Rules, and Objective of Arm Wrestling Competition

Rules, and Objective of Arm Wrestling Competition


Arm wrestling is popular across the world. It is often used to tests strength against another person. While physical strength does matter to win an arm-wrestling competition, but a few simple modifications to the technique can help you easily win arm-wrestling and make you a champion. 

In this article, you will learn about various guidelines, professional arm-wrestling rules, and techniques to win even a strong opponent. 

The object of the Game

The main aim of the game is to beat the opponent by restraining the hands onto the table touchpad. This can be done by both technique and strength. Arm wrestling competition is a combination of technique and strength. This game is also highly psychological along with being a test of physical strength. 

Now worldwide arm wrestling championships help to win individual matches as well as score points for the team. 

Players & Equipment

As you know that the physical strength and size are co-related, competitors compete against each other according to the weight classifications. This ensures a fair arm wrestling competition. 

Every player is asked to dress up appropriately, which is in a sleeveless shirt and sports pants with no advertising. Wearing jeans is not allowed either is any kind of elbow, arm, or wrist support.

In an official Arm Wrestling Tournament, the table needs to have the below-mentioned features and also conform to the WAF rules. 

  • Elbow pads – elbow pads are where each player rests their elbow down to wrestle. These help in providing padding below the elbow to prevent injury and discomfort. 
  • Touchpads – these are raise areas located on the opposite sides of the table which each of the respective competitors tries to push the opponent’s hand onto.
  • Hand pegs – These help the competitors to grip on while wrestling and give them some extra leverage.


The different table is used depending on how the arm wrestle competition is to be done, standing or sitting. For a sit-down arm-wrestling competition, the tabletop should be 28” from the floor while in a stand-up match the tabletop needs to be 40’’ from the floor. Rest all the dimensions are the same, which is 36” long and 26” wide. 

The leg of the table should be a minimum of 28” inside and a maximum of 18” leg to leg. Elbow pads should be 2” from the edge and 7 x 7 and 2” thick made with high-quality thick foam. A touchpad should be 10” long and 4” high and placed at an angle of 5, from the inner corners of elbow pads to the inside of the touchpad. 


When playing individual matches, scoring becomes relatively easy. There is a straight forward win/lose in arm-wrestling over one round. Mostly team championships are played in World Armwrestling Championships. Point are awarded to the performance of individual competitor’s and is joined with the country’s team. 

Following points are awarded in each weight class:

  • 1st – 10 points
  • 2nd – 7 points
  • 3rd – 5 points
  • 4th – 4 points
  • 5th – 3 points
  • 6th – 2 points
  • 7th – 1 point

How To Win Arm Wrestling and Become a Champion?

When there are individual matches, the winner is that player who pins the opponent’s arm onto the touchpad. The World arm Wrestling Championship holds just one long round and other competition held under different rules, federations, and regulations, matches are usually fought in best of three or best of five, as preferred. 

During World Armwrestling Championships, the winning team is the one who earned the maximum points from the member’s performance in individual events. 

Professional Arm Wrestling Rules

  • The commencement of each match is announced by two referees, each standing on each side so that officials can see the competitors clearly and also keep an eye on the grips from both sides.
  • There is not a limit to any match but the referee can call a halt if any or both the competitors, according to his opinions is not in a fit state to carry on. 
  • The competitors need to approach the table and make themselves comfortable and from the opponent’s hand. 
  • The grip should always be palm to palm, with the thumb knuckle always visible. The other hands of the competitors should grip the respective hand peg. 
  • Competitors can choose to play in the referee’s grip or else in a strip but the method should be agreed upon by both the competitors. 
  • Once the referees are happy with the grips of both the competitors, the contents start. Both the players will try to pin the opponent’s arm onto the touchpad.
  • Pressure should be applied in sideways capacity when trying to force the opponent’s hand onto the touchpad. Backpressure is a way to drag the opponent’s hand off the center of the table which is against the rules of the game. 
  • The player wins the match if one of the competitors pins the opponent’s hand on the touch pad. If the referee declares the pin valid, they will shout ‘Stop”! And raise their arm immediately.
  • A pin is valid when any part of the competitors touches the pad naturally. 
  • There are numerous ways of committing fouls in Arm Wrestling. Some of them are touching a part of your own body during the match or dropping the shoulder below the touchpad height, crossing shoulders into the opposition area, poor sportsmanship, foul language are some of them.
  • One foul = two warnings and two fouls leading to disqualification, which ultimately makes the opponent win the match immediately. 




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