Biographical Information on Iizumi Shihan | Testimonials and Thoughts on Soft Judo | Buy Soft Judo Now!

After starting his training in a temple near his family home at the age of eight, Iizumi quickly became a serious student at the Kodokan learning directly from two of Jigoro Kano's finest pupils - Kyuzo Mifune and Sumiyuki Kotani. Mifune and Kotani guided Iizumi through his training.

Eventually Iizumi became involved in teaching the US Forces stationed in Tokyo. During this period, he worked closely with Mifune, who helped him by developing special techniques to teach and work with the foreigners.

In the early 1950's, Iizumi came to America and began teaching the techniques and training principles that he had learned from childhood. Five decades later, he continues teaching and practicing.

Iizumi Shihan today is one of the treasures of Judo. Iizumi Shihan has developed many great practitioners throughout his fifty years teaching Judo. He breaks down the techniques to give details rarely seen in the world. Watching him, you will understand the authentic dynamics of his SOFT JUDO™.

A short word from Iizumi Shihan

"Sixty-six years ago in a temple in Japan, I began studying Judo. At age seventy four, I am still training and teaching. It is my hope that these videos will preserve the traditional style of Judo that I learned as young man.

Why is this instructional series called LEGENDARY SOFT JUDO™? Because Judo is soft. Over the years, Judo has been changed by international competition. Strength and power have been favored over balance and timing. I would like to demonstrate how the techniques of Judo can be done effectively with minimal effort. I feel today’s Judo practitioners would benefit from studying Judo fundamentals, such as Kuzushi, Tai Sabaki, and timing, in greater detail.

If these few fundamentals are correctly understood, then doing the many techniques of Judo will be easy. So, when we practice techniques, we should make sure we understand the basic principles involved. This requires patience and many, many hours of practice."

Jin Iizumi

Thoughts from Iizumi Shihan on Judo

"Judo builds confidence in the practitioner so that they can be successful in life."

"Many students of Judo will grab with all their strength thereby becoming stiff, in Judo we should always use only the minimum force necessary for the judo practice."

"To learn judo you can't learn in one or two practices, it takes many years and you must build up your coordination, balance and speed."

"Mutual respect without injurious training methods is very important."

"Sometimes to learn a technique you must practice it over one thousand times. Over and over..."

"People train for a week and think that it is good, you will never be able do it unless you take the time to develop the techniques to suit yourself."

"Judo is a living thing that all martial artists must preserve as a soft form (judo) rather than as a power style of martial arts technique (wrestling)."


Iizumi Shihan (Second row third from left) with the LAPD's Arrest and Control Trainers and Advisors
Testimonials | Buy Soft Judo Now!

Jin is the last remaining student of the first true Judo master. He is teaching things that no one else in the US knows. His knowledge and the fact that he is out there teaching is beyond priceless to the Judo world.

Ralph Lisle - 5th Dan Judo Black Belt - 78 yrs old


Awesome!! The DVD set with Jin Iizumi was extremely well put together. I wasn’t quite sure what I’d be looking for in a judo instructional, so when I saw how clearly it transitioned from an open mat perspective to Jin Izumi giving step-by-step instructions, I was impressed. They covered everything, from learning basic kazushi all the way to advanced techniques. If I were a beginner, I would have been able to build a solid base and as an experienced player, I have been able to build on my base as well as improve my more advanced throws. It seems to me that any person with or without prior knowledge of judo can learn from this series.

I started learning judo about three years ago. I now compete on the black belt level and have spent time training at the Kodokan in Japan. Iizumi’s smooth, technical style matches much of what I was taught there. I was not surprised to learn that the Kodokan gave him the rank of fifth Dan when he trained there so many years ago. I especially enjoyed when Iizumi would be teaching classes and you would get that live atmosphere. It was a nice change of pace. Each throw and position was given considerable time. Usually when encountering instructionals it is the opposite.

This was money and time well spent. I recommend it to anyone hoping to improve there overall game. From beginner to advanced you will find something you were missing.

Bryce Shepard-Mejia – Judo Black Belt Competitor (CA State Champion) – Submission Grappling Champion

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