Is the IJF really ruining Judo?

Is the IJF really ruining Judo?


What’s up guys? Preston here with another
episode of Grappler Going Abroad. Today I’m talking about something in regards to a comment
I got on one of my videos about the IJF and whether or not the IJF’s restrictive rules
have… are essentially ruining Judo, making it useless for anything other than Olympic
Judo competition. Now 2 years ago, I probably would have agreed with this statement. They
took away the leg grabs, which was one of my biggest weapons coming from a Wrestling
background. So I was a little bit butt-hurt about that. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve
started maturing, changing my game and it’s become less of an issue now. I want to examine
this question and particularly the mindset that goes into saying that “The IJF is ruining
Judo.” But first I want to examine why the IJF is changing the rules. The IOC, the International
Olympic Committee, they base a lot of their decision making off of viewership during the
Olympics. So with that being said, they have to make sure that the IJF is doing what it
needs to do to make sure that Olympic Judo is fun to watch, which means bigger throws,
more activity. So restricting the grip fighting game and taking out the leg grabs, which honestly,
a lot of people who are fans of classical Judo see leg grabs as being ugly takedowns,
ugly throws. So they took those out and made it so you could only get scored for big throws,
you could only score off of big throws. The IJF is doing what it needs to do to ensure
that Judo has a spot in the Olympics. Now whether or not Judo needs to be an Olympic
sport to be successful is a different story. I think Judo being an Olympic sport is great
publicity for Judo as a Martial Art and a Combat Sport. You take Judo out of the Olympics
I’m sure the numbers are going to be astoundingly bad, what happens with membership among all
of the National Governing Bodies in different countries. So I believe Judo needs to remain
an Olympic sport, for the sake of the martial art and for the sake of Judo as a sport. I
think we need to examine the reason why this mindset happens. It takes away people’s weapons
in competition. So people are obviously are going to be a little bit upset about that.
I want to emphasize that this mindset does nothing for sport or the Martial art. All
it does is create resentment and makes the Judo community dysfunctional. There are plenty
of other martial arts out there that have dysfunctional international competition communities
and pockets within themselves. I’ll probably make a video about that at a later date. You
have 3 courses of action that you can take if you’re just completely dissatisfied with
the way the IJF and the National Governing Bodies operate. One, you can fucking quit
Judo. I mean, for someone who has invested a lot of time, if you’re a black belt or if
you train hard, quitting judo isn’t really an option. I know if I was so dissatisfied
with the IJF, I would not quit Judo, I would try to find other options. The other option
is to try and compete under different rule sets. You know AAU has a ruleset that is more
traditional, it has leg grabs, AAU Freestyle Judo. You can try moving into Sambo. The 3rd
option is to suck it up and change your game. That’s really all there is to it. If your
game plan pre-2007, 2006, I can’t remember when they changed the rules at this point,
if you’re so dissatisfied with that, that they took away your biggest weapons. You know
a show of a good judoka, a good competitor, a good sportsman, a good martial artist is
flexibility. Being able to modify your strategy to fit whatever rules you’re fighting under.
Whether or not you’re training for self defense, or training for sport. With that being said,
those are your 3 options. That’s all I got for you guys today. Hopefully you guys like
this video, I know I’m probably going to upset some people by saying what I’m saying. But
frankly, I really don’t care. I’ve dealt with this narrative before with myself, kind of
wrestled with whether I wanted to continue doing Judo or move into a different sport.
Honestly, I don’t think the narrative does anything for anybody. I think it really challenges
you as a judoka to push forward, continue progressing, if anything you may get a few
more tools out of the rule changes. Then if and when it goes back to leg grabs, you’ll
be able to have a few more tactical elements along with your leg grab techniques. Again,
that’s all I got for you guys today. If you like this video, please like it, share it,
comment on it. If you guys want to see more of my videos, be sure to slam that subscribe
button. Don’t forget, I have my Patreon page open, I’m getting ready to go to Japan in
a couple of months. So if you want to support my start up costs for moving to Japan, be
sure to check that out. If you want to help me liquidate my student loans or just help
me continue putting out great content, be sure to check that out. My name is Preston
and this has been Grappler Going Abroad.

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20 thoughts on “Is the IJF really ruining Judo?”

  • Israel Raphael Montoya ortega says:

    I think ijf ir running judo but I love judo I have to adapt my judo and create a new style for my judo game.
    By the way great video

  • Why can't they just have those rules for the olympics, but still teach Judo with all of the existing rules when it comes to club level?

  • I hate it that you can't grap the leg now, jeah that you can grap 2 legs at once oke I can live with that. but now gata garuma or a ko soto gari with one hand on the sleeve and one hand on the leg…. I hate it that just that is gone

  • It depends. My instructor has done judo since he was a child, since the 60's. He's seen the ijf change the rules or not allow techniques it's ridiculous. Like telling teachers not to focus on ground work anymore or not scoring ippon for sacrifice throws. Of course people change but many have left and went to BJJ. You'll find plenty BJJ guys who also done judo.

  • IJF has done absolutely nothing for Judo as a martial art and Judo is no longer a martial art.  There is a slight martial art aspect in Judo, but due to the profligation of sport judo, it is rarely taught.  Judo, BJJ, Aikido, etc are not martial arts because they were not designed for war.  Since Judo is Japanese, the Japanese definition of the word martial, or bu (武) is the only appropriate definition…..thus, martial art means arts for use in war. Self defense is a very secondary, or even tertiary part and sport is merely a training method. I don't expect a good response…….sometimes the truth hurts.

  • AdamIsForGiants says:

    My club practices with AAU free style rules unless there is a competition with a different rule style planned. Its more fun and more entertaining to watch.

  • Leg grabs and grip breaks were banned in the 2013-2016 Olympic cycle.

    Grip breaks (and all restrictions on gripping) were removed for the 2017-2020 Olympic cycle, but the ban on leg grabs remains.

    In terms of making Judo more spectator friendly, I think it's pretty uncontroversial that removing leg grabs absolutely made judo more awesome to watch, especially lighter weight categories. At high level international tournaments, the number of matches ending in ippon skyrocketed. At lightweights (the weight category most affected and most targeted by the leg grab ban), the standard boring tactic of staying on the outside and relying on false attacks or low percentage te-guruma's in hopes of a yuko became obsolete. From a spectator standpoint, I think IJF did a great job on the rules for the last Olympic cycle.

    On the flip side, it's less practical as a martial art. As the video says, you can try to find other events to compete in, like freestyle judo or sambo. Another idea is to supplement your training by learning wrestling, which is another great sport with a ton of restrictions that make it less practical as a martial art. And finally, you can drill the leg grab techniques; it's a bummer that you can't apply it in an IJF tournament, but if your goal is to be well-rounded at all aspects of jacket wrestling, then you can't just rely on competition rules to guide your training.

  • For me they ruin it, but just in competition or Olympic things, in my club we are less restrictive with ijf rules, and i have never feel that i need to know some "ijf prohibited technic" when i roll against bjj guys.

  • Gilbert Tibor Jakub says:

    I am so glad more and more coaches and clubs are joining to the Freestyle judo federation to go back to the real Kodokan Judo insteed of this IJF bullshit!

  • “Judo should be free as art and science from any external influences, political, national, racial, and financial or any other organized interest. And all things connected with it should be directed to its ultimate object, the Benefit of Humanity. Human sacrifice is a matter of ancient history.” ―Jigoro Kano

    the IJF is sacrificing their own character to gain popularity and profit and don't really care about judo.

    I think you're looking at it from too narrow a view its not just that you might not be able to use a technique that may have been a favorite which is relatively minor really; the bigger issue is that now judoka aren't learning to watch out for and defend against these techniques if judo is going to call it's self a martial art it cant neglect these areas this video seems to just focus on the restrictive rules on throwing but it doesn't end there, because of the newaza rules it's neglected by most and even the ones that do work at it often don't include techniques which are effective but banned such as shoulder locks or leg locks

    and really when it comes down to it the spectators don't matter, judo is about making the best out of your self, not compromising your self 364 days of the year so that some strangers can be entertained 1 day out of the year. the real judoka will continue to learn, practice and pass on these techniques

  • create a "greco" division, dont destroy the sport by banning a traditional technique, New IJF rules=fear of wrestlers and misguided attempt to make the sport more exciting. Judo used to be an awesome combat sport now its just a silly game. Competition judo practice will get you beat up in real life, avoid the silly game until they return the sport to its foundation!

  • Banning leg grabs was an embarrassing admission that wrestling was more effective by IJF. Judo has a declining restrictive mindset. I left & went to BJJ where there’s a growth mindset. If you guys follow BJJ you’ll be astounded at the growth and change in the last 20 years.

  • Should I get in touch with ijf to try to make a change? I'm thinking of doing a survey to show them how many judokas are upset by their decisions and rules

  • I can't understand why a leg grab is an ugly throw. In my opinion, nothing is more stupid then some forms of drop seoi nages.

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