WAKO USA Returns to Competition with 2021 Tatami Sports National Championships

WAKO USA Returns to Competition with 2021 Tatami Sports National Championships

It has been almost exactly one year since the last competition took place for tatami sports athletes in the United States. With the outbreak of the global COVID-19 pandemic, almost all activities came to a halt worldwide last March. Since then, it was uncertain when competition would resume and it left athletes eager to know when they would once again have the chance to participate in the sport they love.

Thankfully, after many months of diligent work putting together a strict COVID-19 health and safety protocol, WAKO USA Tatami Sports athletes were able to return to competition on February 13th and 14th in Overland Park, Kansas for 2021 WAKO USA Nationals for tatami sports.

Some highlights of the COVID-19 health and safety protocols included:

  1. Mandatory testing for all fighters
  2. Mandatory mask wearing at all times for coaches, referees & spectators
  3. Mask wearing for all athletes when they were not actively on the tatami competing
  4. A limit of 1 spectator per athlete in the arena
  5. A two day event, broken up into 6 sessions the first day and 4 the second day
  6. Mandatory cleaning of all tatami in between each session
  7. Mandatory cleaning of all fighters’ equipment before each match
  8. Mandatory temperature screening to enter the arena

This year’s event brought together 553 athlete entries from 20 states and 49 clubs across the United States. Some of the top winners for this year’s event were:

  1. Tyreeke Pierre (Men’s Open Weight Grand Champion)
  2. Tahirah Abdul-Qadir (Women’s Open Weight Grand Champion)
  3. Tyson Wray (Junior Boys Open Weight Grand Champion)
  4. Alexi Jimenez (Older Cadet Girls & Junior Girls Open Weight Grand Champion)
  5. Mason Bumba (Older Cadet Boys Open Weight Grand Champion)
  6. El-Java Abdul-Qadir (Veteran’s Open Weight Grand Champion)
  7. Ibrahim Abdul-Qadir (Younger Cadet Boys Open Weight Grand Champion)

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