Summer Olympic Games 1996 – 2012
Olympic host Brazil has won more medals in judo than any other sport, but few golds. In London, Sarah Menezes was its first champion for twenty years. She will be back in Rio.
Judo was invented in Japan by Jigoro Kano in the late nineteenth century. His student, Mikinosuke Kawaishi, went to Paris, co-founded the French Judo Federation, and even introduced the system of coloured belts. His other legacy is that more people practice judo in France than in Japan, but it has quite a way to go to catch up in the medal count.
Georgia has a folk style of wrestling known as chidaoba, which has more than a passing resemblance to judo. As a result, it is now a rising force in what it calls “judo wrestling”.
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