By Dave Hammond (5th Dan), JFAUK Midland Area Representative & Head coach of Scarborough Ippon Judo Club
Ever since the days of the old JudoForum, there has been public debates about what Judo authorities and organisations can do to make Judo more poplar as a spectator sport. The anguish has been plain, the debate long and the ideas varied. As public debate moved into the facebook era, the number of threads that talk of glamming up Judo and what needs to be done to attract more viewers has not diminished. Why?
As a Judo enthusiast, somebody who has been practicing for 37 years, I am not in the slightest bothered about TV viewing figures, nor do I care if Judo is not part of the Olympics. I do wish to see a greater take up of Judo as an activity, but as a spectator sport, I care not. In fact, on balance, I am against it.
Now I know that to some that statement is sacrilege, but it certainly does not go against the principles of Judo as I understand them. Removing Judo from the Olympic rosta and down-grading it from being a spectator sport may jolt the power that some governing bodies exert over their members, but on the other hand it just may empower those that wish to practice Judo in its wider sense, those that wish to embrace non-randori techniques. Continue reading by clicking here.