Are MMA Fighters Good Boxers?

Some MMA fighters are definitely good boxers, but when it comes down to skill-for-skill, boxers specifically are better at their craft then MMA fighters are.

In this brief article, we will be exploring why exactly MMA fighters really are not the greatest boxers.

Concentrate on the Punches

Boxers exclusively fight with punches.

In training, boxers concentrate completely on their strikes. They can strengthen their arms and improve their technique by concentrating on one thing at a time. It also forces them to fight utilizing only their punches at close range, mid-range, and long-range.

MMA fighters don’t have time to concentrate solely on punches. With so many different ways to attack, striking is only a small part of their preparation. Punches are also used by mixed martial artists as a situational technique. Fighters have other options besides punches, so they don’t have to rely on them in every case.

No Kicks

Distanced kicks are used by MMA fighters to keep their opponents at bay, which is an unlawful strategy in boxing

A long fighter like Jon Jones would use kicks to keep his opponent at bay, tire them out, and then go for the knockout. In the opposite direction, the same principle applies. Many MMA fighters used to rely on kicks from afar, but now they must rely on punches. MMA fighters don’t have to navigate those spaces with punches, whereas boxers do.

No Ground Combat

Another reason MMA fighters struggle in boxing is that boxing does not allow for ground combat.

Grappling is a technique used by MMA fighters to take their opponents to the ground. They can wrestle, strike, or clinch their grounded opponent once they’ve arrived. On the ground, opponents are vulnerable, therefore fighters are motivated to persuade their opponent to fall quickly.

Both grappling and punching your opponent while they’re down are forbidden in boxing. Boxers fight from a standing position, only striking the upper body. In boxing, if an opponent is knocked out, it is not because they were tripped or wrestled.

No Ground Combat

Another reason MMA fighters struggle in boxing is that boxing does not allow for ground combat.

Grappling is a technique used by MMA fighters to take their opponents to the ground. They can wrestle, strike, or clinch their grounded opponent once they’ve arrived. On the ground, opponents are vulnerable, therefore fighters are motivated to persuade their opponent to fall quickly.

Both grappling and punching your opponent while they’re down are forbidden in boxing. Boxers fight from a standing position, only striking the upper body. In boxing, if an opponent is knocked out, it is not because they were tripped or wrestled. Combatants might also clutch their opponent into submission to bring the bout to a close.

In boxing, clinching is a much less effective attacking weapon. Clinching is a defensive tactic in which boxers wrap their arms around their opponent, according to the World Boxing Council. Clenching causes a pause in the game, which is ideal for resting or throwing off an opponent.

The boxing clinch, while effective, isn’t nearly as adaptable as the MMA clinch. Clinching is also used by mixed martial artists and boxers in opposing situations. One is an offensive strategy, while the other is a defensive one. In the boxing arena, these characteristics combine to limit an MMA fighter.

Changes on the Defensive

All of these offensive adjustments render an MMA fighter’s defense useless in a boxing battle.

In addition to punches, MMA fighters practice defending against the tactics outlined above. MMA defense, while more balanced, does not prepare fighters to defend in a boxing bout.

MMA fighters, on the other hand, will expose themselves a little more. The thing about boxers is their awareness of their surroundings, particularly where their hands and heads are. To survive a boxing encounter, MMA fighters must relearn their whole defensive system.

Footwork

Because of the differences in boxing offense and defense, MMA footwork is rendered obsolete in the ring.

The footwork of MMA fighters is tailored to throw punches, land kicks, lunge into grapples, avoid kicks, dodge punches, resist takedowns, kick on the ground, and lunge into fights.

Two of these abilities are required in boxing. MMA footwork ignores the focus of boxing and caters to talents that don’t exist in the sport.

Bigger Gloves

Aside from technique, another reason MMA athletes struggle with boxing is that their equipment differs from that of a boxer.

The bulk of MMA competitors use fingerless, smaller cushioned gloves. Boxers wear gloves weighing 16 to 32 ounces that are frequently taped underneath.

Each glove is tailored to a specific sport. Boxing gloves provide extra cushion for frequent punches, while MMA gloves allow the wearer to grapple their opponent. You’d be mistaken if you thought the gloves struck with a different force. Despite their differences in size, studies have found that both gloves strike with approximately comparable force. However, the cushioning makes a substantial difference in fist protection. Transitioning MMA athletes face a steep learning curve.

Longer Matches

Boxing battles last longer than MMA fights.

Boxing matches can run up to twelve rounds, each lasting three minutes. MMA fights, on the other hand, are usually three to five five-minute rounds. In boxing, the maximum total time is 36 minutes, however in MMA, the maximum time is 25 minutes. In the context of combat, eleven minutes is a long time. On stamina alone, a skilled boxer can outlast an MMA fighter.

Final Thoughts

MMA fighters and boxers are both insanely talented at their skill and craft.

While MMA fighters may not always be the best boxers, they can definitely hold their own in their own arenas. And the same can most certainly be said of boxers as well.

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