I.      Introduction

This document covers the rules recognized by the Hellenic Pammachon Alliance to conduct Pankration competitions amongst youth practitioners under the age of 18.

It should be noted that Pankration training methodology is in the context of the Pammachon (Hellenic martial education) adult program.  The adult program includes lethal tactics and currently Pankration competition; which is full contact and includes the use of the rubber knife.  For the Pammachos (Pamachon practitioner) the Pankration format does not simply stand on its own, but is in the context of Hellenic martial art and way of life.  The youth Pankration format, while being "tapping contact" and not including the use of the rubber blade,  is no exception.

In the view of the Hellenic Pammachon Alliance, we strive to provide a safe and challenging format of competition (body, emotion and mind) for the youth.  This format is intended to enhance the young Pammachos' training  by providing the following:

    1. The psychological and physical challenge of competing against other youths of whom a Pammachos may never have even sparred with previously.

    2. Format the rules to penalize techniques that work in “other” sport formats, but are not suited to Hellenic martial art.

    3. The stress of competition to force emotional control AND an ethic to train ever more seriously.

    4. A sense of community in that all Pammachoi are participating in a sport that is an aspect of total Hellenic martial art and culture.

    5. A sense of community as the parents and trainers celebrate all participating Pammachoi.

These rules are intended to allow for further restrictions based on any particular regions  legal requirements.

II.      Competitors

 A. Qualifications 

  1. All competitors must be recognized as at least of rank youth Level 1 (Επίπεδο 1) in Pammachon (Πάμμαχον) by the Hellenic Pammachon Alliance.
  2. All competitors must have up to date affiliation with the Hellenic Pammachon Alliance.

B.    Age Divisions



Weight Classess


Bout Duration (minutes)



45, 50, 60, 70, 75,




60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 110, 120,




90, 100, 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, 160, 170, 180, 190, 200, 220, 270



*Note that competitor brackets are separated by gender at the age of 10.

*Weights are represented as maximum weight per class up to the next classes minimum.

*The Madison system may be utilized though segregated by age (G1, G2, G3) – Here brackets are setup where the lowest weight Pammachos is no more then %10 difference the weight of the heaviest.  This is commonly used in wrestling tournaments in the US.

   II.            Equipment

A.    Uniform

  1. The official uniform of the Hellenic Pammachon Alliance is the στολή (stolee). Click on the button below to view:


B.    Safety Gear

  1. Competitors must wear a mouthpiece.

  2. Male competitors must wear a groin protector.

  3. HPA approved headgear is required be worn by each competitor – This will always include chin protection

  4. HPA approved gloves are a required to be worn by each competitor – These will always have at least 1 inch of molded foam knuckle padding.

  5. HPA approved shin guards are required to be worn be each competitor

  6. Competitors must have surgical tape wrapped around the wrist 4 times preceding a bout .  They will not be able to intitiate a bout without it still being applied.

C.     Markers

  1. One competitor will wear a white terry cloth band OR tape around each shin pad and wrist of each glove.  The other competitor will wear a blue terry cloth band OR tape around each shin pad and wrist of each glove.

III.   Technique

A.    General

  1. All strikes must be applied with proper mechanics (where if there was follow through allowed, penetrating “power” could be applied) but with “tapping” contact.

  2. All strikes  above the collar bone and below the knee are prohibited.

  3. A Pammachos is “down” if 3 points are supported by the mat and/or the opponent (who is “down”).  These points include: head, back, shoulders, forearm, hand, knee and foot.

  4. All submissions must be applied with both Pammachoi “down”.

  5. The “starting position” is where the Pammachoi initiate the bout both in “stasi mahis” (στάση μάχης) .

  6. All submissions must be applied with control allowing the opponent time to tap out. 

  7. Applications of any technique, strike/takedown/throw/sweep/submission,  without injuring the opponent is the responsibility of the Pammachos applying said technique.

  8. Full clinch and half neck clinch to the neck for angling and control is legal.

  9. Lack of movement on the ground for 15 seconds or going out of bounds will always result in the competitors being restarted in the “starting position”.

  10. Restarts will be applied to enforce proper application of tactically sound technique (ie. in the context of Pammachon) – see section V 3, 4, 5.

  11. Any strike, takedown/throw/sweep or submission applied with malicious intent or danger to a competing Pammchos is prohibited.

  12. A Pammachos wins a bout with superior points or by submission ONLY.

  13. All jumping techniques are prohibited as they allow for lack of control and are tactically flawed (ie. in the context of Pammachon).

  14. If a Pammachos runs out of the competition area, the opposing Pammachos will be declared the victor.

  15. A “submission” is declared when a Pammachos taps on the mat or his/her opponent 3 times OR verbally indicates submission.

B.    Legal

1.                       Striking


  1. Strikes with the knuckles of the fist, knee, shin, ball of the foot and heel to specific areas are legal unless specifically listed in the “III.C. 3. Prohibited” section standing or on the ground.

  2. Only knees, to the body or  thighs,  initiated after a half/full neck clinch, body/waist lock is applied  are legal – This enforces control and keeps defensive knees to takedowns from being applied. These techniques typically land to the head.

2.                       Grappling

  1. Takedowns/throws/sweeps are legalother than specified in the “III.C.3. Prohibited” section.

  2. Neck clinch and Body/waist locks in conjunction with leg trips and foot sweeps are legal.

  3. Single and double leg takedowns are legal.

3.                       Submissions

  1. Chokes with both Pammachos “down” are legal.

  2. Submissions to the shoulder, elbow, knee and ankle with both Pammachoi “down” are legal  except as specified in “III.C.3. Prohibited”.

C.     Prohibited

1.                       Striking

  1. Striking with the head, elbow, forearm, and fingers is prohibited.

  2. Striking with any part of the hand other than the knuckles is prohibited.

  3. Strikes to the face, head, back (including spine and kidneys), knee joint,  below the knee, and the groin are prohibited.

  4. Knees, to the body or thighs,  initiated before a half/full neck clinch, body/waist lock is applied  are prohibited.

  5. Any strike applied without control is prohibited.

  6. Striking an opponent that is “down” by a standing opponent is prohibited (includes stomping)

  7. Striking an oppnent that is standing by a Pammachos on the ground is prohibited.

  8. Stomping the foot is prohibited.

2.                       Grappling


  1. Takedowns/throws/sweeps applied with malicious intent are prohibited.

  2. Foot sweeps with anything other than the arch of the foot (ie. shin) are prohibited.

  3. Any takedown/throw/sweep that is not applied with the intended safe delivery of the opponent to the mat is prohibited.

  4. Takedowns/throws/sweeps involving an arm lock around an opponent’s head that don’t  include one of the opponent’s arms in the hold are prohibited.

  5. Spiking the opponent to the floor on the head or neck is prohibited.

  6. Flying takedowns are prohibited.

  7. Applied tension to the neck to escape a hold (includes guard) is prohibited.

3.                       Submissions

  1. Application of any tension to the neck in pursuit of a submission (ie. neck crank, etc) is strictly prohibited.

  2. Small joing manipulation is prohibited.

  3. Any twisting submission applied to the knee or ankle is prohibited.

  4. Any application of tension to the spine in pursuit of a submission is prohibited.

  5. Any submission attempt that is not applied with control and allowing time for the opponent to tap out is prohibited.

  6. Guillotine chokes are prohibited.

4.                       Miscellaneous

  1. Gouging of any type is strictly prohibited (eyes, neck, any orifice, etc)

  2. Clawing, twisting and pinching any part of the body is prohibited.

  3. Placing a finger in the mouth of an opponent is prohibited.

  4. Biting is prohibited.

  5. Spitting is prohibited.

  6. Grabbing an opponent’s shorts, gloves is prohibited.

  7. Unsportsmanlike behavior of any kind including not adhering to the referees commands, delivering technique with malicious intent, swearing, etc is prohibited.

  8. Tackling is prohibited.

  9. Foul language is prohibited.

5.                       Additional Prohibited By Age


G1: 7, 8, 9           - choking,  leg submissions, knee strikes

G2: 10,11,12,13 -  knee strikes

G3: 14,15,16,17  -

IV.   Scoring

A.    Upgright Striking

    1. 2 pts-  will be awarded for a 2-3 strike combination with proper mechanics that is not blocked or parried

    2. 1 pt– Will be awarded to a Pammachos that delivers a strike (singular or part of a combo) with proper mechanics and is not blocked or parried

    3. 0 pt – Strikes that collide with strikes of the opposing Pammachos

    4. 0 pt – Strikes in excess of 3 in combination

B.    Takedowns/Throws/Sweeps

1. 3 pts - Points will be awarded if a Pammachos applies a clean takedown/throw/sweep and places himself/herself in control on top of the opponent (see 2. below). 

      a. However, if the Pammachos closed the distance (ie. shoot) for an immediate takedown/sweep/throw, no points will be awarded unless a mechanically sound strike or fake of a strike was initiated.

2. 0 pts– Points will NOT be awarded if on closing the gap to apply a takedown, a Pammachos heavily brushes a knee against the mat– In a real situation, it is tactically flawed to hit the ground at high velocity with such a sheering motion against the knee.

C.     Ground Control


    1. 0 pts– Pammachos will not be awarded points for control positions as strikes can be accumulated when applied from top position with proper mechanics to the body.

D.    Ground Striking

  1. 1 pt– A Pammachos will be awarded 1 point with each ground strike from a controlling top position to a legal target on the torso while applying proper mechanics and timing.

  2. 1 pt– A Pammachos will be awarded 1 point (and only up to 3) for well executed strikes to the torso from within an opponent’s guard to a legal target on the torso, while applying proper mechanics and timing, unless the position is changed (ie. Pammachos moves out of guard, the bottom Pammachos applying guard discontinues it, etc)

  3. 0 pt – A Pammachos will not be awarded a point from top control or rear control (ie. on top with legs wrapped around opponent’s torso) as striking to the head is not allowed and proper leverage cannot applied to effectively strike other legal targets.  (Note that  striking to the cranium with multiple strikes on the ground is considered tactically flawed.

E.     Submissions

  1. 1 pt- Pammachos will be awarded a point for a dedicated attempt to a submission (see 2. Below).

  2. 0 pts- If a Pammachos gives up a superior position (ie. from the top) to apply a submission (ie. classic armbar) he/she will not be awarded the point for the attempt.

  3. 0 pts- If a Pammachos attempts to apply a submission but moves into position and, due to proximity to the opponent’s  mouth or a lift (ie. resulting from a triangle attempt) by the opponent ,  a restart is issued by the referee, he/she will not be awarded the point for the attempt.

V.   Restarts

  1. If there is lack of action on the ground for 15 seconds, competitors will be restarted in “starting position”.

  2. If both Pammachoiare not touching and one goes fully out of bounds, they will be placed back in the “starting position”.

  3. If both Pammachoi are not touching and one goes fully out of bounds, they will be placed back in the “starting position”.

  4. If a Pammachos on the bottom is  applying a triangle and his/or her opponent raises the competitor 4 inches off the ground, the competitors will be placed back in “starting postion”. – The competitor lifting MUST deliver the triangle-applying competitor to the ground safely after the referee calls “pafsi

    1. This encourages the competitor to disengage from the triangle application and engage in a takedown or other technique.  It also builds in and accounts for the fact that the triangle-applying competitor would be slammed to a hard surface in a combative situation.

  5. If while “down” the Pammachos on top finds his/her chest, groin or side of the neck covering the mouth area of the other competitor’s headgear, the Pammachoi will be placed back in “starting position”.

    1. This encourages the opponent on top (ie. the one in control) to be aware of the mouth of his/her opponent and will empower them not be bitten in a real situation when in a superior position utilizing gravity.

VI.   Foul Out

A Pammachos will “foul out”, and the opposing Pammachos is declared the winner, when the referee has declared a total of 3 fouls.  At any time, the referee may declare “foul out” for a malicious application of technique.

VII.   Time Keeping

Ring time will be kept by a timekeeper.  When the referee declares “pafsi” time will be stopped.  When the referee declares “enarxi” the time will be started.  When time runs out, the timekeepr will shout “pafsi”.

VIII.   Competition Area

The competition area will be defined by a square 32 foot per side.  There will be a buffer of at least 2 meters from the edge.   The mat shall be composed of  a 1.5 inch Dollamur brand mat.

IX.   Referee

The referee will use the following three commands:




English Definition



“stop”    - used in sport



“ready”  - used in sport



“start”  - used in sport


      1. At the start of a bout, the referee with do the following:

        1. The Pammachos will be directed to their respective side of the inner circle.

        2. The referee will ask “eteemee?” to each Pammachos.

        3. When both note the affirmative, he will state “enarksee” to signal the start to action.

      2. The referee will call “pafsi” for any rule infraction and explain to the judges the infraction.  Action as described in 1.  Above will then be commenced.

      3. If a competitor has 3 fouls or commits a foul that in the referee’s discretion is grounds for elimination, he will call “pavsi”.  Pammachos will be guided to the inner ring and the hand of the non-offending Pammachos will be raised signalling that he/she is the victor.

      4. If the timekeeper calls “pavsi” the referee will guide the Pammachoi to their respective side of the inner circle.  When the judges declare the winner, the referee will raise the hand of the victor.

X.   Judges

If a winner is not declared by submission, the judges will declare a victor by points.

There will be three judges per match set at a table on one side of the competition area.  Each will tally points according the the rules in this document.  At the end of the bout, each judge will count the points per competitor.  If one Pammachos has more points, a victor will recorded.  If points are tied, a judge must declare a winner based on “ring generalship”.

Ring generalship” will be awarded to the Pammachos that showed more awareness in movement in regards to the boundaries of the competition area.

The center judge will declare the winner after speaking with the other two judges and recording the victor declared by each of the other two judges.  The center judge will then declare the Pammachos declared the victor by 2 or 3 of the judges as the “winner” by pointing to him or her.

XI.   Opening and Closing Ceremony

The hosting promoters must conduct a performance of a recognized Pyrrichios at the opening of the tournament and the closing of the tournament.  This may be performed by students, or adults (including a Hellenic dance group from the local Hellenic community) in official HPA uniform OR traditional cultural dress relevant to the Pyrrichios performed.