Before becoming an Olympic sport in 1964, judo was established as a form of education by Jigoro Kano in 1882. The purpose was to teach physical and mental discipline, and in turn led to the development of our present day values or moral code.
At the core of these values, and probably the easiest to identify is ‘respect’. In training, judoka line up to ‘rei’ before beginning a lesson, in competition both the athletes and coaches bow to one another in a sign of respect. Simply, it is having the admiration for opponents, regardless of their abilities. The ‘bow’ is a sign of respect, of having a worthy opponent and in judo we avoid disrespecting with big celebrations.
To exemplify and promote these values throughout competitive judo and our grassroots level, the European Judo Union Education sector are working hard, and this month are starting a 12 month series, covering both the judo values and Jita Kyoei.
Author: Thea Cowen