Judo Facts for Kids – 5 Exquisite Facts about Judo

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Updated on: Educator Review By: Michelle Connolly

Judo is an amazing martial art! Let’s discover five exquisite judo facts for kids.

Judo Facts for Kids Fact Number 1: The Name Judo Means ‘Gentle-way’

Judo is a martial art and sport that was first invented in Japan by a man named  Dr. Jigoro Kano. You may be wondering how Judo, a martial art, could mean Gentle-way. Even though Judo has a huge focus on throws, takedowns, chokes and joint-locks, it does stay away from strikes. Strikes are only allowed in Kata practice, where the person and their partner practise pre-arranged Judo patterns. Strikes are not allowed in free practice or competition.

Judo Facts for Kids
Dr. Jigoro Kano

Judo Facts for Kids Fact Number 2: Judo Was The First to Use Coloured Belts

Judo was the first sport and martial art to use coloured belts. These coloured belts were used to tell a student’s rank. There are 6 ranks/ colours in beginner Judo. Brown belt, blue belt, green belt, orange belt, yellow belt and white belt. Once a student completes the beginners grades which are called Kyu grades they can compete for black belts in the Dan grades. The 10th Degree Black Belt is the highest rank a jūdōka can earn. A jūdōka is someone who practises Judo.

Judo Facts for Kids LearningMole
Two martial artists fighting each other

Judo is practised all over the world everyday. Do you know anyone who practises Judo or do you practise Judo? Eventhough Judo originated in Japan, it has become very popular worldwide, entering the Olympics almost 60 years ago. France has more than 600,000 jūdōkas. That is more than the number of people who practise Judo in Japan. It is believed that over 50 million people practise Judo in the world. Judo has also become very popular in many colleges and schools all over the world.

Judo Facts for Kids Fact Number 4: Judo Entered into The Olympics in 1964

Judo was first introduced into the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Only men were allowed to take part in Judo in the Olympics. There were only four weight classes at the time, lightweight, middleweight, heavyweight and openweight. Now there are 6 to 7 weight classes for both men and women. Women were officially allowed to take part in Judo at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. In 1988, Judo was also introduced into the Seoul Paralympics.

Judo Facts for Kids

Judo Facts for Kids Fact Number 5: Judo Came from Jujutsu

Jujutsu, an older and popular form of martial arts, can be seen throughout the practices of Judo. Jujutsu uses similar techniques to Judo. Kano, the founder of Judo, created the new martial art of Judo using the techniques of Jujutsu but removing any techniques he thought were dangerous. There are two types of techniques practised in Judo.

These are groundwork and feet work. Ground work, you guessed it, is when two players are on the ground. The attacker is on the top and the defender is on the bottom. In feet work players stand up and move around the mat using their learned techniques. One player will try to throw their opponent onto the ground and keep them down for 20 seconds to get a point.

Judo Facts for Kids LearningMole
Men practicing Judo together

We hope you enjoyed learning more things about judo as much as we loved teaching you about them. Now that you know how majestic this sport is, you can move on to learn about other sports and activities like: Baseball, Super Bowl, Football World Cup, Gymnastics and Olympic Games.

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