For sporty people here in Singapore, Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is as famous as soccer but there are people that do not know about it. MMA is actually popular not only here in Singapore but across Asia. Its explosive growth over the years means that it attracts millions of fans across the region.
In fact, MMA is moving mainstream with its TV and sponsorship deals. It is high time that we know about MMA. Before anything else, we have to define MMA. MMA is a full-contact combat sport that permits the use of grappling, striking or both techniques whether standing or on the ground.
- The origin of ‘MMA’: According to historians, the term ‘MMA’ was first heard in television uttered by Howard Rosenberg, a television critic. The term was made more popular by newfullcontact.com. Rick Blume promoted the term and it was Jeff Blatnick who adopted the term. There are lots of people and minds who made MMA so there is still a debate on who actually coined it.
- MMA organizations: If we want to know about the listings of MMA organizations, we should go to the MMA portal Tapology.com. In the listings, they are many promotions produced around the world. Among the organizations, the most prominent (especially in mainstream media) it Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Other promotions or organizations include Bellator MMA, ONE Championship, World Series of Fighting and Invicta FC.
- The development of fighters: There are many competitors in this kind of sport therefore fighters have different training camps. In training, fighters study modern kinesiology to analyse the combat-effectiveness of different strategies to improve fighting.
- Rules: The rules have changed. The sport is trying to eliminate the perception of people to the sport as “barbarian and lawless”. To be recognized as a legitimate sport, new rules were included. There is now an introduction of weight classes (there are nine weight classes) introduced by Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts. Before the fight, fighters are required to wrap their hands prior to putting gloves on to protect the fists. Time limits are also established to avoid lengthy fights and more action.
If we want to learn MMA (as a form of exercise not as a profession), we have to look for specific gyms. We do not need to worry about gyms because they are mushrooming across the region. Surely looking for one will not be a problem. If we want to witness the fights, we will be relieved to know that fights are held more often than boxing.