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The Black Belt Magazine World Sport Karate Rankings

Updated: Nov 8, 2023

Black Belt Magazine Rankings update
Black Belt Magazine Rankings update

Updated July 8, 2023

This Black Belt Magazine Rankings update comes with a variety of significant changes. New ISKA world champions have been crowned at the U.S. Open’s Night of Champions. Only the divisions that appeared on stage were eligible for a champion to be named. Additionally, in an attempt to give the rankings a fresh reset, all competitors must have competed at the U.S. Open or Battle of Atlanta to hold a ranking. Competitors who were inactive at these two major events have been excluded.

There are also new divisions to announce in the rankings. In the interest of equality, the women’s point sparring has been divided into “divisional” and “open weight” to differentiate the athletes who are the top performers in each of those categories. The Senior Women’s Forms and Weapons divisions have also now been separated into two separate rankings.

The final change to mention is arguably the most significant of them all. The NASKA musical division presently allows both traditional and open forms. This is inconsistent with Black Belt Magazine’s goal to highlight the top traditionalists and open martial artists among their peers and not compare them to one another.

This is also an opportunity to remind our readers that although NASKA events carry the most weight in our rankings due to the depth of talent, the BBM rankings are not bound to the same divisions as defined by NASKA because they seek to represent athletes across all leagues. The new naming convention of our rankings divides “traditional” and “open” forms and weapons divisions.

“Open” refers to modern forms that incorporate tricks and acrobatics consistent with what is seen in NASKA creative and extreme divisions. Competitors who perform well in the musical divisions with traditional forms that do not feature acrobatics will be considered part of the traditional rankings. Essentially, a competitor’s ranking will be based on the type of form they do, not the particular division they compete in for a given league.

As always, remember that these karate rankings, aside from the featured champions, are ultimately a matter of opinion after the committee’s deliberation. Objective measures like outcome of grand championships and head-to-head matchups are valuable, but this system is subjective by nature and hopes to highlight some of the top athletes in competitive martial arts.

The reigning ISKA World Champions are featured at the top of the rankings, ordered by number of titles this year and then alphabetically. Continue reading past the featured champions to view the active rankings. Special thanks to Lindsey Little Photography for the images used to create the champion graphics. Please click here to visit her Facebook page to see more of her work or contact her for business inquiries.

ISKA U.S. Open World Champions Photo Gallery

Active World Black Belt Rankings Men's Open Weapons

  1. Esteban Tremblay

  2. Ben Jones

  3. Dawson Holt

  4. Rashad Eugene

  5. Sen Gao

Men's Traditional Weapons

  1. Alec Jahanvash

  2. Esteban Tremblay

  3. Dawson Holt

  4. Dominic Lancaster

  5. Ben Jones

Women's Open Weapons

  1. Haley Glass

  2. Sara Campbell

  3. Andrea Guzman

  4. Francesca Dellostrologo

  5. Eden Williams

Women's Traditional Weapons

  1. Haley Glass

  2. Katelyn McMillan

  3. Amber Rutherford

  4. Rose Rheaume

  5. Sara Campbell

Men's Open Forms

  1. Esteban Tremblay

  2. Salef Celiz

  3. Sen Gao

  4. Ben Jones

  5. Rashad Eugene

Men's Traditional Forms

  1. Mason Stowell

  2. Joey Castro

  3. Diego Rodriguez Florez

  4. Jeff Doss

  5. William Smart

Women's Open Forms

  1. Haley Glass

  2. Andrea Guzman

  3. Katelyn McMillan

  4. Julia Guanzon

  5. Kaitlyn Vong

Women's Traditional Forms

  1. Gabrielle Rudolph

  2. Amber Rutherford

  3. Katelyn McMillan

  4. Kaitlyn Vong

  5. Rose Rheaume

Men's Lightweight Sparring

  1. Bailey Murphy

  2. Tyson Wray

  3. Enrique Letona

  4. Kevin Walker

  5. Tyreeke Saint

Men's Heavyweight Sparring

  1. Kristhian Rivas

  2. Devon Hopper

  3. Alex Mancillas

  4. Brandon Ballou

  5. Hector Solory

Men's Open Weight Sparring

  1. Bailey Murphy

  2. Tyreeke Saint & Devon Hopper (TIE)

  3. Jarvis Miller

  4. John Curatolo

Women's Divisional Sparring

  1. Katarina Herman

  2. Corina Balan

  3. Jimena Janeiro

  4. Alexi Jimenez

  5. Maeve McColgan

Women's Open Weight Sparring

  1. Jasmine Peterson

  2. Jimena Janeiro

  3. Katarina Herman

  4. Alexi Jimenez

  5. Diana Hernandez

Men's Team Sparring

  1. Team Straight Up

  2. Top Ten Team USA

  3. Team Legend

  4. Team Dojo Elite

  5. Team DMND G3

Senior Men's Forms

  1. Kevin Kowalczik

  2. Samuel Diaz III

  3. Eric Tremblay

  4. Andrew Cabilan

  5. Jeff Doss

Senior Men's Weapons

  1. Samuel Diaz III

  2. Eric Tremblay

  3. Tim Conkel

  4. Kevin Kowalczik

  5. Jeff Doss

Senior Women's Forms

  1. Melanie Strauss

  2. Ana Lucia Conde

  3. Tara Lynn

  4. Roxanne Doyon

  5. Mouse Millner

Senior Women's Weapons

  1. Amy Williams

  2. Melanie Strauss

  3. Ashley Sacrey

  4. Alex Stagi

  5. Laura Leclerc

Senior Men's Sparring

  1. Brayan Rodriguez

  2. Santiago Aversso

  3. Julio Lugo

  4. Yoskar Gamez

  5. Tray Lazenby

Senior Women's Sparring

  1. Mouse Millner

  2. Ashley Floyd

  3. Samantha Miller

  4. Valeria Diaz

  5. Samantha Guerra

Synchronized Weapons

  1. Team Paul Mitchell (Jones/Tremblay)

  2. Team Raptor (Murray-Ohmat/Gale)

  3. Team Paul Mitchell (Glass/Mancillas)

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Synchronized Forms

  1. Team Infinity (DG & Pia Rodriguez Florez

  2. Team AKA (OBrien/Troia)

  3. Team Paul Mitchell (Holt/Jones)

Team Demonstration

  1. Team Freestyle

  2. Team Competitive Edge

  3. Team Infinity

  4. Florida Sport Martial Arts Academy

  5. Team Leclerc

Junior Boys' Open Weapons

  1. Phillip Brumme

  2. Mason Bumba

  3. Jackson Hensley

  4. Nolan Grunwald

  5. Wassim Dridi

Junior Boys' Traditional Weapons

  1. Noah Sansait

  2. Nolan Grunwald

  3. Wassim Dridi

  4. Sterling Keefe

  5. Austin Hladek

Junior Girls' Open Weapons

  1. Averi Presley

  2. Maria Routel Ferguson

  3. Samantha Mitling

  4. Kodi Molina

  5. Isabella Nicoli

Junior Girls' Traditional Weapons

  1. Sofia Rodriguez Florez

  2. Kodi Molina

  3. Averi Presley

  4. Isabella Nicoli

  5. Maria Routel Ferguson

Junior Boys' Open Forms

  1. Phillip Brumme

  2. Joe Troia

  3. Colin OBrien

  4. Wassim Dridi

  5. Preston Easley

Junior Boys' Traditional Forms

  1. Matthew Gruitia

  2. Cheeks Elizondo

  3. Luca Ricotti

  4. Noah Sansait

  5. Sterling Keefe

Junior Girls' Open Forms

  1. Alyss Groce

  2. Averi Presley

  3. Isabella Nicoli

  4. Neve Harvey

  5. Lilli McGuire

Junior Girls' Traditional Forms

  1. Sofia Rodriguez Florez

  2. Logan Goodman

  3. Isabella Nicoli

  4. Quinlynn Brooks

  5. Maria Routel Ferguson

Junior Boys' Sparring - Featured Competitors

  • 10-11 Grand Champion: Malachi Randalle

  • 12-13 Grand Champion: Cesar Aguilar

  • 14-15 Grand Champion: Jayson Perez

  • 16-17 Grand Champion: Diego Gomez

  • 11 & Under Open Weight: Malachi Randalle

  • 12-14 Open Weight: Hudson Stehle

  • 15-17 Open Weight: Diego Gomez

Junior Girls' Sparring - Featured Competitors

  • 10-11 Grand Champion: Aria Martin

  • 12-13 Grand Champion: Nora Hanson

  • 14-15 Grand Champion: Sandrine Audy

  • 16-17 Grand Champion: Vicky Auclair

  • 11 & Under Open Weight: Aria Martin

  • 12-14 Open Weight: Sandrine Audy

  • 15-17 Open Weight: Sofia Rodriguez Florez

Youth Boys' Open Weapons

  1. Judah Sagawa

  2. Michael Molina

  3. Gavin Dollarhite

  4. Hugo Tristan Kurumella

  5. Zeke Gomez

Youth Boys' Traditional Weapons

  1. Judah Sagawa

  2. Michael Molina

  3. Adomas Rackauskas

  4. Gavin Dollarhite

  5. Kaiden Camacho

Youth Girls' Open Weapons

  1. Savannah Agosto

  2. Olivia Cano

  3. Riley Claire Carlisle

  4. Camille Trippodo

  5. Ashley Lopez

Youth Girls' Traditional Weapons

  1. Adelynn Lau

  2. Madalynn Wiersma

  3. Amanda Duarte

  4. Abby Loreman

  5. Demi Rodriguez

Youth Boys' Open Forms

  1. Judah Sagawa

  2. Zeke Gomez

  3. Jett Kowalczik

  4. Michael Molina

  5. Oscar Pecci

Youth Boys' Traditional Forms

  1. Adomas Rackauskas

  2. Henry Hawkinson

  3. Angel Perez

  4. Kaiden Camacho

  5. Malachi Randalle

Youth Girls' Open Forms

  1. Savannah Agosto

  2. Madalynn Wiersma

  3. Riley Claire Carlisle

  4. Amanda Duarte

  5. Piper Miller

Youth Girls' Traditional Forms

  1. Amanda Duarte

  2. Riley Claire Carlisle

  3. Adelynn Lau

  4. Savannah Agosto

  5. Stephania Lopez

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