Sambo is a modern martial art, combat sport, and self-defense system developed in the Soviet Union and recognized as an official sport by the USSR All-Union Sports Committee in 1938. Sambo is an acronym for the Russian phrase Self-Defense Without Weapon. Sambo has its roots in Chinese Shuai Jiao, Japanese Judo, and traditional folk styles of wrestling. Two variations of Sambo are Sport Sambo and Combat Sambo, with Combat Sambo including weapons, usually a knife.
* Each Sport Sambo and Combat Sambo match is two rounds, usually five minutes per round.
* Sport Sambo involves throws, takedowns, ground and submission fighting.
* Combat Sambo involves realistic and efficient techniques including striking, throws, takedowns, submissions, chokes, weapon removal and defense against multiple attackers. For Combat Sambo, the first round is without weapons. The second round of Combat Sambo allows for use of a weapon, usually a knife.
* Scoring (For Sport Sambo and first round for Combat Sambo, without weapons) -- One, two or four points are given depending on the quality of a throw or takedown due to strikes. No points are scored for strikes in general, only if you score a takedown. Two points for a pin of 10 seconds and four points for a pin of 20 seconds. These pins can only be scored once in a match.
* Scoring (second round of Combat Sambo match, with weapons) -- Same as no weapon. One, two or four points are given depending on the quality of a throw or knockdown due to strikes. No points are scored for strikes in general, only if you score a knock down. Two points for a pin of 10 seconds and four points for a pin of 20 seconds, but an additional point is scored for a killing strike with the knife.
* A Sambo uniform includes a Sambofki (special Sambo shoes) and a red kurtka (special Sambo jacket) with a red belt, and red shorts plus a blue kurtka, belt and shorts. Jacket, shorts and belt must be matching colors (all red or all blue, not mixed).
Winning a Sambo fight -- A competitor can win a Sambo match in several ways.
* Total Victory -- (a "perfect throw" or submission hold) ends match immediately.
* Technical Superiority -- (12 point difference in score) ends match immediately.
* Point difference at end of match duration. If there has been no Total Victory or Technical Superiority, the sportsman with the most points at the end of the match wins - -- no minimum point score required.
* If the referee or doctor steps in to stop the fight.
* Tie matches are decided by a one-minute overtime period, or if there is no winner at the end of overtime, by majority decision of the officials.
Courtesy of Stephen Koepfer, President and Co-Founder of the American Sambo Association.