Competitive Karate point sparring (KPS) requires athletes to combine a high degree of skill with explosive speed (1-6) and winning is measured by cumulative points within a framework of rules and regulations (7). Points are awarded for kicks and punches that achieve unobstructed and controlled contact against the opponent (6). Therefore, coaches and athletes are continuously searching for a competitive “edge”. Performance analysis can help develop strategic approaches to improve a fighter’s efficacy (8). The aim of this study was to ascertain if there existed any identifiable patterns to scoring in KPS. A total of 36 KPS bouts from the World Karate Federation (WKF) Championships were analysed for techniques and scoring outcomes (scoring or non-scoring). Video analysis was performed by a qualified Judge for techniques (TE) executed against opponents with clear intent. All TEs were coded based on key components (with subcomponents) including a time sequence (s) relative to the start of the bout. Components included attack type and side, launch side, limb and technique types as well the plane of movement. Technique frequencies and probabilities were obtained for all simple combinations of components using Chi Squared. A total of 2701 TEs were recorded (x̄ 75±23 TE) with 48% of TE categorised as intended to score with fakes and partials making up 46%. Despite offensive techniques making up 80% of the TE count, the probability of scoring was substantially higher for counter offensives techniques. Punches and sagittal plane based technique made up 74% and 72% of the total TE count respectively, indicating a heavy reliance on straight punches to score. The most targeted area was the head/neck (n = 1113). Eighty-seven percent of TEs were found in “clusters” ranging from 2 to 16 TEs (x̄ = 4) with 83% of scoring TEs occurring in clusters between 2 and 5 TEs.
2015 University Research Conference: Integrate, Innovate, Inspire, Sunshine Coast, Australia 13-16 July 2015