Kodokan & Koshen Judo

The origins of Koshen and Kodokan Judo lie in Jujutsu (jujitsu), perhaps the oldest Japanese form of hand-to-hand combat. Founded in 1882 by Jigoro Kano, a student of jujutsu, judo was a version of jujustu that focused on using the opponent's weight and aggression against him. The term "judo" means "the gentle way" and Kano designed the system to utilize jujutsu's most effective grappling (both stand-up grappling and ground grappling) techniques while eliminating the lethal ones. Although less aggressive than its predecessor, this master throwing system is not be taken lightly. Throws can easily be modified back to their lethal form with simple grip and technique changes. Contrary to popular belief, Kodokan Judo does incorporate striking for self-defense purposes (Atemi-Waza); however in the more commonly known Judo contests, striking of any kind is illegal.

Although jujustu is the direct ancestor of judo, and Sumo perhaps the ancestor of jujutsu, the Japanese grappling roots may be found in a much older system native to China. Chinese wrestling might be the oldest form of Chinese martial arts, and thus one of the world's most ancient. The Chinese referred what the Mongolians to the North practiced as Guan Jiao, while the Tibetans to West practiced what the Manchurians called Bu Ku. History is unclear as to which wrestling styles came first, but a contemporary to these Tibetan and Mongolian systems was the Chinese Jiao Di or horn goring (based on the legend that practicioners wore horned helmets and literally gored each other). The Zhou Dynasty's rule in China (1122-256 B.C.) marks the arrival of Jiao Li, another wrestling system that may or may not be a form of Jiao Di. By the 3rd century B.C. the Qin Dynasty organized Jiao Li into an official sport, and in 1928 the term Shuai Jiao was given to generalize the sport and practice of Chinese wrestling (Shuai Jiao translates to "to throw an opponent using the horns or the legs). Although ethnocentrism plays a role in which martial arts systems and nations contributed to the development of others, it is widely believed by historians that all eastern wrestling arts can be dated back to India's Vedic history, in an ancient art known as Malla-yuddha or "wrestling combat." Regardless of where grappling and specifically the throwing arts originated, each nation, based upon culture and environment developed independent techniques to fit their needs.

At UNITED COMBAT ARTS the core stand-up grappling system taught is Kodokan Judo. It is taught classicly with the gi, without it, and with the Atemi-Waza (punches, kicks, knees, elbows, headbutts, claws, nerve center strikes). Although judo is the core grappling system, techniques from Chinese Wrestling (Shuai Jiao based and Chin Na), Japanese Jujutsu, Greco-Roman, Catch-As-Catch-Can Wrestling, and Filipino Dumog are incorporated.