Judo is a marshal art of Japan. It has developed from jiujitsu a traditional fighting art of the Samurai that had its own form and techniques. It was not a sport in any sense. It was deadly. But, it was Dr. Jigoro Kano, who was also a master of many such forms of marshal arts of the East, recognized the potential of it and transformed it into a sport and designated it as JU-DO, the gentle way! He was able to identify and use the essence of techniques in the ancient marshal art that utilized the force of the opponent to down him.
It rather involved intelligence and agility than brute force. It was the magic of the Samurai art and spirit. Dr. Kano, a virtuoso, was a great patriot and took pride in everything that was Japanese including the concept of Samurai or the Kshatriyas of Japan. He was keen to see that the new art, Judo, did retain the Samurai spirit. Judo, therefore, makes such demands on the serious players that it engulfs their life completely.
That has given judo, the ascetic quality, the austerity that seems to verge on self-torture to the outsiders, and yet, it attracts a huge number of players from all over the world. Judo is practiced in all sporting countries of the world and it is rapidly spreading into places where it was not previously practiced. To know the judo way of thinking is also useful in all other forms of contact sport like wrestling. Indeed, the ideas of use of force in the sense of physics in judo are of interest to any one involved in any kind of tussle in any walk of life.
Judo is thus indeed a way of life as life is indeed full of struggle. Although there is some record to show that judo in India started in Bengal on the initiative of Guru Rabindra Nath Tagor, the movement really began when Mr. Khaniwale of Amaravati started it in Pune around 1940 in the Ferguson College. That activity has continued ever since and now the game has taken roots in India. It is now practiced in almost all the states of India and India has now got its players into the Olympics Games.
It is a matter of some pride that judo has started first in our state and Maharashtra Judo Association has played an important role in the formation of the Judo Federation of India. The Maharashtra Judo Association is a member of the Judo Federation of India ever since its conception.