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Female Japanese judoka coaching Brazil team at Rio Olympics (Japan / Brazil)

Yuko FujiiA Japanese judo instructor working for Brazil?s national team is bringing cultural and technical experience to her pupils as they ramp up their training program for the 2016 Olympics.

?As my team members are improving their physical condition, all they need from me now is to psych them up,? Yuko Fujii, 33, said in Tokyo in December when she was in the capital with the Brazilian team for an international judo competition.

Fujii was born in Obu, Aichi Prefecture. She began practicing judo when she was 5 years old.

Although she finished third in a national tournament when she was in high school, she never reached a level that would see her qualify for a place in the Japanese Olympic team. She ended her judo career when she was 24 in 2007, around the same time as she completed graduate school in Japan and moved to the University of Bath in Britain to improve her English.



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