Selkirk Judo Club

A Typical Class

Each judo class begins with a brief bowing ceremony.  Bowing is an integral part of judo.  It is the Japanese equivalent of a handshake, signifying respect for one's club, teacher or opponent.  Judo students (judoka) also bow on entering and leaving the dojo (training hall), and at the start and end of matches.

Beginning judoka are first taught how to fall properly.  The student learns ukemi (break falls) which involves striking the judo mat with their hand as their lower back makes contact with the mat.  This action absorbs the impact of the fall. 

Once students have mastered ukemi, they begin to learn basic throws such as ogoshi (hip throw) and ippon seoi-nage (one-arm shoulder throw).   They will also be taught grappling techniques on the ground.  Juniors and seniors both learn ground holds where the goal is to immobilize your opponent on the ground for 20 seconds.  Older students (13 and over) also learn chokes and armlock techniques.

A typical class begins with a brief warm up.  Judoka then practice ukemi for a few minutes.  In the junior program, students will often also play warm-up games, such as freeze tag, sumo or team handball.  The senior class will also occasionally warm up with a short game of team handball.

Once the warm-up is complete, the teaching portion of the class begins.  Techniques are taught to students and there is time for practice.  Students may also do various judo drills, such as uchi-komi (repetitive throwing practice).

After the judoka has been taught a few basic techniques, they will also spend a portion of the class practicing these techniques in free practice, or randori.   In randori, two partners attempt to throw each other, or execute ground techniques.  

The class will conclude with a brief cool down and bow off to finish the session.