This is a FREE event to students with Down Syndrome or other qualifying special needs. Tournament directors will work with school owners to coordinate divisions and pairings for any special needs competitors. For tournament purposes, ADD, ADHD or similar attention disorders do not qualify for this category. Competitors will be awarded Gold, Silver and Bronze medals.
The Tournament will give away one (1) five hundred dollar ($500) scholarship/grant that can be used for college or trade school. The category is open to BLACK belt students that are a high school junior, senior or college level student. Each school with five (5) or more competitors can submit one (1) qualifying student who you feel should receive the scholarship/grant.
The candidate must submit a five hundred (500) – six hundred (600) word essay in his or her own words on what it means to be a black belt. The essay must include a cover page with the following details. The cover page information does not count towards the essay word count.
- Full Name, Age & Current Grade Level
- Martial Arts School Name & Master’s Name
- Number of years training Martial Arts.
The candidate will be judged and scored on the content and presentation of the essay. Essays that fall under or go over the word count will be disqualified. Essays with cursing or inappropriate language will be disqualified. The essay must be submitted on or before August 30, 2023. Essays received after August 30, 2023 will receive a five (5) point deduction on the overall score. Eighty-five percent (85%) of the score is based on the content and fifteen percent (15%) of the score is based on the presentation, grammar and spelling. Essays should be mailed to 2345 Bee Ridge Road, Sarasota, FL 34239 or by email to email@example.com. The winner will be announced at The Tournament.
Team Spirit Award—NEW
The Team Spirit category is open to all participating schools. The Team Spirit award will be given to the school with the most pre-registered paid competitors participating in the tournament. For a competitor to be included in the total count they must be pre-registered and paid on or before August 26, 2023. The winning school receives the following:
- $250 in equipment/gear provided by Dynamics
- Reserved section for your team and parents in the bleachers
- Team Pizza Party
- Team Spirit Trophy
- Bragging rights for one year!
For this award, Pairs Forms, Synchronized Team Forms and Demo Team count as one (1) paid competitor. Each person on the Pairs Team, Synchronized Team and or Demo Team do not count as an individual pre-registered paid competitor for this category. The tournament directors will coordinate with the winning school owner(s) to receive the pizza party and equipment.
Please read the tournament handbook for the complete Forms category rules.
IV. Forms—NEW STRUCTURE
The category is open to all styles of martial arts. You will see different styles and forms competing against each other. This year the category features two (2) levels or rounds.
- Level I – This is the medal round. At this level three (3) competitors in the same belt and age division compete against each other. They compete for Gold, Silver and Bronze medals. All Gold medal winners advance to LEVEL II, the grand championship trophy round. The Tournament does allow for a one (1) belt deviation if needed to complete a group of three (3) competitors.
- Level II – This is the grand championship trophy round. The level is open to all competitors that won a Gold medal in the LEVEL I forms category. Gold medal winners compete for the title of Grand Champion against other gold medal winners in their age and belt division. When all of the competitors in a group have completed their forms and the medals have been awarded, all GOLD medal winners enter the ring again. The top three (3) competitors with the highest scores will be awarded 1st place, 2nd place and 3rd place trophies.
V. Synchronized Team Forms—NEW
This category is open to ALL belt and age divisions. It’s a fun and exciting category that allows competitors to compete with their friends and/or family as a team. Each team must have a minimum of three (3) competitors and a maximum of five (5) competitors. Teams can be mixed with male and female and different belt divisions. Each team must demonstrate a traditional Martial Art form. This is not a creative category.
VI. Pair Forms—NEW
This category will be open to ALL belt and age divisions. It is a fun and exciting category that allows competitors to compete with their friend or family as a pair. Each pair is two (2) competitors. The pair can be mixed with male and female and different belt divisions. Teams must demonstrate a traditional Martial Art form. It is not a creative category.
VII. Musical/Creative Forms
The musical forms category and the creative forms category will be combined into one (1) category this year. However, if enough competitors enter to create separate categories they will be divided onsite at The Tournament. That determination will be made on the day of The Tournament. Competitors choosing musical forms must provide their own equipment to play the music. The Tournament does not provide audio equipment for competitors. If the audio equipment malfunctions due to no fault of the tournament and its coordinators, the competitor will be downgraded by the judges.
The breaking category is subdivided into three (3) categories, Standard Breaking, Power Breaking and Highest Kick Break!
Please read the tournament handbook for the complete Breaking category rules.
In this category competitors compete against themselves. The competitor determines their own breaking technique and board heights based on the allowed number of boards for their belt rank. If the competitor is successful and completes the breaks on the first attempt, the competitor will be awarded a Gold medal. If it takes the competitor two (2) attempts on any break they will be awarded a Silver medal. If it takes the competitor three (3) or more total attempts the competitor will be awarded a Bronze medal. Black Belt competitors will compete against two (2) other black belts in their division for 1st, 2nd & 3rd place trophies. Black belts will be judged on their breaking techniques and difficulty. Number of breaking attempts supersedes technique
The competitor must break the boards using a balanced number of hand and foot techniques. For example, a breaking competitor in Level I must break two (2) boards. That competitor must use one (1) hand and one (1) foot technique to break the boards. Level II and LEVEL III competitors have additional requirements as outlined below. The breaking category is divided into the following three (3) levels.
- LEVEL I – 2 Boards – White, Yellow, Orange & Green Belts
- 1 hand & 1 foot technique
- LEVEL II – 4 Boards – Purple, Blue, Brown & Red Belts
- 2 hand & 2 foot techniques
- Must use at least one (1) jumping kick
- 2 hand & 2 foot techniques
- Must use at least one (1) jumping kick
- LEVEL III – 6 boards – Black Belts (BB)
- 3 hand & 3 foot techniques (NO hammer fist for BB division)
- Must use at least one (1) jumping kick
- Must use at least one (1) spinning/turning kick
This category will be limited to black belts only this year. This category will be divided by under 18 years old division and over 18 years old division. Black belts will compete against each other regardless of competitor age and size.
Breaking material will be limited to wood. The Tournament will use one inch (1”) thick pine wood boards for power breaking. No other materials can be used. Boards will be stacked on top of cement blocks. Construction pencils will be used as spacers between the boards. To keep power breaking as fair as possible, competitors must purchase boards from The Tournament. In 2023 power breaking competitors can use any of the following techniques for breaking: Hammer Fist, Palm Strike, Elbow Strike or Straight Punch
IX. Weapons—NEW STRUCTURE
This category is open to different weapons including sword, bo staff, nunchucks, kamas, kali (escrima) sticks, fans and more. For safety reasons, competitors ARE NOT permitted to use sharpened weapons. The weapons category will be divided by belt rank and age. This category encompasses traditional and Music/Creative routines. The weapons category features two (2) levels or rounds.
- Level I – This is the medal round. At this level three (3) competitors in the same belt and age division compete against each other. They compete for Gold, Silver and Bronze medals. All Gold medal winners advance to LEVEL II, the grand championship trophy round.
- Level II – This is the grand championship trophy round. The level is open to all competitors that won a Gold medal in the LEVEL I weapons category. Gold medal winners compete for the title of Grand Champion against other gold medal winners in their age and belt division. When all of the competitors in a group have completed their weapon and the medals have been awarded, all GOLD medal winners enter the ring again. The top three (3) competitors with the highest scores will be awarded 1st place, 2nd place and 3rd place trophies.
Competitors are judged based on their overall performance, technique, beauty, grace and stances compared to the other competitors. When all competitors have completed their weapons routine the judges will conference to award medals in LEVEL I and trophies in LEVEL II.
X. Musical/Creative Weapons
The musical and creative weapons categories will be combined into one (1) category this year. However, if enough competitors enter to create separate categories they will be divided onsite at The Tournament. That determination will be made on the day of The Tournament. Competitors choosing musical weapons must provide their own equipment to play the music. The Tournament does not provide audio equipment for competitors. If the audio equipment malfunctions due to no fault of the tournament and its coordinators, the competitor will be downgraded by the judges.
WEAPONS – The referee should check all weapons for safety. Weapons are subject to referee’s approval (no sharp weapons allowed in the youth divisions). The referee should make sure all spectators and competitors are at a safe distance from the performing competitor. Safety of all competitors, judges, spectators and helpers should be considered by all involved. Therefore, the competitor’s control of the weapon is of utmost importance. If a competitor unintentionally drops the weapon, the competitor is automatically disqualified. If a competitor recklessly or carelessly misuses the weapon, the competitor may be penalized or disqualified.
XI. Self Defense
A competitor must be at their ring just like all other divisions prepared to compete. The competitor who is being attacked must be in full martial arts gear the attackers should also be in uniform, but if a technique requires a person to be in street clothes for the technique(s) then that will be allowed. The competitor will be given ninety (90) seconds to do the technique(s). The time of ninety (90) seconds will start from after they present them self to the officials.
A competitor must have the minimum of three (3) self defense techniques or attackers and a maximum of seven (7) techniques. A competitor may have a single attacker or multiple attackers it will be at the desecration of the competitor. The competitor can do all open hand or defend against weapons or mix them. The scoring of the techniques will be on the knowledge, response time to an attack, and the reality of the techniques.
Please read the tournament handbook for the complete Sparring rules.
The Tournament strives to provide a fun and safe sparring experience. Safety is a major concern. Sparring rules at this tournament are put in place to keep the competition fun, exciting and as safe as possible. ALL sparring competitors under 18 are REQUIRED to wear full sparring gear. Competitors must wear hand, foot, head, chest, groin and mouth protection. Gear must be in clean working condition. Competitors WILL NOT be allowed to spar without protective gear. If the competitor’s gear is deemed unsafe the competitor will be asked to change the equipment before the competitor can compete Gear will be available onsite for purchase if needed. This IS NOT a full contact tournament. Competitors must control their kicks and punches. If a competitor kicks or punches another competitor hard enough to cause that competitor to receive a knockout (KO). The competitor that caused the KO can be disqualified (DQ).
The sparring category will be divided into two (2) separate categories. Both categories are single elimination until the grand championship round.
- Point Sparring – In point sparring the first competitor to reach seven (7) points wins. The match ends when a competitor reaches seven (7) points or the time expires.
- Scoring – Points are scored with both hands and feet.
- Match Time – Preliminary matches are one (1), ninety (90) second round. Finals matches are two (2), ninety (90) second rounds. The match ends when a competitor reaches seven (7) points or the time expires, whichever happens first.
- All legal hand techniques that score will be awarded one (1) point. All legal kicking techniques that score will be awarded two (2) points. All penalty points awarded will be one (1) point value. The competitor who earns the first seven (7) points automatically wins. If no one scores seven (7) points by the end of the two minutes, the competitor who is ahead wins.
- Continuous Point Sparring – In continuous sparring two competitors continue sparring for the entire two (2) minutes. The winner is determined at the end of the match. Each match is carried out until the time expires. The center ring official and two judges will evaluate the relative effectiveness of each fighter based on the number, quality and variety of the scoring strikes. The three officials will determine the winner of each match by majority decision.
Emphasis must be placed on both punching and kicking techniques. Punching or “boxing” only for an extended period of time without throwing kicks may be cause for penalization or may downgrade the judge’s evaluation of your performance. Competition contact for all techniques is deemed to be light contact controlled martial arts movements. Continuous sparring does not include knockout techniques. This is not a full contact combat tournament. Techniques must be well controlled when they land on legal targets with enough control as not to “strike through” or “push through” target with their scoring technique.
ELECTRONIC SCORING – NEW SYSTEM
This year the tournament will feature an electronic scoring system. Scores will be displayed on a large TV screen located on the judge’s table.