Tokyo Olympic Games_Everything to know

by USA Karate

The sport of karate will be making its Olympic debut at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. This is your chance to see the world's top karateka's perform their craft on the world's largest athletic stage. 

Here is what you need to know about karate's competition at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. 


August 5 - Watch Sakura Kokumai compete

Women's Kata, Women Kumite -55kg, Men Kumite -67kg


August 6 - Watch Ariel Torres and Tom Scott compete

Men's Kata, Women Kumite -61kg, Men Kumite -75kg


August 7 - Watch Brian Irr compete

Women Kumite +61kg, Men Kumite +75kg

Watch NBC's Olympic Live Stream

7/23  Opening Ceremony  20:00 ET - Watch HERE

8/04  Women's Kata/Women's -55kg Kumite/Men's -67kg Kumite: Elimination Round  21:00 ET - Watch HERE

8/05  Women's Kata/Women's -55kg Kumite/Men's -67kg Kumite: Finals  4:00 ET - Watch HERE

8/05  Men's Kata/Women's -61kg Kumite/Men -75kg Kumite: Elimination Round  21:00 ET - Watch HERE

8/06  Men's Kata/Women's -61kg Kumite/Men -75kg Kumite: Finals  4:00 ET - Watch HERE

8/07  Women's +61kg/Men's +75kg Kumite: All Rounds  1:00 ET - Watch HERE

Karate athletes will compete in two karate competition categories at the Tokyo Olympic Games.


Athletes will demonstrate offensive and defensive moves against a virtual opponent. In each demonstration, athletes must choose from 1-102 kata movements that are recognized by the World Karate Federation (WKF). 

Points are awarded by a panel of judges for stance, technique, transitional movement, timing, correct breathing, focus, conformance, strength, speed and balance. The two highest and two lowest scores garnered by each performance are thrown out, and the remaining three scores are added up. 

Medals are awarded to the top 3 performing athletes.


In kumite, two athletes square off in an 8x8 meter mat. Matches end either after 3 minutes or when one of the competitors has earned 8 more points than their opponent. Points are awarded for straight punches to the body or face, middle kicks delivered to the body, and high kicks to their opponent's head or punches delivered on an opponent who has been taken to the ground via sweep or takedown. 

Straight punch - 1 point, Yuko

Middle kick - 2 points, Wazari

High kick - 3 points, Ippon

If the three minutes lapse, the competition will the most points wins.

Medals will be awarded to the different weight classes in kumite. 

• Fariba Madani, Referee

• Brian Mertel, Coach

• Javier Mantilla, Coach

• Brody Burns, Coach

• Elizabeth Sottile, Team Leader

• Nicole Clinton, Athletic Trainer

• Jessica Bartley, Sports Psychologist

• Maile Chinen, Host City Coordinator

For media inquiries, please contact Jose Fraguas, Press Officer at