Judo is a great sport. The word means “gentle way” and that sounds strange as we are talking about a type of martial arts, but it’s true. There are no punches or kicks in judo, and your goal is NOT to hurt your partner. You use their weight and momentum to take them to the floor and your own weight to keep them down. You do need strength, but it is much more about technique.
Judo people are a wonderful community. At the SJB Judo Club, which the Kabai family belongs to, all instructors are volunteers. They have been training for many years or even decades, and they don’t get a dime for showing up twice a week to teach. They use their time and their own money to travel to tournaments to coach the kids. Even some of the best instructors, who act as tournament referees, are volunteers. So are the parents who staff all judo events.
Imre did judo as a child. Later (after watching his kids compete in judo for a couple of years) he returned as an adult. After a year or two, due to a non-judo related knee injury he had to quit. But for a while, all 6 members of the Kabai family were training at the SJB Judo Club.
Why Blind Judo?
If you are like most people and you don’t have a blind person in your immediate family or circle of friends, this question probably never crossed your mind: How do blind people exercise to stay healthy? Judo can be a great choice for a blind or visually impaired person. The opponents are in constant physical contact, so seeing your opponent is not essential. In fact blind people often win against sighted athletes. Judo improves their sense of balance and teaches them how to fall safely, skills that can be of great help in a blind person’s everyday life, let they be a child, an adult, or maybe an injured veteran.
Why Blind Judo Foundation?
During the season of the Olympics, remember reading “Proudly Supporting the Olympic Games” on every bottle of soft drink and every box of cereal? Have you ever seen “Proudly Supporting the Paralympic Games” anywhere? Who sponsors blind athletes when they travel to international tournaments or the Paralympic Games? Well, often their coach does, from his own money. The Blind Judo Foundation supports these athletes and also young kids who wish to participate in judo camps, clinics and tournaments. We want to help.
To learn more or to donate, please click here.
The Blind Judo Foundation bracelet that the blogger has been wearing since the hour they left, and pledged not to take off until they are safely back at home.