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Kids Judo: Why is it A Great Martial Art And Sport

Kids Judo: Here is Why Judo Is A Great Martial Art And Sport For Your Child?

Kids Judo participants develop not just physical strength, but their mental strength and their character as well. With millions of children practising the sport and art. When most kids start, it is usually a hit with them. Simply put: It is incredible! And the reason why Judo is a great martial art and sport for your child is that it develops the body, mind and soul

Development Of Kid's Body Through Judo

Kids Judo is a sport that involves one of the widest ranges of body movement available helping kids build all those muscle groups and helping them to an active life. It teaches people to emphasise efficiently using their leverage, balance, technique, timing, and skill for every movement to win.

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Children who participate in any sport have a reduced risk of childhood obesity, heart disease, and osteoporosis, through adulthood. Kids Judo is no exception, from strength to agility to stamina. Setting the foundation for them to become healthy and active adults who appreciate the importance of physical activity.


Another great benefit of Judo for a child’s development is coordination. Judo is a very technical martial art that requires a lot of coordination. Through practice, children learn how to use their bodies in a coordinated manner in order to throw the opponent. As time goes by, children will learn how to use their legs and arms in unison along with changing levels against a resisting opponent which is an excellent way to develop a child’s coordination.

Children learn how to roll and lift up others. All of this develops a child’s physical attributes in a safe, natural and healthy manner so coordination is also developed

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We help our youth learn by teaching proper techniques and body biomechanics.

It helps develop good core and general strength and done correctly is less injury prone. The movements in Judo result in increased flexibility and balance.

    Ukemi: Falling Safely (Break Falls - “Receiving Body,”)

After warm-ups, Judo classes start with Ukemi, which literally means “receiving body,” and teach students how to fall properly before learning anything else. You must learn to fall correctly to avoid getting hurt in the practice of competition. Students (Judoka) have to become comfortable with falling and falling the correct way. The reality of Judo is that you will get thrown often, so you need to learn to break falls.

Picture of two kids Judo players, one doing Hiza Guruma

Development Of Kid's Body Through Judo

Ukemi is a physical skill that tempers the body and builds muscle and has significant applications in life. Kids being kids, will insist on coming off bicycles, falling out of trees or just plain falling. By learning how to fall safely (like stuntmen) they may avoid the breaks saving them pain and the expense of taking care of injuries that may now be avoidable with good Ukemi.

    Pent Up Energy

I'm not sure if this is body or mind perhaps both but Judo is right up there with other great sports with ways to provide an outlet for pent-up energy with exercises such as running, stretching, and jumping rope.

kids judo as with all Judo is a continuous test of body and mind.

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Development Of Kid's Mind Through Judo

Regular training in judo develops the mind as well as the body. Some of the things Judo teaches the mind are:

  • Observation of the situation, people and environment
  • Moving strategically and seizing the initiative
  • Acting decisively by considering the whole picture
  • Knowing when to stop
  • Always be prepared for a contest

These lessons aren’t directly taught but rather naturally infused into training. They decrease the chance of being ‘frozen’ during an unexpected confrontation. An improved mental reaction also leads to an improved physical reaction. A quick assessment of the situation and surroundings and reacting accordingly is especially important.

    Goal Orientated

As children become more skilful in Judo they also become more goal orientated.

    Problem Solving

When introduced to free practice (Randori) and Competition (Shiai – a Japanese word that means to test one's self) your child will enter a semi-uncontrolled setting. They will need to think on their feet and learn to adapt to the situation. The skills that they have lean will inspire self-development and will teach your child to ask questions that will empower them such as ‘how can I avoid this situation and ‘how can I improve in this area.

    Belts And Ranking

Belts and ranking are great ways to help children track their progress and motivate them to strive higher. Belts contribute to your child's confidence and desire to succeed. A system of coloured belts indicates the knowledge and skill levels of the Judoka.

In many cases, the first belt promotion can be attained in a few weeks. When children obtain that first belt, and most everyone not just children loves to have a symbol of their hard work, it shows them that with the right motivation, they can succeed. One belt is never enough, once a child passes one he or she is already thinking about the next one.

Picture of a Kids Judo game for developing strategy by learning to avoid obstacles at the same time as trying to throw whilst avoiding being thrown by their partner
Development Of Kid's Mind Through Judo

    Emphasis On Individual Achievement

In martial arts, each child’s success is based on his or her own individual qualities. Yes, your child will not always win in their class, but that will be because they tried and lost, not because they were not good enough to make it off the bench. Unlike other sports where they may not even get to play the game, kids Judo is one-on-one so they will always be opportunities for them to play. Knowing that their own ambition and hard work are what will drive them to succeed. They are motivated to follow their dreams without the fear of not having the chance to be a part of the game.

    Increased Concentration Focus and Attention

Whilst no promises can be made children’s concentration has been known to increase exponentially after they start practising kids Judo. This is because they get used to following very detailed and specific instructions from their teachers paired with focusing deeply on their own movements. Many feel like they really want to learn and they’re really engaged, which pushes them to focus more.

If you have ever watched a Judo match you could be forgiven for thinking it is just rough and tumbles. But a Judoka learns problem-solving skills. Everything you learn is a mentally stimulating puzzle. Judo requires a lot of practice and strategy and that puzzle gets more and more complex as you learn more and you face more skilled opponents. Concentration, focus and attention to detail are a natural part of learning Judo.

Perhaps the best part is that these skills are not just limited to judo, but can also extend to other areas of life. For example, studying, taking care of their hygiene, doing chores at home, etc.

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Development Of Kid's Soul (Character) Through Judo

    Develops Good Character

At its core, Judo if allowed, develops good character. Respect and politeness are built into it and is a guiding principles for all those who study it. It teaches students how to face adversity and potentially how to overcome it.

Other things that are built into training and will become part of the child's character over time, if they are open to it are confidence and self-esteem; self-control and discipline; humility and responsibility as well as thoughtfulness.


As a martial art, Judo focuses on building Emotional Health through the three R's Respect for yourself (self-respect), respect towards others, including opponents, and elders and teachers. In tune, this nurtures their trust and confidence so they can grow as balanced and emotionally healthy young adults.

Respect is taught from The First Lesson and is the central lesson of Judo. From the initial bow to avoiding injury of yourself and others, it is a lesson that your child will learn time and time again and that can carry through to all aspects of life.

Judo also instils good sportsmanship. At the beginning and end of a match, both contestants must bow to their opponent as a sign of respect. These acknowledgements signify their willingness to engage for each other’s benefit and to respect winning or losing as learning.

    Confidence And Self-Esteem

The very things that make Judo good for developing the mind are also good for developing self-esteem. The lack the confidence and self-esteem of many kids which inhibits their ability to reach their full potential are diminished as children develop their skills. The more skilful they become the more their confidence increases.

The problem-solving nature of Judo on the mat, its tactical and ever-changing environment requires you to think on your feet. This is one of the best ways to instil confidence and self-esteem in your child. Forcing them to be resourceful, helps them understand that they can overcome challenges regardless of how big or small they might be.

Add to that the feeling of doing a throw well cannot be overstated. You are not restricted to Shiai (full contest) to get that thrill. That feeling is only enhanced when you know that your partner knows how to fall and you are not out to hurt them.

    Self Control And Discipline

Judo is powerful, where skills are practised on another human being. A sport that is unbounded by self-control and discipline, if pushed too far, can result in injury. As your child starts to realise their physical potential and gain strength, and fighting ability, their self-control should improve.

Judo teaches self-control and discipline because it requires a child to focus on mastering the techniques without hurting their partner. This will help also improve their understanding of putting in time and effort in order to gain results. This quickly translates into other real-world activities, especially into studying better at school and learning that the work they put into something will reap the rewards that the work deserves.

    Humility and Responsibility

As we are growing up we’re still searching for our identity. That’s why we test our boundaries more, particularly during our teenage years. Judo allows children and teens to test their boundaries in a controlled environment and doing so helps them learn more about themselves.

You have to learn to respect your training partners and your teachers. You learn that you can't blame others for your shortcomings. You have to take responsibility for what you are responsible for. You learn that if you can't do something, a throw, for example, it's usually your own fault and you have to find out what you are doing wrong and fix yourself not write it off as the problem of someone else.


The ideal example of this is an incident involving Professor Kano Himself. He wanted to show Judo to the world and in 1889 he went to Europe. Aboard a ship during his voyage, a well-known event occurred when a fellow traveller challenged Professor Kano. The Professor threw the man but put his hand under the man’s head to prevent him from getting hurt. This illustrates that, from inception, Judo is intended to consider the welfare of even our opponents.

    Mitigate The Consequences Of That Fall

Whilst Ukemi is a physical skill that tempers the body and builds muscle, it also develops the sole because it teaches you that you can fall and mitigate the consequences of that fall.

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Judo Is More Than Just a Martial Art or Sport, It Is Education For Life

When you learn Judo you learn more than just throwing and grappling and self-defence, you learn life skills. Beginning with a bow as a sign of respect, the lessons continue, learning how to coordinate and balance your life as well as your body, and mind. And possibly the most important thing is that when things or life in general throw you, you can fall and get back up and mitigate injury in the process.

As well as mastering the art of Judo, participants also learn the art of Randori, which is seen as a form of physical chess. Participants soon realise that they are more capable than they first thought, testing their minds and bodies against their opponents.

Just as in life, participants will be thrown, pinned down and challenged, pushing them to learn and study from their mistakes. Judo is a sport that challenges the mind and body to work as one!

When you learn Judo, you don’t just learn how to defend yourself better, you learn to control and trust your body as well. And the benefits of Judo, like most martial arts, are both physical and mental.

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