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    Best age for kids to start learning judo?

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    genetic judoka

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    Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by genetic judoka on Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:45 am

    what, in your opinion is the best age to introduce a kid to judo, when the goal is for them to become a lifelong practitioner?

    I am not asking what is the minimum allowable age for a kid to join a dojo, I'm asking what would be the ideal age for them to start if the goal is for them to not get burned out and/or bored and decide they want to quit? obviously there will be substantial variation among individuals, but this is mainly about the discussion of concepts. with that said, stories about variation among individuals are worth sharing for the sake of discussion.

    I'll try to be more specific about what I'm interested in hearing your opinion on:
    what is the best age to start if the goal is for them to willingly continue doing judo for the rest of their life?
    what age is the best age to start if the goal is for them to learn at the highest rate possible?
    what age is the best age to start if the goal is minimum risk of injury?
    (I'm hesitant to include this one) what is the best age to start if the goal is a successful competitive career in judo?

    and here's a fun one: what is the best age at which to stop teaching them like kids, and start treating them like adults on the tatami?

    I don't have any kids, and won't for a few more years if our luck holds. so I have no vested interest in these answers. this is just for the sake of discussion.

    you don't need to have peer reviewed scientific data to answer all the questions in order to be allowed to contribute to this thread. an opinion or anecdote about one or more of the questions is quite acceptable.


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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:04 am

    I think I'd let my kid start judo around 11 or 12. Occasional local comp only until he got his drivers licence at 16 and then let him compete all he likes.

    I'd never teach a kid like a kid. Only like I would an adult.

    Very general tho as it would really be a lot of checking my kid's personality.

    awww...who am I kidding? It'll prolly be up to the wife and rightly so. She's quite the disciplinarian.lol



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    tafftaz

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by tafftaz on Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:29 am

    My son and daughter started at 5 yrs old. Still practising at 23 and 19 with no signs of stopping.
    I take kids at 5 yrs old, and Qmystic you have to treat kids like kids when teaching judo. Children cannot be taught the same way as an adult beginner for many reasons.
    Our youngest classes are 5 -10yrs where a lot of judo related "games" are the bulk of the class. These "games" include all the basics, ukemi, tai sabaki and basic techniques.
    However in an ideal world I would start children at about 11yrs old for optimum benefit.
    We do not, however,live in an ideal world and as sad as it is to say but the junior classes make up the bulk of our membership and they pay the hire costs. Our members are approx. 120+ and about 40 are adults,so do the math.
    That is the reality of most modern judo clubs.
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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:36 am

    tafftaz wrote: and Qmystic you have to treat kids like kids when teaching judo. Children cannot be taught the same way as an adult beginner for many reasons.

    I believe you, Tafftaz. I was being ideal. I should have more accurately stated that I wouldn't teach kids. It sounds like you do and do a good job. I think it requires a talent that I don't have.lol Yet, anyway.


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    tafftaz

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by tafftaz on Fri Jun 07, 2013 5:56 am

    Q mystic wrote:
    tafftaz wrote: and Qmystic you have to treat kids like kids when teaching judo. Children cannot be taught the same way as an adult beginner for many reasons.

    I believe you, Tafftaz. I was being ideal. I should have more accurately stated that I wouldn't teach kids. It sounds like you do and do a good job. I think it requires a talent that I don't have.lol Yet, anyway.

    Sorry mate. Misunderstood your post.
    My old sensei was remarkable at teaching kids. He had a real skill for it. Before he retired I took all the senior and advanced classes for him while he took the kids classes. I will be happy if I get anywhere near his ability when it comes to teaching kids.
    I agree with you that it is a skill in itself and I am by no means the finished article when it comes to teaching children. It is hell of a lot harder than any senior class.
    My son and daughter however help out with the young ones ( my son actually does most of the class) and they are both fast becoming very good at teaching children judo. It does help that they both work in primary schools I suppose.
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    Cichorei Kano

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:01 am

    genetic judoka wrote:what, in your opinion is the best age to introduce a kid to judo, when the goal is for them to become a lifelong practitioner?

    Do you want "personal opinions" or are you interested in the scientific foundations explain what age is more or less appropriate ?

    The answer to your question is difficult because there are other confounders in addition to interindividual differences. "Introduce a kid to judo", but what is that judo ? There are so many clubs where there really is no judo taught to children. Basically, all they do is games, with the exception of some ukemi and perhaps one or two osaekomi. If they wouldn't be wearing gi and colored belt and not be inside a dôjô it would be hard to define what they are doing as jûdô. It is totally different from Japan where they actually do jûdô. I do not write this with intent to start some polemic between club instructors, but only to illustrate that it is really difficult to address the question where the definition of "jûdô for kids" appears so heterogenic. If all you do in kids jûdô training is play games, then the response to the question would not be any different from that to the question "what is the best age to introduce a kids to competitive games in group" ?

    With any competitive games, the number of skills required is limited, and the game somewhat predictable. The kid runs to one point, touches something or picks something up, and runs back after which the next one starts. Pretty straightforwards, repetitive, the next one does exactly what the previous one did with minor adjustments. Such competitive games are not bad. They contribute to development of physiological abilities, train the neuromtor system, balance, but ... it is not judo. In judo the number of different scenarios and trajectories is unlimited, continuous action/reaction, dozens of different techniques, complicated coordination. So, the issue is not just at the side of the child (i.e. the age and interindividual differences in age) but also at the side of the activity itself (just monkeying around in competitive games or true judo ?)

    While kids at very low age 'can' benefit from judo just like they can benefit from about anything that makes them active, the yield is not one of high efficiency. Developmental-psychological and neuro-motor learning knowledge applied to judo has established the age range of 7-11 yrs. Emphasis here is on judo, not just competitive games in general. That is still a 5-year window, but that window is logical given that considerable interindividual differences exist. After this window, abilities temporarily stagnate and even deteriorate due to puberty.


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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:08 am

    tafftaz wrote:
    Q mystic wrote:
    tafftaz wrote: and Qmystic you have to treat kids like kids when teaching judo. Children cannot be taught the same way as an adult beginner for many reasons.

    I believe you, Tafftaz. I was being ideal. I should have more accurately stated that I wouldn't teach kids. It sounds like you do and do a good job. I think it requires a talent that I don't have.lol Yet, anyway.

    Sorry mate. Misunderstood your post.

    Nah. No need, Tafftaz. I said it and you corrected me. thumbup1




    This is an excellent thread topic.


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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:21 am

    CK, so it seems that 7-11 is the ripe age for them to start.

    What about comp tho? Do you teach him excellent judo without comp for some years? Because it seems he would develop into a shodan without comp experience by the time he was 12-14 or so. Wouldn't that hinder him when he goes into comp?

    And if he starts comp early, it seems that he could suffer burn-out young and maybe other future consequences of being a young 'success', like a child-star syndrome(if it's a syndrome).


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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by GregW on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:23 am

    I would ask for what it means to become a "lifelong practitioner." At its broadest definition, judo is a way of life, not just something one does on the tatami. I mention this because of my personal perspective. I began judo at the age of 13 and had to stop at the age of 15 after a family move took me to a remote island in Alaska where there was no dojo. I had earned the rank of junior ikkyu by that time, so I feel like I was a fairly serious student. After all of life's twists and turns, it took me 36 years to step back into a dojo and don a gi again. As I look back on the experience, I never ceased to practice judo in the broadest sense.

    The principle of Ju was a strong influence throughout my life. It was influential in many important decisions. The respect for authority and people in general was always present. Learning to face obstacles and challenges with determination, believing that smart application of principles could overcome "brute force" opposition. Being a gracious winner and being able to keep my chin up in a personal defeat, rising again as needed, was definitely a factor.

    Not to make it sound overly dramatic or anything--I can just see that, once I returned to the mat after 36 years, I really had never stopped practicing judo in the sense of it being a "way." The techniques came back quickly. Over the years, I periodically reviewed the Gokyo-No-Waza in my mind and practiced specific judo exercises from time to time, but those were secondary. To me, being a "lifelong practitioner" of judo goes way beyond practice and earning belts.

    In regards to the age where one can benefit from this, I don't think starting a child out early in judo is beneficial. I would think it would be most valuable in the early teen years when the child begins to form connections to society beyond his family circle. (Perhaps that take place earlier in a child's development in Japan.) If I can instill that influence in to the lives of my students, I'll be very happy indeed.

    As an afterthought, a sensei I met in Tulsa this summer came to mind. He had been through some serious heart surgery. His days on the mat were done. Nevertheless, he showed up for practice, even though most of his workout consisted of offering encouragement and suggestions to the younger participants. He never broke a sweat, but he was still practicing judo. He stands as a great example to me, even though we only met once.


    Last edited by GregW on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:32 am; edited 3 times in total (Reason for editing : fix typo, add a reflection)
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    genetic judoka

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by genetic judoka on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:36 am

    CK, for the sake of this discussion, assume we are talking about doing judo. and by judo I mean judo.

    one could say that the many games that constitute a bulk of a children's class is a means to get the kids to learn the basic skills required for judo. as such it would be considered a pedagogical method of teaching judo to kids of a certain age and attention span, not something entirely separate from judo.

    but let's assume that we're talking about getting kids to do actual judo. by that I mean the class is spent on uchi/nage komi, with some randori at the end. we will however also assume that it is not a requirement that kids be getting taught precisely the same way you'd teach an adult, as you would obviously tailor the delivery of your lesson to the makeup of your class.


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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Dutch Budo on Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:43 am

    They can learn ukemi and some basic throws at age 4...5 and up. Kids bounce better too and if they enjoy it they will soak up the knowledge and never forget it. So even those games as you mention it Genetic, are very important for future reflexes when they are into serious competition. I myself started at 6 and I remember we did a lot of ukemi and some ne waza sweeps. Im still enjoying a good piece of judo, and for me stuff like falling and being grabbed aren't even conscious thoughts anymore, its just as it is.
    At around 12ish they should be starting seriously with competitions and around 16 they could do their first big tournaments. At puberty the athletic ability gets a boost and having some serious discipline and structure in their lifes at that point is very important.

    But having said all this, I think its important not to generalize but look at each individual as a person with their own thoughts, feelings and needs.


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    Ben Reinhardt

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Ben Reinhardt on Fri Jun 07, 2013 7:22 am

    Q mystic wrote:CK, so it seems that 7-11 is the ripe age for them to start.

    What about comp tho? Do you teach him excellent judo without comp for some years? Because it seems he would develop into a shodan without comp experience by the time he was 12-14 or so. Wouldn't that hinder him when he goes into comp?

    And if he starts comp early, it seems that he could suffer burn-out young and maybe other future consequences of being a young 'success', like a child-star syndrome(if it's a syndrome).

    In general, kids are not going to be ready for shodan (as it is defined in the US at least) at that young an age. Like CK wrote though there are inter-individual differences in kids. In any case, probably, highly likely not. You are still thinking like kids are adults...

    It's possible to modify competition rules for kids by age group. Judo Canada does this and it seems to be working pretty well from what I have experienced. With proper controls on kids competition (no 6 year old national champions...competition under modified rules sets and not excessive amounts of it), "competition" can be a positive experience for kids.

    Excellent Judo is relative. Excellent for a kid with the normal age related neuromuscular/coordination deficits (relative to average mature adult) is perhaps not excellent for the adult level of Judo. Not sufficient for shodan in most cases.

    Some kids are super coordinated for their age, with incredible ability to focus and concentrate. My 8 year old is a good example. But he doesn't do Judo. I've seen many others over the years as well. Some compete seriously up to junior nationals level, most after that quit to go to college or work (do not follow elite athlete path...which is incredibly difficult, expensive, and requires huge sacrifices and a huge amount of self discipline). If Judo has been a positive experience for them, it has served a wonderful purpose in their lives to one degree or another. I've seen that as well.

    Judo Canada LTAD

    Judo Canada Tournament Policy (rules for age brackets)
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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 7:28 am

    awesome. Thanks Ben.

    Incredible info in your link.


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    Cichorei Kano

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Fri Jun 07, 2013 8:43 am

    Q mystic wrote:CK, so it seems that 7-11 is the ripe age for them to start.

    What about comp tho? Do you teach him excellent judo without comp for some years? Because it seems he would develop into a shodan without comp experience by the time he was 12-14 or so. Wouldn't that hinder him when he goes into comp?

    And if he starts comp early, it seems that he could suffer burn-out young and maybe other future consequences of being a young 'success', like a child-star syndrome(if it's a syndrome).

    Are you asking me personally in the sense of what I do ? I do not teach the children's groups in the clubs I teach. I have several reasons for this. Usually children are taught by more junior instructors. That is not any different in the clubs I teach. On the other hand, I find it important to stay in touch with the skills, demands and particulars of every group, so I do teach each year a week or two weeks of full-time children's jûdô clinics and I may fall in for a teacher who has another commitment. Certainly, pedagogically there is always something to learn from teaching children and beginners, but in general it isn't the best use of my skills in a sense of ... let's just talk technique, well lots of things that I am curently occupied with are rather advanced. If I would focus on children I would have to set aside even more of that which as a negative consequence for me is less practice, losing out, and getting less skilled.

    Anyhow, in my younger days I did have responsibility for the juniors divisions of some of the clubs where I was teaching so I can directly refer to that time. Obviously, even though I don't teach children constantly now, I still have an opinion about it. In general, I stick to how things were when I was a junior, which was ... minimal jûdô-rank required for competition: 3rd kyû. Therefore, any student would have to accumulate all the experience time-wise and skill-wise for 3rd kyû before entering his/her first competition. Doesn't matter whether the kid is a 'star' or not. If the truly is a star, he likely will become 3rd kyû sooner. My personal view is that it isn't responsible to let lower ranks participate in competition, and when I used to referee beginners competition I was often wondering what I was refereeing anyhow. You had pulling and dragging and finally someone stumbled over their own legs and you had to award some score to that; had nothing to do with jûdô. So, what people, different-minded people do in their club is their business, but my students, or the students taught by our more junior-teachers do not participate in competition before achieving 3rd kyû.

    If ... on the other hand you are asking me what I would do if I were to follow what others do who send students as white belts to tournaments, that's really a wrong question to ask me. Without trying to be too judgemental, let's just say that when someone does that as an instructor then likely one has a different understanding of Kanô's pedagogy than I do. I can't provide the answers for someone whose understanding differs that much from my own. I have no understanding about what a 6th or 5th kyû would be doing at a competition except for watching, so I cannot fill in those gaps. Sorry.

    Moreover, the scenario here is fundamentally different from things that may be acceptable in the US. It is not possible to become shodan at age 14 and even if it were, it would not be possible to do so without competition. Club teachers do not hand out black belts to their own students here. We still have tsukinami-shiai, and there is a mandatory requirement for 10 points. The minimal age to obtain shodan without any competition is 23 years, which is substantially less than when I became shodan. I believe that you had to be at least 30 years old to obtain shodan without any competition. Also, mind that shodan-ranks are awarded only by a national jury, so your technical skills have to be good enough to convince an external jury. Minimal age for shodan is 16 years here. Minimal age for access to tsukinami-shiai is 15 years. That implies that a kid who obtains shodan at age 16, will have successfully beaten 10 adults since there are no age categories in tsukinami-shiai, or if he is lucky, he might have come across another junior. In other words, the scenario you paint, is simply not possible here.


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    Ben Reinhardt

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Ben Reinhardt on Fri Jun 07, 2013 8:54 am

    Cichorei Kano wrote:
    Q mystic wrote:CK, so it seems that 7-11 is the ripe age for them to start.

    What about comp tho? Do you teach him excellent judo without comp for some years? Because it seems he would develop into a shodan without comp experience by the time he was 12-14 or so. Wouldn't that hinder him when he goes into comp?

    And if he starts comp early, it seems that he could suffer burn-out young and maybe other future consequences of being a young 'success', like a child-star syndrome(if it's a syndrome).

    Are you asking me personally in the sense of what I do ? I do not teach the children's groups in the clubs I teach. I have several reasons for this. Usually children are taught by more junior instructors. That is not any different in the clubs I teach. On the other hand, I find it important to stay in touch with the skills, demands and particulars of every group, so I do teach each year a week or two weeks of full-time children's jûdô clinics and I may fall in for a teacher who has another commitment. Certainly, pedagogically there is always something to learn from teaching children and beginners, but in general it isn't the best use of my skills in a sense of ... let's just talk technique, well lots of things that I am curently occupied with are rather advanced. If I would focus on children I would have to set aside even more of that which as a negative consequence for me is less practice, losing out, and getting less skilled.

    Anyhow, in my younger days I did have responsibility for the juniors divisions of some of the clubs where I was teaching so I can directly refer to that time. Obviously, even though I don't teach children constantly now, I still have an opinion about it. In general, I stick to how things were when I was a junior, which was ... minimal jûdô-rank required for competition: 3rd kyû. Therefore, any student would have to accumulate all the experience time-wise and skill-wise for 3rd kyû before entering his/her first competition. Doesn't matter whether the kid is a 'star' or not. If the truly is a star, he likely will become 3rd kyû sooner. My personal view is that it isn't responsible to let lower ranks participate in competition, and when I used to referee beginners competition I was often wondering what I was refereeing anyhow. You had pulling and dragging and finally someone stumbled over their own legs and you had to award some score to that; had nothing to do with jûdô. So, what people, different-minded people do in their club is their business, but my students, or the students taught by our more junior-teachers do not participate in competition before achieving 3rd kyû.

    If ... on the other hand you are asking me what I would do if I were to follow what others do who send students as white belts to tournaments, that's really a wrong question to ask me. Without trying to be too judgemental, let's just say that when someone does that as an instructor then likely one has a different understanding of Kanô's pedagogy than I do. I can't provide the answers for someone whose understanding differs that much from my own. I have no understanding about what a 6th or 5th kyû would be doing at a competition except for watching, so I cannot fill in those gaps. Sorry.

    Moreover, the scenario here is fundamentally different from things that may be acceptable in the US. It is not possible to become shodan at age 14 and even if it were, it would not be possible to do so without competition. Club teachers do not hand out black belts to their own students here. We still have tsukinami-shiai, and there is a mandatory requirement for 10 points. The minimal age to obtain shodan without any competition is 23 years, which is substantially less than when I became shodan. I believe that you had to be at least 30 years old to obtain shodan without any competition. Also, mind that shodan-ranks are awarded only by a national jury, so your technical skills have to be good enough to convince an external jury. Minimal age for shodan is 16 years here. Minimal age for access to tsukinami-shiai is 15 years. That implies that a kid who obtains shodan at age 16, will have successfully beaten 10 adults since there are no age categories in tsukinami-shiai, or if he is lucky, he might have come across another junior. In other words, the scenario you paint, is simply not possible here.

    As an example, in Canada, most kids (teens) who achieve shodan at 17,18, 19 compete and are relatively successful at national level. They also usually compete as adults and win at times...the u21 (formerly u20) IJF division is pretty tough at national level...

    In the US, my experience is similar to yours...for a teen to get shodan, he/she has to compete with and beat adults.

    Teaching small children (in general) isn't something that everyone is cut out for. I've seen people whose judo was not that wonderful, but could teach kids very well indeed to do good judo for their age. I know I prefer to teach older kids, teens, and adults.

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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 9:21 am

    CK,

    Thanks. So, just to say, it sounds like you wouldn't allow anything under green belt(wh,yel,orange,gr,bl,br here) to compete.

    At that point they, relatively, know many throws.

    For instance, I think I learned koshiguruma and ippon seoinage near the same time. Early. In white, yellow and orange I scored a lot with koshi and never really started liking seoinage until green and above. If I didn't compete until green, it seems I might not have ever really developed one or the other. I think my development of koshiguruma in comp during white, yellow and orange helped me to more understand how to apply seoi in comp.

    Wouldn't it just be kind of a mish-mash with knowing too many techs early in comp and not developing them both over time in comp the same way I feel I did with koshi and seoi?

    I don't understand how that wouldn't confuse a judoka.


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    Cichorei Kano

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:25 am

    Q mystic wrote:CK,

    Thanks. So, just to say, it sounds like you wouldn't allow anything under green belt(wh,yel,orange,gr,bl,br here) to compete.

    At that point they, relatively, know many throws.

    Correct. Although that does not mean they can actually throw with all those techniques. They had plenty of chance to experience that in randori though.

    Q mystic wrote:CK,
    For instance, I think I learned koshiguruma and ippon seoinage near the same time. Early. In white, yellow and orange I scored a lot with koshi and never really started liking seoinage until green and above. If I didn't compete until green, it seems I might not have ever really developed one or the other. I think my development of koshiguruma in comp during white, yellow and orange helped me to more understand how to apply seoi in comp.

    Wouldn't it just be kind of a mish-mash with knowing too many techs early in comp and not developing them both over time in comp the same way I feel I did with koshi and seoi?

    I don't understand how that wouldn't confuse a judoka.

    I am not sure there is really that much one would learn as a 6th-4th kyû in competition that one can't learn in randori. Besides, the lower ranks attempt to even turn yaku-soku-geiko into competition anyway ...

    "Wouldn't it just be kind of a mish-mash with knowing too many techs early in comp and not developing them both over time in comp the same way I feel I did with koshi and seoi?" (...)

    Not in my experience. People, certainly beginners, develop their views on techniques and quickly divide techniques into "those that work and those that don't". What do they know ? They know static static techniques, but the entire entourage of debana, tsukuri, kuzushi, taisabaki, is largely missing. Do they learn that at competition ? At that stage ? Doubtful. they can hardly get passed the arms of another similarly ranked person in randori, let alone in competition. When competitions are won it is usually because of surprising someone, power, stupidity or intimidation of the other. In fact, I was a 1st kyû before my focus started shifting from winning towards wanting to win with a nice-looking ippon technique and in most cases that was merely wishful thinking. I won with osaekomi and was disappointed beccause I was looking up to the blackbelt stars who had the ability to throw opponents flat on their back. So what do we have when talking about 6-4th kyû many of whom will actually lose most of their matches ?

    You have the same in music. Force young promising musicians towards contests and what will happen ? They will mesmerize the audience for some time merely because of their youth, some even become good, but virtually none will ever make it because they forfeit the real education towards understanding what one is actually doing.


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    Steve Leadbeater

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    Location : Sydney Australia

    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Steve Leadbeater on Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:52 am

    I prefer students to be at least 7 years of age.......however.......the most successful KIDS instructor in Australia would have to be Mr Warren Rosser (5 Dan) who has literally HUNDREDS of very young children in his numerous classes every week...
    (just look up University of New South Wales Judo Club)

    I have sent people to Warren because I thought the child was too young for me to teach and the Parent has come back to me with thanks for the referral.
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    Q mystic

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:54 am

    CK, In that case it seems a lot of randori partners are necessary, or at least very, very important.

    Thanks.


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    Ben Reinhardt

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Ben Reinhardt on Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:13 am

    Q mystic wrote:CK, In that case it seems a lot of randori partners are necessary, or at least very, very important.

    Thanks.

    This is true for anyone, regardless of age.
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    Cichorei Kano

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:16 am

    Q mystic wrote:CK, In that case it seems a lot of randori partners are necessary.

    If...you don't have them, then that means a lot of comp, with medals for place, and the family coming to watch, for a full Saturday, when your friends are doing other fun things, to get your orange belt.lol

    I understand.

    You know, I never was in a children's division in a jûdô club myself; I started as a youngster directly within the adult division. When I changed clubs as a 2nd kyû my new instructor wanted to put me in the children's division, which was crazy. Imagine the scenario. All the other kids are scared, so I end up fighting the instructor who was an adult and a black belt, whom I am throwing, to the point he has to go full out, and he is only able to submit me in newaza in which as a black belt he is technically much better than me, and besides he was a (relative) "newaza specialists", like they called it in those days. Point is this is totally different from the kind of jûdô I see in the majority of children's groups. Because as a child I was directly in an adult division I obviously never had to partake in children's games in jûdô, and I am glad I didn't because I did not come to jûdô class to do stuff I could do in the boy scouts or similar, I came for jûdô as a martial art. In terms of partners, even though our club was of modest size, this wasn't a problem. If you're strong kid beginner, and average adult is sufficient to deal with for many months in order to try and overcome him. But jûdô and times have changed. I would imagine (I am speculating) that in the US because out of fear for law suits not many clubs would follow this approach. Even though we had insurance, many considered it wimpy behavior to use your insurance. Instead, ice and bandages were our best friends. Almost every training we had bruises all over. In today's age I imagine in the US you would have police over to arrest you for child cruelty and parents would try and sue you.

    Apart from that I know too that it does not work for all children, and probably not even for most to put them in the adult division.


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    "Nothing is as approved as mediocrity, the majority has established it and it fixes it fangs on whatever gets beyond it either way." (Blaise Pascal)
    "Quand on essaie, c'est difficile. Quand on n'essaie pas, c'est impossible" (Guess Who ?)
    "I am never wrong. Once I thought I was, and that was a mistake."
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    Q mystic

    Posts : 319
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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Q mystic on Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:55 am

    Cichorei Kano wrote:
    Q mystic wrote:CK, In that case it seems a lot of randori partners are necessary.

    If...you don't have them, then that means a lot of comp, with medals for place, and the family coming to watch, for a full Saturday, when your friends are doing other fun things, to get your orange belt.lol

    I understand.

    You know, I never was in a children's division in a jûdô club myself; I started as a youngster directly within the adult division. When I changed clubs as a 2nd kyû my new instructor wanted to put me in the children's division, which was crazy. Imagine the scenario. All the other kids are scared, so I end up fighting the adult instructor, whom I am throwing, to the point he has to go full out, and he is only able to submit me in newaza in which as a black belt he is technically much better than me, and besides he was a (relative) "newaza specialists", like they called it in those days. Point is this is totally different from the kind of jûdô I see in the majority of children's groups. Because as a child I was directly in an adult division I obviously never had to partake in children's games in jûdô, and I am glad I didn't because I did not come to jûdô class to do stuff I could do in the boy scouts or similar, I came for jûdô as a martial art. In terms of partners, even though our club was of modest size, this wasn't a problem. If you're strong kid beginner, and average adult is sufficient to deal with for many months in order to try and overcome him. But jûdô and times have changed. I would imagine (I am speculating) that in the US because out of fear for law suits not many clubs would follow this approach. Even though we had insurance, many considered it wimpy behavior to use your insurance. Instead, ice and bandages were our best friends. Almost every training we had bruises all over. In today's age I imagine in the US you would have police over to arrest you for child cruelty and parents would try and sue you.

    Apart from that I know too that it does not work for all children, and probably not even for most to put them in the adult division.

    It didn't work for me and Kudos to you CK. I, too, was a youngster (started at 11) and most of my randori partners were older and bigger. The fact that I whined to my dad about it all the time and that my coach was very, very pro-comp is why I think I went to so many tournies. Which I ended up hating.lol.

    I didn't see the alternative as an option. Just to fight what's in front of you. It didn't make sense to me and yet my buddy, who got me into it and was a nat champ in his teens, had no help from his dad. My dad even helped him out to help me until he was forced to live a ways with his mom. He never complained. Cripes.

    I was injured and tuffed it out a lot tho. +1 me there. Just whined too much to pop.


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    Ricebale

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    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Ricebale on Fri Jun 07, 2013 12:14 pm



    Here's a vid of some of my kids learning how to commit to shoulder rolls. The emphasis is on balance and agility. I like to teach tumbling exercises.

    I also do "washing machine" to teach kasushi, tug o war to teach pull mechanics, sumo to teach push mechanics and peg on go grabs to teach grip placement and speed.

    My typical class has 8 kidsbetween 4-9 year old.

    I integrate terminology and tradition alongside game play, it's all about education.

    Enjoy.
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    OldeEnglishD

    Posts : 94
    Join date : 2012-12-28
    Location : Michigan

    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by OldeEnglishD on Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:29 pm

    My personal experience with my son is that the best age to start is when the child shows interest. My son was 7 when my club put on a kids seminar ($5 fee, 3 hours of learning very basics like ukemi, games that taught breaking kazushi, etc). My son had been in karate for a year and had lost interest for a variety of reasons (Dad, we just punch and kick air, I never know if my technique works). He had quit karate and was skepticle that he would like judo, but he went. After that seminar he was hooked! He started going to 2 classes a week at 7 years old, and 6 months ago at age 8 we added in 2 BJJ classes a week to get more rolling in. I can't keep him out of the dojo. He has done 1 judo tournament and 1 bjj tornament this year and loves doing it. The key is I never force him to go, and because of that he goes to 95% of the classes that I go to. He sees judo and bjj as fun, good excercise, a way to spend time with me, and something to look forward to not something that is forced on him.


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    Emanuele2

    Posts : 141
    Join date : 2013-01-21

    Re: Best age for kids to start learning judo?

    Post by Emanuele2 on Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:31 pm

    Anton Geesink started when he was 13 years old.

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