Chibi Judo (Pre-Judo)
Chibi (little) Judo helps children grow in wonderful ways. As we jump, run, and roll we develop balance, coordination and confidence.
And we have fun! We start out learning our names in Japanese then do movement exercises, tumbling, and some simple judo techniques that teach us to fall safely. We place a strong emphasis on culture so everyone plays games, sing songs and speaks the language of Japan. We learn to “nete” (lie down) and to “tonde” (leap) like a “raion” (lion).
In our positive learning environment we bow politely to Sensei and to one another. At Hanabi respect comes as naturally as smiling.
Hajime! (Beginning Judo)
Hajime! (Begin!) establishes a strong base of judo technique, culture, and character. Fun tumbling, jumping and running activities warm us up before we practice our ukemi or falling techniques. Hajime students learn to fall safely, effortlessly and without discomfort.
Judo allows a smaller person to control an opponent bigger and stronger than themselves. We learn to hold a person down with “kesa-gatame” (scarf hold) and we practice throws where our opponent can be flipped upside down – on Sensei.
Every class finishes with games that develop physical coordination, balance and laughter. We sing in Japanese about inspiration and bow to each other respectfully. Then we say “arigotoh” (thank you). Respect and discipline are as much a part of Hanabi as smiling.
Oyako (Family pre Judo)
Josei (Women’s Judo)
Our Women’s Judo class is taught by a few of our very popular women instructors. The class offers beginning and slightly more advanced instruction geared specifically for women students. The class is rigorous – you will sweat -but friendly and fun – you will smile. The supportive environment allows for each student to maximize their learning and maximize their potential.
Honto no Judo (Intermediate Judo)
Our Intermediate classes allow students to not just learn but to actually use their judo skills. In this class it is quite common to see two feet flying threw the air as a throwing technique is successfully applied.
The skills taught here are more advanced and they are honed through standing, tachi-waza, matwork, ne-waza drills and epecially through extended randori or free practice. The exercises here are also a bit more intense and the games a bit more physical. At this level the fun is a bit more rugged but the smiles are just as broad.
Instructors keep a careful, supportive eye on all of the students to assure that techniques are used efficiently and safely. The environment is a great combination of competition and friendship.
Tournament competition is not required in the Intermediate class but we want all of our intermediate students to have the skills necessary to compete successfully if they so choose.
This year, Team Hanabi, made up almost completely of Intermediate students, placed third in the State of California.
Chukyuh (Advanced Judo)
Hanabi’s Advanced class offers a serious training session for advanced judoka. Hanabi’s Advanced class features one of the largest groups of Black Belts in the country including Brazilian, Israeli, German, French, Italian, Russian, Mongolian and Algerian players. Our American members include former Senior and Master’s National Champions as well as the winner of the 2009 Master’s World Championship. And we are especially proud of the high school and college-age state and national champions who work out in our advanced class.
Though we do offer a vigorous practice it is also a friendly one. Most of our members don’t actually compete and they really enjoy keeping in shape and learning with us in this high level atmosphere.
Newcomers are always welcome. We believe that all advanced players have experiences and specialized knowledge to share and we enjoy learning from our visitors.
And for judo players who have not worked out in a while we have our special Rule of 30. Anyone over 30 can rest anytime they like. (Of course Sensei has the right to assign ages as he or she sees fit: 26 year olds who haven’t worked out in a while may “become” 30.)
Kata are the forms, or the formal movements, of judo. Led by several of our veteran Black Belt instructors, this small, supportive class offers personalized attention through both video review and hands-on practice. Some of the kata most often practiced are “Nage no kata,” forms of throwing; “ju no kata,” forms of softness and “katame no kata,” forms of grappling.