2020 ARMOR CREATES WORLD’S FIRST DATA DRIVEN MARTIAL ARTS TOURNAMENT FROM HOME

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEWS PROVIDED BY 2020 Armor
September 8th, 2020, 2:30 ET

2020 ARMOR COMBINE: WORLD-CLASS COMPETITION FROM HOME

2020 Armor, the leader in electronic training and scoring gear for martial arts, is hosting the World’s First Data-Driven Martial Arts Tournament – the 2020 Armor Combine. Amateurs and Olympians from around the world are competing for the title of World’s Fastest reflexes. The Combine uses 2020 Armor’s patented technology to empower athletes to compete safely and remotely against each other. The tournament climaxes in an esports broadcast live format, with star-studded commentators from the traditional martial arts and video game world on Saturday, September 12th at 1PM EST.

“Competition and showing performance is a fundamental aspect of martial arts, and during the pandemic, the only martial art competitions have been around showing one’s form – known as patterns” says 2020 Armor CEO Ali Ghafour. “This is only half of our martial art training. There has been nothing on sparring or measurable metrics like reaction, power and stamina. The 2020 Armor hardware and app can measure exactly this and the industry can start having decentralized tournaments that are data driven, exciting, generate revenues and merge into the world of video games. It is a really exciting mix.”

Hundreds of participants from across the globe enter the first Combine and are awaiting the final results. 

“For my students this has been incredible,” says Master Jon Powell, of FACM Taekwondo, based in Florida.  “The Combine has given them something to look forward to. Something to train towards. They’ve been working so much harder in class since the event was announced. It makes them feel like they’re really a part of something special in these uncertain times. I couldn’t be more thankful for this event.” 

Mooto, one of the world’s largest martial arts equipment suppliers, joined the Combine as a major sponsor, excited by 2020 Armor’s vision, and offering prizes to the top 8 contestants. The event has also gotten attention outside of the traditional martial arts from the world of Esports. 

“The gaming industry has been watching 2020 Armor closely since its product was released,” said Evan Kubes, President of Rumble Gaming. “The immersive nature of the training gear would be enough on its own to excite gamers, but with this combine, 2020 Armor is taking a huge step towards further integrating martial arts into the esports world. We’re excited to see how the FGC community responds once when they get their hands on 2020 Armor.”

leAD Sports & Health Tech Partners, the world’s leading sports and health tech investment platform  inspired by legend of the sports industry Adi Dassler, sees this event as a huge step forward in 2020 Armor’s evolution in the martial arts industry. 

“Competition brings out the best in us,” says Christoph Sonnen, Co-Founder & CEO of leAD, Partner ADvantage Sports Tech Fund. “We don’t just want it, we need it. It’s incredible that during a pandemic – when you can’t leave your city – 2020 Armor’s technology empowers kids to compete against their heroes without leaving home. Imagine having a chance to face an Olympian. Imagine what that would feel like.  And you don’t have to win. Every single participant in the Combine learns about data-driven training and has the chance to push their own training forward by leaps and bounds. They don’t need to guess how much faster,  stronger, they are becoming. The technology can prove it. Tune in on Saturday, September 12th and you’re going to see the foundation of the professional league they are creating. It’s going to be a tournament unlike any other.” 

The Future

“Anyone can throw a Combine. The model is scalable for any organization – from a small club, to a 200,000 participant event. The 2020 Armor Combine is a model and glimpse for the future of martial arts powered by 2020 Armor,” says 2020 Armor CEO Ali Ghafour. “Our patented technology will usher in the future of how martial arts is practiced and viewed: a form of martial arts that is entertaining, easy to understand, and practiced anywhere in the world.”

To watch the Combine, join the Facebook event to be notified when we go live on September 12th at 1PM EST.  

About 20/20 Armor

20/20 Armor is a sports technology company that develops martial art scoring equipment and software, transforming martial arts into a mainstream professional sport like soccer. The company’s flagship product tracks impacts through a vest that shows the score on the vest itself using scoring from popular video games. Customers include the largest martial art clubs in the world. Founders & investors of 20/20 Armor are former professional martial art athletes. leAD Sports, founded by the family members of Adidas is a major investor. 

20/20 Armor’s vision is to be the standard of impact measurement for all martial arts and to be the foundation technology and creators of a new spectator friendly professional martial art league. 

For more information: 

2020armor.com

Facebook.com/2020armor

Instagram.com/2020armor

About Rumble Gaming

Rumble Gaming is an industry leading talent agency that bridges the gap between brands and the esports and gaming ecosystem by facilitating partnership opportunities and creating authentic marketing activations. As a media platform, we have a content distribution network bolstered across the spheres of digital and linear media. This, coupled with production studios in Toronto, New York and Los Angeles, makes our offering uniquely positioned to create content and disseminate content on behalf of our clients and partners. 

For more information go to https://rumblegaming.gg/

About leAD

leAD Sports & Health Tech Partners sources, funds, and drives growth of early-stage sports & health tech startups globally. leAD was founded in 2016 and was inspired by the legend of the sports industry Adi Dassler. Since inception, leAD has taken on new companies into its business every year. With 30 companies from around the globe under its portfolio, leAD is constantly empowering founders to create their own legacy. leAD works with groundbreaking solutions across the verticals of fan engagement, connected athletes, and health & well-being and focuses on driving growth through smart investment, premier network access, and expert training. leAD has three three investment vehicles – Academy, Portfolio, and ADvantage Fund – and commercial partnerships with Citi Private Bank, Tavistock Group, OurCrowd, and Lake Nona to further support portfolio growth. 

To learn more about leAD, visit www.leadsports.com 

How Club Owners Will Benefit Big From The 2020 Armor Combine

The 2020 Armor Combine, the world’s first data driven competition, can get club owners who own 2020 Armor $1,000.  

Your students can compete for the title of World’s Fastest with martial artists across the globe from the comfort of your dojang.

No plane tickets. No hotel. Just the competition your students crave that other schools in your area can’t offer. 

Why Your School is going to benefit big from the Combine

The winner of the 2020 Armor Combine gets a one of a kind Golden Championship Chestguard and a $1000 scholarship for their martial arts training and development. That $1000 scholarship goes to their school. Because we want to reward you for the great things you are doing during these difficult times. 

This might be the only tournament your students get to compete in for the rest of the year and we are doing everything we can to make it extra special. Not everyone is going to win. But everyone’s efforts will be celebrated. 

Here’s what they’ll get: 

  • Send in your videos training for the 2020 Armor Combine and we’ll repost them to our over 20,000 social followers
  • Everyone who enters will get a special digital certificate to celebrate their participation in the Combine. 
  • The Top 25 participants will get a handcrafted Golden colored certificate sent to their homes to celebrate their achievements that will list their World Ranking. 
  • The Top 16 entries will be announced on globally televised live broadcast on September 12th. 
  • The top 8 will compete for the Gold and get free 2020 Armor T-shirts. 
  • The champion will be a legend forever and be crowned World’s Fastest

It’s simple to enter and completely free. All you have to do is follow the directions at 2020armor.com/combine. Entries close August 26th, so be sure to get your submissions in on time to qualify.

MAY 7TH 20/20 ARMOR APP UPDATE: MAJOR NEW FEATURES RELEASED IN OUR BIGGEST UPDATE EVER

APP v1.2.12 UPDATE: MAY 7, 2020 

The newest release of the 20/20 Armor App is live on the Google Play and the App Store! We have jam packed this release with the most cutting edge features to give you the edge in training like never before. Let’s get into it
PART I: FIT TESTWith this release we see the first major step towards comprehensive analytics in the martial arts. The all new Fit Test runs you through a mixed battery of physical tests to get your first look at a comprehensive overview of your martial arts specific fitness and readiness. Track these stats so you can see your growth over time or even compare your metrics to others around the globe!
PART II: HIGH PERFORMANCE LIVEHigh Performance Live gives you the ability to share your training with others like never before! Just set up your phone for video, start training and see your scores and performance indicators tracked live alongside you on camera! Time to prove to your friends that you really can put the pedal to the metal and show them just what your best performance really looks like. Share your videos to social media and challenge your opponents no matter where they are!
PART III: GAME LOGSWant to see how you did in a previous game? Need a record to show that you really did get that high score? Then simply check under your Profile and find that game in your new Tracking Log, recording your performance for review at any time. You can even add notes to individual games to compliment your records of training and growth.
PART IV: SCHOOL BRANDINGTime to show your school spirit! Our flagship Energy scoring mode now supports customization with your school’s name, website and logo on every recorded video! Make sure you fill out this information in your profile and represent!
And of course, we have added all kinds of stability upgrades and bug fixes to give you a more robust experience across devices.
IMPORTANT: To use any of these new app features, all chestguards must be updated to firmware v2.5.0. For all newly shipped or previously updated units, this can be done through the app itself with no need to use the Desktop Updater.
For questions, tech support and troubleshooting on the new app or any other facet of your 20/20 Armor, please send an email to support@2020armor.com.

Want your school to be a part of the future of martial arts?

PLACE YOUR ORDER TODAY!

How To Get Back Students You Lost And Increase Revenue After Re-Opening

So you’ve successfully reopened your martial arts school in compliance with your state health guidelines and want to get back to business.

If you are still working on that, check out our article on what you need to do to be compliant with your local health guidelines. 

This article will give you tips garnered from industry experts on what you can do to regain lost students and increase your revenue to make up for losses from Coronavirus.

The important thing to keep in mind is that all strategies for attracting new students and retaining the ones you have must be in compliance with the health guidelines so you’re going to have to be creative. 

Where You At Now

Most school owners had at least 30% of their students not move over to their online classes. This could be because they weren’t able to get into the online classes or because of financial need.

A 30% percent drop in revenue is a huge barrier. But it also underlines a key area where you need to have a strategy. How do you regain those students? 

Figure Out Why: The Power of Personal Attention

The first question you have to ask yourself is why they didn’t follow you to online. Arrange a stop by at their house where you can give the student some school swag and get them excited about training again. If they aren’t comfortable with this, you can also arrange a video call where you can reiterate the value of training, explain that you are going to be offering some training at your school and how easy it is to do video training to supplement in class. Show them the personal attention they’ll be getting. This can include private zoom lessons on a weekly basis with their instructors. 

Personal attention = student retention. 

Like what you see? Get more tips on how you can grow your club from leading industry experts by signing up below.



1)Converting From Online To In Person 

A lot of students and their parents are going to be anxious about returning. You should communicate to them all the safety measures you have in place. Classes of no more than 10, offering earlier start times and more classes, taking temperatures before entrance into the building, frequent cleaning and time between classes to allow for social distancing as outlined in our previous article. . By being clear about the efforts you are taking you can ease if not eliminate their anxiety. 

Also continue to offer online training for the foreseeable future. It’s going to take a while for people to become comfortable in the new normal and training at your school will involve an acceptance of a small risk. 

If you cut prices for online training, you should consider bringing them back up as soon as kids start training at school. You can’t devalue your services at the same time when you have to teach more classes and have the same overhead. 

2) Focus On Growing Family Memberships

A big take away from successful club owners dealing with Coronavirus is to focus on growing your family memberships. 

Why? 

To practice at home during the shutdown, most of the students needed some form of parental supervision. They had to get involved to hold targets or joined their kids as a bonding exercise. Parents were involved in martial arts training on a scale never seen before. Use this new connection to martial arts to your advantage.  Focus on getting them involved permanently and convert their membership into a family tier.

Family memberships allow you to give deals, but still make more income than you’d otherwise. This also can radically grow your network as siblings join other siblings and their parents and then connect you to their friends and family as well. This can a real chance at growth. 

3) Expand Private Lessons

As we mentioned earlier, personal attention is the key to retention. Each student should continue to get their once a week private lessons they were getting on Zoom. You could even have one particularly personable instructor in charge of making sure these happen throughout the week. It can really solidify your relationship to your students. 

20/20 Armor Hack For Private Sessions 


But 10 minutes for a 100 or even 200 students can take it out of you. We recommend getting them to train at home with 20/20 Armor’s New Live Stream Training Mode. 

This way they can measure each individual kick in power, stamina and reaction time. They can send their instructor their video and you can give them detailed analysis on what they need to do to improve in a quick message that will take you less than 2-3 minutes. These private lessons will be immensely valuable and also data driven. You’ll be able to watch their video and give them tips they can use. This is a great way to supercharge the value of online lessons for your students. 

A huge benefit to you is that they’ll be way less time consuming and serve as homework that keeps your student invested in their training. 

SUMMARY 

So those are three strategies that should bring in new revenue and help you regain the students that you’ve lost.

  1. Organize video chats or stop bys to get buy in
  2. Focus on Growing Family Membership
  3. Expand Online Private Lessons (Superpowered by 20/20 Armor)

Let us know some strategies that are working for you and help school owners like yourself navigate these difficult times. 

Interested in making more money?

Learn how 20/20 Armor can help your school generate more revenue with these three key strategies.

TKD KICKS CORONA WAS A HUGE SUCCESS!

We (you) did it!!!

We had 1,500 participants who showed up for the amazing TKD Kicks Corona training session. We have never heard of a taekwondo class that big. Well done!!

You should be very proud of yourself for standing with the TKD community and fighting for the doctors and nurses on the frontline protecting our families. 

The event has raised $8000 dollars so far! To put that number in perspective, that’s enough for 25,000 masks! You can still donate by going here https://www.canadahelps.org/en/pages/taekwondo-kicks-corona/ 

Let’s get to $10,000!!!

For those of you who missed the class, it’s at the top of this post for you to watch whenever you’d like.

We’d like to thank our incredible instructors. Here are their social media handles if you want to thank them or ask them to do a seminar in the future with you:

Master Tim Thackrey@timthack 

Master Johnny Nguyen @jwintkd

Master Claire Kim Facebook.com/theClaireBear

Master Stephen Lambdin @stephenlambdin

Master Yvette Yong @yvetteyong.canada

Thank you for creating such a high energy training session and sharing your insights on facing failure, learning from defeat and how to be brave in times like this. It was a truly inspiring experience for everyone who attended. 

We Think You’ll Find These Guys Useful. 

We handpicked these companies to sponsor this event because they make their living helping martial arts practitioners, club owners and parents. Here is what they do, and their websites:

Juice Compound – They do remote coaching – you got a taste from coach Tim Thackrey in class today. There’s a reason Olympians rely on Juice Compound.  They bring  out the best in athletes across the globe. 

2020 Armor:  They provide Martial art scoring vests for your school, home training and high performance teams. 20/20 Armor generates revenue for club owners AND elevates individual practitioners by providing them the analytics they need to level up their performance. 

Prima IP – They do intellectual property for big and small businesses, and this brilliant company is run by Master Marcelo Sarkis. He is an expert in the field and a martial artist. if you need IP services, he is the person to go to.  

Block Insurance: Ms Beth Block is no stranger to the martial art community.  She’s helped school owners for 30 years. If you are a club owner and need to talk to someone who knows their stuff when it comes to insurance and martial art schools she is the leading expert in the industry. There is no one better.

Spark Membership:  Spark Membership provides best in class software for your martial art school. The owners are very successful school owners themselves – so they developed a system to make it easier for you to run your club. Whether it’s automations, marketing or upgrades they’ve got you covered. 

Pulse Taekwondo: The man running this whole thing behind the scenes is Master Emerson Wong. An expert in martial art training, video, stunts, XMA. He also runs three amazing schools. Please check to see if you are close to any of his locations by visiting his link.

Akross – If you need martial art supplies, these are the guys to go to in Canada. Again, this company is run by martial artists who are passionate about the business and have top notch customer service.  

Thank you to everyone in our community who came together with us to make history.  We couldn’t appreciate you more. 

Levelling Up Your Performance With Data Driven Training With Former Canadian Taekwondo Champion Ali Ghafour

On April 4th we held our first live Train At Home stream session with our CEO and former Canadian Taekwondo Champion Master Ali Ghafour in the comfort of his home dojang. You can do these exercises in any room where you have enough space to train. We recommend living rooms and garages if there isn’t a dedicated room in your house.

The key difference between working out with 20/20 Armor and your normal fighting bag or BOB is that you have metrics that allow you to see your progress. You can learn whether your best at the beginning of your work out or after you’ve warmed up. You can learn whether your right arm is stronger than your left. Even Master Ghafour was surprised that his right leg was more powerful than his left leg. Which makes sense. Because our intuition is flawed and our analytic system is based on hard numbers.

In this video, Ali takes you through an easy to follow warm up and a couple of drills centered around measuring his speed and reaction time then a cool down. Once he finished he look at his stats and broke down what they meant to coaches and fighters looking to excel in the competitive world. He also took a look at how with data driven training beginners and regular practioners could use it to elevate their performance.

Want to learn how to level up your game with performance analytics? Submit your email below



A great thing about training with the app is that you can share your progress on social media with your friends and compete to get the highest scores. This adds in a great element of competition to your work out routine and can give you that added push to be your best. Now more than ever we need a reason to stay motivated and it's scientifically proven that seeing regular improvement keeps us focused on our achieving our goals.

Renowned strength and conditioning coach for Olympic Athletes Tim Thackery of Juice Compound Training said "The updates to your product are next level & going to be absolutely essential for data driven training!"

To learn how you can get started training at home with 20/20 Armor go to our dedicated Training At Home page to get all the details.

Get Your Students Training At Home

We’ve recently received a lot of interest from parents at our schools about buying 20/20 Armor to train at home with their kids. 

The parents were excited to perfect the techniques you teach them in class, get fit as a family and keep their kids focused on setting goals and achieving them. 

In this article we will explain the direct and indirect financial benefits of selling 20/20 Armor to your students and how you can get started on this new revenue stream at your school during this upcoming Holiday season. 

Direct Revenue:  $75 dollars per vest

Our retail price for our video game scoring vests is $599 per unit. If you buy in bulk you can achieve significant savings.  For ten vests you can purchase them at a special discount of $5250. Which means you can make $75 dollars per vest. 

Now that’s only the beginning of the benefits you can receive by selling our video game scoring vests to your students. 

Indirect Revenue:

  1. When students train at home you dramatically increase the chance of parents taking classes at your school because the equipment is available and they can take part in training with their child.  
  2. Once the parent begins taking classes the rest of the family will shortly follow and your membership will start to explode.  It’s surprising how often the family are ignored as a potential referral channel. 
  3. Students who train at home are more focused in class and more likely to continue with their training. This will result in a significant retention benefit.
  4.  Students who have their own 20/20 Armor are also more likely to recruit their friends. Their friends come to their house and get to practice with the equipment. You can get students who would never have been interested in martial arts but love videogames. 
  5. Since your kids have their own armor, you have more equipment available when you want to run a tournament, which means you can run bigger events and make more money. 

As you can see the indirect financial benefits are even greater than the direct benefits. 

Let’s do a simple calculation of the potential impact on your club with just ten units purchased by your students for at home training. 

ATTRACT NEW STUDENTS: 

Let go extremely conservative and say you get one student vest purchase you get 1 friend and one family member for one year of classes. These referrals are direct referrals and don’t include going to demos or trade shows. 

The financial benefits at 1 year of classes for the parent and the child are 100 a month x12. Roughly 1200 dollars per student.  So that’s 2,400 dollars right there for attracting new students at no cost to you. So times that by 10 units for ten students and you get $24,000 dollars in recruitment benefits. 

RETAIN YOUR BLACK BELTS: 

The students who makes the purchase becomes more engaged in their classes.  One student in a multi year black belt program is worth between 7-10 thousand dollars to a school over a series of years.  Training at home with 20/20 Armor keeps them engaged in the program and helps prevent them from quitting. It serves as an insurance policy on your child’s training. Say that 2 of the students who buy it are in a black belt program.  

The retention value of just two of these black belt program students is worth $15,000 dollars to your school over a  three year period. That’s not taking into account the effect their dedication has on their fellow students. When they begin to excel at tournaments other students will want to follow in their footsteps. 

THRIVE WITH NEW REVENUE: 

With 20/20 Armor running your tournaments are 80% less expensive because the judging is done on the vest and you only need a centre referee.  Your rings run faster. Delays are drastically reduced. Your experience is better. People come back next year. 

Now these are conservative estimates of the benefits your school can get by selling 20/20 Armor to your students. They don’t take into account non financial benefits like improved performance at tournaments or the mental and physical benefits parents and children will get from training together as a family.  

SELLING 20/20 ARMOR TO YOUR PARENTS: 

Now that you can see the clear benefits to your school from selling 20/20 Armor to your students, let’s talk about how you make it happen.  Here are four sales points we have found incredibly effective with parents at our schools: 

  • Secure your investment in your child’s martial arts education and goal to get to black belt by making sure that your kids practice what they learn in class at home
  • Training with your child at home gives you a chance to become involved in what your child loves and form a closer connection 
  • See your child’s progress and know where they stand with kids at their level. With 20/20 Armor they can improve their speed, strength, timing and accuracy 
  • Get fit as a family. Train with your kid and do the exercises we provided to keep up with your own training when you can’t make it to the gym or dojang 
  • It’s an excellent  gift idea. It’s the same price as an X-BOX but gets you in shape. 

TACTICS: 

We recommend reaching out to your student’s parents through a variety of different channels.  By providing them with the information they need they can make an informed decision and increase their commitment to their child’s training. 

IN CLASS: 

Speak to your students about 20/20 Armor. You can talk about what they can learn with 20/20 Armor and how it will improve their speed, accuracy, power and timing.  

PRIVATE LESSON EXTENSION: 

If you have 20/20 Armor you can also do private lessons with interested students and their families and charge for the lessons. Once you have walked them through the training process they will be more likely to buy and will have improved their technique. 

In fact private lessons for the family are a great way to make more revenue with these direct sales. Because they may run out of ideas and you can fill that need. 

IN YOUR HALLWAY:  

Put up the poster we will provide you with.  When parents come to pick up their kids you can mention this at home training program and the benefits it will have for their family. 

BY EMAIL: 

Send out an email to the parents in your school alerting them to this opportunity and explain these four benefits. 

FACEBOOK GROUP: 

If you have a Facebook group you can take short videos of your students using 20/20 Armor in school.  Explain the benefits of using them at school. This is a visual medium and this is a visual product. Take videos of your students using 20/20 Armor and post them!

Once students and their parents begin training at home you can issue family challenges. This will inspire other parents to buy the equipment so they can take part. 

INSTAGRAM: 

Share pictures and videos of your family training together. Give them challenges. Make parents and children into a team and electrify social media as a potential recruitment tool for your school. 

SUMMARY

This Holiday season it is time to get your student’s family involved in the martial arts they love.  Taking their practice to their homes will improve their speed, timing, accuracy and power and make sure that they fully integrate the lessons you are teaching them in class. 

It will help them stick with their studies and give them the confidence they need to face life outside your amazing school. Your school will make $75 dollars of direct revenue from the sale of each vest. 

These sales will indirectly benefit your recruitment and retention efforts and can add thousands of dollars of revenue you wouldn’t be making otherwise. Go to 20/20 Armor.com/athome to find out more about the benefits of training at home with our revolutionary video game scoring vests.   

Make sure to place your order as soon as possible to make sure your order can ship for Christmas. Get in touch with us at scott@2020armor.com or in the chat to get started immediately! 

2020 ARMOR ANNOUNCES FUNDING FOR A TOTAL OF 2.5 M

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
NOVEMBER 7, 2019

TORONTO — 20/20 Armor, the company transforming martial arts into a mainstream professional sport, announced the closing of the third successful investment of $1M round. This round was championed by leAD Sports, the premier sports venture ecosystem inspired by Adi Dassler, founder of Adidas. 

20/20 Armor’s total funding has now reached $2.5 million.  

Ali Ghafour, founder and CEO of 20/20 Armor, said the follow-on investment by leAD gave the company the capital and board members to shape the future of martial arts. 

“We are generating great revenues and have zero product returns. We are growing the overall martial arts market by merging video games into it. In doing so, we are also laying the foundation for a massive future opportunity by creating a professional martial art league for the masses, that anyone can watch and understand,” says Ghafour. “We are very well positioned for this with our team and IP. This funding round will be used to create more inventory to keep up with the overwhelming customer demand.”

20/20 Armor is extremely happy to announce that they are bringing on former race car driver  Harold Primat as a Board Member. Harold is a world-class investor, one of the shareholders for leAD sports, and an avid supporter of 20/20 Armor’s vision. His experience, network, and passion for sports will be a great addition to the board.

Christoph Sonnen, Co-Founder & CEO of leAD Sports, and Partner of ADvantage Sports Tech Fund said he was thrilled about leAD’s investment in 20/20 Armor and listed the reasons.

“It’s a pleasure to work with the 20/20 Armor. Their vision is in line with leAD’s mission to invest in companies that are truly shaping the future of sports,” says Sonnen. “The decades of experience and their passion for martial arts make the 20/20 Armor team unstoppable. They have shown great sales traction and organic growth since their inception three years ago. We’re excited to see what’s in store for them!”

Sonnen said that 20/20 Armor has the potential to become a leader in fan engagement and training enhancements because of the company’s IoT devices and mobile apps with new data points and gaming options, which are unavailable today. 

“The launch of their mobile app is an industry game-changer,” says Sonnen. “Their whole new approach called ‘In-Game Reality’ puts the player inside their very own video game. And they can share this experience with their friends on social media, creating brand awareness and valuable engagement. With this feature, they take another step towards making martial arts become a mainstream phenomenon. This can impact the lives of millions of people that already practice martial arts and millions that are yet to start practicing and will discover the sport because of 20/20 Armor.”

About leAD
leAD, the premier sports venture ecosystem, is inspired by Adi Dassler, the founding father of the modern sports industry. leAD works with the most promising early-stage sports tech startups from around the world, aiming to propel their growth through smart investment, premier network access, and expert mentorship. leAD consists of the leAD SPORT1 Accelerator, targeting pre-seed startups, the leAD Business Builder, focused on the gap between seed and growth, and the Series A ADvantage Sports Tech Fund.

About 20/20 Armor

20/20 Armor is a sports technology company that develops martial art scoring equipment and software, transforming martial arts into a mainstream professional sport like soccer. The company’s flagship product tracks impacts through a vest that shows the score on the vest itself using scoring from popular video games. Customers include the largest martial art clubs in the world. Founders & investors of 20/20 Armor are former professional martial art athletes. leAD Sports, founded by the family members of Adidas is a major investor. 

20/20 Armor’s vision is to be the standard of impact measurement for all martial arts and to be the foundation technology and creators of a new spectator friendly professional martial art league

The Rise of the Midwest Taekwondo League Powered By 20/20 Armor

His students at American Taekwondo in Brookfield, Wisconsin call him Master Vorpahl. At some point in the future, we suspect the world will know Aaron Vorpahl as the “Vince McMahon” of Taekwondo.
Master Vorpahl was an early adopter of 20/20 Armor, getting his first recreational electronic chest guards in the summer of 2018. Vorpahl started wondering how he could push this technology even further. Almost immediately an idea began to form. That idea would become the Midwest Taekwondo League.

“I love wrestling and my buddy loves wrestling,” says Vorpahl. “Once we started seeing what kind of coolness the armor brings to sparring, it doesn’t seem like just Taekwondo. It had the same feeling when you do something different and cool.  So we wanted to have a tournament. The idea of having a belt for a champion was pretty awesome in our minds. We each bought half of a belt and decided to see what happens.”
Aaron and his team started with just one ring using 20/20 equipment at an in-house tournament for color belts.
“There is a real problem in Taekwondo and that’s the only thing people care about are black belts,” says Vorpahl. “We wanted to do something for the color belts. Give them a lane where they could compete. There is more excitement for the color belts. Everyone is so serious with black belts.  Black belts lack that funness that color belts have in spades.”
They thought they’d get a positive reaction but they didn’t expect the intensity of the response. The crowd around the 20/20 ring was so loud that they had to shut down the Daedo ring. People were absolutely losing their mind cheering on the competitors.
It was as wrestling announcer Gorilla Monsoon would have said, “complete pandemonium.”
With this initial success, Master Vorpahl saw the potential for something greater. What if it wasn’t just an in-house tournament but a competition between schools? So the Midwest Taekwondo League between to take shape. The requirements to join the league were simple.
“To be in the Midwest Taekwondo League you need to have 20/20 Armor in your school,” says Vorpahl.  “You have to publicize events. You have to put the league on Facebook, each school needs to have its own belt and they need to throw an in school tournament to crown a champion. The school champions are the ones who can challenge for the league belt. If you’re a league champion, you don’t pay for the tournament. They get to go free because they’re the champion. It’s a small thing but gets the kids excited.”
If you’ve been following the Midwest Taekwondo League on Instagram and Facebook you’ve seen the beginning of legendary rivalries being formed between schools. Champions rising and falling.  Drama that draws you in and makes you a fan.

“We are going to try new stuff,” says Master Vorpahl.  “This year we want to add four or five new belts. We want to do tag team belts. We want to have a belt just for women.  And some weird hardcore belt that can’t be defended in a Taekwondo ring. That has to be defended at a different style of location. Something silly like that. To keep it fun and exciting.”
20/20 Armor CEO Ali Ghafour has been tracking this league as it rose almost overnight to become the most exciting thing on his social media feed.
“I’m this league’s biggest fan. I can’t get enough of it. It really is the coolest thing,” says Ghafour. “You see the confidence Master Vorpahl is giving these kids by putting them in the spotlight and giving them a chance to compete in this league and it’s such an affirmation that we are on the right path. He’s teaching other school owners how they can make another stream of revenue through tournaments and retain the students they already do have using our equipment.  We couldn’t have a better brand ambassador than Master Vorpahl. I can’t wait to see what he’s planning next.”
So what is Master Vorpahl’s next step in conquering the world of TKD?  
It’ll include the 20/20 Armor app, which is currently in closed beta and has been released to select customers for testing. 

“My dad and I are going to make a whole event that is just 20/20,” says Vorpahl. “We are going to do it so that it’s visual. We want to use the app so that people will able to see the fighters on screen.  There will be a scoreboard, you’ll be able to see the health bar on the screen like in Street Fighter. And you’re going to see it on 60 inch TVs on each corner of the ring. We’ll have a competition to see who’s the hardest kicking blue belt, who has the fastest reactions.  We’re going to build a stage do the 20/20 fights. This thing is only going to get bigger and better. This great community has sprung up to support us. I couldn’t do this without the support of the parents, the work of my partner in Midwest Taekwondo who handles the promotion stuff and without these great kids giving their all.”   
Vorpahl has found the armor incredibly helpful not just in creating new revenue streams through tournaments, but also in helping to retain younger students.
“I saw the 20/20 Armor and I knew we had to have it. It was just so cool,” says Vorpahl.  “It’s an excellent retention tool. The armor helps tremendously with the younger students, with the white belts, with the orange belts.  It helps them realize if they are kicking correctly. They can work on their speed and on their precision. They can see how hard they kick and they can see their progress.  They love watching the lights, they love watching the meters go down. Plus it’s that video game feel. Our students love it.”
If you want to follow the Midwest Taekwondo League’s rapid ascent to global dominance follow them on Instagram at @midwesttaekwondo and Facebook at fb.com/midwesttaekwondoleague. If you want to get started using 20/20 Armor in your own school open a chat session in the bottom right-hand corner or get in touch with Scott@2020armor.com!