teach it.

The insistance of many that judo needs to return to it's "soft" roots is something I disagree with. If anything, Judo needs to return to, as Mr. Svinth puts it "Judo in the Large Sense". However, judo in the small sense is part of that, and necessary for the former to reach fruition. As long as Large Sense is kept in mind as the ultimate aim.

But it seems human nature both east and west is not so different in the end. Contest and sport preparation became more important, not the least because of Japanese militarism and nationalism.

However, it's instructive to note that Kendo went through a similar transformation before WW2. Shinai Geiko became very popular in the Edo Period. Sport style matches became the rage, with public matches being fought for prize money and admission fees. Most people did it not for spriritual growth, but for recreation and exercise ! Sound familiar ? Of course, the Japanese military used Kendo as well as Judo to build up nationalism and the "Japanese Spirit", as well s reworking and perverting the purpose and meaning of budo for their own aims.

Ben Reinhardt

Ben Reinhardt
22nd March 2001, 13:22
Originally posted by Joseph Svinth
What almost everyone since the 1920s has emphasized is what Kano called "Judo in the Narrow Sense" rather than "Judo in the Wide Sense." To Kano, judo in the narrow sense equaled combative and sporting applications of judo while judo in the wide sense equaled the philosophy, which could of course be applied to anything, not just fighting and athletics. In this regard, wrote Kano in an article published in Japan in 1928, "It is regrettable that more stress is laid on the improvement of technique than on moral culture."

++++Ben R.++++
Do you think that as Kano aged, he became more philosophical ? Something similar happened to M. Ueshiba of Aikido. Maybe it was mostly the Japanese militarism that spurred him even more strongly in this direction. I know he had from the beginning the "Three Culture Principle". It just seems to me that the physical technique and it's perfection is a big part of the avenue to "Judo in the Wide Sense". As founder, he must have seen it get out of balance. Again, I think the Japanese military probably was the biggest cause of this.

On the other hand, Kano did get Judo introduced into the school system. Young men love to compete, regardless of culture !

++++++++Ben Reinhardt

"It was not till I went to Japan towards the end of the 1930s that I understood why Dr. Kano insisted on this point, and how brave he was in doing so," Britainís Trevor Leggett later wrote. "He wanted to do something to stem the tide of narrow nationalism that was then becoming stronger and stronger in Japan. He saw that Japanís future role would be to contribute to world culture, and not regard itself as a closed and superior society. I realized clearly the nature of that nationalism, high-minded though it undoubtedly was, when I heard Admiral [Jiro] Nango give an address at the [Kodokanís] dojo-biraki in 1940. He said that though Dr. Kano had seemed sometimes to say that kendo and budo in general were applications of judo, it would be truer to say that judo, like the other branches of budo, were in fact manifestations of the Japanese spirit of Yamato damashii."

Joseph Svinth
23rd March 2001, 07:04
I believe that Kano was reacting to militarism; certainly he viewed sport as a path toward international friendship rather than a flag to wrap one's self in.

The war in China didn't seem to worry him unduly; instead, the impression I've gotten is that he thought that conflict sad but unfortunately necessary to stop the spread of international Communism. "War in China is nothing to do with the Olympics," Kano said repeatedly in 1938. (Where have we heard those words before?)

That said, a conflict that clearly concerned Kano was the growing tension with the United States. He stated his personal goal in Seattle on August 19, 1932: "This mighty ocean is no longer is a dividing gulf. With the developing advancement of the lines of communication, year by year, the blue waters of the Pacific are rapidly becoming transformed into a connecting link that will eventually join us together in our common aim of world friendship and peace."

He was a little ahead of himself in that ambition, I fear.

MarkF
23rd March 2001, 08:54
Originally posted by Ben Reinhardt
The insistance of many that judo needs to return to it's "soft" roots is something I disagree with. If anything, Judo needs to return to, as Mr. Svinth puts it "Judo in the Large Sense". However, judo in the small sense is part of that, and necessary for the former to reach fruition. As long as Large Sense is kept in mind as the ultimate aim.

But it seems human nature both east and west is not so different in the end. Contest and sport preparation became more important, not the least because of Japanese militarism and nationalism.

However, it's instructive to note that Kendo went through a similar transformation before WW2. Shinai Geiko became very popular in the Edo Period. Sport style matches became the rage, with public matches being fought for prize money and admission fees. Most people did it not for spriritual growth, but for recreation and exercise ! Sound familiar ? Of course, the Japanese military used Kendo as well as Judo to build up nationalism and the "Japanese Spirit", as well s reworking and perverting the purpose and meaning of budo for their own aims.

Ben Reinhardt


Hi Ben,
I do not disagree with your answers to my post or to Joe's. I was speaking of judo in the narrowest sense, and a remark which seemed to follow him around, largely ignored by most. Probably most importantly, judo right after the war had to save itself, with the pleadings of not shutting down the Kodokan because it was a sport.

I've seen these remarks attributed by Kano in various publications, and even though the words were almost always changed (today, it is softened so much that its meaning has largely been lost). So I do agree with "wide sense" judo, but was speaking about judo the fighting/sporting art (combative art say many today).

Nevertheless, he did indeed say that judo in its present form (at that time) out of necessity, should have returned to "soft" judo, not the hard muscle judo which was almost always necessary to meet the obligations of the dojo springing up almost everywhere.

The original idea was that judo, if done with the prescribed amount of waza, kuzushi, ect., one never tires. That is extremely hard for most to live up to, and the tedium could be replaced by pulling here, pushing there, and remaining in a rather tense state to win, and it was about this he was warning.

So while I agree with you nearly one-hundred per cent, I was merely speaking of physical judo, not the philosophy of it which most could not maintain out of need.
*****

My problems with judo today is that it is precisely this narrow sense which is replacing all of the judo in its widest sense, and toying with it more and more has changed it completely to winning at all costs. But even that is not so bothersome. What is, is that when asked, most who lose, or an entire "team" of individuals who lose consistently, usually excuse the losing with something such as this: "It was an honor just to be invited to the Olympics and that is the real prize. It would have been nice to win a medal, but that is like found money." No, this isn't a quote from anyone in particular, but if it isn't winning the gold which is important, but losing and winning silver is, then what is the real purpose? I know and agree with Kano's view of the Olympics, but today, it is all about winning. So do it, and quit making the excuse that you won by losing.

Wasn't it in 1996 that the Japanese men's coach who was fired because he was able only to bring home one gold and two silver? If so, then I think I get the picture, and the Japanese are just better at winning, because losing isn't an option.

So yes, I agree. The need is a return to judo in its widest, most grand manner which is necessary.

If US judoka (and Canadien judoka, etc.) would just understand what it is which people *pay* them, perhaps a trip to Cuba, and some workouts with its judo coach would certainly be educational. At the rate they are going, they just may give Japan and Korea, France, and others, a run for the money (pun intended):D

Mark

Ben Reinhardt
23rd March 2001, 14:47
Nevertheless, he did indeed say that judo in its present form (at that time) out of necessity, should have returned to "soft" judo, not the hard muscle judo which was almost always necessary to meet the obligations of the dojo springing up almost everywhere.

Ben R.++++
It's ironic that Kano created conditions that made the "muscle" judo more widespread. Putting it into the school system and the explosive popularity of Judo that resulted practically guaranteed that result. How many qualified instructors were there ? Not many, I would think. Once Kano promoted the idea of Judo as physical education, the horses were out of the barn. So I wonder, maybe he intended it to be so ? Kano was truly a genius, after all. ++++

The original idea was that judo, if done with the prescribed amount of waza, kuzushi, ect., one never tires. That is extremely hard for most to live up to, and the tedium could be replaced by pulling here, pushing there, and remaining in a rather tense state to win, and it was about this he was warning.

+++Ben R.++++
Is this something that Kano said ? I understand where you are coming from on this, but it's not really practical or physiologically possible. The best application of Seiroku Zen'yo might minimize fatigue, but it can't eliminate it. Also, perhaps in a dojo in cooperative randori, or a far superior judoka with an inferior, but in reality, no way (in my opinion). I think that Kano was a lot more practical than that. Sounds more like something that M. Ueshiba would say.
++++++++++++++++++++


My problems with judo today is that it is precisely this narrow sense which is replacing all of the judo in its widest sense, and toying with it more and more has changed it completely to winning at all costs.

+++Ben R.+++
Kind of like real combat, eh ? Mutual slaying, and all that fun stuff ? I don't think that "winning at all costs" is a good attitude in general, but it has some application in "real life". It's funny how some attitudes in sport really are a reflection of attitudes that are sometimes necessary in other situations when more is at stake.
++++++++++++++=

But even that is not so bothersome. What is, is that when asked, most who lose, or an entire "team" of individuals who lose consistently, usually excuse the losing with something such as this: "It was an honor just to be invited to the Olympics and that is the real prize. It would have been nice to win a medal, but that is like found money." No, this isn't a quote from anyone in particular, but if it isn't winning the gold which is important, but losing and winning silver is, then what is the real purpose? I know and agree with Kano's view of the Olympics, but today, it is all about winning. So do it, and quit making the excuse that you won by losing.

+++Ben R.++++
But to do it means to have to win at all costs. Personally, if the attitude that you note above is sincere, why do you have a problem with it. It's not an excuse, but a sign of someone with the proper perspective. They tried to win at all costs, but lost because they were not good enough. Now, whining about referees, injuries, etc., bothers me. But to be able to lose graciously is an important skill, because as you suggest, we "lose" a lot more than we "win".
Shinorhara lost to Douillet in a controversial match in the Olympics this year. I just watched the video this morning before going to work. Douillet dominated the entire match. The Japanese coaches were totally mad, etc.. Know what Shinohara said ? Something to the effect of "I just wasn't strong enough".


Wasn't it in 1996 that the Japanese men's coach who was fired because he was able only to bring home one gold and two silver? If so, then I think I get the picture, and the Japanese are just better at winning, because losing isn't an option.
++++Ben R.+++
From what I heard, that has happened before. They went to a more European style training program. What hear now is that they have gone back to a more traditional Japanese training methods, at least for technique. And that the results are guys like Yoshida, Nomura, and Inoue.
+++++++++++++++

So yes, I agree. The need is a return to judo in its widest, most grand manner which is necessary.

If US judoka (and Canadien judoka, etc.) would just understand what it is which people *pay* them, perhaps a trip to Cuba, and some workouts with its judo coach would certainly be educational. At the rate they are going, they just may give Japan and Korea, France, and others, a run for the money (pun intended).

+++++Ben R.++++
OK, so just train harder and top whining ? Oh, yeah, the Cuban women's coach is going to share his winning methods with his main competitors in the PJU ! LOL ! He's a nice guy (I've met him), but he isn't crazy. The
Cuban government would probably kill him if he did that.

BTW, Nic Gill has been successful for years in intenational Judo. Bronze at the worlds and silver at the 2000 Olympics (where Inoue absolutely slammed him with Uchi Mata).

I don't think it's a matter of desire or training, for the most part. It's a matter of support, the small Judo population base we have, and yes, probably coaching as well.

Nice pun !

Ben Reinhardt+++++++=

Mark

MarkF
24th March 2001, 08:29
Hi, Ben,
No I wasn't quoting Kano. He has said that in other ways, but he did imply it. It was the Kodokan which altered it some by stating one could do that, and there were excuses for not training. They even (Horrors) said that there were reasons for not being in shape.

Whether Kano was a genius or not, is found in history. That he was an academic and brilliant to boot, says a lot for what he wanted for judo, and certainly I don't think it what is found today. That is my opinion, not a fact. But he may be just as happy with it. Who knows?

I also think Kano's wish to physically educate Japan's children with judo/kendo wasn't really his idea, it was the govt. He knew it would, I think, but from pictures, etc., I've seen of the masses doing judo and exercising. He did recommend other types of exercising such as swimming, something Saigo Shiro was said to have left the Kodokan to do, besides kyujutsu. He had a tear in his eye after watching the ending ceremonies in LA 1932. No judo there.

I've been trying to read between the lines for so long that perhaps I am just selfish, and it isn't just the Olympics, it is the entire political structure from the Kodokan on down perhaps which taints my ideals for judo. Then again, I've only be doing it for a few decades or so. I think I need time to digest it all, but isn't that the point? If it is so large, and managed by so few then politics is certainly not wat Kano wanted for judo. He treated it more or less like his baby, noting, but not correcting someone else's idea of, eg, ju no kata. I think he would let it go for the most part.

I didn't see much of the Olympics, but I did see that uchi mata by which Gill lost. It was beautiful, but the beauty of judo is found in other waza, much we don't get to see because of politics, but I bow to your experitse as a national class referee. (BTW: Is it next month's classic in La. to which you are going, or did that all ready come off?). I don't doubt you do get to see stuff I don't.

BTW: The trip to Cuba comment was only one of example. I think it is one more of attitude than talent, so I use that as an example of good coaching, but I'm not saying it would work here, either, only that they must be doing something right, and we must be doing something wrong. I would hope that what is wrong is what is truly right, if you know what I mean.
******

The reason, IMO, that the Japanese blamed himself is because he could not put him down that certain way when no doubt in the world can exist. Throwing someone through the floor has a statement to it. Two koka to one, just doesn't cut it, I guess.

I've been thinking also of getting the records together since partial point scoring was instituted and comparing the outcome of matches in the Olympics, World's etc. I will probably do the Olympics first, though.

Anyway, I'm tired. Lately, I've had classes three hours an evening four times weekly. It catches up to you especially when putting in 12 hour days, or nights.

After next week or the week after, I'm going on vacation which includes a seminar.

Sincerely,
Mark

BTW: Someone I spoke with last summer concerning the state of judo, is (he corrected himself) a student of Kenneth Kuniyuki. He, Mr. Kobayashi, had started playing judo at the age of eight, and now is 75 or 76. After living through relocation, etc. they (some did, anyway) went back to their regular schedule or tried to. They all got a bump to nidan, or something similar. I remember thinking, "now that is the best way to gain your bb, or a higher dan grade. If one can get through that, then it is no small effort." He said, of judo after the war, etc. "Judo was never the same." I suppose I look at it with my own picture and say the same thing of the judo of the early/mid/late sixties and seventies. It just isn't the same.

It can't be a cross for me to bear, but sometimes it is a s**t load to carry around.

Stephenjudoka
24th March 2001, 16:27
The main function of Jui Jitsu was to survive an encounter on the field of battle. By way of comparison, Judo is practiced as a combat sport, or as a means of disciplining the mind.

Consequently the do forms have eliminated a great many effective techniques and replaced them with more ritualistic forms. The rules of competition favour particular types of strategy, so these have advanced at the expense of the older ways.

The martial art changes to suit the purposes of practice.

Looking back into history it can be seen that Terada Kanemon taught the unarmed element of the military tradition known as kito ryu under the name Judo, or 'way of compliance'

A sporting aspect is not new, during the 17th century wrestling competitions were very popular. It was principally by these means that Jui Jitsu/Judo was first introduced to the non - military.

In 1882 Kodokan Judo was born. The prefix distinguished Kano's art from other forms of Judo practised at the time.
He intended that his art should be used to inculcate a healthy mental and physical discipline, suitable for being taught in schools.

Kano's Judo removed itself from its damaging association with the Jui Jitsu of that era.

Kano had incorporated a form of free sparring (randori) inti his Judo and this proved very popular.
From this Judo's sporting potential emerged and in 1909 when Kano affiliated to the International Olympic Committee. In my opinion it is when Judo was accepted by the olympic movement it became a sport.

Stephen Sweetlove

Joseph Svinth
25th March 2001, 00:38
Judo had nothing to do with the Olympics in 1909. The French ambassador wrote the Ministry of Education asking why Japan wasn't sending anyone to the Olympics. Kano was the only person anyone could think of who was remotely associated with sport who was also familiar with Europe, having lived in Germany for a year, and so he got tapped to look into this. He figured that if China could send a team, Japan should, too, and so off two runners, Kano, and a coach went to the Stockholm Olympics.

After WWI, tennis, swimming, and running were Japan's big entries into the sporting field. Kano himself was somewhat opposed to any international competition save the Olympics, and it was his opposition to Japanese collegiate participation in the Far Eastern Championship Games that led to his ouster from the Japanese Amateur Athletic Federation in the early 1920s.

As for the impetus to get judo into the Olympics, that began with the Nazis during the 1930s. (The Germans thought their judo was better than it was, and so thought they would get a lot of third places in the Olympics.) In 1940, judo, kendo, and kyudo were to be demonstration sports, but of course that never came off. FWIW, wushu was a demonstration sport in 1936, so being a demonstration sport is no guarantee that something becomes a medal event.

Now, after WWII, Japanese Americans such as Yosh Uchida began pushing for judo to become an Olympic sport, figuring that it would be a good way for Japanese Americans to get Olympic medals, and by the early 1950s Avery Brundage and the European IOC members had concurred. The Japanese right-wing provided funding, too, as it was patriotic and flag-waving and anti-Communist all at the same time. Thus Olympic judo got lots of support from a variety of places after WWII, but that had nothing to do with Jigoro Kano, who of course died in 1938.

The Kano involved with the Olympic movement is therefore Risei, not Jigoro.

***

That said, look to the Meiji Games and the intercollegiate championships established after WWI for the advent of the schools recruiting increasingly beefy players for the sole purpose of winning judo tournaments. This pattern was widespread by the 1930s, and even the Nisei laughed about how the Japanese colleges recruited judoka the same way that Midwestern colleges recruited football teams. (Grades were irrelevant, we can get you a tutor. The question is, son, how fast can you run the hundred with a ball in your hand.)

Nagaoka and Iizuka were involved with this. Mifune and Kano objected, and this in turn explains many of the political divisions within the Japanese judo community of the early Showa period.

MarkF
25th March 2001, 12:18
Ahh, yeah, what Joe said, although I was only going to write that Kano joined the IOC, but that Judo did not.

Kano becoming as "International" as he did also helped the Kodokan make certain decisions, most of which Kano wasn't involved in for the last seven or eight years of his life. With the death of Kano Sensei, also brought about a split between the Kodokan, or those who were running it, and Mifune Sensei.

This split is rarely spoken of, but others who split included Kawaishi Mikonosuke as he too had other ideas of the direction and description of judo. Mifune went so far as to "insult" the Kodokan members by devising his own kata which in part, at least, did become part of the syllabus, but in name only. His nage ura no kata, or perhpas gaeshi no kata was not recognized nor was his kukinage waza, except in name only (sumi otoshi, his way of tai otoshi, for example).

I can't add much else, except to say, at the time of his death, Mifune was only another highly graded judoka, and wasn't mentioned, until much later, as a great contributor to judo, but it probably didn't happen until the late seventies, or until the Kodokan Institute of 1984[?] was built, and a bust of Mifune was placed there. As a child of twelve and thirteen, this was passed on to us by our teacher. He held Mifune in great regard, and sadly told us of his death in 1965.

Since the only other person who was able to recreate Mifune's sumiotoshi was an aikido man, Tohei, this throw was forever changed and is almost never practiced in the manner of Mifune, by not ever touching the body of uke, except by the sleeves of the uwagi.

There is a distinct difference as see on this clip: http://judoinfo.com/images/video/mifune2.mpg

There are others here (http://judoinfo.com/video.htm) which demonstrate the modern way of sumi otoshi.

Mark

Stephenjudoka
25th March 2001, 13:14
Sorry my mistake it should have read Kano joined the IOC in 1909.
But whatever the date, in my opinion Judo became a sport the day it was accepted as an Olympic sport.

I have re-edited my piece.

Thanks for the correction

Stephen Sweetlove

MarkF
26th March 2001, 06:17
This is just a short BTW on Joe's mention of wushu as a demonstration sport in the Olympic games.

There have probably been many (some, anyway) demo. sports in the Games (Modern Summer Games, anyway) which were not accepted as a recognized sport. Much of this is in the money, politics, and other human frailties as can be seen with Japanese Karate, which had originally been the one selected (between it and Korean karate; TKD). TKD got the nod because of this in part, and others simply because Amercan professional sports were opened to enter the Olympics, IE, basketball and Tennis.

But as to Judo being a Demonstration sport in 1964, then was included in 1972, the results of the year of demonstration should be included with all others. Researchers of the IOC include most of these, including judo. Those which never made it past the demonstration stage should only be footnotes in history.
*****

I had always thought that the use of the term Judo or yawara no michi, was first used by another old school of Kito, Jikishin-ryu, one which split from Kito ryu. I may be totally wrong, but I am almost sure that I had read this and also was told that this was the first use of the term, as it came from my teacher of Kito-ryu, but Terada most surely had used it, and could have well been the first.

Call the above a "mental itch" which needed scratching.:idea:

Mark

Joseph Svinth
26th March 2001, 10:54
Stephen --

The Olympics may not be to blame. Judo competitions in the Meiji Games were more nationalist than internationalist, and in 1941 the Ministry of Education adopted the Nazis' "Strength through Joy" physical education programs almost verbatim. At the same time, school gymnastics (tasen) were renamed "physical discipline" (tairen). Under this scheme, budo was said to include radio transmission, grenade throwing, close-order drill, and races in armor while carrying sandbags.

If that is stretching, then judo definitely became a combative sport following WWII, at which time the Kodokan did its best to divorce itself from the now-discredited militarists. Remember, almost upon arrival, SCAP prohibited the teaching of judo and kendo in Japanese public schools (too individualistic; team sports such as baseball were better, said the Americans, who included men with experience teaching in Japan before WWII). At the same time, SCAP banned the words budo and bushido, as before and during "the Emergency," as the Japanese liked to call World War II, they had become synonyms for Japanese fascism. Still, the Americans had nothing against legitimate sports practiced in a democratic fashion, and as a result sumo tournaments resumed during the winter of 1945-1946, and in November 1946 an All-Japan Judo Yudanshakai was organized. All this has nothing to do with the Olympics, but a lot to do with Japan losing WWII.

Weight divisions, on the other hand, are definitely owed to the Olympics: Avery Brundage said judo needed them to get his support, and as Brundage was Mr. Olympics in those days, it got them.

Mark --

An offshoot of Kito-ryu known as the Jikishin-ryu used the word "judo" during the 18th century, and according to Kano, this is where he got the idea.

indomaster
30th March 2001, 22:20
Originally posted by Stephenjudoka
Is Judo a sport?.
To many practioners Judo is purely a sport( Another form of jacket wrestling). To others Judo is not only an art it is a way of life.
What did Kano want Judo to be?.
Who was it who pushed it to be an Olympic sport?.
What do practioners want it to be?.
I look forward to your thoughts and replies.

Thanks

Stephen Sweetlove

indomaster
30th March 2001, 22:54
Originally posted by Stephenjudoka
Is Judo a sport?.
To many practioners Judo is purely a sport( Another form of jacket wrestling). To others Judo is not only an art it is a way of life.
What did Kano want Judo to be?.
Who was it who pushed it to be an Olympic sport?.
What do practioners want it to be?.
I look forward to your thoughts and replies.

Thanks

Stephen Sweetlove

Selamat (hello) stephen,

Difficult questions, but interesting.
First of all..try to understand this from the 'asian side'.
The 'person' is not so important but the 'group'is.
So, every dicipline(such as judo) is a way to make the group strong in mind and body.
This is for the welfare of the whole country.In this way the group or country can manage
himself without help from others.
Mr.Kano wanted to give his contribution to his country and he did!!!(in many ways,not only judo)
With these great teachers a generation can grow strong and pass it on to the next one.
For example what sort of impact these teachings can have I speak of my own country
Indonesia. Before second world war Indonesia was a colony from the netherlands for
300 years. How they behaved was typically for westerners(sorry to say) they feel superior.
Until the Japanese came and conquer...they told us that the europeans were not that strong.
'We have beaten them'...so thanks to the Japanese the Indonesian people regained their
selfconfidence...and we kicked the dutch out of our country .
This is what these disciplines can bring to the nation...strong selfconfidence .Welfare to the people.Look
The question of olympic judo did came from the west .Why??? Always trying to be superior as individu.

sorry if I did give 'bad' opinions about western people.

eric kasanwidjojo.

Stephenjudoka
31st March 2001, 10:02
An interesting reply. I am supprised at the political interest my questions have aroused.

I did not mean for this subject to be political. However I have read the replies with great interest and discovered Judo has a diversity of followers.

It is obvious to me that Judo affects everyone in different ways. This proves that Judo besides being a sport is a way of life to many.

Lets continue this interesting debate.

Stephen Sweetlove

MarkF
2nd April 2001, 07:03
Lets continue this interesting debate.

Stephen Sweetlove


So why not? Keep the discussion going. So since taiho jutsu contests are so similar (in scoring anyway) to the Sport Judo Mike Swain is promoting, is this a good way of managing contests?

In Mike's New Sport Judo, Ippon doesn't end a match, and neither do tap outs, at least I think the tap out doesn't end the contest. Only the clock ends it.

Mark

Ben Reinhardt
2nd April 2001, 14:33
Originally posted by MarkF


So why not? Keep the discussion going. So since taiho jutsu contests are so similar (in scoring anyway) to the Sport Judo Mike Swain is promoting, is this a good way of managing contests?

In Mike's New Sport Judo, Ippon doesn't end a match, and neither do tap outs, at least I think the tap out doesn't end the contest. Only the clock ends it.

Mark

Hi Mark,

I think in Swain's version of the rules a tap out ends the match.

Sport Judo isn't going anywhere fast as far as I can tell. Haven't heard anything of it for quite a while.

Ben Reinhardt

Stephenjudoka
2nd April 2001, 23:56
I have just got back from Judo. What a great night I have not been able to go to Judo for two weeks and this was my first visit.

Judo is not a sport it is a war. I have had thirty odd Judoka trying to kill me and in turn I have been trying to kill them.

Where else can you have a good old fashioned punch up and then go for a drink and socialising with the people you have been fighting/playing.

You have a long discussion - maybe you were thrown - but you say to your opponent - "that was a great throw"
then you discuss it further have a laugh and a joke and then go home happy.

Mind you I am not looking forward to the aches and pains in the morning.

Judo is many things, today I have had a great night, all my worries were forgotten and I was amongst friends. These friends for a little while were my foe(during training) but for a long time they will be my friends.

I have found Judo friends are my real friends, always there when you need help.

Judo is a sport, Judo is a way of life and for me today a great stress relief.

Stephen Sweetlove

indomaster
3rd April 2001, 04:34
Originally posted by Stephenjudoka
I have just got back from Judo. What a great night I have not been able to go to Judo for two weeks and this was my first visit.

Judo is not a sport it is a war. I have had thirty odd Judoka trying to kill me and in turn I have been trying to kill them.

Where else can you have a good old fashioned punch up and then go for a drink and socialising with the people you have been fighting/playing.

You have a long discussion - maybe you were thrown - but you say to your opponent - "that was a great throw"
then you discuss it further have a laugh and a joke and then go home happy.

Mind you I am not looking forward to the aches and pains in the morning.

Judo is many things, today I have had a great night, all my worries were forgotten and I was amongst friends. These friends for a little while were my foe(during training) but for a long time they will be my friends.



hallo step[hen,

good to hear Judo i s your great love in this life.
We also have this in semarang, but the members of this club can only stay
member if they accept fights.
If they don.t accept then ..no more member. 'cause what is the use of these techniques
if you can't put them in practise.?
Life here can be quite dangerous...if you lose a fight ....most of the time seriously hurt or killed.
Therefore judo is not an art but a skill. An art such as painting...two people can look to the
painting and say....ohh nice or not so nice......but judo,two people fighting...only one winner and one loser.....no discussion about nice ,beautiful,or whatever.
OUr judo is streetfightingoriented, not grappling to much...people overhere don't wear
thick cloathing,only t shirt , Shime waza....without grappling but used with 'filing' technique.
Many punches(very short ones)fingerjabs ,elbow,knee low kicks are used to down.
Groundfighting only if nesceserry.
Martial arts clubs in indonesia cannot advertise openly...many challengers can come...fighting is a deadly
'game'.
Therefore judo is my great love 'cause I'm still alive because of it.

by by

eric kasanwidjojo




Judo is a sport, Judo is a way of life and for me today a great stress relief.

Stephen Sweetlove

MarkF
3rd April 2001, 09:34
Originally posted by indomaster
Groundfighting only if nesceserry.
Martial arts clubs in indonesia cannot advertise openly...many challengers can come...fighting is a deadly
'game'.
Therefore judo is my great love 'cause I'm still alive because of it.



And


Originally posted by Stephen Sweetlove
I have found Judo friends are my real friends, always there when you need help.

Judo is a sport, Judo is a way of life and for me today a great stress relief.



******
Different strokes for different folks. On my door, it says judo.

Best Regards,

Mark