Children's LiteratureJudo, Japanese for "the gentle way," grew out of the hand-to-hand combat techniques developed by Japan's famous samurai warriors. Developed in the late 1800s by Dr. Jigoro Kano, the ancient jujitsu fighting system was modified to become a sport that anyone, young or old, could participate in. Traditional jujitsu's most dangerous elements were removed and a new set of sparring rules were developed. Compassion and respect for opponents and the use of an opponent's force against him were judo's new ruling principles. Most of Japan was dubious, until a team trained by the tiny Dr. Kano (he was only five feet, 2 inches tall) beat a team made up of the best students from several of Japan's best jujitsu schools. From there, judo's popularity exploded across Japan. Judo was brought to the United States by Yoshiaki Yamashita, who taught students at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Today, judo is an official Olympic sport and is studied and practiced the world over, by young and old alike. One in a series of four on the martial arts, the book does an excellent job of introducing its mid-level reader to the history, methods, strategy and philosophy behind this popular sport, or as the book argues, way of life. Broken down into multiple chapters, the book includes good photography, as well as a glossary, timeline, bibliography, index and internet resources. 2004, The Child's World, Ages 7 to 14.