By Gary Anderson

The second part of the Judo Educational Journey Through China has been launched in Beijing ©IJFThe second stage of the Judo Educational Journey Through China was launched at the Shunyi Sports School, just outside Beijing today, and saw Olympic and world champion Tong Wen on hand to help get the campaign up and running again.

The programme was launched by International Judo Federation (IJF) President Marius Vizer at the conclusion of the Qingdao Grand Prix in November last year.

It aims to explore the enormous potential of judo within China and promote the sport to as much of the country's 1.3 billion population as possible ahead of the Summer Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing this summer.

During the first stage of the tour, run in partnership with the Chinese Judo Association (CJA), a number of top Chinese judoka along with IJF officials conducted 15 practical workshops at schools, universities, clubs, training centres and public places across the cities of Qingdao, Zibo, Binzhou, Jinan, Tianjing and Beijing.

Tong Wen took part in the first tour last year and will return to help lead the campaign again, and is set to open a judo school for juveniles to promote the judo moral code in Tianjin.

The next stage of the tour will visit Beijing, Guangzhou, Changsha, Wenzhou and Shanghai over the next two weeks.

Beijing 2008 champion Xiuli Yang helped launch the campaign at the Shunyi Sports School, which saw schoolchildren participating in judo sessions and clinics.

"On behalf of Chinese Judo Association, I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to the International Judo Federation and its President, Marius Vizer, for the support to this Judo Educational Journey Through China," said CJA general secretary, Xiong Fengshan.

"Under the leadership of the IJF experts, it will help us to lead judo clinics, conferences and interactions in terms of judo culture, history, etiquette, social popularity and sport promotion.

"We hope that the 2014 Educational Journey Through China can achieve fruitful results, to attract more people to know judo, practice judo and to let judo benefit ordinary people, so as to make our own contributions to the development of sport and the progress of the society."

Beijing 2008 champion Xiuli Yang took Chinese youngsters through a judo clinic at the Shunyi Sports School ©IJFBeijing 2008 champion Xiuli Yang took Chinese youngsters through a judo clinic at the Shunyi Sports School ©IJF

During the next two weeks, the IJF will be represented by Mohamed Meridja, IJF education and coaching director, and by Nicolas Messner, IJF media and judo for peace director.

"We want to show that judo is fun, especially for the young generations and that through judo they can learn skills for life," said Messner.

"In judo we can practice freely because we have the respect of the rules and of the philosophy of our sport.

"During the upcoming days, we will see thousands of happy faces, because judo is not only a sport, it is also a way of life."

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