The Man who Trained Geesink the Monster
The Conde Koma of Busen Judo
Story of Haku Michigami (1)
Juzen Imada
The turning point of Japanese judo and martial arts.
That was when Geesink defeated Kaminaga in the judo open weight class finals at the Tokyo Olympics.
It is Haku Michigami who trained him.
Michigami is still active in France where he teaches Busen style judo. This moment marked the victory of Europe over Japan, and also the victory of Busen over Kohdohkan. This is the story of Haku Michigami, the Conde Koma of the Showa and Heisei periods.

From Traditional to Modern Judo

September 28, 1995.
The World Judo Championships started in Makuhari of Chiba prefecture. It had been 37 years since the games were last held in Japan. However, in the first day there was not even one Japanese judoist who made it to the finals in the first four weight classes. Even Ogawa, the hope of Japan, stopped at the bronze medal in the 95+kg weight class.
At the end of the final day of competition, Japan ended with 2 males with golds and 1 gold in the women's division. This was the worst record ever for Japan.
Japan also lost in the election to determine the new chairman of the International Judo Federation(IJF) to Park of Korea.
At the time, one IOC member commented how he was looking forward to work together with Park to approve colored judo uniforms. He was Geesink, the Dutch gold medalist at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
With Geesink's victory, judo leaped from a Japanese speciality to a worldwide sport. And now, Geesink is trying to make a major reform as an administrator.
Of course, Japan wants to stick to the traditional white uniform. However, European ideas are overpowering the judo world. Isn't this a sign showing the evolution of judo?

The Man who Raised Geesink
Anton Geesink is known as the symbol representing the internationalization of judo.
However, little is known about the man who trained Geesink.
The man's name is Haku Michigami.
The writer of this article has seen about two TV programs about Anton Geesink in these few years. However, Haku Michigami's name did not come up in any of them.
8 months before the Tokyo Olympics, Michigami proposed in an article called the "Bombshell Announcement towards Kohdohkan Judo" that Geesink will win the gold medal.
After that incident, Michigami has refused to have any relations with the media.
Michigami was always a man who did not like the act of selling one's name, and it was rare for him to appear in the mass media.
In the TV programs about Geesink, it not only lacked the mentioning of Michigami, but also seemed as if Geesink's advisor was someone else.
All Michigami said was that the truth will be revealed as time passes.
However, truth fades away unless it is told on by people. Conde Koma (aka Mitsuyo Maeda) became famous because he was a forgotten man until the Gracie family came out to the ultimate fighting world.
If worst comes to worst, the truth can even be deformed as it is told on.
On this occasion, Michigami has agreed to answer some questions, breaking the silence which he had kept since 1964.
Today, in 1996, there is great meaning in writing about him, in the year of the Atlanta Olympics.
Admiration Towards
Mitsuyo Maeda
Haku Michigami was born on October 21, 1912 as the second son of Yasutaro Michigami in Yawatahama city, Ehime prefecture. The city was famous for its fishing industry.
Yawatahama city must be familiar to some when they talk about martial arts.
Yes, it became famous as it was the birthplace of Ashihara karate in the Shonen Magazine comic series Karate Baka Ichidai.
Shiromitsu Ninomiya, the apprentice of it and the former All-Japan champion of Kyokushin karate, (presently in Enshinkaikan) was also born there.
This article caused a shocking impact on Japanese judo.