La web del Judoka. Also available in english.
  What is Judo?
 

WHAT IS JUDO?





The judo is a martial art founded by Jigoro Kano, in 1882.
This sir started to interested in the jiu-jitsu in the age of 15,
When he had just arrived to tokio. Jigoro Kano was a boy of a weak aspect,
thin constitution and it was difficult to gain combats against bigger
opponents.This is the reason in order that one day, Kano, which had
been studying jiu-jitsu many years, was deciding to apply some scientific
fundaments to the jiu-jitsu technics. These fundaments were based in find
the key points, and unbalance the opponent. Such was the level of
rectification of the technics, which finally the judo was born.

Little by little the judo was removing of way to all the styles of martial
arts that in this moment were practised in Japan, even to the jujitsu, style
against which always an enormous rivalry has been had. It is because of it
that today, the judo has turned into the base of the majority of the martial
modern arts.

The necessary equipment to practise judo is formed by the judogi and the
belt. The judogi can be two colors: white or blue. Other color will not be
allowed in official competitions. Now I'm going to speak about the belts.

White: 6th kyu. Symbol of naivety, of purity. With him begins the learning.
Yellow: 5th Kyu. It means that one is in the phase of discovery.
Orange: 4th kyu. It is considered to be a symbol of the illusion.
Green: 3rd kyu. Symbol of hope and of faith.
Blue: 2nd kyu. It symbolizes the idealism.
Brown: 1st kyu. It indicates that the initiation to the knowledge has almost
been ended.
Black: 1st dan. It wants to say that already you are a teacher.

In Japan the only belts that are used are the white, the brown and the black.
Also it is necessary to mention three belts:

Red and white: 6th, 7th and 8th dan.
Red: 9th, 10th and 11th dan (only obtained by 13 judokas).
White of double thickness: 12th dan (only obtained by Jigoro Kano).

The name of the place where it is practised, is "dojo". There are practised
on a few mattresses of 2x1 meters and 5 centimeters of thickness called "tatami"



 
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