Originated as a martial art and now one of the most popular Japanese traditional sports, Judo has been through a long way. However, there is a long history connected to the birth and popularity of Judo in recent times.
You may know it as a sport, but there is much more about Judo. Filled with interesting facts, Judo is now a sport being played in Olympics. So let’s get started and see what there is to know about traditional Japanese sports.
How Was Judo Born?
The history of Japan and its list of traditions is a never-ending one. Judo may have been created in 1882 by combining jujutsu and other close combat elements, but it is a great mixture of various sports. You may be thinking if it was created in 1882, then how it is ancient and a tradition; let us explain that as well.
As we mentioned, Judo includes the elements of jujutsu, and jujutsu is one of the ancient sports with roots lying till sumo. So you can even call Judo a modern and global form of sumo and jujutsu.
How was Judo Developed in Such a Short Time?
As you may know, Japan was once filled with fierce and brave soldiers, commonly known as samurais. The use of jujutsu and other close combat techniques kept the spirit alive. However, during this, the name Judo wasn’t titled to their techniques.
It all happened when western culture evolved in Japan after the Meiji restoration. It is all the work of a single man who worked in creating Judo as a separate sport.
The First Man Who Founded Judo
When western culture started showing its effect on Japanese society, it was the time when the popularity of Japanese tradition started declining. However, during this time, one passionate man didn’t bow down to western modernization.
When jujutsu was declining, Kano Jigaro excelled in jujutsu and never gave up on his training. Through his techniques, he combined jujutsu with other elements, which is how Judo came into existence.
At the start, he was only 21 years old and had nine students who believed in him. However, this was not it, as he knew how important it is to make it popular worldwide to ensure that Judo remains alive for ages.
He would face this biggest challenge, but he never gave up as he knew that sky was the limit.
Jigaro’s Effort To Make Judo Popular Worldwide
Jigaro knew that Judo was going to be popular in Japan. But the whole world should be aware of it and enjoy the sport. So Jigaro started his mission by visiting Europe.
At the start, he faced criticism, but that only made him stronger. First, he started with Europe, which boosted the success of his mission. Then, working on the international Olympics committee, nothing would stop Jigaro.
The efforts of Jigaro and the passion of his students ensured that Judo was going to be added to the list of sports played in the Olympics. And that is what happened. People like Jigaro inspire other emerging players.