Sumo Wrestling Rules and Regulations


This contest pits your creation against another robot in a field of combat where brute strength and cat-like reflexes combine to create the ultimate battle! The challenge is to create a robot whose sole purpose is to push, throw, flip, drag, or otherwise move your opponent out of a 1.5m diameter circular ring within three minutes.

The Ring

Robot SUMO wrestling takes place in a level circular ring exactly 1.5m in diameter with a white 5cm border along the ring's periphery. The surface of the ring is black rubber and sits 5cm above ground level. To aid sensor detection of the white border, the ground around the ring will also be black.

There are also two parallel starting lines, which are 2cm thick, 10cm wide and coloured brown. These "Shikiri" lines are 80cm apart.

The Play

The robots are placed behind the Shikiri lines. When both contestants are ready, the ring judge will signal the start of the three minute round at which time the robots may begin moving. The start signal will be a modulated IR beam (as emitted by a VCR or TV remote).

The robots will proceed in combat until one unit is disabled or removed from the ring. If a bout is won before the 3 minute round is up, the clock will be stopped and the robots replaced in their starting position for a second bout. There may be up to three bouts in a three minute round, with the winner being the robot which wins two out of three bouts. In the event of a tie, the judges will be asked to decide which robot exhibited the best effort and award the round to that robot.

A robot is considered to be removed from the ring when any of its wheels or legs fall off the edge. A robot whose body hangs over the edge is not considered 'off' until it physically touches the ground. Judgment of the ring officials is final.

Should one robot become disabled ( flipped on it's back or side, for instance ) and is unable to move, the ring officials will award that bout to the remaining robot and a new bout will begin if time permits.

If both robots become unable to continue because of entanglement or deadlock lasting beyond 30 seconds, then the clock will be stopped and the robots will be re-started from the starting position. If one robot stops its movement for 30 seconds, it shall be considered not having the will to fight and the opponent shall be awarded the bout.

At the end of each round, the contestants are responsible for making sure the ring is clean and ready for the next round to the satisfaction of the judges, or the contestant which produced the mess may be disqualified. This includes all debris, fluids, or marks remaining on the ring.

The Robots

The robots must fit within a 30cm by 30cm by 30cm cube at all times during the contest. The robots must weigh 3kgs or less.

Robots must be capable of some form of movement across the ring surface...

The robots are not allowed to dismember themselves or leave parts, oil, or other substances on the ground. They may not mark their opponent deliberately (eg for purposes of detectability).

The robots must not contain any combustible, corrosive, or otherwise dangerous materials for safety reasons. No explosive compression or decompression, either internal or external is permitted. There is a risk of compressed containers rupturing and creating shrapnel. Any robot whose strategy or operation is considered too dangerous will be disqualified by the officials.

Intentional damage or interfering with the opponent's operation is not allowed. Good will and friendship between competitors may evaporate if one opponent uses lightening bolts to destroy the electronics of a competitor.

The robots are not allowed to have offensive slogans or logos painted on them, nor can they emit voice recordings of a similar nature.

If you have any questions concerning your robots eligibility, please feel free to contact the contest organizers and they will be happy to inform you if the robot is legal or not!

Questions, Comments, and Quirks

Robot competitions such as the Australian Robotics Competitions are appearing all across the world, each with its own set of unique contests, however SUMO robotic wrestling seems to be becoming a common standard as it is now adopted by the B.E.A.M. Olympics, Seattle robotics society, San Francisco robotic games, Western Canadian Robot Society, International Robotic Games, and many others. After competing at this years contest, why not take your robot on a world tour??

Each event will be judged on the number of knock-outs AND the amount of time you can stay in the ring with your opponent. (Even if you never score a knock-out, you will receive points for how long your robot managed to stay in combat!)

Originally created in Japan by Dr. Mato Hattori
Rules documented by Craig Maynard
Local modifications made by Gordon Wyeth

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