One premier class offered at EKS is Competition Kata. This class is part of the Black Belt program. Karateka (students) learn to perform competition-style katas mainly for competing in tournament events. In the world of competitive sports, little things count. Different judges for different tournaments look at different things when deciding a “winner”. We are focused on emulating the art form of the “true Okinawan karateka”. Careful analysis of hand, stance, footwork head posture, and focus is provided to the competing individual. Guidance in achieving that world-class perfection is provided by Renshi Eggleston. This class focuses on all those things that ‘create a true champion’.
Team Eggleston Karate (TEK) competes in tournaments around the Richmond metropolitan area and nearby areas. They spend most of the year preparing to compete in the AAU Local and State Tournaments, the AAU National Championships and the AAU Junior Olympics. Members range in age from 4 years to adult. Team Eggleston Karate follows a specific curriculum geared to creating Champions in Kata, Kumite and Kobudo. The team is divided into two categories : TEK-1 for teens and adults and TEK-2 for youth 12 and below.
Students and/or Parents may have questions concerning competition. In the following pages we list some of the questions asked most often along with their answers. We hope they address questions or concerns you may have regarding you or your child and competition. If not, we encourage you to seek out an instructor for additional information.
EKS believes that karate competition is a key aspect of every student’s development. Competition teaches students – both young and old – not only how to perform under pressure, but also how to deal gracefully with both triumph and disappointment. These are important life skills.
While we encourage our students to compete in tournaments, we also want to alert them that competing for the first time can be a scary thing. The first, or first couple, of times a student competes nerves take over and being in front of an audience becomes frightening. We want our students to understand that this is true for all ages and levels and that this is what most of us go through. With that being said, let’s all (instructor’s, parents and students) advise our younger students of what they might endure and help them to understand that competing in their first tournament they may not win a 1st, 2nd or even 3rd place medal, but that they will gain confidence and will overcome for their next competition.
Frequently Asked Competition Questions (FAQ’s)
Volunteering (We need volunteers)
What can I volunteer for?
We will need many volunteers to help with various things during the tournament. If you are interested in volunteering please see Renshi or Shihon Shelia. There will be a list posted detailing where help is needed.
Do I need to know karate to be a volunteer?
No prior karate experience is necessary. All of the information that you will need, will be given to you by the officials and referees, at the tables.
What would I be doing as “table help” at a tournament?
Table volunteers tabulate the results, record and announce scores, keep time and ”flip” the score charts for sparring.
I would like to volunteer as “table help” but I don’t want to miss my child competing. Can I switch rings if I see them in a different ring?
Absolutely! If your child is competing in another ring you may “switch” with someone in that ring.
Can I cheer for my child while volunteering?
All table volunteers, coaches, referees and officials must be impartial and fair to all athletes. Therefore volunteers are not allowed to cheer for individual athletes.
Why do I have to register my child on the AAU website:
Now that Renshi is the AAU Virginia District Director and is hosting the tournament, it is better for EKS students to register themselves with the AAU. The fee for the tournament would be the price shown for already having an AAU Membership.
How do I know which experience level to select for my child’s registration?
Experience is based on time in training of the competitor as of July 1 for the entire calendar year.
• Beginner (between 0-1 years training) • Novice (between 1-2 years training) • Intermediate (between 2-4 years training) • Advanced (4 & over years training)
Why do you want my child’s age as of July 1st?
EKS competes in the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU). AAU rules state that the athletes’ age division is determined by their ages as of July 1 of the calendar year of the National Championships.
Why do you need to know how much my child weighs? What happens if I leave the weight blank on the registration form?
In kumite (sparring), divisions may be split into light and heavy weight division. If the division is split and if no weight is entered on the registration form the athlete will compete in the heavyweight division.
Tournament Uniform and Equipment
What is the requirement regarding AAU patches on uniforms for tournaments?
• All GI’s should be clean and neat and must have an AAU Patch SEWN on. • Athletes will not be allowed to compete without the AAU patch. • Patches are available in the office for $5.00. • Please check with us for proper placement of the patch.
What other uniform requirements are there?
• Fingernails and toenails must be cut short. No nail polish. • No earrings, rings, bracelets, hair beads, hair clips or other potentially harmful jewelry may be worn. • Females may wear a plain white T-shirt or white sports bra beneath the Karate Gi jacket. • Males may not wear anything on under their Gi tops. • Gi sleeves and trousers may NOT be rolled up.
What color belt is my child supposed to wear for the tournament? What if they do not have that color belt?
• Beginner (between 0-1 years training) must wear WHITE belt • Novice (between 1-2 years training) must wear GREEN belt • Intermediate (between 2-4 years training) must wear BROWN belt • Advanced (4 & over years training) must wear BLACK belt
If you do not have your appropriate belt, you may purchase from the front office.
Tournament Uniform and Equipment Continued
What equipment does my child need if they are going to spar in the tournament? Where do I get it?
• Please see Renshi or Shihon Shelia to order approved sparring equipment. • Ages 5 – 18 must have AAU approved white headgear with plastic face shield. • All athletes must have approved white Naugahyde hand pads as well as gum-shields (mouthpiece) • Male athletes must wear Groin Cups worn under the Gi pants. Cups may be purchased at your local sporting goods store (we do not order these). • White cloth shin/instep protectors are optional in junior divisions only. • Headgear, with face shield, and white cloth shin/instep pads are optional for adults. • Only plastic safety glasses manufactured specifically for sport use are allowed for sparring.
When your first arrive, please locate other EKS members. We will all need to line up together.
What time do we need to be at the tournament on competition day?
• It is very important for athletes to be on time. Please plan on arriving with ample time to check in and prepare for the tournament. • For most tournaments, athletes should be at the venue between 8:30 and 9:00 am. Please check with an instructor on the exact time. • All athletes should check in with someone form the coaching staff upon arrival (the will be wearing Blue Blazers or Blue shirts).
What time will my child compete?
Please listen for your child’s “call time”. An announcement will be made when their division is to report to “staging” for their event.
Will my child have time to eat between events? What if they need to use the restroom?
• There will be a concession stand with a variety of things to eat and drink, however be sure that your child is careful when eating with their Gi on. • Athletes should use the restroom regularly before their ”call time” so that they have this taken care of before they go to staging or to the competition floor.
How long will the tournament last?
The length of the tournament depends on many factors, including the number of athletes and divisions.
Can we leave after my child competes?
You may leave after your child has completed their events, however, all athletes are encouraged to stay and watch the advanced (black belt) competition. Also, if the event is having any type of drawing or prize give-away, you must be present to win. This is usually done towards the end of the event.
Communication During the Tournament
Can I talk to my child while they are on the floor?
No, please do not speak to your child while they are on the competition floor. Please speak to the designated “team parent or coach” and they will contact one of the coaches to address your concern.
If I have a question about my child’s event/results, whom should I ask?
Contestants and spectators are not allowed to speak to the referee/officials. If you would like to raise an issue, please speak to the designated “team parent” or “coach”
Who are the officials? Who are the coaches?
Referees/Officials wear gray pants, navy blazers, white shirts and ties. The EKS coaches will be wearing red or blue AAU coach shirts.
How do I deal with my child’s disappointment in their performance or placing in the tournament?
At EKS several of our Sensei and Instructors have years of experience dealing with all types of disappointments related to competition. Suggest to your child that you both speak with one of us on the following day.
How can I find out what the rules are for kobudo (weapons), kata, and kumite (sparring)?
Learning the rules is one of the best ways to help your child become a better competitor! Please look at the AAU karate handbook in sections, four (kata), five (kobudo), and six (shobu sandbon kumite). To download a copy of the AAU rulebook, please go to http://aausports.org/handbooks/karate/karate handbook.pdf.
How can I improve my karate before the tournament and/or tournament season?
We suggest a high level of commitment for each competition each athlete attends. EKS offers a couple of ways to prepare. • Attend class regular (at least 3 days a week) • Private Lessons (Renshi or Shihon Payne) • Attend all seminars and camps
Because we believe in the benefits of competition and all it has to offer, we believe it is important for every karate student to be able to participate in competition at the local level. Our classes provide the experience necessary to compete at the local level. For those students who enjoy competition in general and want to experience competition beyond the local level, including Nationals, EKS provides specifically geared classes, seminars, camps and training programs for these students. For those students who are willing to wholly dedicate themselves to competition at the highest level, we have a program specifically designed for them. For these students, karate is THEIR sport to the exclusion of all others. These athletes are trained and will compete at the world level. These athletes travel and participate in a variety of tournament circuits. This program requires commitment from both the student and parents.