The Canon of Judo
Classic Teachings on Principles and Techniques
The Long-lost “bible of judo” is back in print
after almost 30 years.
Judo's origins date back to ancient times, and through the course of its long history it has evolved into one of Japan's most renowned heritages, assimilating many aspects of Japanese culture. In recent years, Judo has acquired heightened popularity, both in Japan and around the world, as a martial art and a path to spiritual enlightenment.
Kyuzo Mifune (1883-1965) began Judo as a junior middle-school student, and in 1945 was awarded the rank of 10th dan. known as the "God of Judo," he was so famous that, in referring to him, the words "10th dan" alone sufficed. Legend has it that in his sixty years of practice he never lost a match and was never thrown.
This book is the completely revised edition of Canon of Judo, originally published in 1960. It is said the book played a big role in founding the International Judo Federation, and in helping Judo to become an Olympic sport in 1964.
Shortly before his death Mifune revised his work, and this new edition includes these revisions, as well as a completely new translation of the original. It also contains a completely new layout.
With around 1,000 photos of the author and his students, and detailed, thorough explanations of the techniques, The Canon of Judo is the only book of its kind to provide such a comprehensive guide to the various techniques and the spirit of Judo. It will be an indispensable resource for all Judo practitioners.
“The Canon of Judo provides a unique insight into judo’s spirit and techniques and, with very few exceptions, the content remains as relevant today and when it was originally written, half a century ago.”
—Journal of Asian Martial Arts
About the author
KYUZO MIFUNE was born in 1883 in Iwate prefecture, and Mifune began practicing Judo in his junior middle-school days. He joined the Kodokan in 1903 when he came to Tokyo to attend Waseda University, and became the close disciple of Jigoro Kano, the father of Judo and founder of the Kodokan. From 1910, he was a Judo instructor at a number of universities, high schools, and junior high schools. In 1923 he acquired the rank of 7th dan, and became a Kodokan instructor. In 1945 he was awarded 10th dan at the age of sixty-two. He was not physically imposing (159 cm tall and 56 kg), but he made up for that with his persistent hard training and logical, scientific approach to Judo. After developing many new Judo techniques and variations, he came to be known as the “God of Judo.” He passed away in 1965 at the age of eighty-two. At his hometown, Kuji, a Memorial Gymnasium was erected in his honor, called the Mifunejudan.
FRANCOISE WHITE, received a first class degree in Japanese from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and also studied at Sophia University, Tokyo. She has a keen interest in martial arts and Japanese culture, and currently works as a translator of Japanese in London.