Mudanshakai Judo Club

Strength Through Pure Technique

Judo Information for All

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About Judo Scotland's Other National Sport


Judo (full name Kodokan Judo) is an Olympic sport with rules set by The International Judo Federation and recognised throughout the world. It has been an Olympic Sport for men since 1964 and since 1982 for women. Since the 1992 Olympic games in Barcelona, Judo has ranked 2nd as the most universally practised sport and an estimated 8 million people are practising judo players.


Judo can be literally translated as 'the gently way' although its creator, Jigoro Kano, interpreted this as 'maximum efficiency with minimum effort'. The origins of Judo come from the fighting system of ancient Japan- Ju-jitsu. Kano looked at some elements of ju-jitsu and decided to refine, develop, expand and formalise them. By the age of 22 he had completed his system, which he called judo, and opened his first judo school 'The Kodokan' in Tokyo and which still exists today. Jigoro Kano was an exceptional human being, widely regarded as a genius.


Judo is best known for its spectacular throws but also involves wrestling on the ground using special hold downs, strangles and arm locks (for older players). Judo is unique in many ways- it is the only combat sport to be practised full-contact, its respect for fellow players is shown in a special set of formal bows for which there are rules. Judo is a sport which believes in virtues and the passing down of these virtues to players and, ultimately, the greater benefit of society as a whole- the principle of Jite Kyoei, central to Kano's ethos. As a sport it also develops complete body and mental control and fitness. Judo is very much a 'total' body sport and elite judo players are widely regarded as amongst the fittest athletes in the world. If you want to get really fit, judo is the sport for you!


The Scottish are known to be very good judokai (judo players). At the last Commonwealth Games Scotland won 8 judo medals more than in any other sport. Great Britain's last judo world champion was from Scotland, Graeme Randall, who was world champion at -81 kgs in 1999.


Brechin has a long and proud tradition of Judo and there has been a club, in one guise or another, for over 40 years. In its current incarnation of 'Mudanshakwai' it has existed since 1981. Despite being a reasonably small club Brechin has managed to produce Scottish Squad members on a regular basis some of whom have gone on to become GB Team members.