What Is Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)?

Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a fighting sport between two fighters who use fighting techniques to
gain dominance over one another. Strict rules let the fighters use punches, kicks, chokes,
throws and other martial arts techniques. Knockout, submit, or stoppage are the most common
means to win.

MMA Fighting Styles

The top main fighting styles that are used in MMA are:

Boxing: Fighting with one’s fists, commonly while wearing protective leather gloves.
Often known as the “sweet science”, boxers attack with intricate footwork and rapid jabs.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: Carlos Gracie founded the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy in Rio de
Janeiro, Brazil, in the mid-1920s. He passed on the techniques he learnt from Esai
Maeda, a Japanese judo instructor. Later, the skills were tweaked to need less strength
and be more effective against larger opponents. The popularity of Brazilian jiu-jitsu grew
as a result of its practitioners’ performance in no-holds-barred competitions.

Jiu-Jitsu: Throwing, joint locks, hitting, and weapons training are all part of this ancient
Japanese martial art.

Judo: Jigoro Kano established a sporty Japanese martial art inspired from Jiu-Jitsu in
1882. Judo is now an Olympic sport that focuses on throwing techniques. Striking is not
permitted.

Karate: Many Japanese and Okinawan martial arts go by this name. While many karate
forms are recognized for their forceful, linear techniques, several also employ softer,
circular techniques. Kyokushinkai, Shotokan, Goju-Ryu, Shorin-Ryu, and Kenpo—the
first “Americanized” variation of karate—are some of the most prominent styles.

Kickboxing: Boxing punches and martial arts kicks are combined in this sporty martial
art. Muay Thai, full-contact karate, and Asian Rules Fighting are just a few examples of
distinct styles with different rules.

Kung Fu: Gung Fu, Chinese Boxing, and Wu Shu are all terms for virtually the same
thing. There are hundreds of different Kung Fu styles to choose from. Many of them are
based on animal motions. Wing Chun, Praying Mantis, Pau Kua, Tai-Chi-Ch'uan, and
Shuai Chiao are some of the most well-known Kung Fu systems.

Taekwondo: Taekwondo is a Korean martial art recognized for its flamboyant kicking
techniques. It is one of the most widely practiced martial arts in the world.

Wrestling: The world’s oldest sport, in which competitors compete hand-to-hand in an
attempt to throw or take down their opponent without delivering a blow. Freestyle,
Greco-Roman, and catch-as-catch-can are examples of wrestling styles.
What are the Most Popular MMA Organizations?
There are many mixed martial arts (MMA) organizations in the world, and there have been even
more throughout the history of the sport, but not all have been successful. Today, there are a
few that stand out in the crowd:

 

What are the Most Popular MMA Organizations?

There are a number of different MMA organizations around the globe, but some of the top ones are as follows.

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC):

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is an MMA organization based in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States, that was created in 1993. At the moment, the UFC is the world’s largest and greatest mixed martial arts company.
The UFC holds tournaments in twelve weight divisions all over the world (eight men and four
women). Dana White has been the CEO of this company since 2011, and it has grown to be a
multibillion-dollar corporation under his leadership. UFC has held over 500 events around the
world, and has launched the careers of some of the most notorious fighters in MMA history
including the Diaz brothers (Nick and Nate), Conor McGregor, Ronda Rousey, Dominick Cruz,
Donald Cerrone, Daniel Cormier, Miesha Tate, Jose Aldo, Robbie Lawler, Georges St-Pierre,
Anderson Silva, and so many more.

Bellator MMA:

Bellator MMA (formerly Bellator Fighting Championships) is an MMA company based in Hollywood, California. It was created in 2008. Bellator is one of the world's major MMA
promotions, and the second-largest in the United States, trailing only the UFC. Bellator has
hosted some of the biggest names in MMA history, including Ryan Bader, Michael Chandler,
Gegard Mousasi, Paul Daley, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Lyoto Machida, Patrcio “Pitbull”
Freire, and many others.

After Viacom became the company’s largest stakeholder in 2011, all Bellator fights were
relocated to Spike (Paramount Network). They signed an agreement with DAZN in 2018 and

now cover the United States and other major markets with sports streaming services. They have
a partnership with Sky Sports to broadcast fights in the UK starting in 2019. Bellator signed a
deal with ESPN Brasil in 2020 to broadcast fights in South America. With broadcasts in more
than 160 countries, Bellator is currently available to nearly a billion people around the world.

Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships, based in the United States, is the world’s largest
women’s mixed martial arts organization, created in 2012 by Shannon Knapp. They have an
agreement with UFC Fight Pass to stream all Invicta FC events exclusively on their digital
service, as well as their entire library of old fights. To broadcast their events in South America,
they have strategic collaborations with Jewels (a Japanese MMA company) and Brazilian
Combate. Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino, Tonya Evinger, Sarah Kaufman, Ayaka Hamasaki, Barb
Honchak, Jennifer Maia, and Michelle Waterson, are the most well-known Invicta fighters.

Fight Nights Global (FNG):

Fight Nights Global is a mixed martial arts promotion based in
Russia. It is one of the top MMA organizations in the world, with some of the best fighters in the
sport. It was formed in Moscow, Russia, in 2010. Andrei Arlovski, Fedor Emelianenko, Vitaly
Minakov, Batu Khasikov, Rasul Mirzaev, Ali Bagautinov, Vladimir Mineev, Shamil Zavurov,
Murad Machaev, Viktor Peta, Antônio Silva, Gasan Umalatov, Fábio Maldonado, Alexander
Shlemenko, and many others are among the most well-known fighters in this organization.

 

What are the Different Weight Classes in MMA?

 

In MMA, competition is divided into divisions depending on gender and weight range.

The different weight classes in MMA are as follows:

Women’s Divisions
Strawweight (115-pound limit)
Flyweight (125-pound limit)
Bantamweight (135-pound limit)
Featherweight (145-pound limit)

Men’s Divisions
Flyweight (125-pound limit)
Bantamweight (135-pound limit)
Featherweight (145-pound limit)
Lightweight (155-pound limit)
Welterweight (170-pound limit)
Middleweight (185-pound limit)
Light Heavyweight (205-pound limit)
Heavyweight (265-pound limit)

 

What are the rules of MMA?

 

MMA, like every other sport, has its own set of rules.

Fighters are forbidden from using barbaric techniques, according to the Unified Rules of MMA. Some techniques that are not permitted are:

● Crotch strikes
● Hair pulling
● Biting
● Eye gouging
● Headbutting
● Kneeing or kicking the head of a downed opponent
● 12 to 6 elbows
● Finger bending

A fight might be called off due to a “doctor’s stoppage” (classed as a TKO). Most large events
hire doctors, and if a boxer suffers a serious injury, the referee will summon the doctor into the
ring. After that, the doctor will assess the damage and determine whether or not the fighter is
capable of (or can safely continue) fighting. If a fighter can’t see out of one eye, has a broken
bone, or has a major gash or cut, the doctor will stop the fight 9 times out of 10. This is done to
keep the injured fighter safe.

MMA Terminology

MMA has its own unique terminology ranging from the rules to how to win the fight.

Here are some of the top terms to learn to better understand how the fight works.

Unanimous: All judges choose the same fighter as the ultimate winner.

Submission: When a fighter wins by submission, they have successfully forced their opponent
to “tap out” physically with their hands. A submission win can also occur when the opponent
loses consciousness due to a choke or when the referee believes permanent injury is imminent
and decides to stop the bout.

Split: One judge picks one fighter and the other two judges choose the other fighter.

Majority: Two judges pick the same fighter as winner, and the final judge says the fight was a
draw.

Disqualification (DQ): If the opponent of the guilty fighter is hurt and unable to continue fighting
as a result of the intentional headbutt, the guilty fighter may be disqualified.

Draw: A draw can be unanimous, a majority or split decision.

No Contest: No contest rulings are usually issued when an unintentional illegal strike (the
regulations for which vary by organization) renders the recipient of the blow unable to continue,
with the decision being made by the referee, doctor, fighter, or his corner.
Is MMA Illegal Anywhere?

MMA has been prohibited in a number of nations throughout history. MMA is now allowed in
practically every country on the planet. Some countries do not recognize or promote mixed
martial arts as a sport, but it does not mean it is banned in such countries.

How Do Mixed Martial Artists Train?

MMA fighters train with a combination of ground fighting, stand-up strikes, and takedowns.

Martial arts training and awareness for utilizing diverse techniques have greatly changed in the previous ten years as a result of MMA events. While early fighters trained in a wide range of forms (from Sumo to Karate), modern
fighters most often train in a combination of only three: Amateur Wrestling (clinches and takedowns), Submission Wrestling (submissions and placement on the ground), and Kickboxing (primarily Muay Thai, and focusing on striking).

Stand-up fighting, clinch fighting, and ground fighting are the three unique styles that
correspond to the “parts of conflict” idea, which states that fights can be divided into three
phases, each requiring completely different skill sets: stand-up fighting, clinch fighting, and
ground fighting. A fighter’s best tactic is to find the phase in which he has the biggest advantage
over his opponent and then force the battle to take place in that phase. In other words, if you are
equally skilled in all phases of the fight, you will be able to take advantage of your opponent's
weaknesses.

Why is MMA So Popular?

MMA is so popular largely because of the athleticism and skill-sets of the fighters.

MMA has quickly risen in the ranks to become one of the most popular and widely enjoyed
competitions in the world. From some of the most elaborate and remarkable forms of martial
arts to the incredible athleticism of the fighters themselves, MMA has proven itself to be a
genuinely respected sport. And its remarkable global popularity is only continuing to grow with
each passing year.

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