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Spirit of Judo: Can Every Athlete Learn Something From Judokas?

The Spirit of Judo and Your Sport and Passion

I came across this article and I wondered.

Image of Newport Judo Logo - This article is about Spirit of Judo: Can Every Athlete Learn Something From Judokas?
Stand Tall: Respect and Affect
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I think I understand where the writer is coming from. Certainly, there has been no other sport that held my interest the way Judo does.

I can happily walk past a television that is showing any other sport and not blink an eye. Much to the dismay of the Australian rules and rugby league population that I am surrounded by. They just don't hold my interest.

I will participate, in that I will always be happy to listen to people tell me the scores of their favourite game that was on over the weekend but as hard as I try not to, my eyes will glaze over the moment they try to give me a blow by blow description of it. But that is not what happens when I have a conversation about Judo

Why is everybody's sport passion different?

I have no idea but I think that every sportsperson feels that their sport has something to give that no other sport can.

Certainly, discipline is something that any person who wants to succeed in anything is going to have to have.

Is the discipline of Judo unique in some way?

Well, it is in the same sense that any sport that is tough on the body is going to be. There is no doubt that Judo requires a certain mindset to continue when every part of your body is screening, Stop! And there is no doubt that because of the throwing and landing and grappling, it is harder on a body than most but not harder than all others.

The Spirit Of Judo: Image of the torso of a person in a Judo Gi with white belts
Thinking About The Spirit of Judo

Is the respect in Judo unique?

Well, it turns out that Judo is one of a, seemingly ever-diminishing group of sports where respect is extremely strong.

I remember sitting in a conference and the discussion turned to "sledging"; a term that had become synonymous with abusing other players, coaches, referees as well as parents and even the children of parents. Everybody was considered fair game regardless of the sporting code and the discussion revolved around how to stop it.

The leader of the discussion turned to me and inquired why I and the gentleman behind me had been so silent, as everybody else had been very vocal.

I replied that I didn't know how to be involved in the discussion because sledging was so unfamiliar to me, in that in all my years of Judo, I had never heard anybody be involved in sledging. This is not in the spirit of Judo.

The gentleman behind me who was involved with Fencing gave a similar response.

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When the leader asked why we thought that was, we both replied that the culture of respect was so ingrained that I don't think anyone would have thought about doing such a thing. Besides, the referees carry so much power that I don't think you would last long in the sport if you tried.

Maybe it also had something to do with the fact one might be a little wary about offending someone when it is part of the sport to plough your partner into the ground or, in Fencing's case stick something sharp into your chest.

So Judo is one of a smaller group of sports that teachers respect and the unfortunate reality is that there are too many sports that don't. But Judo is not the only sport that teaches respect.

What am I saying here?

Judo has a lot to teach as the author of the original article has clearly shown but as much as I love the sport, what it has to offer is not unique.

It's All About The Judo Spirit Of Judo

It is in the spirit of Judo to teach you, heart. It is in the spirit of Judo to teach you courage. It is in the spirit of Judo to teach you persistence. It is in the spirit of Judo to teach you discipline and many other things. Most of all it is in the spirit of Judo to teach you respect, something that fewer and fewer sports will teach you. Of this, I and all Judoka can be very proud. But other sports also teach these things so it is not unique in this.

But there is one thing in which Judo is unique. No other sport will teach you all these things in the same way that Judo will.

That's the reason I love Judo. And I suspect that's the reason why people love their own sport. Because no other sport will teach the lessons that, that particular sport will teach in the same way that sport will teach it.

If you don't want to learn the things Judo has to teach in the way Judo has to teach them (the spirit of Judo) I guess you won't be learning Judo but some other sport, won't you.

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