Video Series – Point or No Point

One of the problems with judging and refereeing is how to get enough practice in to get comfortable or good at it. We try to make time for people to learn how to flag and referee in the dojo, but there is always more you can do.

  • Watch YouTube videos of karate matches. Replay the parts you need to see the points. Watch the referees, too, to see their hand motions. Suggested search terms are: USANKF, karate, kumite or sparring +/- US open, Nationals,  Rocky Mountain Championship, etc. The videos with the new rules (and higher definition) start in 2012. You can also look at the USA Karate channel which posts new ones from time to time.
  • Practice the hand motions and words in front of the mirror, in the shower, or in front of a video camera.
  • Practice seeing points whenever there is dojo sparring, whether you get to hold flags or not. Position yourself behind the flagger to see from their vantage point.

We have also been making videos of sparring matches, picking out specific scenarios in which you decide, was that a point, not a point and why?

Each video has examples of non-elite athletes sparring, which is what most of us will be judging most of the time. These are very different than elite athletes and are judged according to age and karate level. There is not much information out there on how to make decisions that do not meet all of the criteria perfectly For instance: Does a six year old have to Kiai? How close should a jodan punch really come to a ten year old’s face and what does ten centimeters look like? How do you measure intent?  Thinking about and practicing these judgement calls will make us all better.

Point or No Point

Point or No Point #2

Point or No Point #3

Point or No Point #5 (don’t ask)