About Us

Welcome to World Sabaki Challenge 


Tournament:         Sabaki is a Japanese word meaning channel power efficiently. It can refer to the effort of taming horse or damming a river. In martial arts it means the natural way to use an opponent’s power and momentum against him, regardless of size.   For 38 years, the Sabaki Challenge has provided a place for martial artists to follow their beliefs in the hard training they endure. It allows them to see something in themselves, that might have been hidden if it was just a belief alone. It is a process of self-development and evolution; polishing oneself and techniques, finding what works and what doesn’t; realizing the real opponent is oneself. In this way, great respect is shown to the opponent each fighter faces on the mat. The event is a modern full contact stand up challenge in the tradition of timeless warrior code the whole family can enjoy.


Eligibility:            In an age of multi-million dollar contracts there are still those who push purely for the love of what they do. Men and women from around the world of all martial arts styles will be selected for this single elimination event. Champions from Europe, Asia, Australia and South America will meet in Denver. Many of the fighters train all year for an event that supports their passion; this event is the Sabaki Challenge!


Rules:                   The rules are designed to bring out the best qualities of spirit, discipline, power and technique. Action will be delivered in a decisive yet disciplined manner; often ending in instant submission (knock-out). Sabaki is a form of stand-up combat that scores with punishing blows and take downs. Rules prohibit punching to the head, ground fighting, but allow contact to the body, kicks to the head and body, sweeps, low kicks and throwing techniques. By imposing these rules on themselves, the fighter can aim to be a disciplined and respected human being.


Kancho Ninomiya:     Known in Japan as “karate genius” and “modern day Musashi”, Joko Ninomiya left his homeland for Denver in 1977. He won karate’s most prestigious tournament in Japan, 1978. In 1988 Ninomiya developed Enshin Karate, now with 100 schools across the U.S. and abroad. Kancho Ninomiya created the Sabaki Challenge to provide fighters of all styles an opportunity to challenge themselves in a pure test of stand-up fighting skills.