However, the promotion will be formal after an official approval of the test results from Kodokan Judo Institute in Japan

After two days of Jita Kyoei and black belt Judo seminar, 12 brown belt holders from Bhutan Judo Association (BJA) were awarded a promotion in principle to black belt in Thimphu last week.

Following series of judo techniques demonstration for the promotion, Judo coaches from Kodokan Judo Institute in Japan announced provisional belt promotion result that has kept brown belt holders waiting for the last two years.

President of BJA Karma L Dorji said that the promotion of judo players to black belt marks a beginning of long term development of Judo in the country. “This would ensure us with qualified judo coaches for the future,” he said.

BJA was established in 2010 and has won a bronze medal from an international senior level judo championship this year. The association was recognised by Kodokan Judo Institute in 2016.

A-19 year-old Phub Dem Monger bagged the first international judo medal for the country. The bronze medalist was among the 12 judokas who were promoted to black belt.

Chikara Kariya, Yohei Hatakeyama, and Yoshihiro Horiuchoi, judo coaches from Kodokan judo institute conducted the seminar and black belt test. The seminar and black belt test saw former national judo coach, Yoshihiro Horiuchi return to award the belt to his students.

The seminar and belt test was organised after Kodokan Judo Institute established a new national judo federation in Brunei in April.

“Bhutan’s growth and development of judo is commendable. We will be sharing the experiences and practice of judo in Bhutan to newly established judo federation of Brunei. This will be a good example for them,” said Chikara Kariya.

He added that Bhutan should not only aspire to be the best in South Asian but aim to be the best at a global level. “The seminar focused on basic skills as it is important for the association to reach its highest level,” he said.

Kano Jigoro created judo as a method for physical, intellectual and moral education in 1882. There are about 197 countries with Judo practitioners across the globe.