For Non-Athletes

What is the secret to Judo? Never miss practice.
Jigoro Kano, Founder of Judo

Judo starts from where you are.  Judo is for everybody.

You don’t need to be a star athlete, a gym rat, or in training for the Ultimate Fighter or a UFC match.  People of all ages, shapes and sizes can learn and practice Judo. All it takes is the willingness to start where you are with the strength, flexibility, endurance, and body awareness that you have right now.

You will gain strength, become more flexible and find your endurance improving as you come to practice again and again. Because Judo works the whole body, you’ll find your whole body is improving.

A central part of Judo is learning how to use your body. We all learned how to do remarkably complex things (like walking) when we were little kids. Part of the deep joy of Judo is learning how to get your body to do things you never even imagined you could do. We can’t make you younger, but we can make you feel younger.

If you have a particular challenge, we can work with you. Sensei Terence is certified to coach Blind and Low-Vision Athletes. We have worked with injuries and long-term disabilities from flat feet to missing body parts.  Judo is for every body. We learn a lot from applying Judo principles according to the capacity of the individual student.

While we focus on sport Judo, not everyone is destined to become a serious or even a casual competitor. Even if the thought of Judo match makes your stomach hurt, there is a path of study and progress for you.  You can demonstrate kata or just stay at the club and enjoy the workouts. Judo is for everybody.

Practicing Before Promotions

Practicing Before Promotion Exam

When I competed at the World Masters, I met a withered, hunchbacked 75 year old Japanese competitor. He had flown from Japan to compete in Montreal, Canada with other players in the 75-80 year old age group. While I admired his love of Judo and his commitment, it struck me as foolish for a man in his condition to enter an international Judo event. It seemed he could barely walk.

When I saw him fight, I watched him throw his first opponent with tomoe-nage (stomach throw) for ippon to win the match. This beautiful throw – hurling his opponent ten feet in the air – was accomplished by someone who knew how to use his body for maximum efficiency. His apparent limitations did not matter. He had learned to use what he could do, and not be limited by what he couldn’t.

I was the foolish one for not being able to see that advanced capacity. I learned that day that Judo really is for every body and for every age.

Terence McPartland


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