16 September 2020



Federations and National Governing Bodies have a range of responsibilities from elite training and development, creating policies such as anti-doping, organizing competitions, to one of the most important and perhaps most difficult roles in some countries – increasing the popularity of the sport and promoting participation. Every judo federation aims to acquire new memberships and incorporating Taiso in to their program might just be the missing piece.

Kata, Shiai, Randori and Taiso. What is Taiso?

Tai (Body) and So (hardening) is the Japanese word that means exercises or calisthenics. Taiso is a modern method built from traditional judo preparation exercises which allows you to properly prepare, protect and improve your body. This type of exercise is beneficial for all age categories, from senior citizens to elite athletes. It strengthens your muscles, increases flexibility, aids in injury prevention (prehabilitation/rehabilitation), and helps you learn how to relax. The Taiso training programme consists of coordination, movement, strength and breathing.

DJB and Taiso

The German Judo Federation (DJB) in cooperation with North Rhine-Westphalian Judo Association (NWJV) has added a fun new exercise programme to their curriculum, Taiso. After yoga from India and tai chi from China, the Japanese Taiso is being welcomed in Germany as a 4th form of judo training after Kata, Randori and Shiai. Taiso has been successful in the judo nations of Japan and France for many years, in Japan, Taiso is even broadcasted on their morning radio programmes, known as Radio Taiso and this form of exercise has been around for over 80 years.

According to Nana Tsmakuridze, Taiso’s DJB coordinator,

Taiso is a flexible project. Everyone can practice Taiso, from former judokas, newcomers, parents, judo children, and non-judoka. Anyone that wants to do something for their health can participate. We want to win new members but also most importantly keep our older members.

The goal of the DJB Taiso project is to acquire new members and give judo clubs a higher possibility to attract non-judoka to their dojos because of its yoga and tai-chi principles.

“Taiso Day”

Taiso is still in the beginning stages in Germany, but it has quickly attracted interest in many dojos. Even German National team members like Mortiz Plafky is involved in the project.

Taiso can even be a solution for clubs that are not allowed to practice due to Covid-19 restrictions. This training programme gives judo clubs another option to stay ‘judo fit’ since it does not require a partner to practice. There has been so much interest in Taiso that the German Judo Federation has decided to hold a “Taiso Day” on November 1st, 2020, for coaches and trainers to take a training course and learn more about the Taiso project.

To review Taiso movements and more information regarding Taiso Day visit the DJB Taiso page.

Author: Hannah Martin