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JKA National Championships welcomes spectators & competitors in Metairie

Top-level athletes across North America will travel to New Orleans to demonstrate their practiced technique and strong spirit in hopes of winning the gold.

Come watch competitors from youth to collegiate, young adults to super seniors, compete in the 2018 JKA/AF National, Collegiate & Goodwill Karate Championship this November 10 at Grace King High School in Metairie.

This is a great family-friendly event for adults and children alike to come learn about traditional Japanese karate through watching elite competition. The Japan Karate Association/American Federation (JKA/AF) is an organization dedicated to promoting the traditional art of karate in North America, founded and directed by our Sensei, Master Takayuki Mikami (9th degree, JKA).

In traditional karate, courtesy is an essential aspect of both the art and the competition. Competitors begin each match by bowing to each other and to the judges, showing respect to others taking part in the event. Victory dances and fits of frustration alike are discouraged, as competitors are expected to maintain composure of their emotions as a way of respecting others.

Equally important is the goal of shiai (competition) on improving oneself. The goal is not to win a medal, but to develop through practice and competition itself. When an opponent scores, the karateka (karate practitioner) improves by learning where her weakness is. The tournament serves as a short-term goal; the practice of karate takes a lifetime.

This year's event will feature divisions for all ages and ranks: from youth to senior, from beginner to advanced. Events will be held for both kata (forms) and kumite (sparring).

In kata divisions, athletes perform a traditional set series of movements which represents defense against 4 to 8 attackers. Judges evaluate body coordination, balance, ability to generate power and focus. In earlier rounds, 2 competitors may perform at the same time, with judges voting for the winner with flags. Later, competitors will present their favorite kata individually and receive a numerical score.

Team Kata events will also be held in which 3 karateka perform the same kata together and are also evaluated on their synchronicity.

LKA Karate women perform Team Kata at tournament in Metairie.

In kumite divisions, competitors try to land a perfect technique to the opponent's body or head. Athletes must use control to stop their technique short of touching (youth divisions) or make only light contact (adult divisions). Techniques must display body coordination, proper distance & timing, and focus to be awarded a point. Matches in JKA karate are only to 1 point! However, judges may award half points. This system trains the budo mentality (warrior spirit) that there is only one chance to be successful, and one must not hesitate when he decides to go in for a score.

Team Kumite consists of individual matches; the team with the majority of match wins is the winner. Teams order themselves before the competition begins, so no competitor knows who they will face.

This tournament is an excellent opportunity to learn more about the traditional Japanese martial art of karate. Spectators are welcome to come watch the action! Spectator entry fees for ages 13 & above is $5, and children 12 & under get in free!

Registration is still open for for traditional karateka of all affiliations. Find registration info here.

Invite your family and friends to our event. We hope to see you there!

Date: November 10, 2018

Time: 9 AM - All day

Location: Grace King High School - 4301 Grace King Pl, Metairie, LA 70002

Spectator entry: $5 for 13 & above / Free for 12 & below

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