gtw-judo-hero AP Photo/Julio Cortez

Photo Gallery

Sport Overview

Judo may mean “the gentle way,” but this is a sport of sudden throws and quick reflexes combined with tests to the limits of balance, flexibility, strategy and mental preparation.

Brazil and Cuba were very close in competition for total medal count at the Guadalajara 2011 Pan Am Games — both teams had six gold medals and three silver, while Brazil had an additional four bronze to Cuba’s three. The U. S. finished third with one gold, one silver and six bronze.


Judo was developed from the martial art of jujitsu and established as a sport in Japan in 1882. In its evolution from a fighting art, the sport emphasizes balance, reflex, power, flexibility and coordination.

How it works

Judo matches last five minutes, pitting one athlete against another. The sport encompasses throwing and groundwork techniques with scores awarded for different throws and holds.


The referee’s command to start a judo bout.

The maximum score awarded to a judoka which results in an immediate end to the contest.

A judo competitive uniform.

A judo competitor.

Additional Information

Additional Information