Kata Competition: Standards and Evaluation Resources

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

The following documents detail the Kata Competition Criteria for evaluation and are useful as a guide for kata judges and for competitors at the national and international level.  These documents assume a high level of proficiency with the kata and are not suitable as learning material for those just beginning their kata study.  The United States has fully adopted the IJF standards.


IJF Standards*


*Please be aware that the IJF standards were updated in January 2019.  Please review the documents carefully.  For instance, the IJF has adjusted the starting position of Tomoe-nage to reflect a starting position of 1 meter from center rather than the previous center.


IJF Kata Judging Scoresheets

Kata Document Archive

The following is historical material that may be of use in understanding the current international criteria and the transition from the USA National Kata Standareds to the IJF Standards.  These documents include correlation guides between the different standards and training materials developed when the IJF standards adoption began.


US Standards Transition

The following are the combined US and IJF kata standards, adopted as a transition document for 2015 and 2016 in the US:

Previous IJF Standards and Documents


EJU Kata Documents


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



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 https://athletesafety.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/