Mixed martial arts

Mixed martial arts


Mixed Martial Arts is a full-contact combat
sport that allows the use of both striking and grappling techniques, both standing and
on the ground, from a variety of other combat sports and martial arts. Various mixed-style
contests took place throughout Europe, Japan and the Pacific Rim during the early 1900s.
The combat sport of vale tudo that had developed in Brazil from the 1920s was brought to the
United States by the Gracie family in 1993 with the founding of the Ultimate Fighting
Championship. The more dangerous vale-tudo-style bouts of
the early UFCs were made safer with the implementation of additional rules, leading to the popular
regulated form of MMA seen today. Originally promoted as a competition with the intention
of finding the most effective martial arts for real unarmed combat situations, competitors
were pitted against one another with few rules. Later, fighters employed multiple martial
arts into their style while promoters adopted additional rules aimed at increasing safety
for competitors and to promote mainstream acceptance of the sport. The name mixed martial
arts was coined by television critic Howard Rosenberg, in 1993, in his review of UFC 1.
The term gained popularity when the website newfullcontact.com, then one of the biggest
covering the sport, hosted and reprinted the article. Following these changes, the sport
has seen increased popularity with a pay-per-view business that rivals boxing and professional
wrestling. History
Early history During the Classic Greek era there existed
an ancient Olympic combat sport, known as Pankration which featured a combination of
grappling and striking skills, similar to modern mixed martial arts. This sport originated
in Ancient Greece and was later passed on to the Romans.
No-holds-barred fighting reportedly took place in the late 1880s when wrestlers representing
styles, Greco-Roman wrestling and many others met in tournaments and music-hall challenge
matches throughout Europe. In the USA, the first major encounter between a boxer and
a wrestler in modern times took place in 1887 when John L. Sullivan, then heavyweight world
boxing champion, entered the ring with his trainer, Greco-Roman Wrestling champion William
Muldoon, and was slammed to the mat in two minutes. The next publicized encounter occurred
in the late 1890s when future heavyweight boxing champion Bob Fitzsimmons took on European
Greco-Roman Wrestling champion Ernest Roeber. In September 1901, Frank “Paddy” Slavin, who
had been a contender for Sullivan’s boxing title, knocked out future world wrestling
champion Frank Gotch in Dawson City, Canada. Another early example of mixed martial arts
was Bartitsu, which Edward William Barton-Wright founded in London in 1899. Combining judo,
jujutsu, boxing, savate and canne de combat, Bartitsu was the first martial art known to
have combined Asian and European fighting styles, and which saw MMA-style contests throughout
England, pitting European and Japanese champions against representatives of various European
wrestling styles. The history of modern MMA competition can
be traced to mixed style contests throughout Europe, Japan, and the Pacific Rim during
the early 1900s; In Japan these contests were known as merikan, from the Japanese slang
for “American [fighting]”. Merikan contests were fought under a variety of rules including
points decision, best of three throws or knockdowns, and victory via knockout or submission.
As the popularity of professional wrestling waned after World War I it split into two
genres: “shoot”, in which the fighters actually competed, and “show”, which evolved into modern
professional wrestling. In 1936, heavyweight boxing contender Kingfish
Levinsky and veteran professional wrestler Ray Steele competed in a mixed match, which
Steele won in 35 seconds. In 1963, “Judo” Gene Lebell fought professional
boxer Milo Savage in a no-holds-barred match. Lebell won by Harai Goshi to rear naked choke,
leaving Savage unconscious. This was the very first televised bout of mixed-style fighting
in North America. The hometown crowd was so enraged that they began to boo and throw chairs
at Lebell. At one point, Lebell was stabbed while leaving the ring.
In the late 1960s to early 1970s, the concept of combining the elements of multiple martial
arts was popularized in the west by Bruce Lee via his system philosophy of Jeet Kune
Do. Lee believed that “the best fighter is not a Boxer, Karate or Judo man. The best
fighter is someone who can adapt to any style, to be formless, to adopt an individual’s own
style and not following the system of styles.” In 2004, UFC President Dana White would call
Lee the “father of mixed martial arts” stating: “If you look at the way Bruce Lee trained,
the way he fought, and many of the things he wrote, he said the perfect style was no
style. You take a little something from everything. You take the good things from every different
discipline, use what works, and you throw the rest away”.
Muhammad Ali vs. Antonio Inoki took place in Japan in 1976. Both fighters refused to
engage in the other’s style and after a 15 round stalemate, it was declared a draw. Inoki
flopped to his back for the duration of the bout and kicked Ali’s legs. Ali had sustained
a substantial amount of damage to his legs, causing him to be hospitalized for the next
three days. In 1988 Rick Roufus Challenged Changpuek Kiatsongrit
to a non title Muay Thai vs. kickboxing super fight. Rick Roufus was at the time an undefeated
Kickboxer and held both the KICK Super Middleweight World title and the PKC Middleweight U.S title.
Changpuek Kiatsongrit an accomplished was finding it increasingly difficult to get fights
in Thailand as his weight was not typical for a Thai where competitive bouts at tend
to be at the lower weights. Roufus knocked Changpuek down twice with punches in the first
round breaking Changpuek’s jaw, but lost by knockout in the fourth round due to the culmination
of low kicks that he was unprepared for. Modern sport
The movement that led to the creation of the American and Japanese mixed martial arts scenes
was rooted in two interconnected subcultures and two grappling styles, namely Brazilian
Jiu-Jitsu and shoot wrestling. First were the vale tudo events in Brazil, followed by
the Japanese shoot-style wrestling shows. Vale tudo began in the 1920s and became renowned
with the “Gracie challenge” issued by Carlos Gracie and Hélio Gracie and upheld later
on by descendants of the Gracie family.The “Gracie Challenges” were held in the garages
and gyms of the Gracie family members. When the popularity grew, these types of mixed
bouts were a staple attraction the carnivals in Brazil. Early mixed-match martial arts
professional wrestling bouts in Japan, literally “heterogeneous combat sports bouts”) became
popular with Antonio Inoki in the 1970s. Inoki was a disciple of Rikidōzan, but also of
Karl Gotch who trained numerous Japanese wrestlers in catch wrestling.
Mixed martial arts competitions were introduced in the United States with the first Ultimate
Fighting Championship in 1993. The sport gained international exposure and widespread publicity
when jiu-jitsu fighter Royce Gracie won the first Ultimate Fighting Championship tournament,
submitting three challengers in a total of just five minutes, sparking a revolution in
martial arts. Japan had its own form of mixed martial arts
discipline Shooto that evolved from shoot wrestling in 1985, as well as the shoot wrestling
derivative Pancrase founded as a promotion in 1993. The first Vale Tudo Japan tournaments
were held in 1994 and 1995, both were won by Rickson Gracie. Around the same time, International
Vale Tudo competition started to develop through, VTJ, IVC, UVF etc.). Interest in mixed martial
arts as a sport resulted in the creation of the Pride Fighting Championships in 1997,
where again Rickson participated and won. Origin of ‘MMA’
The term Mixed Martial Arts was coined by television critic Howard Rosenberg, in 1993,
in his review of UFC 1. The term gained popularity when the website newfullcontact.com, then
one of the biggest covering the sport, hosted and reprinted the article. The first use of
the term by a promotion was in September 1995 by Rick Blume, president and CEO of Battlecade
Extreme Fighting, just after UFC 7. Jeff Blatnick was responsible for the Ultimate Fighting
Championship officially adopting the name Mixed Martial Arts. Previously marketed as
“Ultimate Fighting” and “No Holds Barred”, Blatnick and John McCarthy proposed the name
‘MMA’ at the UFC 17 rules meeting in response to increased public criticism. The term is
generally attributed to Howard Rosenberg. Regulation
In March 1997, the Iowa Athletic Commission officially sanctioned Battlecade Extreme Fighting
under a modified form of its existing rules for Shootfighting. These rules created the
3, 5 minute round, one-minute break format, and mandated shootfighting gloves as well
as weight classes for the first time. Illegal blows were listed as groin strikes, head butting,
biting, eye gouging, hair pulling, striking an opponent with an elbow while the opponent
is on the mat, kidney strikes, and striking the back of the head with closed fist. Holding
onto the ring or cage for any reason was defined as foul. While there are minor differences
between these and the final Unified Rules, notably regarding elbow-strikes, the Iowa
rules allowed mixed martial arts promoters to conduct essentially modern events legally,
anywhere in the state. On March 28, 1997, Extreme Fighting 4 was held under these rules,
making it the first officially sanctioned mixed martial arts event, and the first show
conducted under a version of the modern rules. In April 2000, the California State Athletic
Commission voted unanimously in favor of regulations that later became the foundation for the Unified
Rules of Mixed Martial Arts. However when the legislation was sent to California’s capitol
for review, it was determined that the sport fell outside the jurisdiction of the CSAC,
rendering the vote superfluous. In September 2000, the New Jersey State Athletic
Control Board began to allow mixed martial arts promoters to conduct events in New Jersey.
The intent was to allow the NJSACB to observe actual events and gather information to establish
a comprehensive set of rules to effectively regulate the sport.
On April 3, 2001, the NJSACB held a meeting to discuss the regulation of mixed martial
arts events. This meeting attempted to unify the myriad rules and regulations which have
been utilized by the different mixed martial arts organizations. At this meeting, the proposed
uniform rules were agreed upon by the NJSACB, several other regulatory bodies, numerous
promoters of mixed martial arts events and other interested parties in attendance. At
the conclusion of the meeting, all parties in attendance were able to agree upon a uniform
set of rules to govern the sport of mixed martial arts.
The rules adopted by the NJSACB have become the de facto standard set of rules for professional
mixed martial arts across North America. On July 30, 2009, a motion was made at the annual
meeting of the Association of Boxing Commissions to adopt these rules as the “Unified Rules
of Mixed Martial Arts”. The motion passed unanimously.
In November 2005 the United States Army began to sanction mixed martial arts with the first
annual Army Combatives Championships held by the US Army Combatives School.
Canada formally decriminalized mixed martial arts with a vote on Bill S-209 on June 5,
2013. The bill allows for provinces to have the power to create athletic commissions to
regulate and sanction professional mixed martial arts bouts.
Growth The sport reached a new peak of popularity
in North America in the December 2006 rematch between then UFC light heavyweight champion
Chuck Liddell and former champion Tito Ortiz, rivaling the PPV sales of some of the biggest
boxing events of all time, and helping the UFC’s 2006 PPV gross surpass that of any promotion
in PPV history. In 2007, Zuffa LLC, the owners of the UFC MMA promotion, bought Japanese
rival MMA brand Pride FC, merging the contracted fighters under one promotion and drawing comparisons
to the consolidation that occurred in other sports, such as the AFL-NFL Merger in American
football. Since the UFC came to prominence in mainstream
media in 2006, and with their 2007 merger with Pride FC and purchase of WEC, few companies
have presented significant competition. However numerous organizations have held shows of
significance while competing against the UFC. The most notable competition has included:
Pride Fighting Championships World Extreme Cagefighting
International Fight League EliteXC
DREAM Strikeforce
Bellator Fighting Championships ONE Fighting Championship
World Series of Fighting On April 30, 2011, UFC 129 set a new North
American MMA attendance record, drawing 55,724 at the Rogers Centre in Toronto; the event
also set a new MMA world record for the highest paid gate at $12,075,000 and is the highest
gate in Toronto for any event. In 2011, the UFC reached a multi-year deal
with the FOX network, a tremendous milestone in the organization, bringing the sport to
main stream media. Development of fighters
As a result of an increased number of competitors, organized training camps, information sharing,
and modern kinesiology, the understanding of the combat-effectiveness of various strategies
has been greatly improved. UFC commentator Joe Rogan claimed that martial arts evolved
more in the ten years following 1993 than in the preceding 700 years combined. The high profile of modern MMA promotions
such as UFC and Pride has fostered an accelerated development of the sport. The early 1990s
saw a wide variety of traditional styles competing in the sport. However, early competition saw
varying levels of success among disparate styles. In the early 1990s, practitioners of grappling
based styles such as Brazilian jiu-jitsu dominated competition in the United States. Practitioners
of striking based arts such as boxing, kickboxing, and karate who were unfamiliar with submission
grappling proved to be unprepared to deal with its submission techniques. As competitions
became more and more common, those with a base in striking arts became more competitive
as they cross trained in arts based around takedowns and submission holds. Likewise,
those from the varying grappling styles added striking techniques to their arsenal. This
increase of cross-training resulted in fighters becoming increasingly multidimensional and
well-rounded in their skill-sets. The new hybridization of fighting styles can
be seen in the technique of “ground and pound” developed by wrestling-based UFC pioneers
such as Dan Severn, Don Frye and Mark Coleman. These wrestlers realized the need for the
incorporation of strikes on the ground as well as on the feet, and incorporated ground
striking into their grappling-based styles. Mark Coleman stated at UFC 14 that his strategy
was to “Ground him and pound him” which may be the first televised use of the term.
Since the late 1990s, both strikers and grapplers have been successful at MMA, though it is
rare to see any fighter who is not schooled in both striking and grappling arts reach
the highest levels of competition. The greatest MMA fighter of all time is considered
by experts, fighters and fans to be either Heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko or middleweight
Anderson Silva. UFC color commentator Joe Rogan responded to a fan’s question: “Joe,
is Fedor the Greatest Of All Time? It’s him or Anderson, and I could see the argument
going either way honestly. Both guys have had truly magical moments in competition against
some of the best in the world.” Rules The rules for modern mixed martial arts competitions
have changed significantly since the early days of vale tudo, Japanese shoot wrestling,
and UFC 1, and even more from the historic style of pankration. As the knowledge of fighting
techniques spread among fighters and spectators, it became clear that the original minimalist
rule systems needed to be amended. The main motivations for these rule changes were protection
of the health of the fighters, the desire to shed the perception of “barbarism and lawlessness”,
and to be recognized as a legitimate sport. The new rules included the introduction of
weight classes; as knowledge about submissions spread, differences in weight had become a
significant factor. There are nine different weight classes in the Unified Rules of Mixed
Martial Arts. These nine weight classes include flyweight, bantamweight, featherweight, lightweight,
welterweight, middleweight, light heavyweight, heavyweight, and super heavyweight with no
upper weight limit. Small, open-fingered gloves were introduced
to protect fists, reduce the occurrence of cuts and encourage fighters to use their hands
for striking to allow more captivating matches. Gloves were first made mandatory in Japan’s
Shooto promotion and were later adopted by the UFC as it developed into a regulated sport.
Most professional fights have the fighters wear 4 oz gloves, whereas some jurisdictions
require amateurs to wear a slightly heavier 6 oz glove for more protection for the hands
and wrists. Time limits were established to avoid long
fights with little action where competitors conserved their strength. Matches without
time limits also complicated the airing of live events. The time limits in most professional
fights are three 5 minute rounds, and championship fights are normally five 5 minute rounds.
Similar motivations produced the “stand up” rule, where the referee can stand fighters
up if it is perceived that both are resting on the ground or not advancing toward a dominant
position. In the U.S., state athletic and boxing commissions
have played a crucial role in the introduction of additional rules because they oversee MMA
in a similar fashion to boxing. In Japan and most of Europe, there is no regulating authority
over competitions, so these organizations have greater freedom in rule development and
event structure. Previously, Japan-based organization Pride
Fighting Championships held an opening 10-minute round followed by two five-minute rounds.
Stomps, soccer kicks and knees to the head of a grounded opponent are legal, but elbow
strikes to the head are not. This rule set is more predominant in the Asian-based organizations
as opposed to European and American rules. More recently, Singapore-based organization
ONE Fighting Championship allows soccer kicks and knees to the head of a grounded opponent
as well as elbow strikes to the head, but does not allow head stomps.
Victory Victory in a match is normally gained either
by the judges’ decision after an allotted amount of time has elapsed, a stoppage by
the referee or the fight doctor, a submission, by a competitor’s cornerman throwing in the
towel, or by knockout. Knockout: as soon as a fighter is unable to
continue due to legal strikes, his opponent is declared the winner. As MMA rules allow
submissions and ground and pound, the fight is stopped to prevent further injury to the
fighter. Submission: a fighter may admit defeat during
a match by: a tap on the opponent’s body or mat/floor
a verbal submission Technical Submission: the referee stops the
match when the fighter is caught in a submission hold and is in danger of being injured. Often
it is when a fighter gets choked unconscious; other times it is when a bone has been broken
in a submission hold Technical Knockout
Referee stoppage: The ref may stop a match in progress if:
a fighter becomes dominant to the point where the opponent can not intelligently defend
himself and is taking excessive damage as a result
a fighter appears to be losing consciousness as he/she is being struck
a fighter appears to have a significant injury such as a cut or a broken bone Doctor Stoppage/Cut: the referee will call
for a time out if a fighter’s ability to continue is in question as a result of apparent injuries,
such as a large cut. The ring doctor will inspect the fighter and stop the match if
the fighter is deemed unable to continue safely, rendering the opponent the winner. However,
if the match is stopped as a result of an injury from illegal actions by the opponent,
either a disqualification or no contest will be issued instead.
Corner stoppage: a fighter’s corner men may announce defeat on the fighter’s behalf by
throwing in the towel during the match in progress or between rounds. This is normally
done when a fighter is being beaten to the point where it is dangerous and unnecessary.
In some cases, the fighter may be injured. Retirement: a fighter is so dazed or exhausted
that he/she cannot physically continue fighting. Decision: if the match goes the distance,
then the outcome of the bout is determined by three judges. The judging criteria are
organization-specific. Forfeit: a fighter or his representative may
forfeit a match prior to the beginning of the match, thereby losing the match.
Disqualification: a “warning” will be given when a fighter commits a foul or illegal action
or does not follow the referee’s instruction. Three warnings will result in a disqualification.
Moreover, if a fighter is unable to continue due to a deliberate illegal technique from
his opponent, the opponent will be disqualified. No Contest: in the event that both fighters
commit a violation of the rules, or a fighter is unable to continue due to an injury from
an accidental illegal technique, the match will be declared a “No Contest”.
MMA fighter ranking MMA fighters get ranked according to their
performance and outcome of their fights and level of competition they faced. The most
popular and used, ranking portals are: Fight Matrix: Ranks up to 250 fighters worldwide
for every possible division. Sherdog: Ranks top 10 fighters worldwide only
for current available UFC divisions. Also used by ESPN.
SB Nation: Ranks top 14 fighters worldwide only for male divisions. Also used by USA
Today. MMAjunkie.com: Ranks top 10 fighters worldwide
for current UFC available divisions. UFC: Ranks 15 UFC signed fighters only, for
each of its own divisions. Tapology: Ranks top 10 fighters worldwide
for every possible division. MMA Rising: Ranks top 10 fighters worldwide
in every possible division. MMA Weekly: Ranks top 10 male fighters worldwide
in every possible division, and P4P for female fighters. Also used by Yahoo! Sports.
Bleacher Report: Ranks top 10 UFC fighters in each division.
Fight! Magazine: Ranks top 5 fighters and only in male divisions.
Ranking MMA: Ranks top 20 male fighters worldwide in each division and also by promotions.
Clothing Mixed martial arts promotions typically require
that male fighters wear shorts in addition to being barechested, thus precluding the
use of gi or fighting kimono to inhibit or assist submission holds. Male fighters are
required by most athletic commissions to wear groin protectors underneath their trunks.
Female fighters wear short shorts and sports bras or other similarly snug-fitting tops.
Both male and female fighters are required to wear a mouthguard.
The need for flexibility in the legs combined with durability prompted the creation of various
fighting shorts brands, which then spawned a range of mixed martial arts clothing and
casual wear available to the public. Fighting Area
According to UFC Rules and Regulations, an MMA competition or exhibition may be held
in a ring or a fenced area. The fenced area can be round or have at least six sides. The
fenced area is called a cage generically, or a hexagon, an octagon or an octagon cage,
depending on the shape. Common disciplines
Most ‘traditional’ martial arts have a specific focus and these arts may be trained to improve
in that area. Popular disciplines of each type include:
Striking: Boxing, Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Karate, Taekwondo, Savate, Sanshou, Shoot Boxing,
Combat Sambo Clinch: Freestyle, Greco-Roman wrestling,
Sambo, Sanshou, Shoot Boxing, Ju-Jitsu and Judo are trained to improve clinching, takedowns,
and throws, while Muay Thai is trained to improve the striking aspect of the clinch.
Ground: Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Submission Wrestling, shoot wrestling, catch wrestling, Judo, Ju-Jitsu
, and Sambo are trained to improve ground control and position, as well as to achieve
submission holds, and defend against them. Most styles have been adapted from their traditional
form, such as boxing stances which lack effective counters to leg kicks and the muay thai stance
which is poor for defending against takedowns due to the static nature, or Judo and Brazilian
Jiu-Jitsu, techniques which must be adapted for No Gi competition. It is common for a
fighter to train with multiple coaches of different styles or an organized fight team
to improve various aspects of their game at once. Cardiovascular conditioning, speed drills,
strength training and flexibility are also important aspects of a fighter’s training.
Some schools advertise their styles as simply “mixed martial arts”, which has become a style
in itself, but the training will still often be split into different sections.
While mixed martial arts was initially practiced almost exclusively by competitive fighters,
this is no longer the case. As the sport has become more mainstream and more widely taught,
it has become accessible to wider range of practitioners of all ages. Proponents of this
sort of training argue that it is safe for anyone, of any age, with varying levels of
competitiveness and fitness. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu came to international
prominence in the martial arts community in the early 1990s, when Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
expert Royce Gracie won the first, second and fourth Ultimate Fighting Championships,
which at the time were single elimination martial arts tournaments. Royce fought against
often much larger opponents who were practicing other styles, including boxing,Wrestling,
Amateur Wrestling, shoot-fighting, karate and tae kwon do. It has since become a staple
art and key component for many MMA fighters. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is largely credited for
bringing widespread attention to the importance of ground fighting. Sport BJJ tournaments
continue to grow in popularity worldwide and have given rise to no-gi submission grappling
tournaments, such as the ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship. It is primarily considered
a ground-based fighting style, with emphasis on positioning, chokes and joint locks.
Amateur wrestling Amateur Wrestling gained tremendous respect
due to its effectiveness in mixed martial arts competitions. Wrestling is widely studied
by mixed martial artists. Wrestling is also credited for conferring an emphasis on conditioning
for explosive movement and stamina, both of which are critical in competitive mixed martial
arts. It is known for excellent takedowns, particularly against the legs. Notable fighters
include Chael Sonnen, Randy Couture, and Dan Henderson.
Boxing Boxing is a martial art that is widely used
in MMA and is one of the primary striking bases for many fighters. Boxing punches account
for the vast majority of strikes during the stand up portion of a bout and also account
for the largest number of significant strikes, knock downs and KOs in MMA matches. Several
aspects of boxing are extremely valuable such as footwork, use of combinations, and defensive
techniques like slips, stance, and head movement. Boxing based fighters have also been shown
to throw and land a higher volume of strikes compared to other striking bases at a rate
of 3.88 per minute with 9.64 per minute thrown. Some fighters that are known for using boxing
are Nick Diaz, Junior dos Santos, B.J. Penn, Dan Hardy and Shane Carwin
Catch wrestling Karl Gotch was a catch wrestler and a student
of Billy Riley’s Snake Pit in Whelley, Wigan. In the film Catch: the hold not taken, some
of those who trained with Gotch in Wigan talk of his fascination with the traditional Lancashire
style of wrestling and how he was inspired to stay and train at Billy Riley’s after experiencing
its effects first hand during a professional show in Manchester, England. After leaving
Wigan, he later went on to teach catch wrestling to Japanese professional wrestlers in the
1970s to students including Antonio Inoki, Tatsumi Fujinami, Hiro Matsuda, Osamu Kido,
Satoru Sayama and Yoshiaki Fujiwara. Starting from 1976, one of these professional wrestlers,
Inoki, hosted a series of mixed martial arts bouts against the champions of other disciplines.
This resulted in unprecedented popularity of the clash-of-styles bouts in Japan. His
matches showcased catch wrestling moves like the sleeper hold, cross arm breaker, seated
armbar, Indian deathlock and keylock. Karl Gotch’s students formed the original
Universal Wrestling Federation in 1984 which gave rise to shoot-style matches. The UWF
movement was led by catch wrestlers and gave rise to the mixed martial arts boom in Japan.
Wigan stand-out Billy Robinson soon thereafter began training MMA legend Kazushi Sakuraba.
Catch wrestling forms the base of Japan’s martial art of shoot wrestling. Japanese professional
wrestling and a majority of the Japanese fighters from Pancrase, Shooto and the now defunct
RINGS bear links to catch wrestling. The term no holds barred was used originally
to describe the wrestling method prevalent in catch wrestling tournaments during the
late 19th century wherein no wrestling holds were banned from the competition, regardless
of how dangerous they might be. The term was applied to mixed martial arts matches, especially
at the advent of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Judo Using their knowledge of ne-waza/ground grappling
and tachi-waza/standing-grappling, several Judo practitioners have also competed in mixed
martial arts matches. Anderson Silva, who is the top ranked fighter in the world maintains
a black belt in judo, former Russian national Judo championship Bronze medallist Fedor Emelianenko,
famous UFC fighter Karo Parisyan, Jim Wallhead, Rick Hawn, Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, Olympic
medallists Hidehiko Yoshida, rising contender Dong Hyun Kim is a 4th degree judo black belt,
and Ronda Rousey now Strikeforce and The Ultimate Fighting Championship Women’s Bantamweight
Champion. Paulo Filho, a former WEC middleweight champion
has credited judo for his success during an interview.
Karate Karate has proved to be effective in the sport
as it is one of the core foundations of kickboxing, and specializes in striking techniques. Various
styles of karate are practiced by some MMA fighters, notably Chuck Liddell, Lyoto Machida,
Stephen Thompson, John Makdessi, Uriah Hall, Ryan Jimmo and Georges St-Pierre. Liddell
is known to have an extensive striking background in Kenpō with Fabio Martella whereas Lyoto
Machida practices Shotokan Ryu, and St-Pierre practices Kyokushin.
Kickboxing Kickboxing is widely used by MMA fighters
as it is seen as a great way to practice stand-up striking. Fighters such as Michael Bisping,
Alistair Overeem, and Cyrille Diabate. Muay Thai Muay Thai, along with boxing, is recognized
as a foundation for striking in mixed martial arts and is widely practiced and taught. One
of the primary benefits of training in Muay Thai for MMA is its versatility. Techniques
include long, middle and short range with everything from kicks to clinch holds and
throws. It originated in Thailand, and is known as the “art of eight weapons” which
refers to the use of the legs, knees, elbows and fists. It is a very aggressive and straightforward
style. Most prominent MMA fighters with strong Muay Thai background are Anderson Silva, Shogun
Rua and Duane Ludwig. Strategies
The techniques utilized in mixed martial arts competition generally fall into two categories:
striking techniques and grappling techniques. Today, mixed martial artists must cross-train
in a variety of styles to counter their opponent’s strengths and remain effective in all the
phases of combat. Sprawl-and-brawl
Sprawl-and-brawl is a stand-up fighting tactic that consists of effective stand-up striking,
while avoiding ground fighting, typically by using sprawls to defend against takedowns.
A sprawl-and-brawler is usually a boxer or kickboxer, Thai boxer or karate fighter who
has trained in various styles of wrestling, judo, and/or sambo to avoid takedowns to keep
the fight standing. These fighters will often study submission
wrestling to avoid being forced into submission in case they find themselves on the ground.
This style can be deceptively different from traditional kickboxing styles, since sprawl-and-brawlers
must adapt their techniques to incorporate takedown and ground fighting defense. Mirko
Filipović, Chuck Liddell and more recently Junior dos Santos are best known proponents
of this fighting style in MMA. Clinch fighting
Clinch fighting is a tactic consisting of using a clinch hold to prevent the opponent
from moving away into more distant striking range, while also attempting takedowns and
striking the opponent using knees, stomps, elbows, and punches. The clinch is often utilized
by wrestlers and Judokas that have added components of the striking game, and Muay Thai fighters.
Wrestlers and Judoka may use clinch fighting as a way to neutralize the superior striking
skills of a stand-up fighter or to prevent takedowns by a superior ground fighter. Ronda
Rousey with her Judo background, is considered a master at initiating throws from the clinch
to set up armbars. The clinch or “plumb” of a Muay Thai fighter
is often used to improve the accuracy of knees and elbows by physically controlling the position
of the opponent. Anderson Silva is well known for his devastating Muay Thai clinch. He defeated
UFC middle weight champion Rich Franklin using the Muay Thai clinch and kneeing Franklin
repeatedly to the body and face – breaking Franklin’s nose. In their rematch Silva repeated
this and won again. Other fighters may use the clinch to push
their opponent against the cage or ropes, where they can effectively control their opponent’s
movement and restrict mobility while striking them with punches to the body or stomps also
known as dirty boxing. Randy Couture used his Greco Roman wrestling background to popularize
this style en route to six title reigns in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
In general, fighters who cannot win fights through lightning offense, or are more suited
to win fights in the later rounds or via decision are commonly known as Grinders. Grinders basically
shut down their opponents game plan and chip away at them via clinching, smothering and
ground-and-pound for most of the rounds. Prominent examples of Grinders are Pat Healy and Chael
Sonnen. In the year 2000, MMA play-by-play commentator
Stephen Quadros coined the popular phrase lay and pray. This refers to a situation where
a wrestler or grappler keeps another fighter pinned or controlled on the mat to avoid a
stand up, yet exhibiting little or no urgency to finish the grounded opponent with a knockout
or a submission and basically stalling a decision for the entire or most of the fight, basically
taking the opponent down, holding on tight, referee stands them back up, and repeat again
– a sort of extreme form of defensive wrestling. The inference “lay and pray” is that the wrestler/grappler
takes the striker down, lays on him to neutralize the opponent’s striking weapons, and prays
that the referee does not return them to the standing position. This style is considered
by many fans as the most boring style of fighting and is highly criticized for intentionally
creating non-action, yet it is effective and some argue that lay-and-pray is justified
and that it is the responsibility of the downed fighter to be able to protect himself from
this legitimate fighting philosophy. Many consider Jon Fitch to be the poster boy for
lay and pray. UFC Welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre has been criticized by fans for
playing it safe and applying the lay and pray tactic in his fights and so has Bellator MMA
Welterweight champion Ben Askren who justified applying lay and pray, explaining that champion
fights are much harder because they are 5 rounds long compared to the usual 3 round
fights. Ground-and-pound
Ground-and-pound is a strategy consisting of taking an opponent to the ground using
a takedown or throw, obtaining a top, or dominant grappling position, and then striking the
opponent, primarily with fists, hammerfists, and elbows. Ground-and-pound is also used
as a precursor to attempting submission holds. The style is used by fighters well-versed
in submission defense and skilled at takedowns. They take the fight to the ground, maintain
a grappling position, and strike until their opponent submits or is knocked out. Although
not a traditional style of striking, the effectiveness and reliability of ground-and-pound has made
it a popular tactic. It was first demonstrated as an effective technique by Mark Coleman,
then popularized by fighters such as Chael Sonnen, Don Frye, Frank Trigg, Jon Jones,
Cheick Kongo, Mark Kerr, Frank Shamrock, Tito Ortiz, Matt Hughes, and Chris Weidman.
While most fighters utilize ground-and-pound statically, by way of holding their opponents
down and mauling them with short strikes from the top position; a few fighters manage to
utilize it dynamically by striking their opponents while changing positions, thus not allowing
their opponents to settle once they take them down. Cain Velasquez is one of the most devastating
ground strikers in MMA. He attacks his opponents on the ground while transitioning between
positions. Whether he’s moving from mount to back mount or from turtle to side control,
he is constantly landing shots. Fedor Emelianenko who is considered the greatest master of Ground-and-Pound
in MMA history, was the first to demonstrate this dynamic style of ground-and-pound. He
was striking his opponents on the ground while passing guard or while his opponents were
attempting to recover guard. Today, strikes on the ground are an essential
part of a fighter’s training. Submission grappling
Submission grappling is a reference to the ground fighting tactic consisting of taking
an opponent to the ground using a takedown or throw and then applying a submission hold,
forcing the opponent to submit. While grapplers will often work to attain dominant position,
some may be more comfortable fighting from other positions. If a grappler finds themselves
unable to force a takedown, they may resort to pulling guard, whereby they physically
pull their opponent into a dominant position on the ground.
Submissions are an essential part of many disciplines, most notably Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu,
catch wrestling, judo, Sambo, and shootwrestling. They were popularized in the early UFC events
by Royce Gracie and Ken Shamrock. Score oriented fighting
Especially used by fighters with strong wrestling background facing a highly skilled BJJ opponent,
or by wrestlers who prefer stand-up fights. Usually fighters who adopt this strategy use
takedowns only for scoring, easily allowing the adversary to stand up and continue the
fight. They also want to land clear strikes and control the octagon. In order to win the
fight by decision all score oriented fighters have to master perfect MMA defense techniques
and avoid takedowns. Paradoxically, MMA fighters who sometimes
prefer this strategy have some of the most outstanding fights. To note the most prominent
figures: Frankie Edgar, Georges St-Pierre and Demetrious Johnson.
Women’s competition While mixed martial arts is primarily a male
dominated sport, it does have female athletes. Female competition in Japan includes promotions
such as the all-female Valkyrie, and JEWELS. However historically there has been only a
select few major professional mixed martial arts organizations in the United States that
invite women to compete. Among those are Strikeforce, Bellator Fighting Championships, the all female
Invicta Fighting Championships, and the now defunct EliteXC.
There has been a growing awareness of women in mixed martial arts due to popular female
fighters and personalities such as Megumi Fujii, Miesha Tate, Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos,
Ronda Rousey, and Gina Carano among others. Carano became known as “the face of women’s
MMA” after appearing in a number of EliteXC events. This was furthered by her appearances
on MGM Television’s 2008 revival of their game show American Gladiators.
History In Japan, female competition has been documented
since the mid-1990s. Influenced by female professional wrestling and kickboxing, the
Smackgirl competition was formed in 2001 and became the only major all-female promotion
in mixed martial arts. Other early successful Japanese female organizations included Ladies
Legend Pro Wrestling, ReMix, U-Top Tournament, K-Grace, and AX.
Aside from all-female organizations, most major Japanese male dominated promotions have
held select female competitions. These have included DEEP, MARS, Gladiator, HEAT, Cage
Force, K-1, Sengoku, Shooto, and Pancrase. In the United States, prior to the success
of The Ultimate Fighter reality show that launched mixed martial arts into the mainstream
media, there was no major coverage of female competitions. Some early organizations who
invited women to compete included, International Fighting Championships, SuperBrawl, King of
the Cage, Rage in the Cage, Ring of Combat, Bas Rutten Invitational, and HOOKnSHOOT. From
the mid-2000s, more coverage came when organizations such as Strikeforce, EliteXC, Bellator Fighting
Championships, and Shark Fights invited women to compete.
Outside of Japan and the United States, female competition is almost exclusively found in
minor local promotions. However in Europe some major organizations have held select
female competitions, including It’s Showtime, Shooto Europe, Cage Warriors, and M-1 Global.
Following Zuffa’s acquisition of Strikeforce in March 2011, there has been lots of speculation
concerning the future of women’s competition, in term both of relevance and popularity.
The next step was for the UFC to pick up women’s MMA, however UFC President Dana White has
been resistant. He has said, “There is not enough depth to create a women’s division.”
Rule differentiation The traditional MMA rules have often been
adjusted for female competitions because of safety concerns. In Japan, ReMix prohibited
ground-and-pound and featured a 20-second time limit for ground fighting. This rule
remained following ReMix’s 2001 re-branding as Smackgirl, though the time limit was extended
to 30 seconds. The rule was abolished in 2008. In the United States, women’s bouts organised
by EliteXC saw three-minute rounds while those of Strikeforce were originally of two minutes’
duration. These lengths compare to the more usual five minutes for men. They later changed
this rule to allow for five-minute rounds. Another form of rule differentiation is a
change in both weight limits and weight classification. This has been seen in a number of organizations
including, Strikeforce, Smackgirl, and Valkyrie. Milestones
One of the first major female MMA fights was Gina Carano’s Strikeforce debut against Elaina
Maxwell where Carano won via unanimous decision at Strikeforce: Triple Threat in San Jose
on December 8, 2006. Strikeforce has become the first major promotion
in the United States to have held a female fight as the main event on August 15, 2009.
The fight between Carano and Cristiane Santos attracted 856,000 viewers. Santos made history
with her victory over Carano as she became the first Strikeforce Women’s 145 lb Champion.
Disagreement Since its inception the role of women in mixed
martial arts has been a subject of debate. Some observers have treated women’s competition
as a spectacle and a taboo topic. In December 2004, lightweight fighter Takumi Yano refused
to participate in a Pancrase event in protest of there being female bouts on the same card.
Amateur and Professional Mixed Martial Arts Amateur and Professinal Mixed Martial Arts
is a full contact combat sport that incorporates striking and wrestling/grappling techniques.
Under the World MMA Council World Mixed Martial Arts Association, the International Mixed
Martial Arts Federationamateur only and the International Federation of Associated Wrestling
Styles it is practised within a safe and regulated environment which relies on a fair and objective
scoring system and competition procedures similar to those in force in the Unified Rules
of Mixed Martial Arts. Amateur MMA is practised with board shorts and a rashguard along with
approved protection gear that includes head gear, shin protectors, and gloves that allow
grabbing and holding the opponent for a comfortable application of grappling techniques.
World Mixed Martial Arts Association WMMAA was founded in 2012 in Monaco by M-1
Global commercial promoters and is under the leadership of CEO Vadim Finkelstein and Fedor
Emelianenko. The World MMA Association is an organization that manages and develops
mixed martial arts, it establishes rules and procedures and hosts MMA competitions. World
MMA Association includes national MMA organizations, representing the sport and registered in accordance
with national laws. As of December 2013 WMMAA has 38 member states
under its umbrella: Afghanistan, Albania, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium,
Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Georgia, Greece, India, Iran, Italy, Kazakhstan,
Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, the Netherlands, Portugal, Romania,
Russia, Senegal, Serbia, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Trinidad and
Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, Uzbekistan. On October 20, 2013 the first ever World MMA
Championship was held in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
WMMAA Pan-American Division On July 4, 2014 the first ever Pan-American
Division for the World MMA Association was created under the leadership of Business Magnate
Tomas Yu, during the 2014 WMMAA Congress that was held in Amsterdam Netherlands.
International Mixed Martial Arts Federation On February 29, 2012, the International Mixed
Martial Arts Federation was set up to bring international structure, development and support
to mixed martial arts worldwide. The IMMAF is a non-profit, democratic federation organized
according to international federation standards to ensure that MMA as a sport is allowed the
same recognition, representation and rights as all other major sports. The IMMAF is registered
under Swedish law and is founded on democratic principles, as outlined in their statutes.
As of January 2014, there are 30 total members from 30 countries, which come from Austria,
Belgium, Brazil, Cameroon, Canada, Denmark,El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany,
Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Lithuania, Nepal, The Netherlands, New Zealand,
Norway, Portugal, Romania, Seychelles, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Ukraine, the United
Kingdom, and the United States of America. The IMMAF holds its first Amateur World Championships
in Las Vegas, USA, from June 30 to July 6, 2014.
International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles
Amateur Mixed Martial Arts as governed by FILA, it is practiced within a safe and regulated
environment which relies on a fair and objective scoring system and competition procedures
similar to those in force in Olympic wrestling. FILA considers that the implementation of
an amateur variant that could guarantee a safe training environment and a competition
systems complying with the Olympic standards has become an urgent necessity for all athletes
wishing to engage in a professional career. Safety Mixed Martial Arts competitions have changed
dramatically since the first Ultimate Fighting Championship in 1993, specifically with the
inception of the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts. A paucity of data on injuries that occur
in MMA and the resulting concerns and controversy with regard to MMA’s safety remain. A recent
systematic review concluded that the injury incidence rate in MMA appears to be greater
than in most, if not all, other popular and commonly practised combat sports.
Injury rates In a recent meta-analysis of the available
injury data in MMA, the injury incidence rate was estimated to be 228.7 injuries per 1000
athlete-exposures. The estimated injury incidence rate in MMA is greater than in other full-contact
combat sports such as judo, taekwondo, amateur boxing, and professional boxing.
Injury pattern In general, the injury pattern in MMA is very
similar to that in professional boxing but unlike that found in other combat sports such
as judo and taekwondo. The most commonly injured body region is the head followed by the wrist/hand,
while the most frequent types of injury were laceration, fracture, and concussion.
Mental health In preliminary results reported in April 2012
as part of an ongoing study of a 109 professional boxers and MMA fighters being conducted by
Dr. Charles Bernick and his colleagues at Cleveland Clinic’s Lou Ruvo Center for Brain
Health, fighters with more than six years of ring experience were observed to have reductions
in size in their hippocampus and thalamus whereas fighters with more than twelve years
of ring experience were observed to have both reductions in size and symptoms such as memory
loss. Dr. Bernick speculates that studying cumulative lesser blows may eventually prove
even more important than studying infrequent concussions.
Fatalities While competition in the MMA have been occasionally
depicted as brutal by the media, there were no documented cases of deaths after a sanctioned
MMA event prior to 2007. It has been noted that use of the word “sanctioned” can be perceived
as “spin” by those who market the discipline. In the period of 2007 to 2010, there were
two fatalities in mixed martial arts matches. The first was the death of Sam Vasquez on
November 30, 2007. Vasquez collapsed shortly after being knocked out by Vince Libardi in
the third round of an October 20, 2007 fight at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. Vasquez
had two separate surgeries to remove blood clots from his brain, and shortly after the
second operation suffered a devastating stroke and never regained consciousness.
The second death stemming from a sanctioned mixed martial arts contest occurred in South
Carolina on June 28, 2010, when 30-year old Michael Kirkham was knocked out and never
regained consciousness. He was pronounced dead two days after the fight. There have
been seven known deaths in MMA to date. Legality of professional competitions
United States In the United States professional MMA is overseen
by the Association of Boxing Commissions. According to the Associations of Boxing Commissions,
professional MMA competitions are allowed in nearly all states. Alaska has no boxing
or athletic commission, Montana has a state athletic commission although it doesn’t regulate
MMA, however MMA is legal in both states. West Virginia became the 44th state to regulate
mixed martial arts on March 24, 2011. On March 8, 2012, Wyoming became the 45th state to
regulate MMA. On May 4, 2012, it was announced that Vermont had become the 46th state to
regulate MMA. In May 2012 the New York state assembly failed to overturn the state’s ban
on mixed martial arts. Legislation allowing MMA in Connecticut came into effect on October
1, 2013 making it the 47th state to regulate the sport.
Brazil January 17, 2013 saw the announcement that
the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission, or Comissao Atletica Brasileira de MMA, had joined
the International MMA Federation. The CABMMA represents state federations across Brazil
and is spearheaded by lawyers Giovanni Biscardi and Rafael Favettia, a former Executive Secretary
of the Minister of Justice and Interim Minister of Justice. The CABMMA supervised its first
event with “UFC on FX 7” on 19 January 2013 at Ibirapuera Gymnasium in São Paulo.
The CABMMA first hit international sports headlines when it suspended fighter Rousimar
Palhares for prolonging a submission on opponent Mike Pierce, despite him tapping several times,
during UFC Fight Night 29 in Barueri, Brazil on 9th Oct 2013. The CABMMA was called to
preside over another controversy to involve a Brazilian competitor, when Vitor Belfort’s
use of Testosterone Replacement Therapy came to light over UFC on FX 8
Canada For many years, professional MMA competitions
were illegal in Canada. Section 83(2) of the Canadian Criminal Code deemed that only boxing
matches where only fists are used are considered legal. However most provinces regulated it
by a provincial athletic commission by classifying MMA as “mixed boxing”), such as the provinces
of Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Quebec, and Northwest Territories. The legality of
MMA in the provinces of Alberta, British Columbia, and New Brunswick varies depending on the
municipality. Professional MMA competitions remain illegal in the Canadian provinces of
Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Yukon, and Nunavut because it
is not regulated by an athletic commission. Canada formally decriminalized mixed martial
arts with a vote on Bill S-209 on June 5, 2013. The bill formally gives provinces the
power to create athletic commissions to regulate and sanction professional mixed martial arts
bouts. Bill S-209 does not in and of itself make MMA legal across Canada, it allows provinces
to make it legal on a province by province basis.
China In 2011, the Ranik Ultimate Fighting Federation
hosted the first MMA event in Shanghai sanctioned by China’s governing body for combat sports,
the Wushu Sports Management Center of the General Administration of Sport in China.
RUFF formally crowned the first Chinese national MMA champions in 2013 with each champion receiving
1,000,000 RMB in prize money. Other MMA promotions in China includes Real Fight Championship,
which has produced 3 events in Henan and Beijing. Ireland
Mixed Martial Arts Federation Ireland gained membership status under the International
MMA Federation in June 2012. On 13 March 2013 an unprecedented meeting took place between
representatives of the MMAFI and the Northern Ireland’s Minister for Culture and Sport,
Carál Ní Chuilín. According to reports, the Minister pledged her full backing to the
establishment of a recognized governing body for MMA in Ireland; and the Sports Council
was instructed to develop the necessary process for the establishment of the MMAFI into a
recognised governing body. Japan
MMA competition has been legal in Japan since at least the mid-1980s, when Pancrase fights
began to be held. There are several MMA-related organizations, including DEEP, Pancrase, Shooto
and ZST. Norway
In Norway, sports that involve knock-outs as a means of securing victory or points are
illegal, including MMA and boxing. Norwegian MMA fighters must therefore travel abroad
to compete. The Norwegian MMA Federation was elected as a full member of the International
MMA Federation on 22 April 2012, representing 49 member gyms across Norway. In 2012 the
“Merkekamper” concept was introduced by the NMMAF, with government sanctioning, that
enables member MMA gyms to hold events with sparring matches, but governed by strict rules
concerning how hard a fighter is permitted to strike.
Russia In September 2012, MMA was given ‘National
Sport’ status in Russia, and on the same day fighter and M-1 Global promoter Fedor Emelianenko
was appointed to the role of Russian MMA Union president.
Sweden MMA competition is legal and under the purview
of the Swedish Mixed Martial Arts Federation which was formed in 2007 and began overseeing
MMA events and governing the sport as a whole in 2008. In 2009 the SMMAF was accepted into
the Association of Swedish Budo and Martial Arts Federation, thus granting MMA “national
sport” status and making its approved clubs eligible for partial government subsidization.
On April 30, 2011, the SMMAF sanctioned the first event under its purview to utilize the
Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts. The Swedish Mixed Martial Arts Federation governs the
sport of MMA in Sweden as a member affiliated to the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation.
The SMMAF hit the headlines when it withdrew Swedish headliner, Alexander Gustafsson, from
competing at UFC on FUEL 9 in Sweden, due to a facial laceration.
South Africa MMA competition is legal and under the purview
of the Professional Mixed Martial Arts Council or PROMMA Africa; which was formed in 2010
with its main purpose to regulate MMA at larger MMA promotions such as EFC Africa. PROMMA
Africa began overseeing Rise of the Warrior MMA events in 2010. In 2012 the PROMMA Africa
Council was accepted into the Mixed Martial Arts Association of South Africa thus granting
MMA “national sport” status. In addition to EFC Africa, there are other leagues such
as Dragon Legends MMA. Thailand
In 2012, the Sports Authority of Thailand banned competitions. It has been speculated
that the Muay Thai industry played a factor in the Sports Authority of Thailand’s final
decision, as MMA could potentially take away business from Muay Thai, from fighters to
profit. SAT Deputy Governor Sakol Wannapong has said “Organizing a MMA event here would
hurt the image of Muay Thai, if you want to do this kind of business, you should do it
in another country. Organizing MMA here could mislead the public into believing that Muay
Thai is brutal.” Jussi Saloranta, the owner of Thailand’s only
MMA promotion, DARE Fight Sports, revealed that his lawyers found that the ban was actually
premature, and that from a legal standpoint, there is no law banning mixed martial arts
in the country, and that the SAT’s ban was more of a scare tactic. Because of this DARE
continue to showcase events that fans are only informed at the last minute through texts
on the day of the event, and videos are put up on YouTube entitled The Most Dangerous
Gameshow. Saloranta has also helped set up the MMA Association of Thailand, in the hopes
of reaching a compromise with SAT and regulating mixed martial arts in Thailand.
On September 12, 2013, DARE Fight Sports released a statement announcing SAT had removed the
ban on MMA and would henceforth sanction the sport in Thailand.
Cambodia In January 2013, the Cambodian Mixed Martial
Arts Association was created under the Cambodian Martial Arts Federation. At this time there
are no MMA events organized with the CMMAA approval. Television channel MYTV holds its
KWC promotion under the sanctioning of the Cambodian Boxing Federation, responsible for
sanctioning all boxing and Kun Khmer events in the country, in direct contrast to the
situation in neighbouring Thailand. Australia
MMA in Australia is sanctioned in all States and Territories of Australia by various combat
sports authorities/organisations. There is debate about the use of the cage, which is
banned in Victoria and Western Australia. Fighter pay
The pay in MMA has been criticised, the sport has been monopolised by the UFC who take most
of the revenue and put it back into the business leaving fighters with a small percentage of
the pay. The bonus structure has also been criticised with one fighter calling it a means
of control because they keep you guessing, the bonus structure has been used by Dana
White as a way to manipulate the publics view on fighter pay because whenever the topic
comes up the bonus structure is used as a defense and he states you do not know the
bonuses the fighters get. See also Hybrid martial arts
List of current mixed martial arts champions List of female mixed martial artists
List of male mixed martial artists List of Mixed Martial Artists with the most
sanctioned fights Mixed martial arts clothing
Shoot fighting References External links
Vivemma Latin American Authority on Mixed Martial Arts
World Mixed Martial Arts Association International Mixed Martial Arts Federation
Association of Boxing Commissions Unified Rules of MMA
International Sport Combat Federation FILA – Amateur Mixed Martial Arts
MMA media profiles and bios

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