Daido Juku/Kudo


Kudo in Action

I am a huge fan of Daido Juku – Kudo, a form of mixed martial arts that uses the gi and emphasize the budo spirit. That is why they are having there own web page. I found Kudo training more realistic than Mixed Martial Arts when it come to self defense on the street, since it relied on the gi for a lot of his techniques.

Daido Juku
Image via Wikipedia


Daido Juku also known as Daidojuku and Kudo is a martial arts organization founded in 1981 by Azuma Takashi. Azuma, originally a Kyokushin Karate 1977 full contact karate champion, resigned from the Kyokushin organization to form Daidojuku in Sendai city located in northern Honsh?, Japan. Daidojuku literally translated means The Big Way. It incorporates techniques which were not present at that time in full contact karate styles. Azuma, being a 3rd degree black belt in Judo as well as a 4th degree black belt in Kyokushin karate, recognized the potential for a hybrid martial art. These would not be restricted by the boundaries of a single style but would utilise techniques from various martial arts, namely, at the time of its creation in 1980, Judo and Karate. In the late 80’s and early 90’s the style began to incorporate various techniques from muay thai, boxing, jiu-jitsu, sambo, submission wrestling, and other martial arts, fine tuning each technique for use within the Daidojuku style. One of the fundamental goals of Daidojuku being the creation of a versatile and realistic fighting style without compromising safety, Azuma created a style which incorporated various offensive as well as defensive techniques which includes punches to the head, elbow strikes, head butts, judo throws, jiu-jitsu jointlocks and other standup and ground fighting techniques. In 1981, Daidojuku made it’s public debut at the ‘’’1981 Hokutoki Karate Championships’’’, also known as ‘’’Hokutoki.’’’

Originally known as Kakuto Karate Daidojuku or Combat Karate Daidojuku, the name of the style was inevitably changed to recognize its unique and unorthodox techniques as a mixed martial art. In 2001 at an official press conference held for Daidojuku, founder Azuma Takashi and president of Daidojuku, N.P.O., renamed the mixed martial art Budo to Kudo. This renaming allowed Kudo the opportunity of becoming an official Japanese Cultural Budo sport under the same category as Judo, Aikido and Kendo. Kudo and Daidojuku are world wide copyrights and all of its instructors and branch chiefs are certified under the Kudo International Federation, also known as K.I.F.

Azuma currently holds an 8th degree black belt in Kyokushin Budokai, awarded by Shihan John Bluming and an 8th degree black belt in Daidojuku, awarded by the board of directors of Daidojuku.


Daido Juku competitors wear an official Kudo Gi gi (sleeves and body of the top gi, like a single-weave judo gi, are created out of a single piece of cloth, unlike the traditional karate gi where the sleeves are sewn onto the body). This design of the Kudo gi makes it ideal for throwing and grappling techniques. Also required for competition are groin guard, mouth piece, official Kudo hand-wraps, official Kudo fist protectors and SuperSafe (official Kudo protective helmet). The fist protectors are MMA style gloves which cover the wrist, back of the hand and up to the 2nd joint of the knuckles. The SuperSafe head guard is a unique foam helmet developed by Hanshi Masayki Hisataka for the Koshiki fighting system practiced by Shorinjiryu karateka to protect a fighter from facial injuries and head trauma. It is this helmet which allows the fighters in Daido Juku to punch and elbow the face, not allowed in more mainstream Kyokushin variants.

This helmet is known outside of Daido Juku circles jokingly as a “space helmet.” On a funny note, Azuma Jukucho (founder and president of Daido Juku, also the creator of so called “space helmet”) has been quoted as saying in Japanese: “Call it whatever the hell you want, space helmet, aqua helmet, whatever…this is Kudo, this is Daido Juku.” (Jukucho laughs)

Kudo Shodan/Black Belt Test


Off Shoot of Kudo

Zendokai is a off shoot from Daido juku (splintering out 1999), and was founded by Takashi Ozawa. No idea why he splintered off. Probably just politics (as usual). It uses its own spin on the kudo rules (with another name naturally), but its basically the same.



World championship Hokutoki II

Kato Vs. Osada




Places that teach Kudo

Paris, France
Kudo Club in Paris France


Fusion Mixed Martial Arts » Daidojuku/Kudo - 2008 USA Seminars

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