Judo : a historical, statistical and scientific appraisal
This thesis presents the sport of Judo from historical, statistical and scientific perspectives. Modern Judo introduced in 1882 by Professor Jigoro Kano, used the combat element of Jujitsu, stressing the importance of mental and physical preparation. Judo rules evolved with changes in the scoring categories and style of Judo suit. Gradually Judo spread from Japan, and the International Judo Federation was created in 1951, initially consisting of only 12 countries, increasing to 157 in 1992. Statistical analysis of the 1991 World Championships and 1992 Olympic Games showed significant differences in scoring patterns between standing and groundwork techniques for male and female competitors. Groundwork techniques consistently resulted in Ippon. Uchi-Mata and Seoi-Nage were the most successful standing techniques, whilst Osae-Waza was the most successful groundwork technique for both genders. Based on these observations strength programmes to improve Uchi-Mata and Seoi-Nage were developed. A statistical comparison of the two championships indicated that all subgroups of competitors, except male non-medallists displayed the same scoring patterns. Judo can be considered as a multiple activity sport, where flurries of activity are interspersed with periods of recovery. Video analysis of the World Championship and Olympic Games showed that the average activity to recovery ratio was about 1-9: 1. Exercise intensity was studied by measuring cardiorespiratory and metabolic responses to Judo practice and competition. The intensity of exercise, based on blood lactate concentration, during competition was higher than the intensity of exercise during practice. To supplement Judo practice a specifically designed rowing exercise was prescribed. An interval programme was based on the average activity-to-rest ratio determined from the video analysis. Blood lactate concentration was higher, and heart rate lower, for rowing compared to Judo practice. Rowing with short intervals of high intensity separated by short recoveries appears to be a good whole body exercise for conditioning the power endurance component of Judo. Further research is required to confirm this preliminary observation.