ISKA (sports governing body)

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International Sport Karate and Kickboxing Association
IndustryKickboxing promotion
Founded1985 (1985)
United States

The ISKA (originally International Sport Karate Association, later also called the International Sport Kickboxing Association[1][2]) is one of the major international bodies regulating sport karate and kickboxing matches. It is based in the United States. It was established in 1985 as a response to legal and revenue issues that sent the Professional Karate Association (PKA) into decline.[3]


From 1974 until 1985, the PKA had been the most recognized worldwide kickboxing sanctioning group. It was instrumental in establishing public relay of the sport via ESPN, helping to introduce the burgeoning sport to a wider audience,[4] and had also developed the first fighter's ratings systems. Five major U.S.-based promoters and resigning PKA executives created the new body, the International Sport Karate Association (ISKA), with an official announcement on July 16, 1986. The first U.S. directors were Mike Sawyer, Karyn Turner, Tony Thompson, John Worley and Scott Coker. It currently runs the biggest martial arts tournament in the world, The U.S Open. Thousands of competitors from around the world participate every year.[5]

Many of the major PKA promoters began sanctioning their events with the ISKA and several also joined its administration. ISKA also secured ESPN broadcasts of its major title bouts in 1986, thus helping bring quick credibility and recognition to the new association.

Since the World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO) was mostly active in Europe and the World Kickboxing Association (WKA) in Asia, ISKA was quick to expand through its own European Directors starting October 1986 with Olivier Muller, Jérome Canabate and Mohamed Hosseini. American Richard Mayor oversaw the establishment of this European wing as European President between 1986 and 1988.[6]

By 1991, the worldwide control of the ISKA was shared by two co-chairmen: Mike Sawyer and Olivier Muller. International TV coverage was secured, and united separate organizations were formed worldwide to handle responsibility for international sanctioning and grading. ISKA has conducted its official activities under ISKA ASIA since 2008 with Dr. S. A. Moinshirazi the President of ISKA ASIA. Paul Zadro is the President of ISKA Australia, which is the biggest martial arts tournament circuit in Australia.[7]

In the early 2000s ISKA began sanctioning K-1 events such as K1-MAX and K-1 USA, and for several years they also sanctioned both kickboxing and MMA events for Strikeforce.[8] Starting from 2012, ISKA sanctioned events for the kickboxing promotion Glory.[8]

Current activities[edit]

ISKA is a sport karate, all styles kickboxing, mixed martial arts (MMA) sanctioning body in the United States and over 50 countries worldwide.

ISKA's Martial Arts World Championships are held yearly at the US Open of Martial Arts in Disney World, Orlando, Florida. The US Open ISKA World Martial Arts Championships is held annually every year on the Fourth of July weekend. More than 8,000 competitors and 12,000 spectators attend the two-day event each year. The event closes with the Night of Champions featuring the ISKA World Martial Arts Championships. The Night of Champions airs live on ESPN3, while a highlights show airs later on ESPN2. The US Open is the longest continuously running martial arts event on ESPN. The US Open highlights continue to air throughout the year on CSI Sports networks, reaching approximately 85 million households.[9]

Kickboxing World Champions[edit]

Men's Kickboxing Divisions[edit]

Weight class Oriental Rules Muay Thai Rules K-1 Rules
Flyweight (53.5 kg) Japan Kazuki Osaki Ukraine Andrii Mezentsev France Akram Hamidi
Bantamweight (55 kg) Vacant Republic of Ireland Ryan Sheehan Portugal Frederico Cordeiro
Featherweight (57 kg) France Franck Gross Vacant Vacant
Super featherweight (59 kg) Japan Takumi Terada United Kingdom Dylan Burke Vacant
Lightweight (61 kg) Japan Takeru Segawa United Kingdom Jonathan Haggerty Belgium Hicham Moujtahid
Super lightweight (63.5 kg) Romania Emile Hanna Vacant United Kingdom Bailey Sugden
Light welterweight (65 kg) France Jeremy Monteiro Vacant Japan Kento Haraguchi
Welterweight (67 kg) Italy Jordan Valdinocci Vacant Vacant
Super welterweight (70 kg) Romania Călin Petrișor Vacant Italy Giorgio Petrosyan
Light middleweight (72.5 kg) Morocco Mustapha Haida United Kingdom Joe Ryan Denmark Youssef Assouik
Middleweight (75 kg) Italy Christian Guiderdone Vacant France Mickael Lopez De Vega
Super middleweight (78 kg) France Karim Ghajji United Kingdom George Jarvis France Vianney Seperoumal
Light heavyweight (81.5 kg) France Cyril Benzaquen France Aristote Quitusisa France Bilal Bakhouche-Chareuf
Light cruiserweight (85 kg) France Reda Ougdou Austria Henry Bannert Belgium Madani Rahmani
Cruiserweight (88.5 kg) Vacant Vacant Vacant
Super cruiserweight (95 kg) Italy Mattia Faraoni Vacant France Florent Kaouachi
Heavyweight (100 kg) France Fabrice Gnedre Vacant Guinea Mamoudou Keita
Heavyweight (100 kg) Azerbaijan Zabit Samedov Vacant Germany Kerim Jemai

Women's Kickboxing Divisions[edit]

Weight class Oriental Rules Muay Thai Rules K-1 Rules
Atomweight (48 kg) Vacant Japan Anna Shiratsuki Spain Cristina Morales
Strawweight (50.5 kg) Vacant Scotland Amy Pirnie Vacant
Flyweight (52 kg) Spain Mireia Garcia Australia Kim Townsend France Djouarha Chafia
Flyweight (52 kg) Vacant Vacant Cuba Cynthia Gonzalez
Bantamweight (55 kg) Vacant Vacant Vacant
Featherweight (57 kg) Belgium Hélène Connart Italy Martine Michieletto Italy Martine Michieletto
Super featherweight (59 kg) Spain Lara Fernandez United Kingdom Katie Zetolofsky Turkey Sabriye Şengül

Sport Karate World Champions[edit]

Current ISKA Team World Champions[10][edit]

Current Team Champions Discipline
Team Competitive Edge Demo Team
Team Paul Mitchell Karate Synchronized Team Weapons
Team KTOC Synchronized Team Forms
Team Top Ten USA Men's 3 Man Point Sparring

Current ISKA Adult World Champions[11][edit]

Current Adult World Champions Discipline
Michael Guthrie Men's Traditional and CMX Forms
Haley Glass Women's CMX Forms

Women's Weapons

Richard Hoen Self Defense
Bailey Murphy Men's Ope As of July 2nd, 2021n Weighuly 3rdenge Match
Morgan Plowden Women's Open Weight Challenge Match
Jackson Rudolph Men's CMX Weapons
Mason Stowell Men's Traditional Forms

Current ISKA Youth World Champions[12][edit]

Current Youth World Champions Discipline
Dawson Holt 14-17 Boy's CMX Forms

14-17 Boy's Traditional Weapons

Anna Beth Hedgepath 14-17 Girl's CMX Weapons

14-17 Girl's CMX Forms

Maddie Kennaway 14-17 Girl's Traditional Forms
Madison Magnotta 14-17 Girl's Traditional Weapons
Mason Bumba 14-17 Boy's Weapons
Dax Howland 13 & Under Boy's CMX Weapons
Kodi Molina 13 & Under Girl's CMX Weapons
Isabella Nicoli 13 & Under Girl's CMX Forms

13 & Under Girl's and Boy's Traditional Forms

Averi Presley 13 & Under Girl's Traditional Weapons
Judah Sagawa 13 & Under Boy's CMX Forms

As of July 3rd, 2021

Breaking World Champions[edit]

Current World Breaking Champions Discipline
Justin Cuellar 3-Directional Power Wood (Lightweight)

Men's Creative Breaking

Ken Goodrich Power Concrete Arm/Hand (Lightweight)
Parker Moody Power Concrete Kick (Lightweight)
Steve Fisher 3-Directional Power Wood (Heavyweight)
Larry Fields Power Concrete Arm/Hand (Heavyweight)
Tim Steele Power Concrete Kick (Heavyweight)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "International Sport Kickboxing Association Fights, Fight Cards, Videos, Pictures, Events and more". Sherdog. Retrieved October 3, 2022.
  2. ^ "About us – ISKA World Headquarters". Retrieved October 3, 2022.
  3. ^ Bill Wallace (October 1988). The Decline and Fall of the PKA Empire (Digitized by Google Books). Black Belt Magazine. p. 13. Retrieved July 29, 2010.
  4. ^ Corcoran, John and Farkas, Emil. Martial Arts: Traditions, History, People. Gallery Books, New York (1983) p. 317.
  5. ^ "What is ISKA?". Retrieved July 12, 2020.
  6. ^ "From A to WKN". Retrieved October 8, 2015.
  7. ^ "A HISTORY OF KICKBOXING". Archived from the original on March 19, 2009. Retrieved July 15, 2020.
  8. ^ a b ISKA – About Us
  9. ^ "National Coverage Map". Archived from the original (JPG) on December 11, 2013. Retrieved October 8, 2015.
  10. ^ "Sport Karate Champions 2021 – ISKA World Headquarters". Retrieved April 26, 2022.
  11. ^ "Sport Karate Champions 2021 – ISKA World Headquarters". Retrieved April 26, 2022.
  12. ^ "Sport Karate Champions 2021 – ISKA World Headquarters". Retrieved April 26, 2022.

External links[edit]

Web resources

Books and articles