West Covina Judo Dojo, Inc. is a non-profit corporation whose purpose is to introduce Judo (Kodokan Judo) to the public and seek a broader knowledge and deeper understanding of this Japanese martial art.
West Covina Judo Dojo Inc., was founded in 1957 under the sponsorship of the
San Gabriel Valley Japanese American Association, presently known as the East San Gabriel Valley Japanese American Community Center. The early instructors of the West Covina Judo Dojo were Mr. Ed Kitamura, Mr. Yosh Sogioka, and Mr. Masaru "Speed" Harada. Following the leadership of Harada Sensei, West Covina Dojo was then lead by Mr. Keigi Horiuchi, Mr. Akio Yokoyama, Mr. Sprencer Horiuchi and its current head instructor Mr. David Greer.
In order to best understand the history of West Covina Judo Dojo, one must become familiar with the legacy of Judo in the Greater San Gabriel Valley going back to the late 1920 when Judo was first introduced to the Valley by a group of Issei Fathers who formed a dojo in the El Monte area, which at the time was the center of the Japanese Community during that time period. That early Judo Dojo became the San Gabriel Valley Young Men's Association (San Gabriel Valley YMCA) Dojo. This famed Judo Dojo with its noted members such as the late Takeo Hazama, Kazuko Yamaguchi, Takeshi Fujimoto, Mits Kimura, Carl Shoji, Yoshi and Kuwa Okumura, Hide Munekiyo, Yosh Sogioka, and Kikui Nishihara among others was disbanded due to World War II and the evacuation of all its members.
The former San Gabriel Valley YMCA Judo Dojo lead to the birth of present day San Gabriel Judo Dojo and it's sister club West Covina Judo Dojo. West Covina Judo Dojo continues to thrive under its current leadership and continues with the mission of Dr. Jigaro Kano, teaching Kodokan Judo and developing Judokas to be champions on the mat as well as in life.
West Covina Judo Dojo Instructors and Coaching staff consist of National and International Competitors, Coaches, and Referees. All members are certified with USA Judo and the United States Judo Federation
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