Attention! – The 2016 USA JUDO Senior nationals will use the US Standard with 2015 IJF evaluation criteria.


The combination of the two documents for each of the five main katas are linked here:


Ju no Kata

Katame No Kata

Kime No Kata



NEW!  Downloadable IJF Scoresheets in Excel Format



  • Kata information on International Judo Federation competition and evaluation criteria:

Kodokan Kata Handbooks (Go to Kodokan Textbook under each individual kata)

IJF Kata Evaluation Criteria-2015

IJF Competition Rules – 2015

2–page IJF High-level Kata Elements to be Observed in Judging – 2015 (created by EJU judge)

2014 IJF Score Sheets (2015 eliminated separate score for fluidity and is considered in each technique)

Unofficial (but very helpful) Judge’s Guides, with diagrams of start and end positions (created by EJU judge):

·Nage No Kata – Judge’s Guide (2015)

·Katame No Kata- Judge’s Guide (2015)

·Ju No Kata – Judge’s Guide (2015)

·KodokanGoshinjutsu- Judge’s Guide (2015)

·Kime No Kata- Judge’s Guide (2015)


Karl Tamai and Diane Jackson demonstrating Nage No Kata at the 2014 World Judo Kata Championships, Malaga, Spain

Karl Tamai and Diane Tamai Jackson demonstrating Nage No Kata at the 2014 World Judo Kata Championships in Malaga, Spain


What Is Kata?

Kata (“forms” or “formal techniques”) is a method of judo training: a pre-determined demonstration of an ideal situation to apply the principles of throwing, grappling, submissions, and self-defense.  It is a principal component of the art and science of judo, and is complementary to randori (freestyle) training methods.


Kata is conducted and competed in teams of two judoka (judo players).  It is a means to complement judo knowledge for shiai (controlled combat) competitors, and a means to compete after a shiai career or as an alternative to shiai competition.  There are the many opportunities for teams to compete in the kata, from local and national tournaments to the IJF World Judo Kata Championship.  In Shufu, most local tournaments include a kata competition.  Kata training and competition can start at any age, and is included as competition at the Junior Nationals.  Kata is also required for advanced judo ranks to demonstrate mastery of the techniques and principles of judo


Why Kata?

Jigoro Kano (the founder of judo) intended kata to a part of every judoka’s training.  Through kata, an individual learns all of the principles and theories of judo, all of the elements of the wazas (techniques), techniques not allowed in shiai, and a means for overall physical fitness.



There are Seven Principal Katas:

Nage No Kata – Throwing techniques

Katame No Kata – Ne waza (grappling) techniques

Ju No Kata – Forms of gentleness

Goshin Jitsu – modern weapons

Kime No Kata – ancient weapons

Koshiki No Kata – ancient warrior kata

Itsutsu No Kata – Forms of five

Return to IJF Kata Information Section


Learning and Competing

Kata competition is available at all levels of proficiency: local, national, continental and International, and Worlds.  Since 2009, the International Judo Federation has hosted the World Kata Judo Championship.  This elite level of competition has given national competitors a new and higher goal and has led to an increase in the level of proficiency around the world.


There are many path to increasing kata knowledge:  fulfillment of promotional requirements, dojo kata practice, attending clinics, competing, teaching, and judging.


Kata Training:

• Self-study:

o Watch Youtube videos

o Read standards and books

o Start walk-thru practicing

• Attend clinics:

o Shufu generally hosts at least two clinics per year.  In the fall, the Faye Allen Kata Championship includes both competition and clinic.  In the spring, a clinic is held.  The selected kata(s) changes from year-to-year.

o USJF annual kata conference is held in the summer and covers seven katas

o Joshi Judo camp

• Compete: Competition is the best and most effective means for assessing your current proficiency.

o Faye Allen Kata Championship is held in the fall

o Most Shufu tournaments include a kata competition.  As time permits, kata

judges also make themselves available through the day to provide feedback to

the competitors.

• Get feedback

Shufu has several certified kata judges and national and international competitors, who are willing to provide kata students feedback

• Host a clinic


Kata Competition:

• Local:

Most Shufu tournament include a kata competitions.

• Local/Regional:

Faye Allen Kata Championship is held every Fall, typically in late September.  The tournament was established by Edwin Takemori, and is currently run by DC Judo.

• National:

USA Judo Sr. Nationals; USJF Jr and Sr Nationals

• International (open):

Fukuda Kata Tournament; many European tournaments

• International (qualification required):

PanAmerican Championship; World Kata Championship


Tools to learn kata:

• US standards (see individual katas above)


• Kodokan videos

• IFJ standards

• Other Videos


National Kata

USA Judo National Kata Judges

USJF Kata Judging and Instructor Certification

USJF Kata Development and Certification Committee



International Kata

2015 EJU Kata Seminar Report, Rome, Italy

IJF Kata Evaluation Criteria-2015

IJF High-level Kata Elements to be Observed in Judging – 2015 (by EJU)

Nage No Kata – EJU Judge’s Guide (2015)

Katame No Kata- EJU Judge’s Guide (2015)

Ju No Kata- EJU Judge’s Guide (2015)

Kodokan Goshinjutsu- EJU Judge’s Guide (2015)

Kime No Kata- EJU Judge’s Guide (2015)

IJF Score Sheets

IJF Kata Commission – 2009 Analysis of Official Kodokan Video


How to Host a Kata Clinic






IJF KATA COMMISSION – Analysis of Official Kodokan Video

Coach Certification

SafeSport Certification is now required for all USJF registered clubs. If you have already completed the course and submitted a copy of your certificate, you do not need to resubmit. For more information or to take the course, please visit www.safesport.org.

Heads Up concussion training, through the CDC's website, is a requirement for all members of your USJF registered club who function as teachers at any time. Please advise all of your instructors and assistant instructors of this requirement. The training can be accessed at: http://www.cdc.gov/headsup/