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EXPLANATOR: Karate at the Tokyo Olympics

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Things to know about karate competition at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics:

THE ABSOLUTE BASICS

This picture taken on September 7, 2019 shows a general view during the ‘Karate1 Premier League’ competition at the Nippon Budokan, site of the upcoming Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. (Photo by Charly TRIBALLEAU / AFP)

  • There are two types of events: kata (form) other kumite (combat)
  • On kata, individuals demonstrate offensive and defensive moves against a virtual opponent and are scored on factors including speed, pace, balance, sharpness, and power.
  • Competitors choose between 102 forms of kata and they are not allowed to repeat the same kata during a single competition.
  • The kumite The event involves two competitors facing each other with the goal of landing scoring hits in target areas that are awarded one to three points.

HOW MANY MEDALS?

Eight gold medals are up for grabs, including one for men’s and women’s kata. Kumite is divided into three weight categories for men (-67 kg, -75 kg, + 75 kg) and women (-55 kg, -61 kg, + 61 kg)

WHAT CAN WE EXPECT IN TOKYO?

Judo Kiyomi Watanabe

FILE – Filipina Kiyomi Watanabe competes during women’s -63 kg judo at the 30th SEA Games. PHOTO INQURER / Sherwin Vardeleon

There will be 80 ‘karatekas’ competing as the karate does its Debut at the Olympics. His future at the Games remains uncertain as karate will not be on the Paris 2024 program

WHEN IS IT HAPPENING?

August 5-7

WHERE IS IT HAPPENING?

Nippon budokan

This image shows the Nippon Budokan, the venue for judo and karate events, 100 days before the start of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo on April 14, 2021. (Photo by Kazuhiro NOGI / AFP)

Nippon Budokan, the spiritual home of traditional Japanese martial arts, built in 1964. The venue hosted judo for the Tokyo Olympics that year and is also a popular venue for rock concerts, including The Beatles in 1966.

HOW DO WE GET HERE?

karate It was probably formed through the mixture of indigenous defensive tactics practiced by the warrior class in the Ryukyu Kingdom, now Japan’s southernmost Okinawa prefecture, and Chinese martial arts. It began to spread across Japan in the 1920s and now has more than 130 million enthusiasts in nearly 200 countries, according to the World Karate Federation.

WELL FANCY THAT

Japan PM Suga

FILE PHOTO: Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga speaks during a meeting of the coronavirus infection control (COVID-19) headquarters at the prime minister’s office in Tokyo, Japan, on January 22, 2021. Kazuhiro Nogi / Pool via REUTERS

Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has a black belt in karate and was instrumental in getting him a spot in the Olympics, leading a group of lawmakers in lobbying efforts while he was chief cabinet secretary.


Follow Inquirer Sports special coverage of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics here.

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