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Jūdō (柔道) (translation: "the gentle way")

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JUDO (Lit. “the way of softness and flexibility”) A martial art (BUDO) formulated by KANO Jigoro (1860-1938), began to be popularized in 1882 just as JUJUTSU plunged into decay. As a synthesis JUDO is a mature form of JUJUTSU or a BUDO form. JUDO tuned itself toward physical education and culture. Although originally a means of training, modern JUDO has over-emphasized contests, a sportive interpretation. The founder, KANO, never wished for sportive aspects to dominate JUDO.KANO had studied combat SUMO and a great variety of JUJUTSU RYU; he actually gained proficiency in the KITO and TENSHINSHINYO RYU. From these RYU he built most of his JUDO system, which includes techniques of throwing (NAGE-WAZA), grappling (NE-WAZA), ATEMI and resuscitation, all systematically arranged for study. While toning down the combat elements of JUJUTSU, KANO nevertheless required a study of self-defence situations made in KATA or pre-arranged form practice. These and the SHIAI (“contest”) applications of his techniques were training methods leading to the perfection of mind and body. International JUDO grew out of KANO’s efforts as the “mother school” has given technical leadership to the proliferation of JUDO all over the world. It is with KANO’s development of the unique ranking system to identify his exponents of JUDO that he unintentionally placed a strong influence on the BUDO forms developing during the MEIJI and TAISHO eras. All BUDO systems have adopted KANO’s rank structure (KYU,DAN), which classifies trainees as MUDANSHA (“ungraded”) and YUDANSHA (“graded”) in terms of KYU (“class”) and DAN (“grade”) respectively.

This ranking system is totally absent in the classical BUGEI forms (JUTSU systems).

by Thomas Plavecz: www.judoencyclopedia.jimdo.com