Oakland Judo

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Kids and Teens

All pictures courtesy of Angela Lang Photography

Judo is an excellent activity for children. Classes consist of falling and tumbling practice (called ukemi in Japanese), movement drills, and the basic steps of judo throws. Classes are fun and engaging without compromising the spirit of judo. Respect and safety are our two main principles, and everything we do in class is geared towards those ideals.

Through our judo activities your child will benefit from increased balance and coordination, strength, better posture, self defense skills and a firm but relaxed sense of confidence. The founder of judo, Jigoro Kano, emphasized that judo is ultimately aimed at shaping better people and better members of society. Etiquette, respect and proper behavior are required. Physical, mental and social skills are all developed together when learning judo.

People often mention self defense as one of the benefits of martial arts training, but what is self defense? Self defense is recognizing the boundaries between yourself and others, and learning the appropriate response when those boundaries are about to be or have been crossed. This skill is especially important for children, who generally have more fluid boundaries than adults. Because there is no punching or kicking in judo, children learn to control the outcome of a situation without seriously injuring themselves or anyone else.


Parents: We may or may not have appropriately sized loaner uniforms for your child’s free trial class. However they can still participate in all the activities wearing a t-shirt and shorts or sweatpants. It’s a good idea to bring a water bottle as well.


Jonah Ewell has been doing judo since he was eight years old. He has taught judo to kids at Longfellow Middle School, Thousand Oaks, and Gan Israel summer camp. Leon Kenin is a father of five and a judo black belt who has been teaching kids for many years. He has taught judo in many settings around the world and the bay area.

For more about our instructors please visit our People page.

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