Judo for persons who are blind or visually impaired is very similar to the sighted event. There are little modifications to the sport itself and competitions are often integrated; athletes who are blind or visually impaired will often compete against sighted athletes. For information on how to start getting involved in Judo, please Contact Us!
Judo is an all-encompassing sport that challenges many elements of human movement such as strength, flexibility, balance, coordination and agility. Basic Judo consists of four significant areas: throwing technique, holding technique, choking technique, and arm locking technique. Chokes and arm locks are upheld from instruction until the students are teenaged and of an acceptable skill level in the other two aspects of the sport.
The instruction of any and all techniques are given to the student in an individualized manner, often using adaptations that will be of significance to the particular student. The method most used is a tactile approach, guiding the student through the correct physical movements to accomplish a desired technique with an adjunct of verbal instruction. The student will always develop at their own pace. There is never any pressure to graduate at any given time and each student, able bodied or not, is nurtured for the correct amount of time that he/she requires to ensure safe participation in the sport.
Judo is as safe a sport as any other. There are very few injuries realized in judo because there are little outside forces involved beyond that of one’s opponent’s physical ability. A safety-first approach is heeded by our coaches and an atmosphere of mutual respect and cooperation is always present in the dojo. In a short period of time, any student will carry themselves with confidence and a sense of self-reliance when they discover what they are truly capable of in the ring!
Bill Morgan, an experienced Judo master who has been training OBSA athletes since 1984, has said visual impairment is not a reason to be unable to excel toward a desired outcome and that judo is a perfect vehicle to demonstrate this principal to the student. The Judo program, which has been sanctioned by OBSA for many years, has seen much success at the recreational level. Through increased attention to building a strong Judo base in Ontario by way of OBSA initiatives, there will be more Ontarian Judokas who are visually impaired standing on international podiums.
Do you want to get into Judo?
If you are an organization with questions about coaching and interacting with a visually impaired athlete, please call us and we will do everything we can to create a positive learning experience for you and your athletes.