FIAS have announced a series of fundamental changes in sambo ©Getty Images

The Executive Committee of the International SAMBO Federation (FIAS) has announced a series of fundamental changes in the sport, including weight categories and bout lengths at official competitions.

From January 1 2021, divisions for both women and men will be altered, with the weight limits for the lightest competitors of both genders raised, while the heavyweight level for male fighters will be lowered.

The new weight categories for junior and adult women will be 50 kilograms, 54kg, 59kg, 65kg, 72kg, 80kg, and over-80kg.

Previously, they had been 48kg, 52kg, 56kg, 60kg, 64kg, 68kg, 72kg, 80kg and over-80kg.

For junior and adult men, the new divisions are 58kg, 64kg, 71kg, 79kg, 88kg, 98kg, and over-98 kg.

Currently, they are 52kg, 57kg, 62kg, 68kg, 74kg, 82kg, 90kg, 100kg and over-100kg.

Weight categories for cadet and youth level fighters will also be altered.

FIAS has also announced men and women will both fight for five minutes at adult and junior level, with four minutes for youths and cadets.

Previously, adults and junior women's fights have lasted four minutes.

From January 1, 2021, divisions for both women and men will be altered ©Getty Images
From January 1, 2021, divisions for both women and men will be altered ©Getty Images

The first World Beach SAMBO Championships will also be held in Cyprus in 2020.

The Championships, the first of their kind, will feature beach SAMBO, which differs slightly from the traditional form of the sport. 

Rules are modified in that the combat lasts three minutes, without penalties and mat wrestling, and until the first assessed movement, while uniforms for the athletes and referees are also modified.

The meeting, on October 1, also set the age limit for referees at official FIAS competitions at 55, and the limit for the chief referee, chief secretary and deputy chief referee at 60.

It was also decided that should a competition weight category feature only one fighter, no medal ceremony will be held, however the gold will be counted towards their team's official total.

The event was attended by FIAS President Vasily Shestakov, secretary general Roberto Ferraris, and vice-presidents Alamjon Mullaev, Dalil Skalli, Sergey Eliseev and Andrey Klyamko.

Also present were members of the Executive Committee, Laure Fournier, Monique Athanase, Cesar Arteaga, Tatjana Trivic, Merampi Iliadis, Moon Chong-keum and Nobuyuki Asai.