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ICMAC  Judges' rules, guidelines & parameters:

By establishing a set of rules and guidelines for our judges to follow, we elevate the overall standards of ICMAC Chinese martial arts tournaments. These rules have evolved over the years through the input of many dedicated masters and teachers.

With a clear understanding of these parameters, judges will be able to evaluate and score an athlete, and support these scores, based on objective and not subjective criteria.

"Objective scoring" is based on whether or not an athlete who is performing a routine is adhering to requirements of that particular style. Although certain principles are common and required to many styles, it is also true that styles are distinctive and can be clearly distinguished. For example, Traditional Long Fist routines have different requirements than Traditional Southern Fist routines, and so forth.

"Subjective scoring" is based on an individual's personal belief about what is a good or bad performance. These judgments lack fairness, are often biased and may demonstrate a certain lack of preparation on the judge's part.

Regardless of one's judging experience, and in keeping with the true spirit of Chinese martial arts, there is always room for improvement. Every judge who loves CMA and wants to contribute to elevating its standards and spread its growth will gladly accept, support, participate in and provide feedback on the rules as well as the required training sessions.

The Arbitrator

Before we describe the rating criteria for judges, we will address the role of the Arbitrator, who oversees the work of the chief judges and all the other judges.

The Arbitrator is a person of exemplary character and accomplishment in CMA who has experience in all levels of competition and commands and warrants the respect of his or her peers.

Arbitrator's responsibilities and obligations:

  • Is thoroughly knowledgeable of competition rules and guidelines
  • Reviews all chief judges and judging assignments
  • Is aware of the competition layout and ring assignments
  • Has the authority to replace judges
  • Quickly handles any misconduct by coaches or athletes
  • Is responsible for addressing complaints from coaches or athletes and resolving disputes

Judges' Ratings

As there are different skill levels in martial arts ability and knowledge, so too there are differing levels in a judge's knowledge and expertise. In order to distinguish and also encourage judges to not only maintain but elevate their capabilities, we have established three rating systems. These are as follows:

  1. A-Rated judges
  2. B-Rated judges
  3. C-Rated judges

A-Rated judges have many years of judging experience, are able to evaluate athletes fairly, are keenly familiar with the competition format and have a full understanding of the tournament rules. They have the ability, expertise and confidence to fulfill multiple roles. Therefore, it is from this group of the most experienced A-Rated judges that Chief Judges are selected.

Chief Judges' responsibilities and obligations:

  • Attend scheduled judges' training and mandatory meeting
  • Become acquainted with the other officials assigned to your ring and report any absentees to the Arbitrator
  • Address any concerns that your panel of judges may have regarding rules, scoring, and lunch breaks
  • Have good communication skills
  • Be present and timely for opening ceremonies
  • Immediately after the opening ceremonies, report to your assigned ring
  • Call athletes to the ring with the commands of "up" and "on deck"
  • Call the scores from each side judge so that the score keeper can properly record them
  • Make sure that the time/score keepers are properly keeping time and accurately scoring each performance
  • Present the final score to the athlete and to the audience after the score keeper has averaged the final score
  • Award medals at the completion of each division
  • At the completion of each division be sure that the division sheet is properly signed and returned to the coordinator's table
  • Take overall responsibility for the smooth operation of the assigned ring
  • Keep to scheduled time assignments
  • Complete the appraisal form about your work at ringside, and that of the other judges in your panel, after completing the judging assignments

Should the divisions assigned to your ring end early, it is your responsibility to keep your panel intact and to assist other rings in finishing their scheduled divisions. It is not acceptable to dismiss your panel while other rings are still processing athletes.

A-Rated judges' responsibilities:

  • Attend scheduled judges' training and mandatory meeting
  • Become acquainted with the other officials assigned to your ring and report any absentees to the Arbitrator
  • Address any concerns your panel of officials may have regarding rules, scoring, and lunch break
  • Be present and timely for opening ceremonies
  • Immediately after the opening ceremonies report to your assigned ring
  • Print your name on each division sheet you are scoring in order of seating
  • Carefully observe and evaluate the performance of each athlete
  • Be ready to provide your score to the chief judge when scores are called
  • Stay with your assigned chief judge until dismissed

Other possible duties of A-Rated judges:

  • Relieve the chief judge when necessary
  • Serve as an alternate judge at any ring where help is needed
  • Fulfill any other duty that can keep the competition flowing smoothly

B-Rated judges have judged in several competitions but lack the experience of A-Rated judges. Nevertheless, B-Rated judges have a good understanding of competition rules and scoring procedures, are able to give unbiased evaluations of each athlete and fulfill their required duties with diligence and professionalism.

B-Rated judges' responsibilities:

  • Attend scheduled judges' training and mandatory meeting
  • Acquaint yourself with the assigned chief judge for your ring
  • Be prepared with competition rules and scoring procedures
  • Be present and timely for opening ceremonies
  • Immediately after the opening ceremonies report to your assigned ring
  • Carefully observe and evaluate the performance of each athlete
  • Be ready to provide your score to the chief judge when scores are called
  • Stay with your assigned chief judge until dismissed

Other possible duties of B-Rated judges:

  • Serve as an alternate judge when necessary
  • Fill in as time keeper or score keeper
  • Fulfill any other duty that can keep the competition flowing smoothly

C-Rated judges are new to judging or have very limited experience. This group should work hard at understanding the rules and the overall workings of a competition to develop experience from the ground up. C-Rated judges must first work as time keepers and score keepers. This will provide crucial tournament experience while under the close supervision of the chief judge.

C-Rated judges' duties and responsibilities:

  • Attend scheduled judges' training and mandatory meeting
  • Acquaint yourself with the assigned chief judge for your ring
  • Be knowledgeable of competition rules, scoring and time keeping procedures
  • Be present and timely for the opening ceremonies
  • Immediately after the opening ceremonies report to your assigned ring
  • Properly fill in the names of athletes who have registered on site
  • Carefully observe each athlete's performance so as to enrich your understanding and build a knowledge of judging criteria
  • Properly keep time or record the scores called by the chief judge
  • Do not abandon your position until excused by the chief judge

Other possible duties of C-Rated judges:

  • Fill in as judge if you meet the minimum required criteria
  • Be prepared to keep score or keep time in another ring
  • Fulfill any other duty that can keep the competition flowing smoothly

The duties of the time keeper are as follows:

  • Know the proper operation of the stopwatch
  • Insure that the stopwatch is in good working order
  • Know the time requirements for the divisions in your ring
  • Record and report the time to the chief judge

The duties of the score keeper are as follows:

  • Properly record the scores from each judge
  • Subtract the high and low score, where applicable, and average the total score for the chief judge (a calculator will be provided)
  • Record the final score legibly
  • Carefully check the placement of each athlete once the division is complete
  • Make sure that the division sheet is returned to the coordinator's table

Rating Parameters for Judges

Establishing a parameter from which to set a judge's rating is a difficult and delicate undertaking, and one that will continue to be honed over time.

In establishing a rating parameter, a judge's experience or lack thereof is the key determining factor. The experience gained in judging a small-scale Kung Fu tournament is not the same as that which is acquired in judging large-scale Chinese martial arts championships. The number of events, workload and expectations differ greatly between the two, even as the obligations and duties of the judge may remain the same.

A-Rated judges must meet the following criteria:

  1. Have a minimum of 5 years of judging experience
  2. Have judged in at least 10 major tournaments
  3. Be recognized by the Chinese martial arts community
  4. Be fair, dependable and responsible
  5. Demonstrate discipline, morality and sportsmanship
  6. Be willing to work at maintaining high judging standards

B-Rated Judges must meet the following criteria:

  1. Have a minimum of 2 years of judging experience
  2. Have judged in at least 5 major tournaments
  3. Be fair, dependable and responsible
  4. Demonstrate discipline, morality and sportsmanship
  5. Be willing to work at honing and improving judging standards

C-Rated judges must meet the following criteria:

  1. Be willing to work at accumulating tournament experience
  2. Demonstrate discipline, morality and sportsmanship
  3. Be knowledgeable about time keeping and score keeping procedures
  4. Be dependable and responsible
  5. Attend judges training courses
  6. Work as time keepers or score keepers for 2 years and be actively involved in at least 4 tournaments

Maintaining and Raising Judges' Ratings

Just as ratings can be raised through training and tournament participation, they can be lowered through lack of training and participation.

A-Rated judges will lose their rating if they do not judge in at least two major tournaments in a calendar year and attend two judges training sessions within that same year.

Once an A-Rated judge loses his rating, he will need to judge as a B-Rated judge for one year in at least two major tournaments and attend at least two judges training sessions within that same year. Also, once the A Rating has been regained, it must be maintained for an additional year before being considered for chief judging assignments.

B-Rated judges will lose their rating if they do not judge in at least two major tournaments in a calendar year and attend two judges training sessions within that same year.

B-Rated judges can become A-Rated judges once they have judged for a minimum of 5 years and in at least 10 major tournaments and attended a minimum of 10 judges training sessions within that time span.

C-Rated judges can become B-Rated judges after having served as time keeper and score keeper in at least 4 major tournaments and attended at least 4 judges training sessions within that time span.

Judges' Training Clinics

If you are interested in becoming a Facilitator for the judges' training clinics, please contact us directly.

Do you want to be on our judges' panel?

If you are interested in becoming part of our judges' panel for the tournament circuit, please complete the downloadable questionnaire and mail it, along with 2 passport-size photos, to the Circuit Headquarters address that appears on the form. We will confirm receipt of your form by e-mail. Every form will become part of our judges' data base and will be periodically re-evaluated.

Although every application will be given careful consideration, we will select only the best candidates so as to fulfill our goal of building a strong body of judges who are dedicated to CMA, dependable, enthusiastic, hard working and willing to continue to hone their judging skills.

 

Kung Fu Camp

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