The Attraction Of Mixed Martial Arts

Mixed martial arts or MMA has burst into the scene and rocked the world of high-profile combat sports. It isn’t a new phenomenon by any means but its entry into mainstream consciousness is certainly a game-changer. This type of fighting largely existed underground with records dating back to the early 1900s. It became a subculture that slowly gained a lot of adherents throughout the century in Japan, Brazil, and other countries. There were efforts to create a league in the 80s but US legislators shot it down with a prohibition. Things evolved, however, and now we have the UFC as well as other MMA promotions around the world. Millions of fans have been attracted to the sport for varied reasons.

1. Multiple styles in one ring

The premise of the sport is intriguing by itself. In a typical tournament, fighters can only face those who practice the same discipline. Boxers fought boxers, wrestlers fought wrestlers, karatekas fought karatekas, and so on. Now we have a combat sport that welcomes everyone from different backgrounds in one ring. The best BJJ grappling dummy, Muy Thai – Wrestling — you name it. One of the goals is to find out which type of martial arts is the best in one-on-one combat. The most skilled practitioners of every discipline can wave their flag and show the world what they can do. How styles clash is exciting to watch as outcomes are unpredictable.

2. Short, intense matches

MMA matches are generally short with only a few rounds per bout, each consisting of a few minutes. Fighters cannot afford to sit around and be tentative. They have to make aggressive moves to make the most of their time. If an opponent tags you, then you have to retaliate right away or the judges will score against you. The intensity is high throughout. This is in contrast with other fighting arrangements such as in boxing. Boxers used to have 15 full rounds to fight with the early rounds often being used to size each other up. Now top-tier professional boxing matches have been shortened to 12 rounds but the tentative nature of the initial stages is still there. Mike Tyson in his prime is a notable exception.

3. One undisputed champion per weight class

There is also a singular belt that is up for grabs for each weight class in MMA. This leaves no confusion as to who is the undisputed champion. There is a clear path to the top that every contender can try to take. Only the best person can reach it and stay there. Boxing has often been criticized for having multiple belts available in each class. For example, there are four so-called champions in the welterweight division at the same time. This is confusing for people as they don’t know who’s the real top dog among the bunch.

4. Very few rules and limitations

In most disciplines, there are lots of rules that have to be followed and limitations imposed on the fighters. There is a long list of illegal moves so everyone needs to be careful. This also restricts what audiences can see. In many ways, this forces fighters to be creative and be masterful with their craft. However, some people find this to be tiresome in terms of pure entertainment. MMA was designed to be a very open type of sport. It has to be given the variety of disciplines that are involved in it. Fighters often train in multiple styles for a great all-around game.

5. The abundance of meaningful fights all year

Promoters in MMA are always sure to line up great fights with actual significance throughout the year. This is a direct consequence of the single title policy. Contenders cannot become champions overnight because of a suddenly vacant belt from a questionable governing body. In order to be a champion, you have to beat the champion. There is no other way around it. A person cannot target the least accomplished champ from a list to get an easy win. Every fight is hard because on the worthy rise to the top.

6. Expanding global base

MMA outfits are sprouting all over the world. The most successful one is the UFC but there are many others operating in various countries. There are fighters from every nationality competing at different levels which add an additional layer of interest. People get more engaged cheering for their countrymen as they are sources of national pride. They get to showcase their own styles of fighting.

Fighters Who Built The Sport Of MMA

Mixed martial arts fighting is a sport that encompasses various martial arts such as jiu-jitsu, wrestling, and kickboxing. There are certain fighters who managed to build the sport in different ways. Some managed to bring their technique, some managed to talk trash, and others just simply dominated their opponents. This article looks at some of the founders in the sport of MMA

There have been many fighters who have come and gone in mixed martial arts for various reasons, but some early on were vital to the success of the sport. Here is a look at some of the most influential fighters in the history of the MMA

Royce Gracie
Probably the most influential fighter in MMA history, Royce Gracie brought Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to UFC 1 and wowed spectators with his ability to beat larger opponents by way of submission. At a time when fights had few rules, and matches were in open weight classes, Gracie impressed with his ability to put his opponents in undesirable positions. He dominated the first UFC by winning all three fights of the tournament-style format. He then went on to a streak of more submission victories, winning his first 11 fights all by making his opponents tap out. Without Gracie, the sport would likely not have the art form of submissions like it does. In a lot of ways, the entire Gracie family has molded the sport through various fighting techniques used by fighters all over the world.

Forrest Griffin
Griffin owes a lot of his notoriety to his opponent for the finale of The Ultimate Fighter. For the end of the first season of the hit reality show, Griffin fought Stephan Bonnar in one of the best fights in UFC history. A mostly stand-up fight, both contestants battled non-stop for three rounds in a very close contest. Griffin won, but Stephan Bonnar was also awarded a contract. While retiring with only a 19-7 record, Griffin also managed to build the sport by focusing on other avenues, such as writing best-selling books. His great fights which brought ratings to the Spike TV network, as well as his popularity that transcended the sport, makes Griffin one of the most important fighters in the history of MMA

Tito Ortiz
The aptly named “Huntington Beach Bad Boy,” was one of the first to gain notoriety as a personality to despise. Tito carried himself with more cockiness than others, and let his mouth do some trash talking at a time when fighters tended to go about their business. In part, the dislike toward Tito was also due to him being a good fighter. He beat the great Ken Shamrock three separate times. The hatred and greatness of Tito made him a big draw. For being the first notable bad guy in the sport, which would later inspire some other notable trash talkers, Tito deserves a spot on this list.

Chuck Liddell
There was a period in the UFC where the Light Heavyweight division was stacked with talent. At the top of that stack for quite a while was Chuck Liddell. Liddell managed to avenge his previous loss to Randy Couture and become champion at UFC 52. He was able to defend the title four more times, including against Tito Ortiz, and Randy Couture again, before losing the title to “Rampage” Jackson. He also had a cool care-free attitude that appealed to many fans. Because of his dominance within a talent-filled division, Liddell brought eyes to the sport.

Georges St-Pierre
St-Pierre has only lost two career fights—to Matt Hughes, and to Matt Serra, and both times he was able to rectify those losses. St-Pierre dominated the UFC Welterweight division. Although nicknamed “Rush” by the way he was able to score first round victories early in his career, St-Pierre later switched to a more technical approach following his loss to Matt Serra and worked his opponents by wearing them down over multiple rounds. With the amount of title fight victories and technical precision, St-Pierre has become a legend in the sport.

Ken Shamrock
Like Gracie, Shamrock was there for the first UFC event. Although ultimately losing to Gracie, he still dominated many of the contests and some found his style preferable to Gracie’s. From the UFC, Shamrock brought his victories to Japan, where he became the first individual outside of the country to become the King of Pancrase.