The history of judo starts with Jigorō Kanō. At the time of his adolescence Kanō stood 1.57 m (5 ft 2 in) but weighed only 41 kg (90 lb). He was frequently bullied at school due to his small size and his intellectual nature to the point other students dragged him out of the school buildings to beat him. He wished he were stronger in order to defend himself and a family friend recommended jujutsu, a martial art practiced by the Samurai.After Kanō showed interest in pursuing the teachings of martial arts, his strict father allowed him to do so under one condition - that he would strive to become a master.
Kanō started looking for a jujutsu teacher at Tokyo Imperial University in 1877. While training, he formulated his own opinions about martial arts. In 1882 this eventually led him to develop a martial arts style all his own - Judo. In principle, this style sought to utilize an opponent’s energy against him and eliminated some of the jujutsu techniques he deemed dangerous.
Children around the world practice judo safely and yet still emphasis effective technique during sparring sessions. Kanō espouses mutual welfare and maximum efficiency that includes looking after your partner and ensuring that the techniques are efficient, but more importantly – safe.
In 1886, the Tokyo Police department held its famous tournament to determine which martial art was superior in a true fight. Judo or JuJutsu? Kanō’s disciples defeated the rival school with a decisive thirteen out of fifteen matches and established Judo as the premier Tokyo Police’s training system. This association remains till this day. All new police recruits in Japan must have a black belt in Judo, allowing them to use Judo philosophy and movements, during everyday service, before reaching for the weapon.