What Is MMA/Mixed Martial Arts?
Mixed Martial Arts or commonly known as MMA is a full-contact combat sport that allows the use of different fighting styles like boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, karate, Muay Thai, Vale Tudo, Brazilian Ju jitsu and other fighting styles throughout the world. It became so popular during the early 1900s.
The first regulated MMA league in the United States was created by CV Productions in 1980 and they named it as “Tough Guy Contest”. Later, it was named as “Battle Of The Superfighters” that sanctioned tournaments in Pennsylvania. But the bad news is in 1983 when the Pennsylvania State Senate pass a bill that prohibits this sport. Vale Tudo, a combat sport in Brazil that was developed in 1920s was then brought in United States by the Gracie Family in 1993. This event was then followed by the founding of the Ultimate Fighting Championship or UFC on the same year. This was establish for them to know what is the most effective Martial Arts for unarmed combat situations. This time, UFC is the most famous MMA league in the world. But there are other famous MMA leagues throughout the world also like Bellator MMA, Invicta Fighting Championship and ONE Championship (One FC).
Battle Of The MMA Fighters
The MMA battle takes place on a close ring or a cage with no equipments. They are only wearing shorts and a thin MMA gloves. No other equipment needed and they are just barefoot during the match. The fighters are allowed to use their own fighting techniques. They can punch, kick and grab just to knockout their opponent and win the match. This battle style was from the origin of MMA, the Vale Tudo that has an English meaning of “anything goes”.
There are some rules on MMA that is similar to Boxing and Wrestling. The fighter has 3 ways to win the match. Fighter can win by knocking out the opponent so that he will be unable to continue the match anymore. A fighter can also win by holding the opponent and forcing to submission. The last way is to finish the fight and win by the judges’ decision. The judges’ decision can be unanimous or a split decision. If the decision is split then the majority of the decision will be the final one.
MMA has 10 weight classes according to the Unified Rules. These weight classes are listed below.
MMA Weight Classes
- Strawweight – up to 115 lb (52.2 kg; 8.2 st)
- Flyweight – up to 125 lb (56.7 kg; 8.9 st)
- Bantamweight – up to 135 lb (61.2 kg; 9.6 st)
- Featherweight – up to 145 lb (65.8 kg; 10.4 st)
- Lightweight – up to 155 lb (70.3 kg; 11.1 st)
- Welterweight – up to 170 lb (77.1 kg; 12.1 st)
- Middleweight – up to 185 lb (83.9 kg; 13.2 st)
- Light Heavyweight – up to 205 lb (93.0 kg; 14.6 st)
- Heavyweight – up to 265 lb (120.2 kg; 18.9 st)
- Super Heavyweight – N/A
Note: 1 lb grace limit is allowed to non-title bouts.
Some leagues have different weight classes but most leagues are following the Unified Rules for the weight classes. The ring or cage of the Mixed Martial Arts fight differs on each league. Some are circle shape, some are 8 sided, 9 sided, 6 sided and there are some cages also that are just the same with the boxing ring. But even there are many MMA leagues in the world and they are different from one another, the contest is still the same. That is to win and to be the best on an MMA cage. No matter what fighting style you have as long as you will follow the rules.