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This F.A.Q. is designed to provide you with information you need to know to get the most out of being a member of the Fresno Judo Club community.

What is judo?

Judo is a modern Japanese martial art, an Olympic sport, and is used in combat sports such as MMA. Judo was founded in 1882 in Japan by Professor Jigoro Kano. Prof. Kano developed judo from his studies of jujitsu, the weaponless fighting art of the samurai.  Brazilian jujtsu and Russian sambo are arts that were derived from judo. In judo there are three main focuses, standup (tachi-waza), grappling (ne-waza) and striking (atemi-waza) techniques. The sport of judo uses throwing and grappling techniques. Striking techniques are used in kata or pre-arranged choreographed techniques for self-defense.


Judo is a difficult, but rewarding, sport. Through the consistent study and practice of judo, one will acquire and develop many characteristics including confidence, poise, mental and physical discipline, appreciation of hard work and self-respect.

What do I need before starting judo?

Due to the fact that Judo is a full-contact sport, parents and students must complete registration paperwork and sign a liability waiver. We also require every judoka to be a member of the United States Judo Federation in order to join Fresno Judo Club (application and information provided with FJC new member paperwork).


A judo uniform (Judo Gi) and belt (obi) is required for Judo and are available for purchase or order at the Fresno Judo Club. During the first few practices, judoka should wear comfortable clothing like sweat pants or shorts and a T-shirt. No hard objects are allowed like buttons, zippers, hairpins, or jewelry. Female students should wear a non-collared T-shirt or rash guard under their judo gi. Male students can wear a non-collared T-shirt or rash guard if they desire during practice. In competition, males are not allowed to wear a T-shirt/rash guard under their judo gi.

May I attend Fresno Judo Club Board meetings?

Yes! Unless otherwise stated, the FJC board meetings are open to the public and occur on a bimonthly basis.

Who can learn judo?

Anyone age 6 and up can participate in judo, although in some cases a doctor’s note may be required to ensure safety. Judo is a physically demanding contact sport. If you believe you or your child may have physical limitations, please ask your physician prior to starting. 

When do new members begin class?

New members are accepted quarterly (January, April, July, and October). Please email us at fresnojudo@gmail.con to be added to the waiting list. 

What will I be learning/practicing?

All new judo students are required to learn proper judo etiquette and fundamentals of how to fall correctly without injury before learning throwing techniques.  After learning basic judo safety, students will learn basic throwing and grappling techniques.

At 6:00pm on the last Tuesday of every month, our children and adult classes participate in our club's Monthly Tournament during which students participate in practice matches and learn the rules of competition.

At 6:00pm on the last Thursday of every month our children and adult classes train in self-defense techniques.

As a parent, how can I be more involved in the Fresno Judo Club? 

If you are interested in participating on the judo mat, we have a Beginning Adult class on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7:15 pm-8:15 pm.  We have self-defense nights, usually the last Thursday of the month, during which we invite parents on the mat to learn with their students. 


We also have many volunteer opportunities such as timekeeping and score keeping during our Monthly Tournaments (last Tuesday of the month) and our annual tournament in October. 


We have multiple fundraisers throughout the year that we need donations for and assistance with. Keep your eyes open for sign-ups and announcements at the end of practice as well as on our social media.  You are also welcome to come to our board meetings.

How will judo benefit my kids/me?

At our dojo, we emphasize self-discipline, responsibility, good character, and self-esteem through the practice of judo.  We intend to prepare students mentally and physically for situations both inside and outside the dojo. In addition, through the study of judo, judoka learn the importance of goal setting and how to handle challenging situations as well as both success and failure. These skills are beneficial in school, careers, and life in general.

Can I watch practice before joining?

Yes! We advise future students to visit our dojo and observe practice to see if judo is the sport they want to commit to.

How often will I/my child be considered for a rank promotion?

The instructors meet on a regular basis to discuss each athlete and their progress. Promotions are decided based on requirements of judo knowledge, technical skill and performance, attendance, and overall character.  Competition is not required but can decrease the amount of time between promotions. In most cases, the time between promotions can be one to two years based on the discretion of instructors.

Who do I contact for more information?

Please contact Sensei Larry Tsutsui at (559) 284–5481. You are also welcome to stop by prior to any of the scheduled practice days and times to see if a sensei or board member is available to provide further information.

What are the rules for a judo tournament?

Click this link to see the tournament rules.

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