Great Conclusion in Nanjing for the Second Edition of the Judo Educational Journey Through China Back
May 27, 2014
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Great Conclusion in Nanjing for the Second Edition of the Judo Educational Journey Through China
The International Judo Federation and the Chinese Judo Association organised the second edition of the Judo Educational Journey Through China, with the support of the National Olympic Committee and the IOC from May 13-23.
In the framework of the promotion of this summer’s Nanjing Youth Olympic Games, the tour came to a celebratory conclusion in Nanjing in front of hundreds of young judoka.
The Journey, which stopped in five cities last year, visited six cities this year as the Olympic sport and its deeply embedded values were on display in Beijing, Guangzhou, Changsha, Wenzhou, Shanghai and Nanjing.
The Chinese crowds saw 20 judo sessions including judo clinics, conferences and photo shoots in emblematic places which were organised for approximately 5,800 participants, without counting the spectators who discovered the judo delegation during the photo shoot and the visit of tourist spots like the Yandang Mountains, the closing site of the Asian Games in Guangzhou or Zhouzhuang Town.
The idea of such a journey was born two years ago, after a decision to hold educational activities during IJF events was taken by the IJF President, Mr. Marius Vizer. Last year’s tour finished on the Great Wall, near Beijing, with an unforgettable judo demo and photo shoot on the famous monument.
The IJF was represented by Mr. Mohamed Meridja, IJF Head Education and Coaching Director, and Mr. Nicolas Messner, IJF Media and Head Judo For Peace Director.
They were accompanied by a 10 person delegation from the Chinese Judo Association, including Beijing Olympic Champion Yang Xiuli and London Olympic silver medallist Xu Lili along with two kata specialists.
During the different sessions the educational values of judo were at the centre of the theme. China has great development potential. Such an Educational Journey will have a clear impact on the number of judo players in the country as well as on the overall judo level.
The youngsters also had the opportunity to meet with their national judo heroes and to discover some of the methods they favoured to become champions.
Xu Lili, London silver medalist participated int he Journey
During the tour, several meetings took place with officials and parents and school teachers also discovered the power of sports and in particular of judo, which brings values to the young generations.
The Chinese media were omnipresent during the Journey, reporting on the activities, interviewing the participants and the delegations. Several reports were broadcast on the Chinese TV and social media also played a massive role to promote the activities.
The Chinese Judo Association officially represented by its General Secretary, Mr. Xiong Fangshan, was really happy with the whole Journey: "It was a fantastic adventure,” he said.
"Thanks to the IJF and the commitment of its President, Mr. Marius Vizer, and its experts, we had the opportunity to raise the awareness of the Chinese people to the judo values and philosophy. This is only the beginning of the development of judo throughout China and we would like to organise a third edition of the Journey, next year with new cities to be visited. We are keen to help the development of judo in China as well as to help the IJF to promote judo throughout the planet.
"After the Educational Journey through China in 2013 and 2014, my deepest impression is that students from primary schools and middle schools can have a better understanding on judo, especially the educational aspect of Judo,” added the General Secretary. "They learnt not only what judo is, but also the etiquette of judo, in which way we can better promote judo in a boarder sense among youngsters in the future.
"With the promotion of judo, we hope to make sport return society in a true sense. We hope people can join judo for exercise, so as to enhance their body physique, the etiquette of the youngsters and help realize the Chinese Dream.”
The YOG Mascots arrived in the Judo Venue
Mr. Mohamed Meridja closed this year’s edition of the Journey in Nanjing: "It is a great symbol to close the tour in Nanjing, which will host the second Youth Olympic Games this summer. The Chinese Judo Association did a fantastic job to make this project come true. Everybody put a lot of energy during the past two weeks and I especially want to congratulate the champions who dedicated their time to promote the educational dimension of judo.”
The very last judo session was held in the YOG Judo venues with approximately 1000 participants.
Follow the Judo Educational Journey Through China on the IJF Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ijudo