Tokio Hirano, the judo master

There was this judo master named Tokio Hirano that some folks say was the greatest judo technician in history.  When he moved from Japan to Europe in the early 1950s he developed the habit of challenging all the black belts in whatever towns he visited to matches – and he ended up racking up over 4300 ippons (decisive wins) within 6 years!


A couple of years ago I had the profoundly humbling opportunity to teach my interpretation and understanding of Hirano’s methods – at least what I could glean from his videos and the accounts from people that I’d been able to find that had touched his students.  That session was a lot of fun and I did a LOT of research beforehand.  I watched everything that was on the interwebs about him and his technique.


Then, just today someone asked something about Hirano and I did a search for the same old videos and stumbled across this set of videos that is new (to me)!

This video is of Hirano as an old man teaching in Holland and it is an absolute blast to see his energy and strength and flexibility and his insane technical expertise in action!

Hirano gets me excited about judo!

Categories: Martial Arts