Tournament Rules for 2014

 

I. GENERAL EXPECTATIONS

 

II. CUTTING RULES

for both Basic and Advanced Tournaments

 

III. CORE COUNTED BLOWS RULES

for both Dagger, Open Steel Longsword, and all Mixed Weapon events (Women's and Open)

 

IV. CORE AFTER BLOW RULES

for Invitational Steel Longsword

 

V. FORMS & FUNCTION INVITATIONAL RULES 

 

 

Tournament Rules from 2013 for reference

 

I. GOALS

 

IGX tournaments are dedicated to exploring both historical martial traditions and modern administrative innovations, and studying how to combine them for best practical use.  This year includes several components that make this year a notably complex organizational undertaking.  PLEASE READ BELOW to familiarize yourself with the overall expectations of IGX 2013! 

 

A. Contribute data to ongoing HEMA empirical research on historical rule sets:

 
1. Manciolino's rules from his Opera Nova (c. 1523): we will continue the efforts of Fechtschule America (FA) 2013 by continuing to explore and implement this rule set for One- and Two-handed sword events.  The key elements of this rule set include:
  • Weighted targets: strikes to the head are 3 points and strikes to the foot are 2 points.  While the rules do not specify anything further, we are extrapolating that all other strikes to the body will be awarded 1 point. 
  • After-blows: we will be implementing the historical concept of the After-blow.  Points gained by the After-blow are just as valuable as points gained by the initial blow (e.g. first head hit and After-blow head hit are both worth 3 points).  Because historical data suggests that After-blows are valid within anywhere from 1 to as many as 3 foot steps, fighters should expect that judges will allow for a relatively long window of opportunity for the person launching the After-blow to make the attempt.  In other words: once you land the initial strike, the victim will have a good moment to set up a challenging After-blow that you must defend successfully.  This represents a higher bar of difficulty being set for defending against the After-blow. 
  • Double-hits: we will be implementing the modern concept of the Double-hit, in which after a certain number of Double-hits have been scored, both opponents will earn a double-loss.  Just as the window of opportunity for a valid After-blow is broad, Double-hits do not have to occur absolutely or nearly simultaneously.  Judges should watch to see if the fighters are being mindful of being able to defend against the After-blow as they launch their attacks.  If either opponent is launching in a tempo or manner where they clearly would not have been able to cover an After-blow, and both blows land on target in a tempo and manner inconsistent with an After-blow, judges can rule this a Double-hit. 
 
2. Counted Blows: we will continue exploring the historical concept of "Counted Blows", in which participants must execute a specific number of blows before the action stops in an engagement.  This concept is based on recent publshed research by Matt Galas entitled "Tournament Bouts: When to Stop the Action", particularly regarding the earlier Chivalric Tradition and the later Gang of the German Fechtschule.  The Counted Blows model will be implemented for Dagger and Spear events.  The key terms of this rule set include:
  • Gänge: the plural of a "Gang" or "go", simply the number of "goes" or rounds that the two opponents have to engage one another. 
  • Counted Blows: the number of blows required to occur for a Gang to end.  From historical data, it is unclear if the blows counted are all that are thrown, or only those that are thrown with intent, or only those that successfully land, or otherwise.  In keeping with the spirit of the self-defense Dagger rule set that we have implemented successfully at Boston Sword Gathering (BSG) 2012 and Fechtschule America (FA) 2013, we will continue with the use of counting only those blows that land successfully on valid target. 
  • Double-hits: we will be implementing the modern concept of the Double-hit, in which after a certain number of Double-hits have been scored, both opponents will earn a loss.  In the case of the Counted Blows model where multiple blows are being thrown, a Double-hit occurs simply when BOTH opponents complete the requisite number of blows in a tempo narrow enough that judges cannot determine a winner of a Gang. 

 

B. Test new tournament administration methods and formats: 

 

1. Broadening the field of weapon skill sets: we are encouraging HEMA practitioners to broaden their martial skill sets by exposure to different weapon forms beyond longsword (currently the community favorite).  Because no single event can possibly hold competitions in every historical weapon form, we are piloting the concept of weapon form "Categories", specifically Weapon Skills, Close Quarters Combat, One-handed weapon, Two-handed weapon, and Pole Weapons.  While not fully inclusive of the many historical weapon forms, the intent is to maintain this Category structure for the next few years in HEMA evolution to help ensure broad weapon form exposure for participants, while simply varying the specific weapon forms within each Category from year to year. 


The specific tournaments by Category this year are as follows:
  • Weapon Skills: 1) Cutting Tourney
  • Close Quarters Combat: 2) Wrestling; 3) Dagger [NEW]
  • One-handed weapon: 4) Side Sword (Quals & Basic Elims), Sword & Buckler (Advanced Elims)
  • Two-handed weapon: 5a) Steel Women's Longsword; 5b) Nylon Open Longsword (Quals & Basic Elims), Steel Open Longword (Advanced Elims)
  • Pole Weapons: 6) Spear [NEW]
 
NOTE that the Dagger tourney will have a completely new component (Dagger v Dagger!) that we are piloting this year, and that Spear itself is also a pilot tournament. 
 
2. New award formats: as further incentive to increase both the breadth and depth of skill for HEMA practitioners, we are introducing two new awards formats for IGX this year:
  • Best Technical Fighter: introduced this year at Fechtschule America and further developed by Fechtschule New York, this is designed to award depth of skill.  In addition to 1st – 3rd place, each of the 6 tournaments above will also feature a Technical Excellence award, based on a cumulative tally of "Yes/No" votes from judges.  At the end of each bout, Judges will be asked for each fighter whether or not they displayed notably exceptional technical fighting.  If Judges believe so, they can each vote "Yes".  These votes will be tallied over all bouts for each Tourney, and the fighter with the highest tally will win this award. 
  • Best All-Round Fighter: similar to the triathlon award at Longpoint this year, this is designed to award breadth of skill.  All participants are automatically eligible as long as they compete in at least 4 of the 6 IGX tournaments.  At the end of each tournament, participants will be ranked and will be awarded points per the list below.  At the end of all tournaments, each participant will have their highest 4 scores tallied and used for ranking for Best All-Round Fighter.  The single CAVEAT to this is that 1 of the 4 tournaments must be from either the One- or Two-handed weapon Category.
    • 1st: 25
    • 2nd: 18
    • 3rd: 15
    • 4th: 12
    • 5th: 10
    • 6th: 8
    • 7th: 6
    • 8th: 4
    • 9th: 2
    • 10th: 1
    • 11th and beyond: 0
 
3. Swiss pairs scheduling: we will make every effort to allow attendees to participant in as many events as possible.  To that end, we will use Swiss pairings as opposed to a pool structure.  In Swiss-style tournaments, opponents are paired in subsequent rounds with others who have similar win-loss records. This will allow a number of administrative improvements:
  • Participants will find themselves matched with opponents of similar skill within just a few rounds
  • The number of rounds can be adjusted based on time available, e.g. if we have enough time, participants can get more rounds of competition
  • Adjustments to rules (e.g. for experimentation, safety, etc. based on observed ongoing participant performance) can be implemented at the beginning of any Swiss round. 
For more details on scheduling for specific tournaments, see SCHEDULING below. 
 
4. Basic v Advanced tiers; Women's Longsword: because the range of skill can vary widely in competition, we are piloting the concept of sorting participants into two tiers (Basic v Advanced) based on performance in the Qualifier stage of the Open (i.e. both genders) One- and Two-handed sword events.  Similar to the Swiss pairing, the goal is to allow participants to fight a field of opponents close to their skill level.  In addition to the Open events, we will also hold a Women's Longsword event and encourage women participants to try both.  This will allow us to collect empirical data on how comparable the skill level, experience, and technical excellence is between all fighters in the Basic and Advanced tiers of the Open versus those in Women's Longsword. 
 
In addition, the Basic and Advanced tiers will provide another important benefit: allowing participants who do not "pass" the Qualifier stage to continue fighting in the Elimination stage.  To be clear: regardless of how well you do in the Qualifier stage, you WILL compete in the Elimination stage.  Participants in the Advanced tiers will be asked to fight using more complex weapon skills (e.g. Sword & Buckler for One-handed sword; Steel longswords for Two-handed sword).  Participants in the Basic tiers will continue to fight using the same weapons and skills from the Qualifier stage. 

 

II. SAFETY

 

While we expect all competitors to show good sportsmanship at all times, we also understand and expect that the priority for competitors is to focus on winning.  Likewise, the ultimate responsibility for maintaining a safe competitive environment falls on the shoulders of the IGX Tournament Staff.  To aid in these efforts, please note the following regulations and recommendations:

 

A. 3-tier penalty system: all events at IGX will use a standard 3-tier penalty system, enforced by the Referee.  The referee will call a penalty if he sees an illegal technique or other unsafe or unsportsmanlike behavior.  The 3 tiers are as follows:

  • 1st tier: a warning, no point penalty – typically for accidental/incidental offenses. 
  • 2nd tier: an appropriate point penalty – typically for repeated/intentional offenses. 
  • 3rd tier: expulsion from the bout, tournament, or event as appropriate – typically for egregious offenses including injuring the opponent maliciously.  If you injure an opponent to the point of withdrawal in the course of a bout, that is a potential 3rd-tier offense and you can expect the Referee to respond accordingly. 

You do not need to progress to a 2nd tier penalty if there has been a 1st tier – that is up to the Referee and there can be multiple 1st tier and 2nd tier calls in a given bout.  (Preferably there should be none.)  If any penalties have been called, Judges should take these into serious consideration when awarding Technical Excellence awards. 

 

B. Excessive hits and unsafe fighting: to be clear, striking an opponent with significant force IS allowed, and even encouraged as part of a fighters "game".  It is up to the Judges and ultimately Referee to monitor power levels and assess when force is excessive.  Timely communication between Tournament Staff and fighters is KEY – it is much more difficult to resolve a problem after the fact than addressing it immediately, or preferably preventing it during escalation.  To help make sure communication channels remain open, the following are recommended Best Practices:

 

1. Have a coach: the mind of a fighter in tournament is often very narrowly focused, and the advantages of having a coach to broaden that view and keep things in perspective is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.  Even if you are attending the tournament "alone", we encourage you to make a friend and simply have them in your corner during bouts.  One obvious purpose for the coach is to help give tactical feedback before, during, and after bouts.  Another equally important potential function is to watch for inappropriate behavior and bring it to the attention of the Tournament Staff.  In any instance where inappropriate behavior is suspected, the fighter and/or coach are encouraged to immediately notify the Table Admins for Time Out and discuss the issue with the Referee. 

 

2. Referee and Judge Safety protocols: if at ANY time the Judges or Referee suspect there might be excessive force or unsafe fighting, they are expected to halt the action IMMEDIATELY.  Once halted, the following protocol should be observed by the Referee:

  • Referee approaches fighter that is potential subject of excessive force/unsafe fighting
  • Question 1: "Are you OK"?  Assess if there is injury. 
  • Question 2: "Do you feel this is excessive or you are in danger of being injured?"  Assess if there is risk of future injury. 
  • Referee approaches fighter that is potential party responsible for excessive force/unsafe fighting.  Assess legitimacy of excessive force or unsafe fighting. 
  • From assessments, give feedback to fighters and coaches, apply penalties as appropriate. 

 

C. Equipment requirements: 

 

1. Weapons:  competitors are NOT allowed to use their own weapons for competition.  IGX will provide weapons needed in all tournament formats as follows: 

  • 1) Cutting Tourney: an Albion Crecy or Baron, depending on the stage.  
  • 2) Wrestling: N/A
  • 3) Dagger: O'Connor sparring daggers
  • 4a) One-handed sword, Basic: Purpleheart Type III Nylon One-handed swords
  • 4b) One-handed sword, Advanced: Purpleheart Type III Nylon One-handed swords & Cold Steel Bucklers
  • 5a) Longsword, Open, Basic: Purpleheart Type III Nylon Longswords
  • 5b) Longsword, Women's: Ensifer or Regenyei steel longswords
  • 5c) Longsword, Open, Advanced: Ensifer or Regenyei steel longswords
  • 6) Spear: O'Connor sparring spears

 

2. Protective gear: participants are responsible for bringing and wearing appropriate gear.  At a minimum, this must include a fencing mask for the head, hard protection for the hands, elbows, knees, and groin, and padded protection for the throat, back of the head, torso, and shins.  No skin may remain showing.  Lacrosse or similar padded gloves do NOT qualify as “hard protection” unless they are reinforced with some type of plastic or metal plating, or are used on a hand holding a buckler.  All gear will be subject to inspection before IGX tournaments begin.  

 

Steel gauntlets are allowed as long as the gloves underneath have adequate padding to spread out the force of heavy blows; participants wearing gauntlets will not be allowed to strike the opponent with their gauntlets.  All steel equipment must have rolled or rounded edges and no sharp protrusions.  We will relax the hand protection requirements for the Dagger tournament and for those that qualify for the Sword & Buckler tournament.  For the Dagger tournament, padded gloves are sufficient, though we recommend that the wrist be protected with some sort of padded cuff (to protect against nerve damage from concussive strikes to the wrist).  

 

Shoes must be worn at all times.  Since most of the events will take place on soft indoor turf, we recommend participants make sure they have turf-appropriate footwear.  Some people seem to prefer sneakers with good traction on this turf and others like less traction, we encourage participants to do some research and choose footwear most appropriate. 

 

IGX strongly recommends that all participants in the weapons tournaments wear mouth guards and hard/padded protection that covers the ankles, such as this

 

 

III. SCHEDULING

 

The following scheduling considerations apply to all one-on-one tournaments.  Scheduling for the Cutting Tourney is handled separately, see Section IV.F: Cutting Tourney Rules

 

A. Weight classes: Wrestling and Dagger tournaments will divide the population by weight classes as appropriate. 

 

B. Swiss pairs v Pools: all scheduling will be Swiss if possible.  Pools may be sued if numbers for an event are particularly low (e.g. Women's Longsword).  The first round of Swiss pairs will be seeded primarily by weight, and subsequent rounds by performance (first by wins, then by other determinants, e.g. after-blows, double-hits, counted blows, etc.) as per normal with Swiss pairing. 

 

C. Qualifiers v Eliminations: Wrestling and Spear will have a single Elimination phase to determine finalists.  Dagger will have two mandatory phases: the self-defense phase first, followed immediately by the dagger v dagger phase second, to determine finalists.  The One- and Two-handed weapon tournaments will start with a Qualifiers phase followed by an Elimination phase.  The results of each Quals phase is used to separate the fighters into two populations: Basic and Advanced.  For each population, the results from Quals is used to determine the seeding for the Elims phase, at the start of which points are reset.  The Quals and Elims phases will be implemented as follows:

 

One-handed weapon:
  • Quals and Elims, Basic: several Swiss pair rounds of Nylon Side Sword
  • Elims, Advanced: several Swiss pair rounds of Nylon Sword & Buckler
Two-handed weapon:
  • Quals and Elims, Basic: several Swiss pair rounds of Nylon Longsword
  • Elims, Advanced: several Swiss pair rounds of Steel Longsword

 

D. Finals: we will generally fight 1 or 2 bouts for each tournament (1st & 2nd, 3rd & 4th time permitting).  Each bout will be fought best of 3 rounds.  The following are specifics for each tournament format:

  • 1) Cutting Tourney: finals round for top 3 fighters
  • 2) Wrestling: 1st & 2nd for Light, Middle, and Heavy weight classes
  • 3) Dagger: 1st & 2nd using Dagger v Dagger; 3rd & 4th using Dagger Self-defense formats
  • 4a) One-handed sword, Basic: 1st & 2nd using Nylon Side swords
  • 4b) One-handed sword, Advanced: 1st & 2nd using Nylon Sword & Buckler
  • 5a) Longsword, Open, Basic: 1st & 2nd using Nylon longswords
  • 5b) Longsword, Women's: 1st & 2nd using Steel longswords
  • 5c) Longsword, Open, Advanced: 1st & 2nd using Steel longswords
  • 6) Spear: 1st & 2nd

NOTE FOR FINALS: we WILL continue to implement appropriate Double-Hit rule throughout the finals.  In the event that a pair of fighters double out, the next ranking pair of fighters from the earlier tournament results will be promoted to fight in their place.  So official word of advice to all finalists: don't forget to fight clean!!!

 

 

IV. RULES

 

 

A. Environment

 

The Cutting Tourney will take place on indoor hard court.  All other tourneys will take place on indoor turf, typically within a demarcated ring 10m in diameter.  The Wrestling and Dagger Tourneys may take place on gymnastic mat over indoor turf to provide additional comfort for falling participants.  

 

 

B. Priority Rules for Multiple Actions

 

Because these tournaments include several scoring action types (e.g. strikes, grapples, disarms, throws, and ring-outs, etc.), confusing combinations can occur.  For instance, it can be confusing when both opponents execute near-simultaneous actions that can score (e.g. a disarm countered by a throw), or when a single opponent executes more than one action that can score (e.g. a disarm followed by a throw).  The following are the priority rules that govern these cases of multiple actions that can score:

 

1. When a single opponent executes more than one action that can score: in general, the first scoring action takes precedent.  Only in a case where the winning opponent executes the follow-on action in unbroken succession with control may the follow-on action be considered for scoring.  In this case, the action with the higher score takes precedence (i.e. multiple potential scoring actions for a single opponent are NOT cumulative).  

 

2. When both opponents execute actions that can score: in general, the latter/response action must take place in either After-blow time or a 3-count in the case of grappling or throws.  In this case, both opponents are awarded scores appropriate to their respective actions.  

 

 

C. Wrestling Tourney Rules

 

1. Motivation: the HEMA community has developed a successful competitive tradition with weapon forms, but is still in its relative infancy with regard to unarmed competitive combat.  Because wrestling is so fundamental to many weapon forms in the martial traditions underlying HEMA, we are continuing the tradition of a very simple traditional Western wrestling game known as back-hold wrestling.  The reasons are:

  • Relevance: The back-hold grip is a traditional grip used in Western culture and is illustrated in many of the wrestling treatises the HEMA community studies from several cultures. 
  • Safety: the restricted grip helps limit wrestling mechanics that might lead to injury under the stress and strain of competition. 
  • Simplicity: the very simple rules that form this game should allow HEMA students to pick this up as a training game relatively quickly. 

Ultimately, the goal of this event is to expose participants to wrestling and get a realistic assessment of their skills in a simple competitive environment. 

 

2. Set-up: opponents start in the middle of the ring with their hands clasped around the back of one another: left arm over the opponent's right, and vice versa; chin on the opponent's right shoulder. 

 

3. To win: best of 3 falls, no time limit.  Bouts typically last roughly 1 minute at most.  

 

4. Legal targets and techniques: opponents attempt to make each other fall without loosening their grip (though the grip can be released once the opponent is falling to avoid injury).  A fall is defined as any part of the body touching the ground other than the feet.  The loser of a fall is whoever touches the ground first, or who lets loose their grip first.  In cases where both opponents fall without a clear order, this is known as a "dog fall" and the fall is redone.  

 

5. Illegal targets and techniques: the following actions are illegal and are subject to the 3-tier penalty system: 

  • Striking, including kicking or kneeing. NOTE: striking with the side of the foot (i.e. tripping) is NOT illegal.  
  • Ring-outs.  Opponents will be warned and re-set.
  • Passivity, as defined after a reasonable period at the discretion of the judging staff.  

 

 

D. Dagger Tourney Rules

 

1. Motivation: continuing the efforts of BSG 2012,  the IGX Dagger tournament will include both a self-defense phase, and a new phase in which we pilot the next step in the evolution of dagger competition: dagger v dagger! 

 

In the first phase, participants will be required to demonstrate unarmed self-defense skills against a dagger-wielding attacker in a competitive environment, in an effort to draw out techniques shown from historical treatises.  This challenge assumes a very specific context, and it is critical for all participants to recognize and understand this context as it frames the desired behavior for both the Armed attacker and Unarmed defender. 

 

The challenge assumes a scenario where the attacker launches a committed and repeated assault to fatally stab the defender.  Real-life examples of this behavior can be seen here, courtesy of BSG 2012 instructor Jay Vail:

 

As illustrated from these videos, a number of patterns emerge and can be summarized:

  • Attackers focus on overwhelming the defender with the weapon, throwing strong direct committed attacks repeatedly. 
  • Defenders often have very limited time and space to react, and do not always have the luxury of escape as an option. 

To simulate this context and provide a test of unarmed self-defense skill, the self-defense phase will be an asymmetric challenge (not unlike the asymmetric nature of the Franco-Belgian format with a King v a Challenger) in which an unarmed defender must attempt to control an armed attacker for a specific number of rounds.  This will be implemented using the Counted Blows model, with 3 Gänge and a threshold of 3 successful Counted Blows that the attacker must successfully land in order to end a Gang.  The unarmed will have until the end of the Gang in which to interrupt the attacks and control the attacker. 

 

In the second phase, the rules will be a simple extension of those from the first self-defense phase: both opponents will be armed with a dagger, and both will have the option to end the Gang will the set threshold of Counted Blows.  Similarly, both opponents will again have the option to interrupt the attacks and control the other as an alternative to ending the Gang. 

  

 

Phase 1: Self-Defense

 

2. Set-up: the Ref helps the opponents determine who starts as the Unarmed defender and the attacker Armed with the dagger.  The choice should be given to the lighter of the two opponents; in cases where the weight is identical, the Ref can toss a coin (or equivalent).  The Unarmed starts in the middle of the ring, and must defend 3 Gänge against dagger thrusts from the Armed, who approach from outside the ring.  Once complete, the opponents switch roles  and locations and repeat.  

 

3. To win: acquire the most points after 2 sets 3 Gänge where both opponents have had the opportunity to be both Armed and Unarmed; or 1 minute, whichever comes first. 

 

4. Legal targets and techniques: opponents must start with the dagger in the ice-pick grip (though this may be broadened to include the fencing grip in later bouts, based on group performance).  Opponents may strike with any part of the dagger, but only thrusts with the tip to the head and torso count for scoring.  Because Judges are counting only blows that they are certain are successful (i.e. land on target), opponents are encouraged to strike deep enough to visually depress the collapsible blade of the dagger.  

 

The following actions result in the following scores: 

Armed: 

  • 3 successful stabs = 1 pt
  • Unarmed ring-out = -1 pt to Unarmed score

Unarmed: 

  • Control for 3-count = 1 pt
  • Disarm or counter-stab = 3 pt
  • Controlled throw = 3 pt
  • Armed ring-out = 1 pt

 

5. Illegal targets and techniques: the following actions are illegal and are subject to the 3-tier penalty system: passivity, strikes to back of head or groin, starting with both hands on grip, non-weapon strikes, joint locks, chokes, high throws, throwing opponent on head, tackling with excessive force, hiding or throwing the dagger.  

 

 

Phase 2: Dagger v Dagger

 

2. Set-up: both opponents start outside of the ring.  

 

3. To win: acquire the most points after 5 Gänge or 2 minutes, whichever comes first.  

 

4. Legal targets and techniques: opponents will start with the dagger in the ice-pick grip (though this may be broadened to include the fencing grip in later bouts, based on group performance).  Opponents may strike with any part of the dagger, but only thrusts with the tip of the dagger to the head and torso count for scoring.  Because Judges are counting only blows that they are certain are successful (i.e. land on target), opponents are encouraged to strike deep enough to visually depress the collapsible blade of the dagger.  

 

The following actions result in the following scores: 

  • 3 successful stabs = 1 pt
  • Disarm or counter-stab = 3 pt
  • Controlled throw = 3 pt
  • Ring out = 1 pt

 

Double-hits can occur if both opponents score 3 successful stabs close enough together in time that judges cannot distinguish the order.  3 Double-hits result in a double-loss.  

 

5. Illegal targets and techniques: the following actions are illegal and are subject to the 3-tier penalty system: strikes to back of head or groin, starting with both hands on grip, non-weapon strikes, joint locks, chokes, high throws, throwing opponent on head, tackling with excessive force, hiding or throwing the dagger.  

 

 

E. Sword Tourney Rules

 

1. Motivation: the IGX sword tournaments are designed to test a variety of swordsmanship skills, namely using a sword in two hands, a sword in one hand, and a sword in one hand in coordination with an implement in the other hand (buckler for this year).  The Manciolino rules are well suited as a core rule set since Manciolino's corpus covers these sword skills (among other weapon skill sets as well). 

  

2. Set-up: both opponents start outside the ring. 

 

3. To win: acquire 9 points or more first, or the most points after 2 minutes, whichever comes first.  

 

4. Legal targets and techniques: the full body is valid target except for the back of the head and neck, groin, spine, and hands (wrist to fingertips).  Opponents can strike with the the edge or point of the sword blade to score.  The flat of the blade can be used but will not score, except for strikes to the foot.  The grip can be changed at any time, as long as both hands are never simultaneously on the blade.  Push-kicks above the waist are allowed.  

 

The following actions result in the following scores: 

  • Strike to head (side or top) = 3 pt
  • Strike to foot (below the ankle) = 2 pt
  • Strike to any other valid target = 1 pt
  • Pommel or buckler strike to front of mask = 3 pt
  • Controlled throw = 3 pt
  • Technical disarm = 3 pt
  • Ring out = 1 pt
  • Grapple for 3-count = 1 pt
  • Unintentional disarm = 1 pt
  • Clean embrace (both arms pinned against body of opponent and unable to score) for 3-count = score increased to 9 points (i.e. immediate win)

 

While hands are considered off-target, attackers can score on contact with the hands if Judges determine that they would have struck valid target if the defender had not covered said target with their hands (known as "covering target").  

In the case of strikes landing on both opponents, Judges will determine if there is an After-blow or Double-hit situation.  Both the initial strike and After-blow have the same scoring potential.  3 Double-hits result in a double-loss.  

 

5. Illegal targets and techniques: the following actions are illegal and are subject to the 3-tier penalty system: striking the hands intentionally, murder strikes, striking with the cross, strikes to back of head/neck or groin, strikes with closed fist, kicks below waist, pommel strikes to any target except front of mask, joint locks, chokes, high throws, throwing the opponent on the head, and tackling with excessive force.

  

 

F. Spear Tourney Rules

 

1. Motivation: just as BSG introduced the dagger last year, IGX is introducing the spear as a pilot event this year to encourage the community to explore pole weapon techniques at a competitive level.  Because we have historical precedent for spears and pole weapons being used combatively and competitively from the Chivalric tradition, the Counted Blows model is a good place to start for our pilot attempt, with 5 Gänge and a threshold of 2 successful Counted Blows to end each Gang. 

 

2. Set-up: both opponents start outside the ring. 

 

3. To win: acquire the most points after 5 Gänge or 2 minutes, whichever comes first.  

 

4. Legal targets and techniques: the opponents attempt to thrust and hit the head or body of the other.  2 successful Counted Blows are required to end each Gang.  Opponents may strike and parry with any portion of the spear, but only thrusts with the tip will be counted for scoring.  The grip may be changed at any time, and both two- and one-handed grips are allowed.  Because Judges are counting only blows that they are certain are successful (i.e. land on target), opponents are encouraged to strike deep enough to visually depress the collapsible blade of the dagger.  

 

The following actions result in the following scores: 

  • 2 successful stabs = 1 pt
  • Ring-out = 1 pt

 

5. Illegal targets and techniques: the following actions are illegal and are subject to the 3-tier penalty system: grabbing the opponent or weapon, extended corps-a-corps, strikes to back of head or groin, and throwing the spear.  

 

 

G. Cutting Tourney Rules

 

1. Motivation: the purpose is to more fully test the martial skills of the competitors by addressing the question of whether or not they can cut.  The test is not mean to be a simulation of a fight or a human target, but simply act as a measuring stick for comparison of skill.  

 

Skills Evaluated (in order of importance)

  • Edge alignment: necessary to reliably sever a mat
  • Aim: this is tested by the requirement to place a specific number of cuts into a single mat without overlap.  In a later stage the aim requirement ismade more difficult and arbitrary
  • Versatility: the competitor is expected to be able to perform a variety of cuts, most from both sides, as well as from different guards.  Imagine if you had to free-fence but could only score with a very limited selection of cuts; this illustrates the importance of this component.  
  • Angle Control: angles selected are arbitrary and the requirement to match them is a test of targeting and control.  
  • Trajectory Control: the sword should maintain a flat path through the target as this maximizes the utility of a cut in a real world situation.  
  • Power: proper power generation is necessary for causing damage with a sword and is tested by the ability to sever a full mat.  

 

2. Set-up: the tournament will consist of a number of elimination stages.  Some competitors will be eliminated after each stage.  Each stage's pattern will be more difficult than the preceding stage.  

 

Stage 1: Qualification: will have all participants

 

Stage 2: Skills: will begin with 8 participants

One competitor will be eliminated after Cutting from Different guards

One competitor will be eliminated after Cutting Multiple Targets

Two competitors will be eliminated after Arbitrary Accuracy

 

Stage 3: Finals: will have 4 participants

 

For further details on Safety, Scoring, Judging Standards, Patterns, Order of Action, and Tournament Administrative Roles, click here for documentation, and here for a video illustration.