Masahiko Kimura (Kimura Masahiko, September 10, 1917 – April 18, 1993) was a Japanese judoka and professional wrestler who is widely considered one of the greatest judoka of all time. In 1951, Masahiko Kimura defeated Helio Gracie in a judo/jiujitsu submission match in Brazil. Kimura triumphed with a move that broke his adversary’s arm. The reverse ude-garami (shoulder lock) he used would later be known as the “Kimura.”
Intense Karate Training:
Kimura was an amazing martial artist who was promoted to yondan (fourth dan) at age 15 after only six years of practice. In 1935, he became the youngest godan (fifth degree black belt) after defeating eight opponents at the Kodokan Dojo. By age 20, he had become the All Japan Open Weight Judo Champion, a title he maintained for 13 years. Kimura was known for his intense and difficult workouts, which at one point consisted of 1,000 push-ups and nine hours of daily practice. His wins outside of Japan helped expose martial arts to the world.
on, he taught Shime-Waza. Initially, he demonstrated the techniques, then he allowed the students to choke him. Since he was somewhat intoxicated, he was choked into unconsciousness by the student. Without defense, even Judo greats can be chocked into unconsciousness by a white belt student.
Shortly after defending his All Japan Judo title in 1949, Kimura accepted the position as chief Judo instructor for the metropolitan police in Tokyo. The commencement of the position would begin in April 1950. In February 1950, Wushijima sensei contacted Kimura, inviting him to participate in “professional Judo”. Kimura accepted because he felt in debt to the generosity of his sensei.
Also, Kimura’s wife was sick from tuberculosis and Kimura needed money for medicine. In total, 32 Judoka joined the undertaking. Kimura became the first professional Judo champion by defeating Yamaguchi with Ippon Seoinage. However, after a short-lived existence, the endeavor failed, due to a lack of business acumen.
During this crisis, which included no income from professional Judo and his wife’s illness, Kimura and two other Judokas decided to have a Professional Judo tour in Hawaii. While touring in Hawaii, Kimura was able to buy Streptomycin and PAS for his wife. Eventually, she recovered from TB. They had a happy marriage and raised their son and daughter.
Following are the achievement of the great karate legend:
- All-Japan Collegiate Championships (1935)
- 7th All Japan Judo Championship (1937)
- 8th All Japan Judo Championship (1938)
- 9th All Japan Judo Championship (1939)
- Ten-Ran Shiai tournament (1940)
- 1947 West Japan Judo Championship
- 1949 All Japan Judo Championship
- 1936 Takudai Kosen Judo Championship