Understanding Olympic Karate 02

Get ready for the 2020 Summer Olympics and one of its new sports: KARATE!

Karate is an ancient martial art finding its roots as far back as 1372. It has evolved greatly and is being practiced as an international sport as well as a martial art.

Now, Karate has evolved into many different styles and many associations have been created. The only one recognized by the International Olympic Committee is the World Karate Federation [WKF]. Karate at the Olympic Games will follow the WKF rules.

It is not a simple combat sport to follow for those who don’t practice it. It is not as straight forward as hitting the other person until they faint.

There are many things to know to be able to understand and enjoy a karate match!

Here is the #2 thing to understand

Points are awarded only by the corner judges using their flags. A point is awarded only if two flags or more of the same color come out.

A flag pointed down means 1 point

A flag parallel to the floor is 2 points

A flag pointed up means 3 points

If 2 flags or more of the same color come out giving the same amount of points, that amount of point is awarded. (ex: 3 blue flags giving 2 points come out, then 2 points are given to blue)

If 2 or 3 flags of the same color come out all with different points, the lower points are awarded. (ex1: 1 red flag shows 2 points and 1 red flag shows 3 points, then 2 points are given to red)(ex2: 1 red flag shows 1 point, 1 red flag shows 2 points, and 1 red flag shows 3 points, then 1 point is given to red)

If 2 flags come out for blue AND 2 flags come out for red, points are given to both accordingly.

If 2 flags come out but are of different color, no points are given.

Sometimes, flags will be held vertically or in a cross in front of the judge. That’s for penalties, and that’s for another lesson!

Here’s an example on how points are given according to flags:

You are one step closer to understanding the new Olympic sport that is Karate.

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