Combative Sports Administrative Rules

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COMBATIVE SPORTS
Administrative Rules of the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
16 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 61
Effective January 1, 2014

TABLE OF CONTENTS

61.1. Authority.
61.10. Definitions.
61.20. General Licensing Requirements.
61.21. Licensing Requirements--Referees.
61.22. Licensing Requirements--Judges.
61.23. General Prohibitions.
61.24. Practice Requirements--General
61.30. Responsibilities and Authority of the Executive Director.
61.40. Responsibilities of the Promoter.
61.41. Responsibilities of the Referee.
61.42. Responsibilities of Judges.
61.43. Responsibilities of Seconds.
61.44. Responsibilities of Managers.
61.45. Responsibilities of Timekeepers.
61.46. Responsibilities of Ringside Physicians.
61.47. Responsibilities of Contestants.
61.48. Responsibilities of Amateur Combative Sports Associations.
61.49. Certain Amateur Events.
61.80. Fees.
61.91. Sanctions and Penalties.
61.105. Weight Categories and Weigh-in--Boxing and Kickboxing.
61.106. Ring and Glove Requirements--Boxing and Kickboxing Contests.
61.107. Boxing.
61.108. Kickboxing.
61.110. Martial Arts.
61.111. Mixed Martial Arts.
61.112. Muay Thai Fighting.
61.120. Medical Advisory Committee.

61.1. Authority. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

This chapter is promulgated under the authority of Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 2052 and Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 51.

61.10. Definitions. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

The following words and terms have the following meanings:

(1) Badge--A department-issued credential provided to timekeepers, judges, referees and ringside physicians who officiate at combative sports events.

(2) Chief second--The second designated by the contestant as the primary advisor or assistant to the contestant.

(3) Code--The Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 2052, "Combative Sports".

(4) Contestant--Any participant, including a professional combative sports contestant, who competes in a combative sport event regulated by the Code.

(5) Deadwood--The numerical difference between tickets printed and tickets used.

(6) Federal Identification Card--A nationally recognized identification card issued by the National Boxing Registry or the National Mixed Martial Arts Registry required for competition in a combative sport event.

(7) Full Contact--Contact made while intentionally striking a blow with any part of the body to an opponent when the contact has the potential to temporarily disable or to injure an opponent.

(8) Knock-down--A knock-down occurs when any part of a contestant’s body, other than his feet, contacts the floor of the ring or fighting area as a result of a blow struck to the contestant by an opponent.

(9) License or Registration--A document issued by the executive director permitting a person to participate at an event or perform a function regulated by the Code.

(10)  Manager--A person who, under contract, agreement, or other arrangement with a contestant undertakes to directly or indirectly, control, or administer a professional combative sports contestant’s affairs.

(11)  Matchmaker--One who arranges matches for professional combative sports contestants.

(12)  Person--Any natural person, corporation, partnership, association or other similar entity.

(13)  Purse--The financial guarantee or any other remuneration promised to contestants for participating in an event and includes guarantees for cable pay per view, radio, television or motion picture rights.

(14)  Ring Officials--Referees, judges, ringside physicians and timekeepers.

(15)  Ringside Physician--An individual who has an unrestricted and unlimited license to practice medicine in this state and who by agreement, is assigned as the physician for a combative sports event.

(16)  Second--A person who provides assistance or advice to a contestant during a contest.

(17)  Technical Zone--A restricted access alcoholic beverage free area located between the ringside and a department-approved barrier.

(18)  Timekeeper--A person who is the official timer of the length of rounds/heats and the intervals between rounds/heats and counts when a contestant is down.

61.20. General Licensing Requirements. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378, amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective June 17, 2013, 38 TexReg 3781; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) Professional combative sports contestants, promoters, referees, judges, seconds, matchmakers, managers, and event coordinators who officiate or participate in a regulated professional event authorized by the Code must be licensed or registered by the executive director. Referees who officiate at regulated amateur events must also be licensed or registered by the executive director.

(b) Amateur combative sports associations must be registered by the executive director.

(c) If a licensee or registrant, other than a contestant or a second, changes his address of record, the licensee or registrant shall inform the executive director in writing of the change within 30 days of the change.

(d) Each applicant must submit a completed application or renewal form, a contestant consent form for drug testing as required by the department, and pay the appropriate fees.

(e) All licensing requirements for contestants should be completed at least 72 hours before an event.

61.21. Licensing Requirements--Referees. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007; 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

(a) To qualify for a new license as a referee, an applicant must:

(1) be at least 21 years of age;

(2) provide information sufficient for the department to verify that the applicant has not been convicted of an offense that directly relates to the duties and responsibilities of a referee;

(3) demonstrate the ability to perform the functions of a referee by:

(A) having completed a training program provided by, or approved by the executive director, that consists of classroom training and an internship program; or,

(B) meeting one or more of the following:

(i) having at least three years active experience as a referee in the combative sport in which he seeks endorsement by having officiated in at least ten combative sporting events per year;

(ii) being currently licensed and in good standing as a referee in a state that the executive director has determined has licensing requirements that are equivalent to Texas’ requirements; or

(iii) having formerly held a Texas referee’s license that lapsed in good standing.

(b) These requirements may be waived by the executive director for any applicant who is licensed and in good standing as a referee with any department-approved sanctioning body such as the World Boxing Council, World Boxing Association, International Boxing Federation, or World Boxing Organization.

(c) Referee licenses will be endorsed showing each class of bouts in which they may officiate with one or more of the following legends:

(1) B (Boxing); and

(2) M (Mixed martial arts and Kickboxing.)

(d) An endorsement may be obtained by completion of classroom training and an internship program provided or approved by the executive director for that class of endorsement.

(e) Persons renewing licenses, or obtaining new licenses on the basis of holding a license from another state or formerly having held a Texas license, may obtain one or more endorsements by providing proof acceptable to the executive director of previous experience refereeing contests in the class of endorsement(s) sought.

(f) Referees must have an endorsement for a class in order to referee events in that class.

61.22. Licensing Requirements--Judges. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

(a) To qualify for a new license as a judge, an applicant must:

(1) be at least 21 years of age;

(2) provide information sufficient for the department to verify that the applicant has not been convicted of an offense that directly relates to the duties and responsibilities of a judge;

(3) demonstrate the ability to perform the functions of a judge by:

(A) having observed and completed score cards for all contests in at least five events while under the supervision of the department and scoring the contests in keeping with standards established by the executive director; or,

(B) meeting one or more of the following:

(i) having at least three years active experience as a judge and/or referee by having officiated in at least ten combative sporting events per year;

(ii) being currently licensed and in good standing as a judge in a state that the executive director has determined has licensing requirements that are equivalent to Texas’ requirements; or

(iii) having formerly held a Texas judge’s license that lapsed in good standing.

(b) These requirements may be waived by the executive director for any applicant who is licensed and in good standing as a judge with any department-approved sanctioning body such as the World Boxing Council, World Boxing Association, International Boxing Federation, or World Boxing Organization.

(c) To obtain or renew a license, a judge must provide test results showing visual acuity in each eye of at least 20/40 corrected. The test must have been performed by a licensed Optometrist or licensed Ophthalmologist no more than three years before the application for licensure or license renewal is filed.

61.23. General Prohibitions. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) Judges, Timekeepers, Matchmakers, Referees and Ringside Physicians may not have a direct or indirect financial interest in any contestant.

(b) Contestants and ring officials licensed under the Code may not participate in an illegal event.

(c) Persons under the age of 17 will not be issued a license.  Minors age 17 but not yet 18 may be issued a contestant’s license with a notarized written consent from a parent or guardian. A person age 36 or older applying for a contestant’s license shall also submit a report of favorable physical testing conducted within the previous twelve months including but not limited to an EEG (electroencephalography), and an EKG (electrocardiogram). The applicant may request an administrative hearing if the executive director determines the physical testing results are not favorable in any way and fails to issue a license for that reason.

(d) A matchmaker may not act as, and may not be licensed as; a contestant, ring official or second.

(e) A promoter may not act as, and may not be a timekeeper or licensed as a referee or judge. A promoter may be licensed as a manager and as a second. A promoter may be licensed as a contestant unless prohibited by Federal law.

(f) A promoter shall not permit his promoter’s license to be used by another person.

(g) Licensed promoters may engage in promotions with other licensed promoters so long as each promoter holds a valid unexpired license.

(h) No person shall be allowed to participate in an event performing a function for which a license is required, unless the person has proof of identification and a current license.  Acceptable proof of identification includes driver’s licenses, passport, state issued identification cards, federal identification cards, or any other identification required by the executive director.

(i) A contestant may not act as, and may not be licensed as a judge.

(j) A person who is an officer or director of a Ranking Organization may not act as, and may not be licensed as a judge.

61.24. Practice Requirements--General. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481)

(a) All licensees and registrants shall behave in a professional manner and at all times pertinent to the event, exhibit the highest degree of sportsmanlike conduct.

(b) All licensees and registrants shall carry out the terms and conditions of contracts concerning combative sports events regulated by this state to which they are parties.

(c) From the weigh-in until an event’s conclusion, a licensee, upon request, shall present to department personnel his license. Failure to do so may result in the licensee being denied access to the event other than as a ticket holder.

61.30. Responsibilities and Authority of the Executive Director. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective March 1, 2013, 38 TexReg 1142; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) The executive director, or his designee, has complete authority over all phases of an event, including, but not limited to the weigh-in, matching of contestants, entrance to the forum, access to the technical zone, audit of ticket sales, payment of purses and changing of a rendered decision in accordance with subsection (n).

(b) For all professional events the executive director, or his designee, will assign the timekeepers, referees, ringside physicians and judges.

(c) In title and championship bouts the executive director, or his designee, will consult with the sponsoring or sanctioning bodies on the assignment of judges and referees. The executive director, or his designee, will make assignments for such bouts.

(d) The executive director or his designee, will evaluate an applicant's or licensee's fitness for licensure as a contestant based on the totality of his or her physical condition, taking into account the following indicators:

(1) under the age of 18;

(2) actual age;

(3) number of bouts;

(4) number of rounds fought;

(5) number of identified injuries;

(6) number of knockouts and technical knockouts suffered within the last 12 months, specifically those where the contestant lost consciousness;

(7) periods of inactivity in excess of 12 calendar months;

(8) ring record for the past twenty-four months;

(9) weight, including fluctuations in weight; and

(10)  any health or mental condition that may contribute to the lack of ability to perform.

(e) The executive director may request medical tests to prove gender of a contestant.

(f) The executive director, or his designee, may recognize and enforce disciplinary sanctions, disqualification, or medical suspensions imposed by other combative sport authorities. If the executive director, or his designee, proposes to deny licensure based on action of another jurisdiction, the applicant has a right to an opportunity for a hearing.

(g) Selection and Assignment of Ring Officials

(1) The executive director, or his designee, will assign ring officials to ensure the highest degree of safety for contestants. The department will assist ring officials in developing expertise in the combative sports of their choice, to include training and shadow officiating.

(A) Ringside Physicians must hold a license as defined by §61.10(15); and

(B) Demonstrate by training, education, or experience, knowledge in the diagnoses and treatment of sports related trauma.

(2) To officiate at an assigned event, a ring official will be issued a department badge after executing a signed acknowledgement agreeing to the following terms.

(A) The badge is the property of the department and may only be used at an event to which the ring official has been assigned.

(B) A ring official shall surrender the badge at any time at the direction of the executive director, or his designee, if used to gain access to a regulated event the ring official has not been assigned to work or for any other reason that violates department rules or the code.

(C) Failure to surrender the badge upon direction of the executive director or his designee may result in disciplinary action and removal from the pool of qualified ring officials.

(3) The key determining factors for assigning ring officials are:

(A) the ring official's level of expertise in connection with the level of expertise required for a particular bout and a particular combative sport;

(B) the location of the event;

(C) the location of the ring official’s residence; and

(D) any other factors as determined by the executive director.

(4) A ring official who declines to work an event may be removed from the pool of qualified ring officials.

(5) The name of a ring official who declines to work an event five times in succession will be removed from the pool of qualified ring officials.

(6) A ring official who uses his badge to gain access to a regulated event to which he has not been assigned or who violates department rules or the code may be removed from the pool of qualified ring officials.

(7) In order to be reinstated to the pool of qualified ring officials, a ring official may be required to complete additional training as determined by the executive director, in addition to any other qualifications.

(h) The executive director, or his designee, shall assign two timekeepers for each event, one to keep time and one to count for knock-downs.

(i) The executive director, or his designee, may eject any person from an event who violates department rules or the Code.

(j) The executive director, or his designee, will not approve matches between contestants in different weight categories, except by weight tolerances as stated in §61.105.

(k) The executive director, or his designee, will not approve matches between genders.

(l) The executive director, or his designee, may waive the application of a rule to an event if he determines that such waiver will not negatively affect the safety of any contestant and that the spirit of the Code and this chapter is served by such waiver. The waiver must be in writing or later confirmed in writing.

(m) Licensure or registration does not automatically authorize an individual to participate in an event.

(n) A decision rendered after a contest is final and shall not be changed unless:

(1) following the rendition of a decision the executive director determines that any one of the following occurred:

(A) the compilation of the score card of the judges shows an error which would mean that the decision was given to the wrong contestant;

(B) there was a violation of the laws or rules and regulations governing combative sports which affected the result of any bout; or

(C) the winner of a bout tested positive immediately before or after the bout for a substance listed in §61.47(q).

(2) If the executive director determines that any of paragraph (1)(A) – (C) occurred with regards to any bout then the decision rendered shall be changed as the executive director may direct.

(o) The executive director, or his designee, may approve championship or title bouts if the department has recognized the sponsoring sanctioning organization as a legitimate combative sport organization.

(p) The executive director, or his designee, may require of a contestant, neurological or other medical testing.

(q) The executive director, or his designee, shall have sole control over the technical zone including but not limited to who may be admitted to the zone.

61.40. Responsibilities of the Promoter. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective March 1, 2013, 38 TexReg 1142; amended effective June 17, 2013, 38 TexReg 3781; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) Bond and Insurance Requirements for Promoters

(1) At the time of licensure and upon each renewal, a promoter applicant must submit to the department proof of financial responsibility by:

(A) submitting a $15,000 surety bond written by a bonding company authorized to do business in the State of Texas guaranteeing payment of all obligations, except gross receipts taxes, arising out of events promoted by the applicant which shall remain in effect for four years after the effective cancellation date; and

(B) submitting a $15,000 surety bond, written by a bonding company authorized to do business in the State of Texas, guaranteeing payment of gross receipts taxes owed for promoted events, which shall remain in effect for four years after the effective cancellation date.

(2) The promoter shall provide insurance and pay all deductibles for contestants, to cover medical, surgical and hospital care with a minimum limit of $50,000 for injuries sustained while participating in a contest and $100,000 to a contestant’s estate if he dies of injuries received while participating in a contest. The insurance premium and deductibles shall not be deducted from the contestant’s purse. At least ten calendar days before an event, the promoter shall provide to the department for each event sponsored, a certificate of insurance showing proper coverage. The promoter shall supply to those participating in the event the proper information for filing a medical claim.

(b) A promoter shall:

(1) Bear all financial responsibility for the event.

(2) Provide the department written notice of all proposed event dates, ticket prices, and participants of the main event, at least 21 days before the proposed event date and obtain written department approval to promote the event before advertising or selling tickets. Promoters who have cancelled or postponed two events in sequence after having obtained department approval for the events will be required to pay the permit fee set out in §61.80(c) at the time the 21 day notice is filed. The fee will not be refunded.

(3) Obtain written department approval for the fight card at least 10 working days before the event date in a manner prescribed by the department. The request shall contain the full legal name, address, date-of-birth, Texas contestant license number, Federal Identification number, weight, previous fight record (by supplying current results from the contestant’s boxing registry recognized by the Professional Boxing Safety Act of 1996, 15 USC §§6301-6313 or from Mixed Martial Arts, LLC the national registry for MMA contestants), and number of rounds to be fought for each contestant. In addition, the department may require submission of certified birth certificates or other official evidence of identification.

(4) Provide written notice to the department of any change in the card before the scheduled weigh-in.  Notices announcing changes or substitutions in the card must also be conspicuously posted at the box office and announced from the ring before the opening bout.

(5) Provide to the department, written notice of any change in the announced or advertised location, time or card cancellations before the scheduled weigh-in.

(6) Provide two ringside physicians, to be assigned by the department, for each event.

(7) Provide at least one physician to conduct pre-fight physicals. The department may require additional physicians depending on the event size. Provide a private area for the ringside physician to perform pre-fight examinations.

(8) Provide a sufficient number of seats in a department-designated area located in close proximity to the technical zone for use by ring officials and other individuals authorized and/or assigned by the department to work or attend the event.

(9) Assure that beverages are only allowed in paper or plastic cups at the event.

(10)  Immediately after the event, compensate the ringside physicians, timekeepers, judges, referees and contestants. Payment of percentage contracts shall be made when the amount can be determined. Payments that do not require additional accounting or auditing, shall be made in the presence of an authorized department representative.

(11)  Provide no less than two private dressing rooms of adequate size for the contestants and their licensed managers, and seconds, and separate dressing rooms for male and female contestants. Only working department employees, contract inspectors, media, physicians, working ring officials, promoter, matchmaker, manager and seconds will be allowed in the dressing rooms.

(12)  Ensure that no alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs are in the dressing room.

(13)  Ensure the safety of the contestants, officials, and spectators.

(A) There shall be a pre-fight plan and route to remove an injured contestant from the ring and arena. The promoter shall inform the department of the plan which shall include the name and location of a local hospital emergency room.

(B) A sufficient number of security personnel shall be retained to maintain order.

(14)  Schedule no less than 24 or more than 60 rounds for each boxing event. No bout shall exceed 10 rounds, except a championship or title bout which shall not exceed 12 rounds. A sparring or exhibition bout shall not exceed three rounds.

(15)  Schedule no less than 6 or more than 15 bouts for each mixed martial arts event.

(16)  Ensure that the rules in §61.106 regarding equipment and gloves that apply to a particular type of event are followed and that each event is conducted in compliance with the following:

(A) The ring apron shall be kept clear at all times of objects including, but not limited to: cameras, microphones, and advertisements. A separate camera platform at a neutral corner of the ring for use by camera operators may be provided. Camera operators may be allowed on the ring apron during rest periods, between bouts, or at the discretion of the executive director, or his designee. No seats may be sold at the ring apron.

(B) The technical zone shall be set up for the department, according to the instructions of the executive director or his designee.

(C) All emergency medical personnel and portable medical equipment shall be located within the technical zone during the event. There must be a resuscitator, oxygen, stretcher, a certified ambulance, neck brace, defibrillator, backboard, portable suction, and an emergency medical technician on site for all contests. The executive director, or his designee, may require additional medical personnel and equipment depending on the number of matches scheduled.

(D) The judges' chairs shall be high enough that their shoulders shall be no lower than the ring floor.  Physician ringside seats shall be in the neutral corner(s).

(E) There shall be at least one, but no more than three, authorized promoter representative(s) at ringside at all times. Only the promoter's representative(s), department officials, the press, physicians, representatives of sanctioning bodies, and judges shall sit at the ringside tables. For purposes of this subparagraph, an event coordinator is a representative of the promoter.

(17)  Pay by check or money order the licensing fee of any contestant, second, or manager, who intends to participate in a scheduled combative sports event and who is not licensed at the time of the event weigh-in.

(18)  Supervise the activities of employees and event coordinators to assure that promoted events are conducted in compliance with this chapter and applicable statutes.

(19)  Ensure that all advertising concerning an event he promotes accurately describes the event and does not include the names of any person or entity, other than the promoter, as a presenter of the event.

(c) Contract requirements between Promoter and Contestant.

(1) The promoter for an event shall have contracts with contestants executed in triplicate on department forms showing the amount of guarantee or percentage promised the number and time limit of rounds, when and where the contestants are scheduled to appear, weight category, and other pertinent details governing the event. If applicable, the compensation section must include the specifics of television, radio and cable rights. The contract must define and provide for agreement on compensation if the opponent fails to appear at the weigh-in or bout. All contracts must state the dollar amount or percentage withheld for expenses, taxes, advances, sanctions or any other items the promoter seeks to subtract from a contestant's purse.

(2) The promoter shall furnish one executed copy of the contract to the contestants or their managers, retain one, and submit one to the department.

(3) All required information must be typed or legibly printed, and the contestant and promoter shall initial any changes or addenda.

(d) Tickets

(1) All tickets shall have printed on each half, the price including any service surcharge or handling fee, and event date.

(2) Roll tickets with consecutive numbers shall be sold only at the box office on the day of the event.

(3) If there is no ticket manifest, tickets of different prices shall be printed on different colored ticket stock.

(4) The promoter shall submit a verified report to the department of tickets delivered to any outlet or event sponsor. The report shall account for any known overprints, changes, or extras and must be on a department-approved form.

(5) Tickets shall not be sold for more than the actual capacity of the location where the event is held.

(6) All tickets shall be torn in half and one half returned to the ticket holder at the entrance gate. The other half shall be immediately deposited in a sealed container, where it is to remain until the department’s representative witnesses the opening of the container. No one shall pass through the gate without having their ticket torn or shall occupy a seat unless holding a ticket half or have a working pass or credential with a specific seat assignment indicated on them. Passes and or credentials may not be sold or bartered.

(7) If a main event or special added attraction is postponed or cancelled for any reason, the promoter shall promptly refund ticket sales. A special added attraction is the appearance of any person or persons at any combative sports event whose reputation or ability is calculated to increase attendance. Tickets in the hands of ticket services shall be returned to the promoter not later than when the box office at the combative sports event site has closed.

(8) Promoters shall hold tickets of every description used for any event, including deadwood, for at least 30 days after the event. The tickets shall be kept in separate packages for each event for audit purposes.

(9) The promoter shall be responsible to pay the gross receipts tax for complimentary tickets issued in excess of 25%.

(10)  Gross receipts taxes shall be calculated as 3% of the face value of all tickets sold plus 3% of the face value of all complimentary tickets issued in excess of 25%.

(11)  Tickets shall be accounted for after the event and the executive director, or his designee, may review the process, and may check the number of gate ticket containers and their seals or padlocks.

(e) A promoter shall submit to the department a tax report and a 3% gross receipts tax payment within three business days of an event.

(f) In the event of a departmental audit of a tax report authorized by §2052.152, of the Texas Occupations Code, a person subject to the financial audit shall make available used tickets, deadwood and additional exhibits to the department in the form and at a time established by the executive director, or his designee.

61.41. Responsibilities of the Referee. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective March 1, 2013, 38 TexReg 1142)

(a) Referees are responsible for enforcing the rules of the bouts and shall exercise immediate authority, direction and control over bouts. The referee shall conduct a rules meeting before the first bout of the event.

(b) The referee may eject from an event any person who violates the Code or department rules. If a second violates this chapter or the Code, the referee may disqualify the seconds' contestant.

(c) If an assigned referee is unable to officiate, he shall notify the department at least five hours before the event.

(d) The safety of contestants shall be the primary concern of the referee at all times. The referee may stop any bout:

(1) where there is reason to believe that continuing may result in serious injury to either contestant;

(2) if a contestant cannot defend himself;

(3) because of an injury or a contestant's poor physical condition; or

(4) if the referee feels that a contestant is not fighting in earnest.

(e) If a contestant is accidentally fouled, including a head butt but can continue, the referee may stop the bout for a reasonable time, and inform the judges and the contestant’s second of the accidental injury.

(f) If a mouthpiece is knocked out, the referee shall call time during a break in the action, the contestant’s second will clean and reinsert the mouthpiece. If the mouthpiece is spit out the same procedure will be followed and the referee may charge the contestant with a foul.

(g) The referee or executive director may disqualify a contestant and declare the opponent the winner after one warning by the referee or a department representative for the use of profanity, obscene or threatening gestures by a contestant, his manager, or his second.

(h) When a foul occurs, the referee shall call time and advise the judges of the foul and the number of points they should deduct.

(i) Before each bout, the referee shall call the contestants and their chief seconds together for final instructions.  The referee shall hold the chief second responsible for his contestant's conduct during the bout.

(j) When a low blow incapacitates a contestant, the referee shall give him reasonable time to recover. The referee may confer with the ringside physician. If a contestant shows an unwillingness to continue because of a low-blow claim, and the referee has resumed the fight, that contestant shall be declared the loser by a technical knockout.

(k) Knock-downs.

(1) When a blow to a contestant causes a knock-down, the referee shall order the opponent to go to the ring's farthest neutral corner, pointing to the corner, and immediately pick up the timekeeper's count.

(2) The referee shall audibly announce the passing of the seconds, accompanying the count with upward motions of his arm for each second and indicating the count with visual finger counts after each second.

(3) The referee shall stop counting if the opponent does not remain in the neutral corner until the count is complete.

(4) The mandatory eight count after knock-downs will be the standard procedure in all bouts.

(5) If a contestant who is knocked down rises before the count of ten and goes down again without being struck, the referee shall resume the count where he stopped.

(6) A contestant who has been knocked down cannot be saved by the bell in any round, including the last one.

(7) If the contestant who is knocked down does not rise before the count of ten, the referee shall declare the opponent the winner by a knockout.

(8) If the contestant appears to be seriously injured, without beginning a count, the referee may summon the ringside physician into the ring, and declare the bout terminated by knockout.

(9) The referee's count is the official count.

(l) If a contestant does not answer the bell signifying the start of a round, the referee shall give a ten count and declare him the loser by a technical knockout.

(m) If a contestant who has been knocked out of the ring or has fallen out of the ring during the bout fails to return immediately, the referee shall give the contestant 20 seconds to return to the ring. After a 20 second count, if the contestant has not returned to the ring, the referee shall count the contestant out as if he were down. No one may help contestants back into the ring.

(n) If during the first four rounds a contestant is accidentally injured, and is unable to continue, or is pushed, knocked or falls out of the ring, and is injured by the fall and unable to return, the referee shall declare the bout a no decision. If such injury occurs during later rounds, all completed rounds and the partial round in which the bout is terminated shall be scored and the contestant ahead on points shall be declared the winner by technical decision.

(o) A licensed referee may act as a judge or a timekeeper.

(p) All referees must attend the rules meeting prior to the first bout of an event.

61.42. Responsibilities of Judges. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

(a) A majority vote of the judging officials decides the outcome of the bout.

(b) If an assigned judge is unable to officiate, he shall notify the department at least five hours before the event.

(c) If a contest is stopped before the end of the fourth round because of an accidental foul, the bout shall be declared a no decision. If after the fourth round an accidental foul injury occurs or worsens and the bout is stopped, all completed and partial rounds shall be scored. The contestant ahead on points shall be declared the winner by technical decision.

(d) Scoring shall be recorded only on a department form. Once the form is completed, checked and signed by the official it must be given directly to the department supervisor for the event.  Scoring forms are the property of the department and will be maintained in the official records of the event.

(e) In all bouts, the total points the judges give each contestant may be announced.

(f) A licensed judge may act as a timekeeper.

(g) A judge shall at all times during a bout maintain focus on the bout even during rest periods. In order to maintain focus, judges shall not engage in distractions including but not limited to: eating, talking, taking photographs, or carrying materials not related to the bout.

61.43. Responsibilities of Seconds. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470)

(a) Each contestant must have two seconds unless the Department permits otherwise. Each contestant shall have one chief second.

(b) The seconds shall dress neatly.

(c) Seconds shall keep their corners clean, dry, and free from objects.

(d) Seconds may surrender for their contestants by standing on the apron and signaling to the referee.

(e) A second may not:

(1) excessively coach a contestant during a round and shall remain silent when instructed to do so by a Department representative or the referee;

(2) throw excessive amounts of water on his contestant;

(3) toss a towel or any other object into the ring in token surrender of his contestant;

(4) use any unapproved substance during the contest.

(f) Seconds shall remain seated in the chairs provided during the rounds.

(g) If a second deliberately worsens a cut by spreading or tearing it, the referee may disqualify the contestant.

(h) Only one second shall be allowed in the ring between rounds, and he shall leave the ring enclosure at the timekeeper’s warning. Two seconds will be allowed on the ring apron. All seconds and all obstructions including stools, buckets and equipment shall be off the ring platform when the bell sounds for the beginning of the next round.

(i) A second shall be responsible for a contestant’s corner supplies.

(1) Approved supplies are ice, which must be in an ice bag or Department approved container, water, cotton swabs, gauze pads, clean towels, Adrenalin 1:10,000, Avitene, Thromblin, petroleum jelly or other surgical lubricant, medical diachylon tape, Enswel, and electrolytes. Electrolytes must be brought to the ring in the manufacturer’s sealed container. Electrolytes must be opened for the first time in the presence of a representative of the Department. All coagulants shall be in a container with the proper manufacturer’s label and not contaminated by any foreign substance.

(2) All containers shall be properly labeled with the manufacturer’s label and not contaminated by any foreign substance.

(3) The use of an unapproved substance may result in disciplinary action.

(4) Only water and electrolytes shall be permitted for hydration of a contestant between rounds.  Honey, glucose, or sugar, or any other substance may not be mixed with the water.

(5) Excessive use of any lubricant on the contestant’s body, arms or face is prohibited.

(j) When the ringside physician enters a contestant’s corner, the second in the ring shall yield immediately to the physician's examination without interference. The referee will call time out until the physician completes the examination. This will permit the corner the full rest period to administer to their contestant. The Department may disqualify a contestant, manager and/or second for unprofessional conduct in failing to cooperate with the ringside physician.

(k) A second must attend the referee’s rules meeting conducted prior to the first contest of an event.

61.44. Responsibilities of Managers. (Amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

(a) Managers shall deal fairly with contestants.

(b) It is the contestant and manager’s joint responsibility to comply with all requirements, including rest periods and medical suspensions.

(c) Managers or their designees, must attend the referee’s rules meeting conducted prior to the first bout of an event.

61.45. Responsibilities of Timekeepers.

(a) The timekeeper shall give a ten second warning before the end of each rest period. The timekeeper shall sound the bell only at the beginning and end of each round.

(b) When a contestant is down, the timekeeper shall start his count, continuing until he reaches the count of ten seconds.

(c) If the referee is absent from the ring or temporarily incapacitated, the timekeeper shall immediately sound the bell to temporarily stop the contest.

(d) The timekeeper shall use a bell approved by the Department.

61.46. Responsibilities of Ringside Physicians. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective June 17, 2013, 38 TexReg 3781)

Ringside physicians shall perform the following duties:

(1) perform medical examinations on contestants at the weigh-in to include a review of a contestant’s answers to medical questions on the application. Only the contestant, his manager, his chief second, the ringside physician, and department representatives are allowed in the examination room during the physical;

(2) remain at ringside at all times during the scheduled bouts;

(3) immediately examine a contestant who suffers a knockout, concussion, or other head injury; and

(4) conduct a post-contest examination that includes the physician's recommendations for rest periods, medical suspensions, medical disqualification, and any other exam results. Results of the post contest examination shall be reported to the department within one hour after an event.

61.47. Responsibilities of Contestants. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective March 1, 2013, 38 TexReg 1142; amended effective June 17, 2013, 38 TexReg 3781)

(a) Medical Examinations. Each contestant applying for a license, or license renewal, shall submit on a department-approved form signed by an examining physician and an examining ophthalmologist or optometrist:

(1) Proof of having passed a comprehensive medical examination within the previous six months; and

(2) Proof of having passed an ophthalmologic medical examination within the previous six months.

(3) The comprehensive medical examination must also include proof that within the last six months, the applicant has been tested for and is free of the Hepatitis C virus and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and that the applicant is not acutely or chronically infected with the Hepatitis B virus by testing the Hepatitis B surface antigen for a non-reactive result, or by other medically acceptable testing procedure that establishes the absence of Hepatitis B infectivity.

(4) Examining physicians, optometrists, and ophthalmologists must be licensed by a state, district or territory of the United States of America.

(b) A contestant applicant must submit to the department all information required by the department’s application.

(c) A contestant may not perform under any name that does not appear in departmental records.

(d) Contestants shall report to the weigh in at the scheduled time.

(e) Contestants shall in good faith perform to the best of their abilities.

(f) A contestant who commits a foul under this chapter is subject to administrative sanctions and or penalties in addition to losing points during a contest.

(g) Arguing with an official or refusing to obey the orders of an official is prohibited.

(h) Contestants shall compete in proper ring attire. The trunks' waistband shall not extend above the waistline and the hem may not extend more than two inches below the knee. Ring attire may not have sequins, buttons, tassels or any other decorative items that may become detached during a bout. A fitted mouthpiece shall be worn while competing.  Shoes shall be of soft material and shall not be fitted with spikes, cleats, or hard heels. Contestants may not participate in any bout while wearing jewelry, including but not limited to, watches, rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, any type of stud used to penetrate body piercings.

(i) All contestants shall be in the dressing room at least 45 minutes before the event is scheduled to begin. The contestants shall be ready to enter the ring immediately after the preceding bout is finished.

(j) After receiving final instructions from the referee, contestants may touch gloves or shake hands and then shall retire to their corners.

(k) After the referee or judge’s decision has been announced, both contestants and their seconds shall leave the ring when requested to do so by the referee.

(l) Every contestant shall undergo a pre-fight physical examination. If a contestant’s physical exam shows him unfit for competition, the contestant shall not participate in the contest.  The manager, chief second, or contestant shall make an immediate report of the facts to the promoter and the department.

(m) If a contestant becomes ill or injured and cannot take part in a bout for which he is under contract, he, his chief second, or his manager shall immediately report the facts to the promoter and the department. The contestant must submit to the department medical proof of the injury or illness.

(n) A positive Hepatitis C, or human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) test, or a positive Hepatitis B surface antigen test or other indication of Hepatitis B infectivity will result in disqualification.

(o) The administration or use of any drugs, alcohol, stimulants, or injections in any part of the body, either before or during a bout to or by a contestant is prohibited unless a drug is prescribed, administered or authorized by a licensed physician and the executive director authorizes the contestant to use the drug. A contestant taking prescribed or over the counter medication must inform the executive director of such usage at least 24 hours prior to the bout.

(p) A person who applies for or holds a license as a contestant shall provide a urine specimen or blood sample or both for drug testing either before or after the bout, if directed by the executive director or his designee. The applicant or licensee is responsible for paying the costs of the drug screen. A positive test, refusal to provide a sample, failure to comply with the testing process, or attempting to substitute, dilute, mask or adulterate a sample during collection shall be considered a violation of subsection (o) and will result in an automatic 90 day medical suspension and may also result in administrative penalties and sanctions.

(q) A positive test (which has been confirmed by a laboratory authorized by the executive director or his designee) for any of the following substances shall be conclusive evidence of a violation of subsection (o) and will result in an automatic 90 day medical suspension and may also result in administrative sanctions or monetary penalties or both:

(1) Stimulants

(2) Narcotics

(3) Phencyclidines;

(4) Barbiturates and Benzodiazepines;

(5) Cannabinoids (marijuana)

(6) Anabolic agents (exogenous and endogenous)

(7) Peptide hormones

(8) Masking agents

(9) Diuretics

(10)  Glucocorticosteroids

(11)  Beta-2 agonists (including both optical isomers where relevant) are prohibited except salbutamol (maximum 1600 micrograms over 24 hours), formoterol (maximum 36 micrograms over 24 hours) and salmeterol when taken by inhalation in accordance with the manufacturers’ recommended therapeutic regimen;

(12)  Hormones and Metabolic Modulators;

(13)  Alcohol; or

(14)  Any pharmacological substance not addressed above that is not currently approved by any governmental regulatory health authority for human therapeutic use such as drugs under pre-clinical or clinical development or discontinued; or designer drugs; or substances approved only for veterinary use.

(r) Failure to disclose the use of a substance described above constitutes a violation of subsection (o).

(s) As a condition of licensure, contestants waive right of confidentiality of medical records relating to treatment or diagnosis of any condition that relates to the contestant’s ability to participate in a bout. All medical records submitted to the department, without the contestant’s consent to release, are confidential, and shall be used only by the executive director or his representative for the purpose of ascertaining the contestant's ability to be licensed or participate in a bout.

(t) After the bout, contestants shall undergo a post-contest examination by a ringside physician.

(u) Based upon the post-contest examination, contestants shall automatically receive rest periods, medical suspensions, or medical disqualifications for the following:

(1) Medical condition--medical suspension will be based upon the physician’s recommendation;

(2) Technical knockout--30 day minimum medical suspension;

(3) Knockout:

(A) First knockout--60 day minimum medical suspension;

(B) Two knockouts within twelve months--120 days minimum medical suspension;

(C) Three knockouts within twelve months or three consecutive knockouts--medical disqualification from further competition; and

(4) Mandatory rest--all contestants shall receive a mandatory rest period calculated as three days of rest for each round fought with no less than a seven day mandatory minimum rest period.

(v) A contestant who tests positive for a drug listed under subsection (q) shall automatically receive a 90 day medical suspension.

(w) Medical disqualification of a contestant is for his own safety and may be made at the recommendation of the examining physician or the department. A contestant who disagrees with a medical disqualification, medical suspension or rest period set at the discretion of a ringside physician or a disqualification or suspension set by the department,  may request a hearing to show proof of fitness. The hearing shall be provided at the earliest opportunity after the department receives a written request from the contestant or his manager.

(x) The following are gender specific provisions:

(1) Male contestants must wear a protection cup, which shall be firmly adjusted before entering the ring.

(2) Female contestants:

(A) Must wear garments that cover their breasts;

(B) Shall submit to a pregnancy test at weigh-in;

(C) Will be disqualified by a positive pregnancy test; and

(D) May wear breast protection plates.

(y) Contestants must attend the referee’s rules meeting conducted prior to the first bout of an event.

61.48. Responsibilities of Amateur Combative Sports Associations. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective March 1, 2008, 33 TexReg 1523; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) An amateur combative sports association (ACSA) must provide to the Department proof that it is either a non-profit organization chartered by the State of Texas or that it is approved as a non-profit organization under the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code.

(b) An ACSA shall file with the Executive Director rules for conducting the organization’s affairs and the conduct of its members. The rules:

(1) Must include provisions to:

(A) Establish conditions for membership;

(B) Provide guidelines for training its members in preparation for a contest;

(C) Establish a minimum training period before a contest;

(D) Indicate which class(es) of combative sports the ACSA will conduct;

(E) Require that all referees participating in events conducted by the ACSA are licensed by the Department; and,

(F) Either:

(i) Adopt, as appropriate, rules set out below for boxing, kickboxing, mixed martial arts, and muay thai; or,

(ii) Establish the ACSA’s rules for a class or classes of events it will sponsor; and,

(2) May include provisions to:

(A) Provide for payment of actual expenses, up to an established maximum, for the contestants who participate in an event; and,

(B) Allow members of other ACSAs to participate as a visiting member in an event conducted by it without the other ACSA participating in the conducted event, so long as it ascertains that the visiting member is qualified under the rules to be a contestant in the event.

(c) An ACSA may not conduct or participate in any event unless it has received Executive Director’s written approval of rules required in subsection (b) of this section.

(d) An ACSA that has adopted rules permitted under subsection (b)(2) of this section must, before it sponsors or participates in any event, submit to the Executive Director a $15,000 surety bond, written by a bonding company authorized to do business in the State of Texas, guaranteeing payment of gross receipts taxes owed for promoted events, which shall remain in effect for four years after the effective cancellation date.

(e) An ACSA shall provide insurance and pay all deductibles for contestants, to cover medical, surgical and hospital care with a minimum limit of $50,000 for injuries sustained while participating in a contest and $100,000 to a contestant’s estate if he dies of injuries suffered while participating in a contest. At least ten calendar days before an event the ASCA shall provide to the Department for each event to be conducted, a certificate of insurance showing proper coverage. The ASCA shall supply to those participating in the event the proper information for filing a medical claim.

(f) An ACSA shall ensure that all contestants participating in contests it conducts are amateurs.

(g) An ACSA may not allow any person who has not been a member of the ACSA for at least thirty days to participate as a contestant in any event in which the ACSA participates.

(h) An ACSA conducting an event shall:

(1) Bear all financial responsibility for the event.

(2) Provide the Department written notice of all proposed event dates, ticket prices, and participants of the main event, at least 21 days before the proposed event date and obtain written approval from the Department to promote the event prior to advertising or selling tickets.

(3) Provide two physicians to be assigned by the Department for each event.

(4) Provide at least one licensed physician to conduct pre-fight physicals. Provide a private area for the physician to perform pre-fight examinations.

(5) Assure that beverages are only allowed in paper or plastic cups at the event.

(6) Assure that no alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs are in the dressing room.

(7) Ensure the safety of the contestants, officials, and spectators.

(A) There shall be a pre-fight plan and route to remove an injured contestant from the ring and arena. Upon request, the promoter shall inform the Department of these plans. The plan shall include the name and location of a local hospital emergency room.

(B) A sufficient number of security personnel shall be retained to maintain order.

(8) Ensure that the rules set forth herein below regarding equipment and gloves that apply to a particular type of event are followed.

(9) Ensure that each contest is conducted as provided by the ACSA's rules approved by the Department.

(10)  Ensure that each event has the appropriate equipment as described by the ACSA's rules approved by the Department.

(11)  Ensure that all advertising concerning an event to be conducted indicates that it is an amateur event, and includes the name of the ACSA that will conduct the event.

(i) Tickets

(1) All tickets shall have printed on each half, the price including any service surcharge or handling fee, and the event date.

(2) Roll tickets with consecutive numbers shall be sold only at the box office on the day of the show.

(3) If there is no ticket manifest, tickets of different prices shall be printed on different colored ticket stock.

(4) Tickets shall not be sold for more than the actual capacity of the location where the event is held.

(5) ACSA's shall hold tickets of every description used for any event for at least 30 days after the event.  The tickets shall be kept in separate packages for each event for audit purposes.

(j) An ACSA shall submit to the Department a tax report and a 3% gross receipts tax payment within three business days after an event.

61.49. Certain Amateur Events. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481)

Amateur events conducted by organizations that are exempt from licensing and bonding requirements pursuant to Occupations Code, §2052.110, must be reported to the Department three working days before the event noting the time, date, location, and the name of the sponsoring organization.

61.80. Fees. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective March 1, 2008, 33 TexReg 1524; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) The annual fee shall accompany each license or registration application or renewal as follows.

(1) Promoter--$900

(2) Contestant--$20

(3) Manager--$100

(4) Second--$20

(5) Matchmaker--$100

(6) Referee--$125

(7) Judge--$100

(8) Amateur Combative Sports Association--$50

(9) Event Coordinator--$200

(b) Four year Federal Identification card--$20

(c) Permit Fee--$100 per live professional event and the simultaneous telecast of a live contest on a closed circuit telecast in which fees are charged for admission.

(d) A fee submitted to obtain a license, permit or registration is nonrefundable.

61.91. Sanctions and Penalties. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445)

If a person violates Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 2052, or a rule, or order of the Executive Director or Commission relating to the Code, proceedings may be instituted to impose administrative sanctions and/or recommend administrative penalties in accordance with the Code or the Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 51 and 16 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 60 of this title (relating to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation).

61.105. Weight Categories and Weigh-in--Boxing and Kickboxing. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

(a) A promoter shall assure that the weigh-in takes place at a specific time set by the promoter and approved by the department, generally between the hours of 2 p.m. of the day before the contest and 12 noon the day of the contest. The department must be notified ten days before the event.

(b) A department-approved scale must be used for weighing-in contestants. The department may require that the scales be certified.

(c) Contestants failing to meet contract weight shall have two hours to meet the allowances and be reweighed.

(d) No contestant may engage in a contest where the weigh-in weight difference between contestants exceeds the allowance shown in the following "WEIGHT ALLOWANCE" schedule:

(1) 112 lbs. or under--3 lbs.

(2) 113-118 lbs.--4 lbs.

(3) 119-126 lbs.--5 lbs.

(4) 127-135 lbs.--6 lbs.

(5) 136-147 lbs.--8 lbs.

(6) 148-160 lbs.--10 lbs.

(7) 161-175 lbs.--12 lbs.

(8) 176-200 lbs.--15 lbs.

(9) 201 lbs. or over--No limit

(e) If a contestant’s body weight at the time of weigh-in is 5% or more over his contracted weight, he shall be disqualified for the contest.

(f) If in an attempt to make weight, a contestant shows evidence of dehydration, having taken diuretics, or other drugs, or having used any other harsh modality, the department shall disqualify the contestant on the advice of the examining physician.

(g) Weight Divisions. The weight classes for boxing and kickboxing contests or exhibitions are shown in paragraphs (1) – (15). A contestant in a weight class may participate in a bout with a contestant in an adjacent weight class so long as their weight difference falls within the weight allowance shown in subsection (d) for the weight of the contestant weighing the least.

(1) Flyweight--up to 112 lbs.

(2) Super Flyweight--over 112 to 115 lbs.

(3) Bantamweight--over 115 to 118 lbs.

(4) Super Bantamweight--over 118 to 122 lbs.

(5) Featherweight--over 122 to 126 lbs.

(6) Super Featherweight--over 126 to 130 lbs.

(7) Lightweight--over 130 to 135 lbs.

(8) Super Lightweight--over 135 to 140 lbs.

(9) Welterweight--over 140 to 147 lbs.

(10)  Super Welterweight--over 147 to 154 lbs.

(11)  Middleweight--over 154 to 160 lbs.

(12)  Super Middleweight--over 160 to 168 lbs.

(13)  Light Heavyweight--over 168 to 175 lbs.

(14)  Cruiserweight--over 175 to 200 lbs.

(15)  Heavyweight--over 200 lbs.

61.106. Ring and Glove Requirements--Boxing and Kickboxing Contests. (New section effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective October 15, 2010, 9081)

(a) The ring shall be set up at least two hours before the contest is scheduled to begin.

(b) Except as specifically otherwise authorized by the executive director, rings shall meet the following:

(1) Rings shall be square with sides not less than 16 feet or more than 24 feet inside the ropes, and the floor shall extend at least 24 inches beyond the ropes on all sides, and shall be of at least 3/4-inch material, adequately supported, and padded with ensolite or similar closed-cell foam that is at least 1-inch thick;

(2) The padding shall extend over the edge of the ring platform and have a top covering of canvas, duck, or similar material approved by the department;

(3) The covering shall be clean and be tightly stretched and laced to the ring platform and may not have tears, holes or overlapping seams;

(4) The ring platform shall have at least three sets of steps into the ring during a contest: one set for each contestant’s corner and one set in the neutral corner to be used for the ringside physician and the department;

(5) The ring corners shall be protected inside the ring with a urethane pad at least six inches wide, and shall be covered with material similar to the ring floor covering, and the covering must be long enough to cover all the rope joints;

(6) Ring posts shall be made of a strong material, preferably steel, and shall be at least three inches in diameter, and shall be secured under the ring to prevent spreading;

(7) There shall be four ring ropes at least one inch in diameter evenly spaced, one foot apart with the lower rope being 18 inches above the ring floor;

(8) The ropes shall be attached to the ring posts with turnbuckles and shall be stretched taut during all contests, and the bottom rope shall be padded with at least 2 inches of soft material;

(9) Be equipped with a bell that makes a sound loud enough to be heard by the contestants, referee, and other officials; and,

(10)  Include in each contestant’s corner an appropriate receptacle for spitting ,a clean water bucket for the contestant’s use, and at least three chairs or stools labeled "seconds" to be used by the contestant's official seconds.

(c) New gloves must be used for all professional main events. If gloves used in preliminary contests have been used before, they shall be whole, clean, in sanitary condition, and subject to inspection by the referee and department representatives. Any gloves found unfit shall not be used and must be replaced with acceptable gloves. There shall be extra sets of gloves on hand to be used in case gloves are broken or in any way damaged during a contest.

(d) Contestants in all weight categories up to, and including 147 lbs, shall use eight-ounce gloves. In heavier classes, they may wear ten-ounce gloves. Female contestants may wear 10-ounce gloves.

(e) Promoters of professional events shall keep gloves used in an event in their possession for a minimum of seven days after the event and shall make them available for inspection by the department upon request.

(f) Hand wraps shall be restricted to no more than twenty yards of soft gauze, not more than two inches wide. The gauze shall be held in place by no more than eight feet of adhesive tape, no more than one and one-half inches wide. The adhesive tape shall not cover any part of the knuckles when the hand is clenched to make a fist. The use of water, or any other liquid or material, on the tape is strictly prohibited. Hand wraps shall be applied in the dressing room in the presence of a department representative.

61.107. Boxing. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481)

(a) All rules stated herein apply to the combative sport of boxing, with the exception of §§61.108 - 61.112, unless this section conflicts with another rule stated herein. If a conflict occurs, this section prevails.

(b) In scoring a contest the elements of offense, defense, clean hitting, ring generalship, and sportsmanship shall be carefully considered by the judges. Scoring shall be by the ten-point must system. The winner of any round is marked ten and the loser is marked nine or less. When a round is even, each contestant shall receive ten points. A clean knock-down shall be scored heavily. Judges shall deduct points for fouls when directed to do so by the referee. Judges shall clearly write their decision and sign them individually. A draw shall be called if each official votes differently or any two vote a draw.

(c) A contestant shall be deemed down when:

(1) any part of his body other than his feet is on the ring floor; or

(2) he is hanging over the ropes in a defenseless manner.

(d) The following tactics are fouls and are forbidden. Using these tactics may result in a warning, loss of points as determined by the referee, disqualification, forfeiture, and an administrative penalty and/or sanction.

(1) Hitting below the belt.

(2) Holding an opponent with one hand and hitting him with the other.

(3) Hitting an opponent who is down or is getting up after being down.

(4) Holding an opponent or deliberately maintaining a clinch.

(5) Butting with the head or shoulder or using the knee.

(6) Hitting with the inside or butt of the hand, the wrist or the elbow.

(7) Hitting or "flicking" with open gloves.

(8) Wrestling, kicking or roughing at the ropes.

(9) Purposely going down without being hit.

(10)  Striking deliberately at the area of the body around the kidneys.

(11)  Jabbing an opponent's eyes with the thumb of a glove.

(12)  Using abusive or profane language.

(13)  Hitting at the back of the head or neck (rabbit punches).

(14)  Failing to obey the referee.

(15)  Engaging in any physical action or contact other than sportsmanlike boxing, which may injure another contestant.

(16)  Spitting out a mouthpiece.

(17)  Hitting an opponent after the bell has sounded ending a round.

(e) Contests between males shall have no more than three-minute rounds with one-minute rest periods between rounds.  Contests between females shall have no more than two-minute rounds with one-minute rest periods between rounds.

61.108. Kickboxing. (Amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481)

(a) All rules stated herein apply to the combative sport of kickboxing, with the exception of §§61.107 and 61.110-61.112 unless this section conflicts with another rule stated herein. If a conflict occurs, this section prevails.

(b) Kickboxing matches shall not exceed nine two‑minute rounds with a one‑minute rest period between rounds. The Department may, however, permit an additional two rounds for championship events.

(c) Kickboxers shall not wear shoes of any type, except for protective padded footgear.

(d) Male contestants must wear a foul‑proof groin protector. A plastic cup with an athletic supporter is adequate, but an abdominal guard is preferable. Female contestants must wear foul‑proof breast protectors. Plastic breast covers are adequate. Female contestants must also wear a pelvic guard to protect their hips. Foot and shin pads are required.

(e) Each Kickboxing contestant must execute a minimum of six kicks during each round. If either fighter does not do so, he will automatically lose the round. If both contestants fail to execute the minimum number of kicks by the end of a round, the round is declared a draw. In any match of nine or more rounds, if either fighter fails to execute the minimum number of kicks in any three rounds, he automatically loses the fight. In a non-title fight, if either fighter fails to execute the minimum number of kicks in any two rounds, he loses the fight.

(f) A contestant intentionally avoiding any physical contact with his or her opponent will receive a warning. If a contestant continues avoiding contact, he or she will be declared the loser of that round. If a contestant avoids contact after losing a round for that reason, he or she may be subject to the same penalties and procedures as a contestant guilty of foul tactics.

(g) In any case where the referee decides that the contestants are not honestly competing, that the knockout is a "dive", or the foul is a prearranged termination of the bout, he or she will not finish the knockout count, disqualify the contestant for fouling, or render a decision, but shall stop the bout and declare it ended not later than before the end of the last round. If the event is professional, he shall also order purses of both fighters held pending investigation and disposition of the funds by the Department.

(h) No contestant shall leave the ring during the one‑minute rest period between rounds. If any contestant fails or refuses to resume fighting when the bell sounds for starting the next round, the referee will award a knockout victory to his or her opponent as of the round that has just been finished. If the event is professional and the circumstances indicate to the referee the need for an investigation or disciplinary action, the referee will not make a decision and will order the purse or purses of either or both contestants withheld.

(i) Before a fallen contestant resumes fighting after having been knocked to, slipped to, or fallen to the floor, the referee shall wipe the contestant's gloves free of any foreign substance.

(j) The following tactics are fouls and are forbidden. Using these tactics may result in a warning, loss of points as determined by the referee, disqualification, forfeiture, and an administrative penalty and/or sanction.

(1) Head butts, elbow strikes or clubbing, kicks, punches or any other strikes at the groin.

(2) Attacking with the knees.

(3) Open‑hand attacks to the eyes or throat.

(4) Striking at that part of the body over the kidneys or spine.

(5) Spitting, slapping or biting.

(6) Palm heel strikes (using the heel of the palm of the hand to deliver a blow to the face).

(7) Arm bars (grabbing one arm with the other and pressing the grabbed arm against the opponent's throat).

(8) Grabbing or holding onto an opponent's leg or foot and grabbing or holding onto any other part of the body except for the purpose of attempting to throw the opponent to the floor.

(9) Leg checking (extending the leg to check an opponent's leg or prevent him or her from kicking).

(10)  Purposely going down without being hit.

(11)  Any un-sportsmanlike trick or action causing any injury to an opponent.

(12)  Attacking on the break.

(13)  Attacking after the bell or gong has sounded ending the round or when the opponent is out of the ring.

(14)  Intentionally pushing, shoving or wrestling an opponent out of the ring with any part of the body.

61.110. Martial Arts. (Amended effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481)

(a) All full-contact martial arts are forms of a combative sport.

(b) All rules stated herein apply to martial art competitions with the exception of §§ 61.106, 61.107, 61.108, and 61.112, unless this section conflicts with another rule stated herein. If a conflict occurs, this section prevails.

(c) If a contest or exhibition of a martial art is not conducted pursuant to §61.111 or §61.112 of these rules, it must be conducted pursuant to the official rules for the particular art, which must be filed with and approved by the Department. The sponsoring organization or promoter must file with and obtain permission of the Executive Director prior to holding the contest.

61.111. Mixed Martial Arts. (Amended effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470)

(a) All rules stated herein, except §§61.106 – 61.108, and 61.112 apply to mixed martial arts contests unless this section conflicts with another rule stated herein. If a conflict occurs, this section prevails.

(b) Contestants may wear fingerless gloves weighing not less than 4 ounces, which shall be supplied by the promoter and approved by the Executive Director.

(1) If both contestants wear gloves, closed fist punching and frontal palm/heel strikes are permitted.

(2) If both contestants are not wearing gloves, frontal palm/heel strikes and closed fist punches are not permitted, except to the body.

(c) Contestants may prevail by technical knockout, knockout, submission, (either by physical or verbal tap out,) disqualification or judges decision.

(d) Scoring Techniques.

(1) Using the 10-Point Must Scoring System, judges are required to determine a winner of a contest that ends after the scheduled number of rounds have been completed. Ten points must be awarded to the winner of each round and 9 points or less must be awarded to the loser, except for a rare even round, which is scored a 10-10.

(2) Judges must evaluate mixed martial arts techniques, such as effective striking, effective grappling, fighting area control, and effective aggressiveness/defense.

(e) Contestants may wear shorts, trunks, wrestling singlet, or traditional martial arts Gi, unless otherwise instructed by the Executive Director. Knee braces without metal are permissible. Contestants may not wear shoes of any kind during competition. A male contestant may not wear a shirt during competition.

(f) Each contestant must be clean and present a tidy appearance. The use of grease or any other foreign substance, including, without limitation, grooming creams, lotions or sprays, may not be used on the face, hair or body of a contestant. The referee or the Executive Director’s representative shall cause any foreign substance to be removed.

(g) Contestants who wear gloves may wrap hands in a manner approved by the Executive Director. If contestants are not wearing gloves, it is not permissible to wrap hands, but wrists may be taped. Contestants who choose to wear gloves, may only compete with other contestants wearing gloves. Contestants choosing not to wear gloves, may only compete with other contestants who choose not to wear gloves.

(h) Weight Divisions. Except with the approval of the Executive Director, the classes for mixed martial arts contest or exhibitions and the weights for each class are shown in the following schedule:

(1) Flyweight--up to 125 lbs.

(2) Bantamweight--over 125 to 135 lbs.

(3) Featherweight--over 135 to 145 lbs.

(4) Lightweight--over 145 to 155 lbs.

(5) Welterweight--over 155 to 170 lbs.

(6) Middleweight--over 170 to 185 lbs.

(7) Light Heavyweight--over 185 to 205 lbs.

(8) Heavyweight--over 205 to 265 lbs.

(9) Super Heavyweight--over 265 lbs.

(i) Non-championship contests shall not exceed a total of 15 minutes per contest with no overtime allowed. Championship contests shall not exceed a total of 25 minutes of action. Rounds shall be a minimum of three minutes with a one-minute rest period between each round.

(j) A fitted mouthpiece shall be worn while competing.

(k) A male contestant must wear a plastic foul-proof groin protector (abdominal guard). A female contestant must wear a plastic pelvic guard and may wear a breast protector.

(l) Contestants may use the ropes once during a round. The second time a contestant grabs the ropes will be considered a submission.

(m) Intentionally escaping from the fighting area will result in a rope call.

(n) If both contestants wrestle into or under the ropes and the referee believes that the ropes are causing interference with the match, the referee may stop the action, and require both contestants to take a standing position in the middle of the fighting area before continuing the match.

(o) If both contestants are wrestling on the ground and the referee believes neither contestant will gain an advantage, the referee may stop the contest, and require both contestants to take a standing position in the middle of the fighting area before continuing the match.

(p) Mixed martial arts contests may be conducted either in an approved ring or in an enclosed fighting area. The following specifics apply:

(1) Rings:

(A) Must be no smaller than 16 feet square and no larger than 32 feet square within the ropes. The ring floor must extend at least 18 inches beyond the ropes;

(B) The ring floor must be padded with ensolite or another similar closed-cell foam, with at least 1 inch layer of foam padding. Padding must extend beyond the ring ropes and over the edge of the platform. Material that tends to gather in lumps or ridges may not be used;

(C) The ring platform must not be more than 4 feet above the floor of the venue and must have suitable steps or ramps for the use of the contestants and ring officials;

(D) Ring posts must be made of metal, not more than 3 inches in diameter, extending from the floor of the venue to a minimum height of 58 inches above the ring floor, and must be properly padded in a manner approved by the Executive Director. Ring posts must be at least 18 inches away from the ring ropes;

(E) There must be five ring ropes, not less than 1 inch in diameter and wrapped in soft material. The lowest rope must be 12 inches above the ring floor;

(F) There may not be any obstruction or object on the ring floor;

(2) Fighting Areas:

(A) May be circular or may be multi-sided having four or more sides that are equal in length. A circular fighting area must have a diameter of no less than 16 feet and of no more than 32 feet in length. For a multi-sided fighting area the shortest straight line distance between any two opposite sides must be no less than 16 feet and no more than 32 feet in length.

(B) The floor shall be constructed of material at least ¾ inch thick, adequately supported, and padded with ensolite or similar closed-cell foam that is at least one inch thick.

(C) Padding shall extend beyond the fighting area and over the edge of the platform, and have a top covering of canvas, duck or similar material approved by the Executive Director.

(D) The covering shall be clean and tightly stretched and laced to the fighting area platform and may not have tears, holes or overlapping seams.

(E) The fighting area platform shall not be more than 4 feet above the floor of the building and shall have suitable steps or ramps for use by the participants.

(F) Posts shall be made of metal not more than 6 inches in diameter, extending from the floor of the venue to between 5 and 7 feet above the canvas of the fighting area and, if inside the fenced area, shall be properly padded in a manner approved by the Executive Director.

(G) The fighting area shall be enclosed by a fence made of material that will not allow a contestant to fall out or break through it onto the floor or spectators; including, without limitation, chain-link fence coated with vinyl. Any metal portion of the fenced area must be covered and padded in a manner approved by the Executive Director and must not be abrasive to the contestants.

(H) A fence area must have 2 gated entrances on opposite sides of the fenced area.

(I) There must not be any obstruction on the fence surrounding the area in which the contestants compete.

(q) The promoter of a mixed martial arts event shall hang at least 2 video screens that meet the approval of the Executive Director and which allow the patrons to view the action inside the enclosed fighting area or ring.

(r) If a laceration occurs, the referee may stop the contest and request the ring physician to examine the laceration. Either the physician or referee can stop the contest.

(s) The following tactics are fouls and may result in disqualification or point deduction at the discretion of the referee.

(1) Head butts.

(2) Kicks, punches or any strikes to the groin.

(3) Spitting or biting.

(4) Striking or grabbing the throat area.

(5) Grabbing the trachea.

(6) Kneeing to the head of a grounded opponent.

(7) Kicking to the head of a grounded opponent.

(8) Hair pulling.

(9) Engaging in any unsportsmanlike conduct that causes an injury to an opponent.

(10)  Attacking on the break.

(11)  Attacking after the bell has sounded.

(12)  Intentionally pushing, shoving, wrestling, or throwing an opponent out of the fight area.

(13)  Holding the fence or the ropes.

(14)  Using abusive language in the fighting area.

(15)  The use of any foreign substances on any contestant's hair, body or equipment

(16)  Eye gouging of any kind.

(17)  Fish hooking.

(18)  Putting a finger into any orifice or into any cut or laceration on an opponent.

(19)  Small joint manipulation.

(20)  Striking to the spine or the back of the head.

(21)  Striking downward using the point of the elbow.

(22)  Clawing, pinching, or twisting the flesh.

(23)  Grabbing the clavicle.

(24)  Stomping a grounded opponent.

(25)  Kicking to the kidney with the heel.

(26)  Spiking an opponent to the canvas on his head or neck.

(27)  Holding the shorts or gloves of an opponent.

(28)  Flagrantly disregarding the instructions of the referee.

(29)  Attacking an opponent who is under the care of the referee.

(30)  Timidity, including without limitation, avoiding contact with an opponent, intentionally or consistently dropping the mouthpiece or faking an injury.

(31)  Throwing in the towel during competition.

(32)  Interference by the corner.

(t) The determination of the winner shall be as follows:

(1) by submission, either verbally or by tapping two or more times on the mat, ropes, ring corner or the opponents body;

(2) by knockout;

(3) by being down on the map for a ten count;

(4) by the referee disqualifying a contestant through a technical knockout;

(5) by the referee stopping a match based upon a ring physician’s advice;

(6) by a contestant’s corner stopping the bout;

(7) by the referee disqualifying a contestant for a violation of these rules; or

(8) by the judges decision based upon technique and aggressiveness minus the number of penalties.

61.112. Muay Thai Fighting. (New section effective February 1, 2005, 30 TexReg 378; amended effective February 1, 2006, 31 TexReg 481)

(a) All rules stated herein apply to the combative sport of muay thai fighting with the exception of §§61.107-61.111, unless this section conflicts with another rule stated herein. If a conflict occurs, this section prevails.

(b) Muay Thai is competition in which a person utilizes punches, elbows, and knees.

(c) It is permissible to strike an opponent’s legs, arms, body, face, and head using the shin, knee, gloved fist or elbow.

(d) Contests will be scheduled for no more than five three-minute rounds with two-minute rest periods.

(e) Contestants must wear gloves weighing not less than 8 oz.

(f) Ankles may be taped or wrapped with approved non-metallic medical wrap.

(g) Male contestants must wear a foul-proof groin protector. Female contestants must wear foul-proof breast protectors.  Plastic breast protectors are adequate.

(h) Spinning back fist blows are allowed, so long as contact is made only with the padded part of the glove.

(i) The following tactics are fouls and may result in disqualification or the deduction of one or more points, at the discretion of the referee;

(1) Head butts;

(2) Striking a downed opponent;

(3) Kicks, punches or any strikes to the groin, kidneys, or spine;

(4) Pricking or pressing eyes;

(5) Spitting or biting;

(6) Striking the throat area;

(7) Hair pulling;

(8) Wrestling or throwing opponent to ground;

(9) Performing any illegal holding or wrestling technique not part of Muay Thai;

(10)  Holding or stepping on one of the ropes while fighting, elbowing, or striking;

(11)  Any un-sportsmanlike conduct;

(12)  Attacking on the break;

(13)  Attacking after the bell has sounded, and

(14)  Throwing in the towel during competition.

(j) The determination of the winner shall be as follows:

(1) by knockout;

(2) by technical knockout;

(3) by points on judges’ score cards, with at least two rounds of five-round fights being completed, if both fighters are injured or counted out, and are unable to continue;

(4) by the referee stopping a match based upon a ring physician’s advice;

(5) by the referee stopping a match when one fighter is outclassing the other;

(6) by a contestants corner stopping the bout;

(7) by the referee disqualifying a contestant for a violation of these rules.

61.120. Medical Advisory Committee. (New section effective December 1, 2003, 28 TexReg 10445; amended effective December 1, 2007, 32 TexReg 8470; amended effective January 1, 2014, 38 TexReg 9505)

(a) The presiding officer of the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation, with the approval of the Commission, shall appoint a medical advisory committee to advise the Department concerning health issues for contestants.

(b) The presiding officer of the advisory committee shall be appointed by the presiding officer of the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation, with the approval of the Commission.

(c) The Committee shall be composed of seven members:

(1) four members shall be medical doctors licensed by the State of Texas;

(2) one member shall be an emergency medical technician; and

(3) two public members.

(d) The Committee shall make recommendations to the Department concerning:

(1) physical tests for contestants; and

(2) assignment requirements for ringside physicians.

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