Psychology professor coached Judo at Olympic level

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David Matsumoto wasn’t interested in the sport of Judo when he first started at seven years old, but being the youngest of three boys, he was expected to follow in their footsteps when his time came. His perseverance in the sport brought him the honor of seventh degree black belt, and by the age of fifty.

He studied psychology at the University of Michigan and has continued his study of nonverbal expression ever since. He even did this with a survey at the 2004 Olympic Games at Athens, confirming what had perviously been observed by Scott Madey at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona. When people win their last match, they are happier than when they lose their last match, even if that is losing to the gold medal winner, the highest place.

His conclusion is that we should be happy wherever we finish, especially when we are in medal positions.

“Since I was young, my first Judo instructor always instilled in me one of the things we have to do as a student is give back,” Matsumoto said. “As a part of my Judo training I knew that I would also be helping others by teaching what I know.”

So it was that David gave back by sharing his knowledge in the dojo, the Judo Club he inherited and was renamed the East Bay Judo Institute. But his greatest achievement was giving back to Judo at the Olympic level, even coaching a team that won gold in an international event in 1999.

The Golden Gate Express has a fuller article about David Matsumoto and his studies at Olympic level

Category: News