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A hierarchal system of grades, used to identify a judoka’s competency, has been in place in Judo since 1883.

Although much of what is required to achieve promotion to the next grade is, in the main, decided by a Country’s Governing Body (in our case JudoScotland), most are based upon the standards established by The Kodokan and Judo’s founder Prof. Jigoro Kano:

1.       Technical Level of Judo

2.       Character as a person

3.       Understanding of Judo

4.       Application to your life

5.       Achievements in Judo

As the Governing Body for Judo in Scotland, JudoScotland believes strongly in upholding these principles throughout the judo experience and by doing so can better contribute to the holistic development of our members and communities.

“rank advancement should signify not only technical proficiency, but your level of advancement in issues of morality and character development, and contributions to society, community and the greater world around you.”

Prof Jigoro Kano

The JudoScotland Mon, Kyu and Dan grade systems are aligned with those of British Judo; ensuring a consistent contribution to the development of judoka across the UK. This universal system provides a continuous, cohesive and progressive journey for Judoka of all ages and abilities that enjoys the integrity of all the sport’s Governing Bodies.

As a reflection of character, knowledge and ability a judoka’s grade is used within the sport to identify appropriate opponents, training groups, competitions & events and access to several key workforce roles e.g. Referee & Coach. For these reasons the integrity of the judoka’s grade is highly valued and something JudoScotland strives to protect.




*With thanks to Mike Callan for his information on ‘The History of The Grading Scheme’.

Kai Grades

Start your Judo grading journey with our Kai grades! Designed to help support those under 8 develop the foundations they need in a fun and supportive way to prepare them for a life in judo.

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