Shobu Ippon Rules



  1. The Kumite competition area :
  2. a) The kumite competition area is defined at 8×8 meters for Cadets, Juniors and Seniors, plus 2 meters total safety area.
  3. b) The kumite competition area is defined at 6×6 meters for Children under 14 years, plus 2 meters total safety area.
  4. Official dress :
  5. a) Referees : A one-button navy jacket with two silver buttons.

A white shirt with short sleeves. An official tie, worn without tiepin. Plain light -grey trousers without turn-upps. Plain dark blue, or black socks and black slip-on shoes without shoelaces, only for use on the match erea.

Female Referees and Judges can wear a hair clip.


  1. b) Contestants : White Karate-Gi, the belts red one and blue one, the mits of the same color as the belt are compulsory. A body/chest protector is compulsory for cadets, juniors and seniors female. It is forbidden to wear shin pads, foot protections, glasses and earrings; as well as clips or other blunt objects in hair. Contact lenses can be worn by the competitor’s own risk. A pony tale band can be worn by the female contestants. Groin guards are not mandatory, but if worn must be approved types.


  1. c) Coaches : The coaches will wear a sports suit (training suit, and in the finals, costume) and will display the official identification signs.
  2. d) Competitors and coaches must wear the official uniform, as defined above.
  3. e) The Arbitration Commission may exclude any official or competitor that does not comply with this rule.



  • If a competitor appears on the tatami at the beginning of a bout with inappropriate outfit, he will not be disqualified immediately; he will be given 1 minute to fix the situation.
  • With the agreement of the Arbitration Commission, the Official Referees and Judges may take off their jacket.
  1. Organization of the competition :
  2. Team Competitions :    Kumite teams will be composed of 3 athletes and 1 reserve, and Kata teams from 3 athletes (male / female).
  3. Kumite teams will be composed of 3 athletes and 1 reserve. At the start of the competition, the Kumite team must have at least 2 athletes in order to participate.
  4. Individual competitions :   Will be organized, in all age / weight categories, masculine and feminine, after elimination system without repassage.


  1. The Referee Panel :


  1. The referees’ Panel will be composed of 1 Referee – SUSHIN, 4Judges – FUKUSHIN, an Arbitrator – KANSA, a scorekeeper, 4 reserve Referees and a Tatami Manager. Referee
  2. SUSHIN will have the casting vote, showing his arm bent on the side of the decision. He is the only one who can stop the game and validate the points.


  1. The FUKUSHIN Judges will sit on the 4 corners of the tatami area with 2 hand flags, one red – AKA and one blue – AO (the 2 FUKUSHIN from the front corners of the Referee SUSHIN-2 and 3 will hold the red flag in the left hand and the blue flag in the right hand, and the other 2 FUKUSHIN, at the corners behind the SUSHIN-1 and 4, will hold the red flag in the right hand and the blue flag in the left hand). They are obliged to signal only valid techniques that they see.


  1. If SUSHIN does not stop the match and does not signal why he did not stop the match, when at least two FUKUSHIN Judges signal a technique on the same side, KANSA is obliged to stop the match by whistling and shaking the red flag. In this case SUSHIN must validate the technique.


  1. If, for example, two FUKUSHIN Judges raise a flag for AKA and the other two FUKUSHIN Judges for AO, the SUSHIN Referee, having the casting vote, will validate the point on the side that he believes he saw the valid technique, and ignore the signaling of the other two referees FUKUSHIN.


  1. If, for example, at the end of the match, Referee SUSHIN and 1 rJudge FUKUSHIN signal a decision to AKA and two other FUKUSHIN Judges signal a decision for AO, Referee SUSHIN, having the decisive ballot vote, will validate the point for AKA.


  1. If, for example, at the end of the match, Referee SUSHIN and 1 Judge FUKUSHIN signal a decision to AKA and the other 3 FUKUSHIN judges signal the decision to the AO, the Referee SUSHIN is obliged to validate the point for AO, even if he is convinced that AKA has made the scorring technique.


  1. If Referee SUSHIN sees a scorring technique for AKA (or AO) and stops the match, he can validate the point only if he has the support of a FUKUSHIN Judge on his side.


  1. If, for example, after the stop of the bout, Referee SUSHIN and 1 Judge FUKUSHIN signal a decision to AKA (AO) and the other 3 FUKUSHIN Judges signal TORIMASEN, the Referee SUSHIN can not validate the technique and will show TORIMASEN.


  1.  If, for example, after the stop of the bout, Referee SUSHIN and 1 Judge FUKUSHIN signal the same decision to AKA (AO), 1 other FUKUSHIN Judge signal TORIMASEN and 1 Judge FUKUSHIN signals MIENAI, Referee SUSHIN can validate technique.




  • Referee SUSHIN can stop the match if he sees a valid point, if he has the support of 1 FUKUSHIN Judge.
  • Referee SUSHIN is obliged to stop the match if at least 2 FUKUSHIN Judges signal the same side (AKA or AO) technique.

–     No Referee or Judge at a kumite match can be from the same country with the two competitors.


         5. Duration of a match and signaling:

  1. Children under 14 years – 1,5 minutes;
  2. Cadets, Juniors, Senios -female – 2 minutes;
  3. Seniors and under 21 years – male – 3 minutes.
  4. In case of draw, the decision will be taken by HANTEI.
  5. e) ATOSHI BARAKU (warning at the end of the match) a siren sound, or Referee whistle at 30 secunds from the end of the bout.


  1. The score      :

In SHOBU  IPPON competitions:

  1. WAZAARI (1 point)
  2. Jodan /Chudan  Tsuki or Uchi (TAI-NO-SEN or GO-NO-SEN)
  3. Chudan Keri (TAI-NO-SEN or GO-NO-SEN)
  4. IPPON (2 puncts)
  5. Jodan Keri
  6. Tsuki or Keri against an unbalanced opponent by the initiative, or fell to the ground
  • Tsuki/Uchi  without the opponent’s reaction, or on unprotected back
  1. Tsuki or Keri executed on SEN-NO-SEN.

All techniques, in order to be validated, must meet the 6 criteria :


  1. Good form;
  2. Sporting attitude;
  3. Vigorous application;
  4. Awareness (ZANSHIN);
  5. Good timing;
  6. Proper distance.



WAZAARI is 90% of the value of an IPPON, and slightly deficient of one of the 6 criteria.

In all cases, contact withthe hand or foot on the face must be controlled; in case of excessive contact, the Referes Panel will decide the level of warning or penalty imposed.

The match ends, by decision, at 2 WAZAARI  or 1 IPPON.

(Attacks are limited to the following AREAS  Head, Face, Neck, Chest, Abdomen, Back, Side)


·         An effective technique applied at the same time when the end of the match is signaled is considered valid. Even if it is effective, a technique applied after an order suspending or stopping the fight will not be marked and can lead to the penalty of the culprit.·         No technique, even if it is correct, will not be scored if it was applied when the two competitors were outside the Tatami. However, if one of the contestants applies an effective technique while still inside the tatami and before Referee SUSHIN shouts YAME, this technique will be awarded.·         There will not be marked effective techniques for scoring simultaneously both opponents against each other (AIUCHI).



  1. Decision criteria  :

The result of a fight is given by a competitor when it gets the difference of 2 points, or 1 point at the end of the game, gets a decision (HANTEI) or situations of HANSOKU, SHIKKAKU, or KIKEN imposed against a competitor. When a match ends with an even or no score, the Referee will announce the null match (HIKIWAKE) and the decision will be taken by HANTEI.

In team competitions, if a competitor loses by HANSOKU or SHIKKAKU, any score of the disqualified competitor will be reduced to 0 and the 2-0 score will be scored in favor of the other team.

If none of the competitors get a score during the match or we have a tie, the decision will be taken by the final vote of the SUSHIN Referee and the four FUKUSHIN Judges(HANTEI). It is obligatory to make a decision in favor of one of the competitors that will be based on the following:
a)  the attitude, the fighting spirit and the force demonstrated by the competitors;

  1. b) the superiority of tactics and techniques presented;
  2. c)  which of the contestants initiated most of the actions.

In team competitions, the winner will be the team with the most victories. In the event of a tie, the winner will be the team with the most points accumulated, both in the win and the lost matches. In case of equality and points, an additional match between two competitors of the two teams will be organized.

The winner will win the winning team. In the event of a tie, the winning team will be designated by the decision of the Referee and 4 Judges (HANTEI), taking into account the above criteria. 

  1. Prohibited behaviour :
  2. Category 1

Excessive contacts on the wrists (and hard contacts on the calves, not followed by an attack), face, head and kidney foot techniques, contact at the throat, unassisted sweeps and throws that by contact with the ground endanger the opponent’s physical integrity, kicks with open palm, head, knee or elbow will be warned / penalized as follows:

  1. KEIKOKU – warning (ATENAI)
  2. HANSOKU CHUI – warning

III. HANSOKU – penalty (the opponent wins the bout)


  1. Category 2

Exit from the Tatami on his own fault, disobedience to the Referee’s decision, grabbing or pushing for more than 5 seconds, unruly behavior, MUBOBI, sweeps and throws that by their nature may jeopardize the opponent’s physical integrity, techniques that exceed the target and run away from the fight to run the time.

Exaggeration of an injury caused by the opponent, or as a result of a MUBOBI situation

  1. CHUKOKU – warning (only for JOGAI)
  2. KEIKOKU – warning (ATENAI)


VI.HANSOKU  – penalty (the opponent wins the bout)

Explanations :

  • Only Category 2 deviations by JOGAI are warned 3 times followed by penalty, the other deviations being warned twice followed by penalty (disqualification of the competitor).

Athletes, coaches, members of a delegation that behaves inconsistently with the principles and damage the Karate-Do prestige, will be immediately disqualified from all competitions, with the possibility of suspending the competition for an additional period of time.

If an athlete claims a non-existent injury, SHIKKAKU is required without a prior warning. In these cases it is necessary to consult the  Referee Committee.

A public announcement must be made in this case.



  • Competition area at Kata

Surface size is defined the same as in the kumite competition.

  • Official dress

Competitors will wear white Karate-Gi, and the red or blue belt. A discreet clip can be worn by female competitors.

  • Organizing Kata competitions
  1. Kata teams (male and female)
  2. Kata individual (male and female)
    • Kata Competitions will be male and female, individual and team, through direct elimination without repassage. Both athletes and individuals will run Kata in the order of AKA and then AO, facing the Main Judge.
    • There is no required Kata. The Children, Kadets, Juniors and Seniors will perform a different Kata in each round.
    • The decision will be taken by the majority of flags raised by the same competitor (AKA, or AO).

No Judge at a kata match can be from the same country as the two competitors.

Only Shotokan style Kata are admitted.



  • Decision criteria
  1. Kata must be performed with competence and must demonstrate a clear understanding of the traditional principles it contains. In appreciating the demonstration of a competitor or team, the Judge looked after:
    1. A realistic demonstration of the meaning of kata.
    2. A good understanding of the used techniques (BUNKAI).
    3. Good synchronization, rhythm, speed, balance and focus of force (KIME).
    4. Correct and proper use of breathing as a help for KIME.
    5. Correct focus of attention(CHAKUGAN) and concentration.
    6. The correct position of the legs (DACHI) , with the right straightening standing and firm placement on the floor.
    7. The right abdominal contraction (HARA) and without leaning up or down the moving thighs.
    8. The correct form of the demonstrated style (KIHON).
    9. Kata’s difficulty presented.
    10. At Team Kata also is add synchronisation without any outside help.
  2. The competitor who stops during the Kata demonstration will be disqualified or who performs a kata different from the one announced or mentioned on the scoreboard.
  3. The competitor who is performing an unacceptable Kata or repeats Kata will be disqualified.
  4. Will be disqualified the competitor who does not bow in Tatami at the beginning and / or end of kata.
  5. The competitor to whom the belt falls during kata execution will be disqualified.


  • The Kata competition :
  1. At the beginning of each match and in response to their names, the two competitors, one wearing the red belt (AKA) and the other wearing the blue belt (AO), will align to the match area perimeter facing the Kata Main Judge. After greeting in front of the Judges, the AO will step outside the match area. AKA will begin after moving to the starting position, and says the clear announcement of the kata name it will perform. At the end of the kata demonstration, AKA will bow, leave the space and wait for the demonstration made by AO. Once the AO completes the Kata demonstration, both will stay outside the perimeter of the match space and wait for the decision taken by Judges Panel.
  2. If Kata is not in compliance with the regulations, or there are other irregularities, the Main Judge may call others to arrive at a verdict.
  3. If a competitor is disqualified, the Main Judge will cross over and dismiss the flags (as at the Torimasen signal in Kumite).
  4. After the two kata finish, the competitors will stand on the right and left of the competition space. The Main Judge will call for the decision (HANTEI) and will blow two times on the whistle while the Judges will cast their votes. The decision will be taken in favor of AKA or AO. The contestant who receives the most votes will be declared winner.
  5. The two competitors will salute by bowing in front of each other, then to the Judges Panel and leaving the match area.



  1. The starting point of a kata demonstration is within the perimeter of the competition space.
  2. The Chief Judge will call for a HANTEI decision and blow two whistles of the whistle. The judges will raise the flags simultaneously. After counting the votes (5 seconds), the flags will descend after another short whistle.
  • If the competitor has failed to return when called or withdrawn (KIKEN), the decision will automatically take the opponent’s favor without the need to execute the specified kata.


Sibiu, 31.03.2018                                                                                 Rules modified, adapted si   improved  by

Vladimir Dorian Prica  6 DAN



Apendix 1 : Terminology

SHOBU  IPPON HAJIME The beginning of the match or fight After the announcement, the referee SUSHIN takes a step back
ATOSHI BARAKU There is still a little time left The timekeeperr will give an acoustic signal 30 seconds before the actual end of the fight, and SUSHIN makes the announcement.
YAME Stop Interruption or end of a fight. When he makes the announcement, SUSHIN makes a short cut by hand.
MOTO NO ICHI Initial position Competitors and SUSHIN return to their starting positions
TSUZUKETE Continue the fight Command to resume the fight when an unauthorized interruption occurred
TSUZUKETE HAJIME Resuming the fight SUSHIN stands in his position. When he says tsuzukete stretches his arms with his palms facing the competitors and when he says “Hajime” he turns his palms to one another and at the same time steps back.
FUKUSHIN SHUGO Judge / Judge’s call. SUSHIN calls the 4 FUKUSHIN at the end of the match or fight, or recommends Shikkaku.
HANTEI Decision  SUSHIN calls the 4 FUKUSHIN to make a decision at the end of an inconclusive match. After a short whistle the 4 FUKUSHIN express his vote by signals with flags, and SUSHIN, at the same time, indicates his vote by raising the hand (right or left).
HIKIWAKE Match null In the event of a null match, the referee crosses his arms and then stretches them with his palms in front.
TORIMASEN Unacceptable as scoring technique SUSHIN crosses his arms, then makes a cutting motion, laterally, palms down. So do FUKUSHIN with the flags.
YOWAI Technique without power SUSHIN moves the palm down, then makes the same gesture as at TORIMASEN. So do FUKUSHIN with the flags.
AIUCHI Techniques punctuated simultaneously No point is given to any competitor. SUSHIN takes his fists together in front of his chest. So do FUKUSHIN with the flags.
MIENAI The referees did not see the technique SUSHIN takes his palms to the eyes. FUKUSHIN take their flags to their eyes.
MA AI Inappropriate distance SUSHIN takes his palms to the front of the abdomen face to face. FUKUSHIN do the same with the flags.
AKA (AO) IPPON Marking two points SUSHIN raises his arm to 45 ° against the competitor. So do FUKUSHIN with the flags.
AKA (AO) WAZAARI Marking one point SUSHIN raises the arm to the shoulder or down to 45 ° from the competitor. So do FUKUSHIN with the flags.
CHUKOKU (only for JOGAI) First warning for category 2 – JOGAI For Ctg.2, SUSHIN points the pointer vertically toward the culprit’s face. FUKUSHIN beats the color of the sportsman who came out of TATAMI on the demarcation line of TATAMI and straightens the flag vertically towards the guilty one.
KEIKOKU (ATENAI for categories 1 si 2) Warning SUSHIN indicates a violation of Ctg.1 or Ctg.2, then indicates at 45 ° downwards in the direction of the guilty
HANSOKU-CHUI Warning SUSHIN indicates the penalty, then points the pointer horizontally to the guilty one
HANSOKU Disqualification SUSHIN indicates the penalty, then points the 45 ° upward in the direction of the guilty and announces the winner of the opponent.
JOGAI Exit the match space


SUSHIN indicates with the pointer finger on the side of the guilty, towards the edge of the battle surface and the level of warning. FUKUSHIN beats the color of the sportsman that came out of the surface on the line of demarcation of the battle surface and straightens the flag, vertically, towards the guilty one.
SHIKKAKU Severe disqualification SUSHIN shows up to 45 degrees to the guilty one, then retires by making AO (AKA) Shikkaku! Then the adversary is announced the winner.
KIKEN Disclaimer SUSHIN points down to 45 degrees in the direction of the competitor’s starting line.
MUBOBI Self-exposure to hazards SUSHIN moves forward and back to face fis hand.
AKA (AO) NO KACHI Announcement of the winner SUSHIN raises the arm to the winner


Sibiu, 31.03.2018                                                                          Rules modificated, adapted and  improved  by

Vladimir Dorian Prica  6 DAN