Tag Archives: Rio2016

What are the top Judo nations?

Determining which nations are the strongest in Judo is a complicated calculation. In this article we shall approach this by looking at Rio2016 Olympic games.

Technology makes investigating this subject somewhat easier than in earlier times. The IJF operates the http://judobase.org website, which includes all data from IJF events since 2009, including the Olympic Games in Rio.


  • Japan
  • France
  • Russia
  • Italy
  • USA


  • Japan
  • Slovenia
  • Italy
  • Azerbaijan
  • France

From these two metrics we can easily identify that Japan tops both lists, France and Italy appear on both lists as well. USA does not appear on the second list, but only just they are 6th on that list.

These two metrics suggest that Japan and France are the strongest nations.

Other metrics need to be considered also, for example number of athletes qualified for the event (excluding the home nation Brazil that had automatic qualification):

  • France
  • Japan
  • Germany
  • Mongolia
  • Russia

Again, France and Japan top the list, which could infer depth of talent. France and Japan were the only two nations that had 14 athletes compete in Rio.

More investigation is required clearly, but even this simple examination can give some information and importantly raise questions around the topic.



The first big european event in the Rio2016 qualification period occured on the weekend and it is a good time to explore the data we now have freely available from the IJF.

This year The International Judo Federation (IJF) released the Judobase.org website. This site has been in development for sometime and now is available, for free, to anyone. The site is similar to the venerable judoinside.com site, with a couple of important differentiators.

1) It is created from the official IJF data systems.

What this means is that this is the “official” source of data, and coming direct from the IJF IT systems it should be more accurate.

It does however mean that it only covers the IJF events, so judoinside remains the go to site for a complete picture of athletes career. The JudoBase site will not tell you if/when a player won their national championships, etc.

2) Scores.

Judobase being intergrated into the IJF data systems is able to capture and include scoring data. So you can see when a score happens in each fight (only available in more recent events). So it has more detail.

3) Video.

Once again being integrated has it’s advantages, the video from the official cameras is being encoded and uploaded with only a small delay to Judobase.org. You can click on a contest and watch the video (whilst looking at the scores) and really get the data you need.

4. WRL Integration

The judobase system already includes the athletes world ranking list (WRL) data. This is currently coming from the manual systems but will I imagine become the canonical source for ranking data.

So what can we discover?

The statistical side of Judobase.org is not very mature, it is really only an indication of what is possible. I would hope that the readers of this blog would quickly find ideas and share them so that the Judobase system can automatically generate relevant data for enthusiasts, fans and researchers.


So the latest event at the time of writing is the Budapest Grand Prix; and this is available at http://judobase.org/#/competition/profile/1166