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Thread: Tokyo Olympics

  1. #121
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    Olympic Pole Dancing

    New Olympic candidates: arm-wrestling, dodgeball, poker, kettlebell lifting, footgolf, foosball & pole dancing

    Pole-dancing in the Olympics? International sports federation recognition helps pave the way.
    By Marissa Payne October 18 at 4:15 PM


    Pole-dancing is emerging as a sport — and a clean one in more ways than one. Their clothes stay on, and top-level participants must comply with World Anti-Doping Agency standards. (Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images)

    No strip club necessary. Pole-dancing now stands on its own as a provisionally recognized sport thanks to the Global Association of International Sports Federation, which granted the activity’s international governing federation “observer status” earlier this month.

    “Pole Sports is a performance sport combining dance and acrobatics on a vertical pole,” GAISF writes on its website. “Pole Sports requires great physical and mental exertion, strength and endurance are required to lift, hold and spin the body. A high degree of flexibility is needed to contort, pose, demonstrate lines and execute techniques.”

    Observer status is the first step international federations must achieve before becoming full GAISF members, which serves as a great boost for any sport hoping to one day land in the Olympics. And that is exactly pole-dancing’s goal, according to International Pole Sports Federation President Katie Coates, who lauded the day the decision was made on Oct. 2 as “historical.”

    “The IPSF is very proud to have taken this positive step towards official recognition and the GAISF Observer Status will give our sport the opportunity to develop further, on the national and on the international stage,” she said in a statement. “In just eight years we have created a sport, ignited a global following and inspired a new generation of sportsmen, [sports]women and children. I am thankful to the IPSF and GAISF teams and excited about the future of our sport.”

    The road to the Olympics isn’t short, however. Along with a recognized governing body, prospective sports must also gain separate recognition from the International Olympic Committee. Provisional IOC recognition lasts three years, during which committee members decide whether to give it full recognition. If successful, the sport’s governing body still needs to then petition to become an official Olympic sport, which can take several more years.

    For Coates, however, those obstacles do not sound insurmountable, considering the uphill battle she said she faced while campaigning to gain provisional recognition from the GAISF.

    “I feel like we have achieved the impossible,” she told the Telegraph this week. “Everyone told us that we would not be able to get pole-dancing recognized as a sport.”

    Today, pole-dancing competitions are as family-friendly as any sporting event — and just as well regulated.

    The IPSF outlines its rules, judging and other criteria in its 137-page document, that lays out guidelines for several categories of competition, ranging from youth to mixed doubles to para-competition. Pole dancers are even required to take doping tests to ensure the sport is clean.



    Watching a competition is akin to attending a dance recital of sorts, where the athletes, often dressed in sparkly two-piece outfits or leotards, perform choreographed routines set to music on two 20-foot poles on a spotlighted stage. One pole rotates while the other is static, which allows athletes to perform different types of tricks as outlined in the rule book.

    The IPSF even began holding its own world championships in 2012. Russia’s Anna Chigarina is the current women’s champion.

    “Pole-dancing is not like everyone thinks it is,” Coates said. “You need to actually watch it to understand.”

    Six other international federations joined pole-dancing in gaining provisional recognition from the GAISF this month. They include some other eyebrow-raising activities, including arm-wrestling, dodgeball, poker and kettlebell lifting, as well as FootGolf, a sport that combines soccer and golf, and table soccer, which is better known as foosball.

    “We warmly welcome our first Observers,” GAISF President Patrick Baumann said in a statement. “This is an exciting time for them and for us and we will do everything within our remit to help them realize their full potential as International Federations within the global sport’s family and, one day, maybe become part of the Olympic program.”
    Olympics & Pole Dancing
    Gene Ching
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  2. #122
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    Tokyo 2020 Games Mascot <Mascot Design Candidates Movie>

    Gene Ching
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  3. #123
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    Official mascots



    tokyo2020
    Verified

    Follow
    It's official! Design Set A has been chosen as the #Tokyo2020 mascots!

    東京2020大会マスコットが決定。これから一緒に大会を盛り上げていきます!

    #Olympics #Paralympics #Mascot #2020Mascot #together #adorable #Tokyo #Japan #東京2020 #マスコット #2020マスコット
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    tokyo2020It's official! Design Set A has been chosen as the #Tokyo2020 mascots!

    東京2020大会マスコットが決定。これから一緒に大会を盛り上げていきます!

    #Olympics #Paralympics #Mascot #2020Mascot #together #adorable #Tokyo #Japan #東京2020 #マスコット #2020マスコット
    I was hoping for something more 'Sailor Moon'
    Gene Ching
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  4. #124
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    日清 近代五種ペラーズ 「ひとり、で五つ 篇」【フルVer】

    Gene Ching
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  5. #125
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    Jean Lopez

    Olympic taekwondo coach Jean Lopez banned for sexual misconduct with a minor
    Nancy Armour and Rachel Axon, USA TODAY Published 11:56 a.m. ET April 4, 2018 | Updated 9:04 p.m. ET April 4, 2018


    Jean Lopez is the coach for his brother, Steven Lopez, who is taekwondo’s biggest star and the most decorated athlete in that sport. USA TODAY Sports
    (Photo: Eileen Blass, USA TODAY Sports)

    Jean Lopez, the older brother and longtime coach of two-time Olympic taekwondo champion Steven Lopez, has been declared permanently ineligible after the U.S. Center for SafeSport found him guilty of sexual misconduct and sexual misconduct involving a minor.

    The decision reached Tuesday brings resolution to an investigation that began with USA Taekwondo three years ago and was turned over to SafeSport when it opened in March 2017. Three women who spoke with USA TODAY Sports have described sexual misconduct by Jean Lopez dating back to 1997, and one of those women filed a complaint with USA Taekwondo in 2006.

    “This matter concerns a decades long pattern of sexual misconduct by an older athlete/coach abusing his power to groom, manipulate and, ultimately, sexually abuse younger female athletes,” SafeSport said in its decision obtained by USA TODAY Sports.

    “Given the number of incidents reported over a span of several years and by multiple reporting parties, most of whom have no reasonable motive to fabricate an allegation – much less multiple, distinct incidents – of misconduct, the totality of the circumstances clearly shows a recurrent pattern of behavior on the part of Jean."

    More: Lopez brothers, Olympic taekwondo royalty, hit with sex abuse allegations

    More: USA Taekwondo athlete allowed in Rio Olympics training gym after ban for sexual misconduct

    SafeSport published Lopez’s name in its database Wednesday morning, noting the decision is subject to appeal and not yet final.

    Jean Lopez could not be reached for comment Wednesday. George Weissfisch, who served as Lopez’s advisor through the process, did not respond to an email from USA TODAY Sports.

    USA TODAY Sports reported the allegations against Jean Lopez in June, as well as separate allegations of sexual misconduct against Steven Lopez. In an interview with USA TODAY Sports last spring, Steven Lopez denied the allegations.

    Steven Lopez is taekwondo’s biggest star and the most decorated athlete in that sport. He is a five-time Olympian with gold medals in 2000 and 2004 and a bronze in 2008, as well as five world titles.

    USA Taekwondo turned over its investigation of Steven Lopez to SafeSport last year, and the status of his case is unclear. Mandy Meloon, who accused the two-time Olympic champion of rape and physical abuse, said SafeSport investigator Kathleen Smith told her last month that SafeSport was still trying to arrange an interview with him.

    But Wednesday night, Steven Lopez's name was added to the SafeSport database of disciplinary records as having been placed under an "interim measure-restriction" for sexual misconduct. The decision date is listed as June 19, 2017, and SafeSport describes this category as someone whose eligibility "has been restricted pending final resolution of the matter."

    It's not clear what the restriction is referring to; Lopez participated in last year's world championships, which began June 24, as well as this year's U.S. Open and national team trials.

    Lopez, 39, qualified for his 24th national team at trials in February, and he told the Houston Chronicle that he intends to keep competing through the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. He did not immediately return a phone call from USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday night seeking comment.

    Steven Lopez has been coached throughout his career by Jean, who also coached siblings Mark and Diana Lopez to medals in Beijing in 2008. Jean Lopez, 44, coached the U.S. team in four Olympics.

    USA TODAY Sports reported in June that Jean and Steven Lopez were allowed to participate in the 2016 Rio Olympics even though both had been accused of sexual assault and USA Taekwondo had been investigating them for more than a year. USA Taekwondo never held hearings that would have brought a resolution to the cases, but the attorney who conducted the investigation was concerned enough that he alerted the FBI.

    “I am relieved and excited that he will no longer be able to coach young athletes or manipulate girls in these kinds of settings,” said Heidi Gilbert, who accused Jean Lopez of sexually assaulting her in 2003 while they were at a tournament in Germany. “I am highly disappointed in the process. It seems like they handled the situation different for the Lopezes vs. other coaches.

    “It just took way too long,” she added. “But I am relieved. And very excited that no girl is ever going to have to deal with him again.”

    USA Taekwondo had no immediate response, citing its policy of not commenting on active cases. Jean Lopez has until Tuesday to contest the decision through an arbitrator. He has denied all of the allegations, both in interviews with SafeSport and last spring with USA TODAY Sports.

    “I’ve never been inappropriate with anyone,” Jean Lopez told USA TODAY Sports.

    The decision makes Lopez permanently ineligible for membership to USA Taekwondo, which would prohibit Jean Lopez from coaching Steven or any other athlete on the U.S. team.

    Last month, USA Taekwondo announced a collaboration to share information on misconduct issues involving members with Amateur Athletic Union.

    Lopez has spoken at seminars or worked at camps in other countries, including Argentina and Chile. SafeSport’s decision would not bar him from coaching in other countries. That would require a ban by World Taekwondo, and its rules require national federations to report misconduct complaints.

    “The reach of it’s always going to be limited,” said Jon Little, an attorney who sued USA Taekwondo on several occasions and who now represents five women who said they were sexually assaulted by the Lopez brothers.

    “He’s always going to be able to go to Argentina or do something. …They can’t totally stop him from coaching.”

    Jean Lopez has been coaching at a gym in Las Vegas, which touts his Olympic credentials.

    On its website, Legacy Taekwondo says it is the “only taekwondo training center in Las Vegas who can boast instructors that have won and coached Olympic, World and National gold medalist on behalf of the United States of America.”

    The SafeSport decision comes more than a decade after Meloon first told USA Taekwondo in 2006 that Jean Lopez had sexually assaulted her at a tournament in 1997. She was 16 at the time.

    While USA Taekwondo dismissed her claim at the time, SafeSport’s investigation found it to have merit.

    “It’s not only myself personally, everything in the news, the #metoo,” Meloon said. “It wasn’t the right time. It was just so accepted. It was just the way things were, and now it’s just different.”

    SafeSport’s investigation also found Jean Lopez had assaulted Gilbert and a third woman, with whom he had also engaged in a consensual sexual relationship with her starting when she was 17.

    “This is probably one of the worst SafeSport cases I’ve ever seen,” Little said.

    “Literally it went on for two decades. I guess if you’re asking me is there a difference between now and then, the answer is barely. I’m encouraged that the USOC took action against such a prominent person. However, look what it took. It took multiple newspaper stories over multiple years. It took multiple proceedings at the USOC and in other venues. It took police reports to various agencies. It took a lot for a long time for this to end. And the bottom line is that nothing should take this long.”

    The Olympic movement is under heavy criticism for its handling of sexual abuse cases following revelations that longtime USA Gymnastics physician Larry Nassar abused hundreds of women, including Olympic champions Aly Raisman, Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, Jordyn Wieber and Gabby Douglas. USA Taekwondo, USA Swimming, US Speedskating and USA Judo also have been criticized for how they’ve handled high-profile or wide-spread allegations of abuse.

    In January, the bipartisan House Energy and Commerce Committee asked the U.S. Olympic Committee, USA Gymnastics, USA Taekwondo, USA Swimming and Michigan State to provide information on how they have handled complaints. It has since expanded its inquiry to include all national governing bodies and is awaiting responses.

    The USOC has long maintained it does not have the authority or resources to investigate abuse complaints. Instead, it created the U.S. Center for SafeSport, which is charged with adjudicating all sexual abuse complaints in the Olympic movement.

    When SafeSport opened in March 2017, national governing bodies were told to turn over any pending sexual abuse cases. The complaints against Jean Lopez and his brother were given to the center immediately.
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  6. #126
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    reinstated (un-busted)

    More on Jean Lopez here.


    Taekwondo star Jean Lopez reinstated after ban from sport amid sexual misconduct allegations

    By Click2Houston.com Staff
    Posted: 10:45 PM, August 18, 2018
    Updated: 10:45 PM, August 18, 2018


    Getty Images

    HOUSTON - Noted taekwondo coach Jean Lopez, from Sugar Land, who has been accused of sexual misconduct, has been reinstated after being blocked from the sport earlier this year.

    Lopez's attorney confirmed to KPRC 2 that the sanctions have been lifted by Safesport and he is eligible to coach again. Lopez was banned amid sexual misconduct charges that were filed this year.

    The charges stem from an investigation that began three years ago.
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    More on Lopez

    Now it's about Safe Sport.

    Safe Sport added to lawsuit alleging USOC cover up of sexual abuse of taekwondo athletes by Lopez brothers
    Organizations accused of sex trafficking and forced labor by former Team USA athletes


    Steven Lopez, an Olympic gold medalist in Tae Kwon Do is introduced as honorary captain before an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 18, 2016, in Houston. (AP Photo/George Bridges)

    By SCOTT M. REID | sreid@scng.com | Orange County Register
    PUBLISHED: August 24, 2018 at 4:40 pm | UPDATED: August 24, 2018 at 4:55 pm

    The U.S. Center for Safe Sport has been added to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Denver Friday that alleges gross negligence and trafficking by Safe Sport and the U.S. Olympic Committee for failing to protect female taekwondo athletes from sexual abuse by Olympic gold medalist Steven Lopez and his brother Jean, a longtime U.S. national team coach.

    Kay Poe, a 2000 Olympian, on Friday joined other former and current Team USA athletes in a lawsuit that charges that the USOC, Safe Sport and USA Taekwondo, the sport’s national governing body, engaged in forced labor, sex trafficking and racketeering under federal RICO statutes by secretly obstructing investigations in allegations of sexual abuse by the Lopez brothers.

    Specifically the lawsuit alleges that investigations into sexual abuse allegations against the Lopez brothers were suspended to allow the brothers to coach and compete in the 2016 Olympic Games and 2017 U.S. Championships.

    The suit also alleges that Safe Sport’s claims of being independent are false and that the center is compromised by conflicts of interest. The center, which opened in March 2017, was created by and is financed by the USOC.

    “This case will conclusively demonstrate that Safe Sport is a sham,” said Robert Allard, an attorney for Poe. “We have seen case after case highlighted by the recent decision to reinstate alleged serial predator JeanLopez where SafeSport bends over backward to protect pedophile coaches and, as a consequence, the financial interests of the USOC and its (national governing bodies).”

    Friday’s amended complaint comes a week after Safe Sport removed Jean Lopez from its list of permanently ineligible individuals and given “interim restriction” status. It is unclear why Safe Sport made the change or what the conditions of the restriction are.

    Jean Lopez was originally banned by Safe Sport in April for sexual misconduct and sexual misconduct involving a minor. Steven Lopez, a gold medalist at the 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games, was placed on “interim suspension” on May 7 by Safe Sport for “allegations of misconduct.”

    The Lopez brothers have denied any wrongdoing.

    The suit, initially filed this past spring, alleges that the USOC, Safe Sport and USA Taekwondo “obstructed, attempted to obstruct, interfered, and or prevented the enforcement” of their policies by ignoring verbal and written complaints of sexual abuse, dismissing complaints of and refusing to act on reports of sexual abuse and delaying the investigation of reports of sexual abuse. The suit also alleges the organizations advised athletes to withdraw complaints of sexual abuse that they knew were truthful, offered to put athletes back on team rosters only if they withdrew truthful complaints of sexual abuse, and threatened athletes with consequences for failure to withdraw complaints.

    Poe in 1996 at the age of 14 became the youngest ever member of the U.S. national taekwondo team. She alleges Jean Lopez began sexually exploiting her and engaging in sexual intercourse with her in the year leading up to the 2000 Olympics. The suit said Lopez forced Poe into sex at the 1999 World Championships in Alberta. Lopez’s abuse of Poe was known to many in the USOC and USA Taekwondo community, the suit alleges.

    Mandy Meloon alleges Jean Lopez molested her while to she pretended to sleep on a trip to a 1997 World Cup event in Cairo, Egypt. Meloon was 15 at the time. Meloon began a sexual relationship with Steven Lopez in 2000, according to court documents. She alleges in the filing that Steven Lopez physically abused her in 2002 and raped her in 2004.

    Heidi Gilbert alleges Jean Lopez drugged, molested and performed oral sex on her while they traveled to a 2003 World Cup event in Germany. Later, Gilbert alleges, Jean Lopez told her he wanted to leave his wife and have “Olympic babies” with her.

    Gabriella Joslin alleges Steven Lopez sexually assaulted her during the 2006 German Open.
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  8. #128
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    Gundam in orbit for realz

    I cannot wait until mecha fights become an Olympic event.

    Japan to release Gundam and Char’s Zaku into space to orbit Earth, ahead of Tokyo 2020 Olympics
    Dale Roll 57 minutes ago



    Launch will celebrate the anime’s anniversary and look forward to the 2020 Olympics!

    Mobile Suit Gundam, the anime that defined the mecha genre, is celebrating its 40 year anniversary, and that’s cause to celebrate. But as if the release of limited-edition Gundam coffee cans, the opening of a brand new Gundam Cafe, and plans for an actual moving Gundam statue weren’t enough, now there are also plans to actually send some mobile suits into space.

    That’s right, you read that correctly. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has teamed up with the Tokyo University Graduate School of Engineering’s Aerospace Engineering department to use mobile suits to cheer on the Tokyo 2020 Olympics from space. To do so, they’ll be sending models of the original Gundam and Char’s Zaku from the Mobile Suit Gundam series out into Earth’s orbit.

    ▼ The suits will even be traveling around the Earth at a rate of about eight kilometers (five miles) per second, which means they’ll complete one orbit in about 90 minutes!


    Sadly, they won’t be full-size Gundam statues, like the one in Odaiba. The logistics of launching a 20-meter tall (60-plus foot), extremely heavy statue into space would probably be too difficult with the technology we have right now. Instead, they’ll be sending out two Gunpla models, like the build-it-yourself kind that fans can buy and make at home, but they won’t be ordinary plastic Gunpla models, of course; thanks to the cooperation of three companies in Fukui Prefecture, as well as JAXA and Tokyo University, they’ll be made with special materials and painted with a special kind of paint in order to withstand the harsh environment of space.

    They’ll be launched from the International Space Station sometime in March or April next year, together with the new G-Satellite, a micro satellite which measures just 30 centimeters across (about 11 inches), and which is also an electronic billboard. The models will be housed in the “cockpit” of the G-Satellite until it enters Earth’s orbit, and then it will open, and they’ll look as if they’re floating in outer space.

    ▼ An image of the G-Satellite


    The mobile suits will be standing on the electronic signboard, on which encouraging messages for the athletes will be displayed in the five colors of the Olympics. The G-Satellite will also be equipped with seven cameras to capture the messages, which those involved with the project will share on social media.

    Unfortunately the mobile suits won’t be allowed to revolve around the earth for eternity, as they’ll be taken back in sometime during the Olympics. Still, thanks to cool experiments like this, maybe one day we will be able to send a Gundam into space to orbit the earth perpetually, and a full-sized one at that! Now wouldn’t that be something for extraterrestrial visitors to see?

    In any case, we’ll be looking forward to the pictures posted on social media next year!

    Source: One Team Project via Japaaan Magazine
    Images: One Team Project
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    medals



    Tokyo 2020 Olympic medals unveiled with help of 6 million recycled phones
    By OlympicTalk Jul 24, 2019, 6:27 AM EDT

    The Tokyo Olympic medals, created in part with metals from six millions recycled cell phones and other small electronics, were unveiled on Wednesday, one year out from the Opening Ceremony.

    More than 78,000 tons of used cell phones and other devices were collected to help yield more than 12,000 pounds of gold, silver and bronze.

    Each medal weighs between one pound (bronze) and 1.2 pounds (gold), to be distributed at the largest Games ever with records of 33 sports and 339 events.

    The medal design was chosen from an open competition that attracted more than 400 entries.

    From Tokyo 2020:

    The medals resemble rough stones that have been polished and which now shine, with “light” and “brilliance” their overall themes. The medals collect and reflect myriad patterns of light, symbolizing the energy of the athletes and those who support them; their design is intended to symbolise diversity and represent a world where people who compete in sports and work hard are honored. The brilliance of the medals’ reflections signifies the warm glow of friendship depicted by people all over the world holding hands.


    Tiger Claw makes custom medals. Just so you know...
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    martial arts & world diplomacy

    WORLD NEWS AUGUST 7, 2019 / 5:33 PM / UPDATED 11 HOURS AGO
    Judo helps Japan get to grips with China's expansion in Pacific
    Jonathan Barrett
    4 MIN READ

    APIA, Samoa (Reuters) - In a large church hall near the Samoan parliament, 175-kg (386-lb) judo practitioner Derek Sua is being thrown to the mat by his Japanese coach, a black-belt who is just a third his size.

    Sua welcomes the training, usually difficult for athletes in Pacific Ocean islands to secure, but now offered free by Japan’s development assistance agency, to help him qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

    “It’s not easy, because here in the Pacific for us, especially Pacific islanders, we have limited competition,” Sua said. “Because we need to find funding to travel overseas and compete.”

    Sua added that he would train in Japan in August with several other Samoans, following an invitation he described as fostering goodwill between the two nations.

    But the offer is also part of a wider diplomatic effort in the Pacific by the United States and its allies, including Japan, to counter the growing influence of China, which has ramped up its sports programs in the region.

    Sometimes called “soft” or “cultural” diplomacy, such programs can extend beyond sports to language exchanges and the arts, with the aim of advancing foreign policy goals.


    FILE PHOTO: Samoan judoka Derek Sua attends a practice session with his Japanese coach Kohei Kamibayashi at a training facility inside a church hall in Apia, Samoa, July 13, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Barrett

    Although tiny, the Pacific islands control vast swaths of resource-rich ocean and strategic infrastructure, such as airstrips and ports, provoking interest from China and a counter response from the United States.

    Last week, Samoan sports minister Loau Keneti Sio said China had extended an invitation to train a “large contingent” of young athletes in sports, from athletics to badminton and volleyball, later this year.

    China had already hosted Samoan athletes ahead of the Olympic-styled Pacific Games, held in Samoa in July, while training chefs and performers for the opening and closing ceremonies, he added.

    China has soft power initiatives elsewhere in the Pacific, which include exposing regional table tennis players to the country’s world-class coaches and training regimes.

    The judo diplomacy complements similar initiatives from regional allies Australia and New Zealand, which actively use rugby union and league to forge strong ties with Pacific islands, where the football codes are dominant.

    Originating in Japan, judo makes use of grip fighting and throws that have proved to be effective techniques for mixed martial art competitions.

    On the mats in Samoa, Sua’s coach, Kohei Kamibayashi, said judo was a sport whose most powerful practitioners did not always win the battle.

    The Japanese coach said his star Samoan pupil, who competed at the last Olympics in Brazil, must prepare to face bigger opponents in his 100-kg (221-lb) -plus category, where there are no weight limits.

    Kamibayashi said he was helping Sua perfect his use of a technique called “seoi-nage”, effective for throwing bigger opponents.

    While Samoans were naturally built for a sport like judo, it was a very demanding martial art that was still struggling to win converts on the island, Sua added.

    “It can be another dominant sport here in Samoa if a lot of people get interested,” he said.

    Reporting by Jonathan Barrett in APIA, Samoa; Editing by Clarence Fernandez
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    olympic primer

    Karate at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics: Everything you need to know
    A new fan's guide to watching this ancient martial art.

    BY DANIELLE KOSECKI
    AUGUST 10, 2019 6:00 AM PDT


    Karate's two modalities -- kata and kumite -- make their Olympic debut in 2020.
    Canva

    Karate, a system of unarmed combat that literally means "empty hand," is said to have developed during the 17th century in the Okinawa prefecture, a chain of islands off the southern coast of Japan. Despite being popularized worldwide as a sport after World War II, karate -- along with four other sports -- will be part of the Summer Olympics for the first time in 2020. Fittingly, it makes its Olympic debut in Japan, where the sport, which involves executing arm- and leg-based strikes, first originated.

    It joins judo, taekwondo, and wrestling as the only Olympics-approved martial arts -- for 2020 anyway: Karate failed to make the cut for the Paris Olympics in 2024.

    With that in mind, here's everything you need to know to enjoy karate during the Tokyo Olympics next summer.

    Karate Events at the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics

    In Tokyo, Karate practitioners, or karatekas, will compete at Nippon Budokan, an indoor legacy venue built to host judo events at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Since then, Nippon Budokan, which is located in Kitanomaru Park in the center of Tokyo, has hosted various sports and music acts -- including the Beatles, Led Zeppelin and Diana Ross -- but it's best known as the home of Japanese martial arts. It was the site of the first Karate World Championships in 1970 and to this day still hosts the national championships for judo, kendo, aikido and more.

    At the 2020 Olympics, both the men and the women will compete in two karate events at Nippon Budokan: kata, a solo form discipline, and kumite, a sparring discipline.


    Karate Day 2: Baku 2015 - 1st European Games
    Minh Dack of France competes in the Men's Karate Kata elimination round during the Baku 2015 European Games.
    Michael Steele

    In the Olympics, there will be one kata event -- and one gold medal -- each for men and women. During the competition, karatekas will perform a series of offensive and defensive movements, known as forms, against a virtual opponent. There are 102 kata approved by the World Karate Federation (WKF) that the athletes can choose from, such as Heian Shodan and Nijushiho.

    Unlike in traditional competitions, which are scored using a flag system, Olympic judges will use a point system to evaluate the athletes' technical performance, taking things like techniques, timing and breathing into consideration, as well as their athletic performance -- i.e. strength, speed and balance.

    According to this new scoring system, an individual's two highest and lowest scores will be thrown out, with the three remaining added together to represent their final score. After a ranking round, top performers will either progress to either the bronze medal or final bout.

    Check out the full schedule of the 2020 Olympic Karate events.


    Karate - Buenos Aires Youth Olympics: Day 12
    Annika Saelid of Norway (red) and Negin Altooni of Iran (blue) compete in the Women's Kumite +59kg Semifinal during the 2018 Buenos Aires Youth Olympic Games 2018.
    Marcelo Endelli / Getty Images

    The WKF recognizes five weight classes in competition. But in the Olympics, men's and women's kumite will be consolidated into three weight classes. For men those classes are up to 67 kilograms, up to 75kg, and over 75kg, and for women it's and up to 55 kg, up to 61kg and over 61kg.

    Within each weight class, pairs of karateka will compete against each other in an 8-by-8-meter area for up to three minutes. Points are awarded when an athlete lands a properly executed strike, kick or punch on various parts of their opponent's body, such as their head, neck, belly or back.

    The first karateka to score eight points more than their competitor, or the karateka with the most points at the end of the match is the winner. In the event of a tie, judges determine the winner.

    Competitors in each weight class will have to progress through three rounds -- an elimination round, the semi-final, and the final -- in pursuit of a gold medal.

    How Karateka qualify for the Olympics
    The WKF has more than 190 members but only 80 competitors will qualify the compete in Tokyo: 10 in each kumite weight class for both the men and the women and 10 men and 10 women in kata.

    There are a few different ways to earn a spot on that list. The first is through qualification.

    Thirty-two athletes (16 men and 16 women) will qualify based on their world ranking as of April 6, 2020. Twelve more men and 12 more women will qualify based on their results at a tournament in Paris, France from May 8 to 10, 2020. And 12 athletes will qualify at two continental events: the European Games which will be held June 14 to 30, 2019 in Minsk, Belarus and the Pan-American Games July 26 to Aug. 11, 2019 in Lima, Peru (details here).

    The second pathway to the Olympics is open to citizens of the host country -- Japan is allowed to appoint eight athletes (four men and four women) to their Olympic team. If any of those athletes qualify via their world ranking or a tournament, those spots will be reallocated to other athletes.

    The four final Olympic slots will be chosen by the Tripartite Commission, which is made up of the National Olympic Committees, the International Olympic Committee and the International Federations.

    On Oct. 14, 2019 the International Olympic Committee will invite all eligible National Olympic Committees to submit their requests for Tripartite Commission Invitation Places by Jan. 15, 2020, according to the rules. The allocation of the last four spots will be confirmed after the end of the qualification period for karate, which has yet to be determined.

    By June 2, 2020, the WKF will publish a list of the qualified athletes on the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 section of its website. The National Olympic Committees will then have two weeks to confirm if they wish to send those athletes to the Games.
    THREADS
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    Gene Ching
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  12. #132
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    I'm now worried that Beijing Bikinis may deserve it's own indie thread soon.

    Can the “Beijing Bikini” help Tokyo bear the boiling heat during next year’s Games?
    Master Blaster 2 days ago



    Some Chinese authorities want to put a stop to it, but might Japanese authorities be wise to encourage letting our guts fly free?

    A long-standing hot-weather technique among older guys in China has been to roll up their shirts to just under their chests creating the illusion of wearing something like a bra. Dubbed, the “Beijing Bikini” it has recently come under fire by local governments who are calling for a ban on the practice.



    Our writer Meg, who often travels to China, first encountered the Beijing Bikini back in the 2000s while visiting Shanghai. Her companion was startled by a group of men wearing what, from a distance, appeared to be sports bras.

    ▼ Friend: “Oh my god! Meg! Old guys in a sports bras! There’s a whole bunch of them! Are they some kind of perverts?!”



    As they got closer Meg saw one of the men turn to face them. It was clear now that his “sports bra” was nothing more than his tank top rolled up to his nipples. But he held an air of satisfaction and relaxation seldom seen, and he causally flashed a smile as pure and genuine as a newborn babe.

    This was a man who had achieved ultimate comfort.



    While it had the unfortunate side effect of driving her friend into a panic, the Beijing Bikini was clearly an effective way at countering unforgivably hot weather.

    Flash-forward to Tokyo 2019. The government has been racking its collective brain to find ways to combat its uncomfortable and deadly summer heat in time for the 2020 Olympics. Could the Beijing Bikini be the cost-effective key to accomplishing this?

    Beijing did have a highly successful summer Olympics in 2008… this was beginning to make all kinds of crazy sense, so Meg assembled a team of writers to hike up their tops and hit the streets to test the Beijing Bikini’s effectiveness in Japan.



    Each representing different stomach intensities and styles of tops, P.K. Sanjun, Go Hattori, and Yuichiro Wasai stepped into the steamy Tokyo jungle with their new heat-prevention fashions.



    They kept their heads up high and seemed to have an air of confidence, but they lacked that pure feeling of comfort that Meg had once seen in Shanghai so many years before. Something was amiss.



    After returning to the office, both Go and P.K. reported a significant cooling feeling in their midriffs. Yuichiro, however, said his belly was only somewhat cooler.

    Here’s each man’s feeling on the Beijing Bikini:



    Go Hattori: “My midsection was cooler, but I felt really insecure that it would affect my weak stomach. The cool feeling was only in my stomach. Anyway, it doesn’t look cool so it’s not for me personally.”



    P.K. Sanjun: “There certainly is a cool feeling in my gut… but even when I’m in good shape and have abs, I still feel bad about showing people my middle-aged belly. But if everyone’s doing it over in Beijing, why not take advantage and do it there too?”



    Yuichiro Wasai: “If you’re going to do this, why not just take your shirt off? The Beijing Bikini is hiding only the chest, as if that’s some special line of decency. It definitely got a little cooler, but it’s a half-baked way to preserve manners. On the other hand, just whipping off your shirt sends a clear message that you throw caution to the wind with regard to etiquette. It’s also a better way to be in terms of keeping cool, so I would just take my shirt off. I mean, if it were down to either that or a Beijing Bikini.”

    So, the Beijing Bikini does appear to have some hurdles to overcome before it’s embraced by people in Japan. There is still time before the Olympics for it to catch on, though and it’s still considerably better than those umbrella hats.

    Images: ©SoraNews24
    THREAD
    Beijing Bikinis on the belly breathing thread
    2020 Tokyo Olympics
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  13. #133
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    New Olympic Doboks?

    Is this really a thing?

    Stop World Taekwondo from using new dobok in Tokyo 2020

    Petition
    Signatures 1 314

    We, the participants of taekwondo, around the world, OBJECT to the use of this dobok and respectfully petition World Taekwondo to preserve the integrity and tradition of our martial art and NOT USE this dobok in the Olympic Games.

    Get your old skool Doboks here.

    THREADS
    TKD
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    Gene Ching
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  14. #134
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    THIS IS KARATE! Olympic 2020 Promo

    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
    Support our forum by getting your gear at MartialArtSmart

  15. #135
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    I hate it when politics interferes with athletics...

    ...but such is part of the intrinsic drama of international games...

    NINE MONTHS BEFORE TOKYO OLYMPICS
    Iran barred indefinitely from world judo over refusal to face Israelis
    Official suspension handed down by International Judo Federation comes after Iranian judoka said he was ordered to throw match to avoid facing Israeli competitor
    By AFP and TOI STAFF
    22 October 2019, 7:14 pm 3


    Iran's judoka Saeid Mollaei reacts after losing to Belgium's Matthias Casse in the semifinal fight in the men's under-81 kilogram category during the 2019 Judo World Championships in Tokyo on August 28, 2019. (Charly Triballeau/AFP)

    The International Judo Federation (IJF) said Tuesday it had banned Iran from competition indefinitely over the country’s refusal to face Israeli competitors.
    The federation issued a provisional ban last month while investigating a report that Iran had ordered a judoka to lose deliberately at the world championships to avoid facing Israeli competitor Sagi Muki in the subsequent round.

    “Following the events, which occurred during the last World Judo Championships Tokyo 2019, the final suspension of the Iran Judo Federation from all competitions… has been pronounced,” the IJF said in a statement.

    The IJF said the suspension will remain in place until the Iran Judo Federation “gives strong guarantees and proves that they will respect the IJF Statutes and accept that their athletes fight against Israeli athletes.”

    Iranian fighter Saeid Mollaei, defending his title at the Tokyo World Championships in August, had said he was ordered to throw his semifinal rather than risk facing an Israeli in the final of the under 81kg class.

    The Iranian, 27, lost the semifinal and then went on to lose his third-place fight.


    In this photo taken Sept. 12, 2019, Iranian judoka Saeid Mollaei poses for a portrait photo at an undisclosed southern city of Germany. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

    Mollaei said he had been instructed to withdraw from the competition by the presidents of the Iran Judo Federation and the Iran Olympic committee.

    Rejecting the charges, the Iranian federation denied that pressure had been applied to force Mollaei to withdraw from the championships.

    However the IJF disciplinary commission examining the case found that Iran’s actions “constitute a serious breach and gross violation of the Statutes of the IJF, its legitimate interests, its principles and objectives.”

    Judo is one of Iran’s sporting strong points and the ban comes as a blow just nine months ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.

    Tehran is expected to appeal against the IJF decision at the Swiss-based Court for Arbitration of Sport. They have 21 days to do so.

    Meanwhile, Culture Minister Miri Regev lauded the IJF’s ban, but said in a statement that she regretted “the heavy price Iranian athletes will have to pay because of their regime’s decisions.”

    The IJF said Mollaei had been pressured to lose by Iranian deputy sports minister Davar Zani. Mollaei was also reportedly pressured to bow out by Iranian Olympic Committee president Reza Salehi Amiri, who told him minutes before his semifinal match that Iranian security services were at his parents’ house in Tehran.


    Belgium’s Matthias Casse (in blue) celebrates winning the semifinal fight against Iran’s Saeid Mollaei in the men’s under-81 kilogram category during the 2019 Judo World Championships in Tokyo on August 28, 2019. (Charly Triballeau/AFP)

    The IJF said an official from the Iranian embassy in Tokyo pretending to be a coach gained access to a restricted area to coerce the 27-year-old Tehran native to lose the match as he warmed up on the sidelines.

    Mollaei fled to Berlin after the championships, where he was hoping to secure a place at the 2020 Olympic games.

    Iran does not recognize Israel as a country, and Iranian sports teams have for several decades had a policy of not competing against Israelis. Iranian passports remind holders in bold red they are “not entitled to travel to occupied Palestine.”

    One of the most famous cases was that of Arash Miresmaeili, a two-time judo world champion who showed up overweight for his bout against an Israeli at the Olympics in Athens in 2004 and was disqualified.

    He was praised by Iran’s then-president Mohammad Khatami and the ultraconservative media and eventually made his way to become the current chief of Iran’s judo federation’s chief.

    Miresmaeili told Iranian media at the time he would refuse to fight an Israeli as a gesture of support for Palestine.

    According to him, the current ban on the federation is “outside the usual procedure” as the disciplinary committee reviewing the case should have temporarily suspended Iran until reviews were complete and Iran had time to present its defense.


    Sagi Muki of Israel, top, competes against Matthias Casse of Belgium during a men’s under-81 kilogram final of the World Judo Championships in Tokyo, Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)
    THREADS
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