Best Countries at Judo?

This is not a country vs country thread in case anyone gets offended. I was looking at the results from the last few Olympics and saw that most of the medals were one by a select few countries. In your opinion what countries are producing the best Judokas, and are there any new up and comers?

historically:
Japan
S Korea
France
Cuba - Don't know how good they are anymore.
Some former Soviet Union block countries
Brazil (?)

I am probably not right 100%, but the countries that come to my mind when I think of strong judo are (in no particular order):

Mongolia
Russia
Japan
Georgia
Cuba
France
S.Korea

men... japan. s korea. france. russia. georgia. brazil. ukraine. uzbekistan. azerbajan. iran. netherlands. cuba. germany.

women... japan. france. cuba. china. brazil. netherlands. germany. s korea. russia.

For women it is easy. Japan and France are the best. Men more scattered. Russia has made an emergence recently.Their former republics like Azerbaijan and Kashistan etc have a few)Mongolia with Naidan winning gold at Bejing has fostered more world class competitors. South Korea/Japan/France are always strong.

Brazil needs to be mentioned for mens/women also.

England lol Phone Post

Poland used to be strong, now not so much. Phone Post

Brazil has produced Honorato, Canto, Miguel (Gold), Camilo, and a few others at the mens I believe. They are right online with the US in terms of produced medals I think, although they have a gold and we do not.

I think Brazil is awesome today at Judo, but the US was much better than them in the 80s. It would be very interesting to see what caused the change over the past 20 years.

We are about the same size, so the talent pools are both there, but maybe the grassroots in Judo in Brazil is allowing them to find the talent that it takes to produce world class players easier than the US system.

Discuss.

I think it has to do with their fighting culture. Most of them do BJJ because they dominate in it. If they focused on judo they would have a higher presence on the international judo level. The talent is there. But it is much harder to stay on top in judo than BJJ for a "culture" to dominate considering international competition. Roger Gracie is one who I think could of been a world class player in judo in the 220+ division. He has the complete game.

...actually, JBB, very few people in brazil actually do bjj compared to judo.

our talent pool in judo is diminished becuase, to put it simply, it is not a major collegiate sport. period.

if it isnt a major collegiate sport then we will not attract high level athletes to participate in large numbers.

it is as simple as that. period.

"our talent pool in judo is diminished becuase, to put it simply, it is not a major collegiate sport. period. "

I agree. And would even take it a step further and say it is because it isn't a major high school sport (or at any other school level).

I thought the discussion was on world class judo players from Brazil not how many players do bjj or how many players do judo in Brazil. Or the status of judo in the US? It seems you take my words out of context/meaning to just disagree. It is a fact you can last longer in BJJ at a competitive world class level than judo. So I think the longevity factor has something to do with it. The rigors of world class judo takes it toll on the body.

JBB>... i like to have conversations. if i have to bend your words a bit to do it, then so be it!!!!

pete... you tell the truth as well... i am actively trying to lay the groundwork to develop judo programs that work along-side wrestling programs at local HS's. i think it will take me a few years to have something down pat. I dont think it is as hard as people believe it to be. but, to be honest, it is a lot of work and in many ways the Judokas need to prove themselves as valuable to the program. but, all the same, that isnt too hard to do at all.

JoshuaResnick - JBB>... i like to have conversations. if i have to bend your words a bit to do it, then so be it!!!!

pete... you tell the truth as well... i am actively trying to lay the groundwork to develop judo programs that work along-side wrestling programs at local HS's. i think it will take me a few years to have something down pat. I dont think it is as hard as people believe it to be. but, to be honest, it is a lot of work and in many ways the Judokas need to prove themselves as valuable to the program. but, all the same, that isnt too hard to do at all.



Interesting. I was completing my teaching credential at a So. Cal middle school a couple years back. I tried to educate the kids about judo during a lesson on the Olympics. Later, when I asked them the name of the martial art that I had covered, they kept responding "karate" or "boobo" or some horrible mispronunciation of judo.

I even popped in Karo's instructional and everything; the kids just weren't getting it or weren't interested; I even heard one kid tell me "That would never work against Anderson Silva" LOL~!

Anyway, I admire your efforts to integrate the gentle art with wrestling, and I wish you great success.

JoshuaResnick - ...actually, JBB, very few people in brazil actually do bjj compared to judo.

our talent pool in judo is diminished becuase, to put it simply, it is not a major collegiate sport. period.

if it isnt a major collegiate sport then we will not attract high level athletes to participate in large numbers.

it is as simple as that. period.

Judo is a very popular sport in Brazil among the kids. The enormous amount of Japanese immigrants helped the dissemination of the sport. The government invests big in sports to keep the kids off the streets by creating sports centers. Of course, most of these kids would opt to play soccer, but still, a fair amount would practice judo. Quantity eventually generates quality. Brazil also transmits big judo events in the major tvs stations live.
Most of my life growing up in Brazil I didn't pay a dime to practice judo. It was free. In my home dojo was always packed with kids. We had health insurance and scholarship through the city hall (competitors who would qualify the city team).

I talk about Judo a lot in my classroom, have a bio board with pictures of me competing and my instructor comes in every now and then to read to the kids. Now, they call everything Judo.