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General Responsiblities

It is the duty of all adult black belts, regardless of rank or position, to earn appropriate judging levels and volunteer to judge at any ATA event they are attending. This rule applies to every black belt in attendance. All adult black belts shall arrive before the judge's meeting held at every regional event, attend the meeting, and remain at the tournament until the final “Bow-out” has been completed unless they receive permission from the RTTL and the Senior Rank in attendance. It is the duty of every senior instructor to ensure that their junior instructors and black belts comply with this rule. Failure to do so will result in forfeiture of any points earned at that event and can lead to additional sanctions from the ATA's tournament department. Senior instructors shall refrain from interfering in the competition. If anyone feels there is a problem in the ring they shall notify the RTTL and take no further action unless instructed.
If a black belt does not follow proper protocol at the tournament, the following steps will be taken:

  • For the first infraction the RTTL will speak to the competitor involved, discuss the proper expectations of an adult black belt, and notify the student’s instructor.
  • Any further occurrences will result in a letter being written to the student with copies to that student’s senior instructor and the tournament department at National Headquarters advising them of the repercussions for future occurrences of the behavior. The possible consequences include, but are not limited to the following:
    • For adult black belts arriving late, the RTTL will determine if they will be allowed to compete. Arrival and Competition Times
    • Those who leave early may forfeit any top ten points earned toward state or world champion top ten.

Black Belt Meeting and Attendance

The Regional Tournament Team Leader or his/her assistant is to coordinate a Black Belt judges meeting prior to every regional tournament. The purpose of such meeting is to:

  • Address judging concerns and any rule clarifications.
  • Make special announcements concerning the tournament.
  • Make judging assignments.
  • Begin the process of black belt competition assignments.
  • Remind Judges of the safety compliance rules.

Dress Code for Arriving and Departing an ATA Tournament

Before and after their competition, color belts may wear regular “street” clothes, bearing in mind appropriate styles for the occasion. Black belts are held to a higher standard due to their position in the organization and in the eyes of the color belt students. Black Belts in attendance (whether competing or not) should either wear “dress” clothes, a traditional white dobok or certified instructor suit. Females can wear “dress” slacks, or skirts and tops, or dresses. Males should wear “dress” slacks and shirts (or sweaters) with a tie, sport coats or suits. It is understood that younger junior black belts have “trouble” keeping nice clothes clean, and they will be given special consideration. Teenagers and above should be able to care for themselves and are expected to comply with the dress requirements. Certified Instructors MUST wear either their instructor “dress suit” or their traditional white dobok. This dress code is in effect from the first appearance at the tournament site until away from the tournament site. A proper ATA white uniform is appropriate at all times.