Amateur combative sports
Learn about safe and legal participation in amateur combative sports contests.
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In 2017, the Ontario government clarified the legal status of amateur combative sport through Order in Council 1087/2017.
This means that contests are legal in 11 amateur combative sports if they are held with the permission of a government-recognized Provincial Sport Organization (PSO).
Contests in sports that are not sanctioned by a provincially recognized PSO are deemed illegal.
Safe and legal amateur combative sport contests
Ontario supports safe participation in amateur combative sports.
About Provincial Sport Organizations
A PSO is a not-for-profit organization recognized by the ministry as the governing body of a particular amateur sport in Ontario. A PSO must be recognized in accordance with the provincial Sport Recognition Policy.
The primary function of a PSO is to develop athletes, coaches and officials. Currently, there are 10 PSOs recognized by the government in Ontario for combative sports.
List of designated sports and events
Browse a list of designated amateur combative sports, including:
- their specific Provincial Sport Organization
- links to their sanctioned event listings
|Designated amateur combative sport||Provincial Sport Organization||Event listings|
|Boxing||Boxing Ontario||Find boxing events|
|Grappling||Ontario Grappling Association||Find grappling events|
|Jiu-Jitsu||Ontario Jiu-Jitsu Association||Find jiu-jitsu events|
|Judo||Judo Ontario||Find judo events|
|Karate||Karate Ontario Inc.||Find karate events|
|Kickboxing||Kickboxing Ontario||Find kickboxing events|
|Muay Thai||Muay Thai Ontario||Find Muay Thai events|
|Pankration||Ontario Grappling Association||Find prankration events|
|Taekwondo||Taekwondo Ontario||Find taekwondo events|
|Wrestling||Ontario Amateur Wrestling Association||Find wrestling events|
|Wushu||Wushu Ontario||Find wushu events|
Definition of a contest
When sanctioning contests, PSOs must adhere to:
- the definition of a contest
- all requirements as detailed in the Sport Recognition Policy
If a contest meets the definition of a prize fight, it must be sanctioned by the recognized PSO.
As per the Canadian Criminal Code section 83 (2), "In this section, prize fight means an encounter or fight with fists, hands or feet between two persons who have met for that purpose by previous arrangement made by or for them."
Special note on wrestling
In the case of wrestling, amateur contests may also be held by a school or university with the permission of a school, or university athletic association or its affiliate, and would adhere to the full competition requirements mandated under the Ontario Amateur Wrestling Association.
Host a combative sport contest
To host a contest in an exempt amateur combative sport, the associated recognized PSO must sanction the contest.
The government has authorized ten PSOs as the recognized sport bodies to sanction contests.
A contest not authorized by a recognized PSO in an exempt amateur combative sport could be deemed illegal and subject to prosecution.
Compete in a combative sport
Before you participate in an amateur combative sport contest, make sure you’re informed about the health and safety practices at the training facilities or tournament venues.
This includes obtaining information about first aid response and insurance policies that disclose:
- how injuries are handled
- the responsibilities of tournament or practice facility owners
To inform your decisions about participating in an amateur combative sport, learn more about health and safety standards.
Enforcement of the Canadian Criminal Code is handled by provincial or municipal police services.
For more information, email us email@example.com or contact your Provincial Sport Organization.