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Seals and Associations?

Discussion in 'The Sesh' started by AJPreciseKendama, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. AJPreciseKendama

    AJPreciseKendama n00b

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    So there are differentt seals and approved kendamas for certain play, for example the EKA or Europe Kendama Association that seals can be found on sunrises and I think a few other brands. And there is ofcourse JKA with ozora and other brands, (not really sure now with the recent shuffle with TK) but do you think a US seal or competition required association will ever come about or something along those lines?
     
    Jan 7, 2017
  2. bonerkid

    bonerkid Honed Member

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    It doesn't really seem necessary to me. I have not actually ever been to USA, let alone an american contest, but from what I've seen in videos, most stuff seems allowed. Paint jobs that helps tracking, super sticky paint like LOL clear, kusa silk or sweets cushion. I think spinners are allowed as well.

    Basically as long as the dama isn't completely off regarding size, I think anything is legal. Which makes a seal seem like a lot of unnecessary work.
     
    Jan 8, 2017
  3. AJPreciseKendama

    AJPreciseKendama n00b

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    Yeah that is what I was thinking. Almost anything is allowed at us competitions because if thelack of regulating which is a good thing in most cases. It brings more hype for certain custom setups people win with
     
    Jan 8, 2017
  4. bonerkid

    bonerkid Honed Member

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    Yeah, it's super cool that you can enter with any mix of ken, tama and string and potentially win a big contest with a personal kendama. And it's still very fair because the same quality of kendamas are available to most people for a fair price anyways.
     
    Jan 8, 2017
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  5. st0rmzy

    st0rmzy Member

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    I'm pretty sure the JKA's approval system ensures that all the damas are a standard size/shape, and a low price, so that kendama is accessible, american comps seem to differ, like you said, where pretty much anything goes, so a seal wouldn't really do much other than look nice and allow you to say USA Approved or whatever.
     
    Jan 8, 2017
  6. htimSxelA

    htimSxelA Moderator Staff Member

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    There have been numerous chats between the company owners and major players in the industry about this. I personally don't see the need, though I could see it having some benefits.

    Dama regulation wise, GLOKEN more or less defined the current standard (it's gotta fit in the box, and no weirdo add ons).

    Scene-building wise, I think just organic, viral online growth had obviously worked great. The EKA has been around a long time and has done some good things, but I think they've also pidgeon-holed themselves in a bit. The very regimented style that the older associations have just doesn't fit well with the current dama scene.
     
    Jan 8, 2017
  7. AJPreciseKendama

    AJPreciseKendama n00b

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    Yeah I see where your coming from, your thread about JKA is actually what made me start thinking about it lol so thanks!
     
    Jan 8, 2017
  8. htimSxelA

    htimSxelA Moderator Staff Member

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    I should probably add... I think an association would have benefits, in the way that it can create some external goals for players to aim for. When I started playing, I scoured the internet and used google translate to try to figure out how to self-test the JKA system. If there were an english-language version, I think it would get use. Some people work best when they have goals like that set for them!
     
    Jan 8, 2017
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  9. AJPreciseKendama

    AJPreciseKendama n00b

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    Amen man. I have based my list of tricks in learning off of the kUSA and learnkendama playlist. Both of you "groups" I guess do a fantastic job
     
    Jan 8, 2017
  10. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

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    FWIW there was a car racing series in the US called the International Race of Champions (IROC). It had all the racers compete in identically prepared cars with the intent that the race was about the driver's skill not the cars themselves.

    Rules regulating what kendama gets a JKA seal and rules regarding JKA competitions and level tests are a lot like that. They put the focus on the ability of the player and tend to try and minimize the impact of the gear.
     
    Jan 10, 2017
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  11. AJPreciseKendama

    AJPreciseKendama n00b

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    Yeah I see what your saying. It makes sense much like IROC or ROC now I guess. Put them with regulated gear to compare eachother to itand to eachother
     
    Jan 10, 2017
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  12. htimSxelA

    htimSxelA Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that a more strict gear regulation doesn't necessarily mean a more 'true' measure of each player's skill. It just means that the game of 'kendama' has been more narrowly defined (and thus the champion will be the 'best' at that more narrow definition of the game),

    All else equal, if any player can use any kendama, then I think it is still a fair test. This is assuming that someone doesn't create a 1-of-1 'super kendama', but I think that situation is unlikely.
     
    Jan 10, 2017
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  13. Ben Lowe

    Ben Lowe Slayer

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    For the record, if someone DOES create the 'super kendama,' I volunteer to test it and give feedback. Totally free of charge. ;):cool:
     
    Jan 10, 2017
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  14. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

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    Perhaps, but considering sponsored players probably have to play something from their sponsor, the chance that a competitor's "super kendama of the moment" would be unavailable to them in a competition is likely. It gets back to creating a level playing field. In some sports you'll often see teams with the most money backing and the best parts being really hard to beat for entry level guys without the cash and support. Ceteris paribus.

    There's nothing that says there can't be various rules and regs for different competitions or ones that focus on different styles or abilities. That happens in nearly all sports, folks look to make their events slightly different to draw a crowd. Highly technical skills and highly improvisational skills are not necessarily exclusive nor is one inherently better than the other; they're just different.
     
    Jan 10, 2017
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  15. htimSxelA

    htimSxelA Moderator Staff Member

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    True, though the monetary barriers in something like building a racing car are WAY higher than the price of a good kendama.
    The idea of a sponsored player not being able to play the 'best' kendama is interesting though... though trying to certify certain brands/types of kendamas creates some behind the scenes political conflicts of interest in most cases, I'm sure. In reality, it doesn't seem that many kendama brands put too much pressure on their players to play certain kendamas in competition, though I'm sure they would appreciate it!
     
    Jan 10, 2017
  16. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not sure that it would necessarily be all that political; list of specs, certification process, done. There are certified golf balls and clubs, baseballs and bats, skis, bicycles, tennis rackets, helmets, all sorts of things that one must use in the certifying organization's sanctioned events. I would imagine that the JKA functions very much like other organizing bodies at least in that respect.
     
    Jan 10, 2017
  17. htimSxelA

    htimSxelA Moderator Staff Member

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    Thats not quite the way the JKA works though, otherwise any company could make a kendama to their specs, and get JKA certified.

    GLOKEN's 'box' rule is closer to what you've described, its a pretty loose way to define specs, but it works. Any kendama that fits to spec... or in this case fits in the box, is okay to use.

    I remember when the EKA was trying to create a seal that could be put on kendamas, to make them okay to use in EKA events (EKO, british open, etc). Void was upset because the seals were going onto Sunrise kendamas that weren't acceptable by the EKA standards (more than one colour of stripe on a tama). So even with a system in place, there are lots of places for politics and error to come into play. What kendamas are allowed to be certified becomes a big deal.
     
    Jan 10, 2017
  18. azleonhart

    azleonhart Moderator Staff Member

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    I think the JKA regulations are too strict, that it hinders advancement to kendama.

    To quote Leia to Tarkin :
    "The more you tighten your grip, the more star systems will slip through your fingers."
     
    Jan 10, 2017
  19. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

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    Perhaps there's some vetting that is required as well. I'd be interested in finding out more. I noticed recently that some Sweets models were flying the JKA 40th anniversary sticker (IIRC those are acceptable for testing up to Jun Shodan (pre-Dan) level. Maybe someone from that crew could chime in on what it took to get them.

    The Gloken box rule is clever but doesn't address the stickiness of the paint that might be on the tama (or ken) and that leaves a fairly important variable out of the measurement. I wonder if someone makes a "stickymeter" that could compare finishes.

    I don't know of the EKA case but I guess I don't see the politics involved based on your description. If a certain type/style of kendama was approved for certification then the official seals were put on unapproved kendama then those kendama wouldn't be certified, seal or not. An analogy I can think of would be a car passes tech and is approved for a race. After the race there is a teardown and things are found that weren't originally cleared/OKed in the car. It would be disqualified since it was different that what was approved. I guess to me it's just a function of following the rules rather than politics but again I know only of the EKA situation from your comment.
     
    Jan 10, 2017
  20. azleonhart

    azleonhart Moderator Staff Member

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    @goenKendama, if i recall correctly (according to @MattSweets), at one of the past MKO events, finalists were only given the option to use natty kendamas.
    They slayed regardless.

    The fact being, the skill of the player is what wins competitions rather than the tack of the kendama.
    You can have a really tacky tama, but that does not guarantee victory in competitions.
    Gloken's box rule merely makes sure the player's ken size does not give them superior advantage over the rest.

    I honestly think that tacky tamas have played a major role in the advancement of kendama, something that is good to keep in consideration.
     
    Jan 10, 2017