Whenever I start talking about Blind Judo, I get excited because I truly believe that it’s an extraordinary activity for blind and vision impaired people.
The first time I heard about Blind Judo I was in a Judo competition in South America watching a fight that had already started. At some point, someone told me that one of the competitors was blind and I was amazed at the fact that if he hadn’t told me, I could’t have guessed it.
Later that day, I found out that Judo for visual impaired people has virtually no difference with the Judo everyone practice. Specifically, the only difference when fighting is that the two competitors start already holding each other instead of 2 meters apart.
After that, I started paying more attention to the way I was practicing Judo and I realised that, once you’ve learned the techniques and movements, the opponent’s position or reactions are felt mostly through your hands and balance rather than looking at him.
Since then, I’ve had the dream of starting a class for blind and VI people and this year I’m making it a reality at Yuki Judo.
Benefits of Judo for Blind & VI people
The benefits of Judo practice for blind and VI people are the same as for everyone else. You learn how to fall safely, practice specific techniques from standing and on the ground, and we do lots of randori (training Judo fights). These will develop your coordination, balance, speed and strength and with time, your techniques will improve and you’ll begin to be more effective during randori and competition.
On top of that, practicing Judo is a highly demanding physical activity and throughout continuous training your endurance will improve.
Yuki Judo belongs to the Victoria Amateur Judo Association, who organises several competitions during the year. Once you’ve acquired the basics of Judo, you will have the opportunity to participate in any of those regular competitions, if you want to. They can be challenging but at the same time are fun and always in a friendly environment.
There are many testimonials worldwide of blind and VI people who have done really well in regular competitions. To name one example, Sergio Ibáñez is a Judoka from Spain, who has a birth vision disability with 78% vision loss and he won the second place at the regular Spanish National Judo Championship in 2018.
Although competitions are not the main focus at Yuki Judo, the example above shows you that, if you train and commit to it, there is no limit to the Judo level you can achieve.
On the other hand, practicing Martial Arts is a proven way of developing your character and self confidence, not because you start winning fights, but because learning Judo is a path of self improvement towards excellence and every little achievement will enforce them.
On the other hand, I have to tell you that learning Judo is tough and difficult for everyone, but is also fun and highly rewarding when regularly trained. In my experience, you need to give yourself some time to get into it and usually one or two classes won’t tell you if you like it or not.
So, if you are not sure, ask yourself the questions below and come and try a few classes:
Would you like to:
- have fun while doing intense physical activity and finish each class full of endorphins?
- engage in a martial art/sport that is challenging and rewarding?
- develop mental and physical strength?
- test yourself in competitions?
- Do you believe in respect and honour?
If you answered yes to some of these questions, call me or fill out the contact form and let’s get started!