In preparation for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, the International Judo Federation has created a series of vignettes to introduce fans to the lives of the athletes they follow. Judo stars young and old and from different countries will be featured in an “I Am Judo” video series.
Not only will you get to see what motivates them, you will see them at their highest of highs and their lowest of lows. There will be images and clips from the past of the judo stars as well as insight on family life.
One of the first clips shown from the series featured French judo star Marie-Eve Gahie. The 23-year-old won gold at the 2019 World Championships in Tokyo under the –70 kg division.
“For me, representing France in the country where judo was born would be an honour, and it would be a dream to win! Judo taught me so much,” Gahie stated. “I really feel lucky and it opened my eyes to a lot of things, and I now see our world and our society differently. It’s a passion, a dream that I am living and I feel lucky to live this experience the way I do.”
The most recent video involves Sagi Muki, a three-time gold medalist who represents Team Israel. At 27, Muki won gold at the 2019 World Championships under the -81kg division, the 2018 European Championships and the 2015 European Games.
Muki opened up about training 2-3 times a day and how he started gaining an interest in the sport at the age of four. Ranked second in the world last year, Muki consideres judo a way of life.
“To be an Olympic athlete is a really huge demand,” Muki stated. “From yourself, from those around you, it means doing everything in a precise way, going with your truth until the end. It means sacrificing a lot. It demands so much and every competition is important.”