Mixed Martial Arts-An Introduction

Danial & Musawirmixed martial arts (MMA)2 Comments

Mixed Martial Arts- An Introduction

Mixed martial art is a full combat hand to hand sport. It involves the use of techniques and strategies from all the disciplines of martial arts. It is a multi dimensional sport unlike other combat sports like boxing, wrestling, karate which are usually one-dimensional.

Mixed martial arts in a simple word is a sport that allows you to fight anyway you want. If you want to fight on ground, good, if you want to stand and trade punches and kicks with your opponent, no problem. If you want to grab your opponent with his neck and hit him with knees, cool!! If you want to take your opponents back, and slam him all over the place with sup lexes, amazing. If you want to choke your opponents out or break his arm or leg, no problem, because it’s all legal in the world of Mixes martial arts.

Why is this called Mixed Martial Arts?

This sport is actually nothing but a combination of various disciplines of Mixed Martial Arts. Usually following disciplines are commonly used in Mixed Martial Arts:

Boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, muay thai, brazilian jiu jitsu, sambo, jude, karate etc.

How it all started?

The first regulated MMA league in USA was held in 1980 by the name of “Tough Guy Contest”. It was later named “The Battle of Super Fighters” in Pennsylvania but it was later banned by Pennsylvania senate in 1983.

Ultimate fighting championship (UFC) and the dawn of Mixed Martial Arts

In 1993 Mixed Martial Art’s biggest organization was founded by the name of “Ultimate Fighting Championship by the Gracie family.

Why was Mixed Martial Arts initiated?

Mixed Martial Arts was initiated to find out the best and most effective discipline of martial arts. For this reason the UFC 1, first televised event of Mixed Martial Arts was held in 1993.

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From where did the term Mixed Martial Arts come?

There are plenty of different sources which give credits to different persons for introducing this term, however some trustworthy sources suggest that the first man to use this term was a television critic “Howard Rosenberg” in a program based on the review of UFC 1.

What does it take to be a successful Mixed Martial Artist?

It has already been stated that MMA is a combination of Mixed Martial Arts. It involves boxing, kick-boxing, karate, wrestling, free-style and many more disciplines, similarly there are many strategies used in Mixed Martial Arts unlike some common Martial Arts disciplines which focuses on one or two disciplines usually.

So in order to become a truly good Mixed Martial Artist one must have at least deep expertise in at least one or two disciplines of Martial Arts and he must keep adding new thing to his games. Evaluation is very important if you want be very good at Mixed Martial Arts because this sport without a doubt is the fastest evolving sport in the world

For example if you want to be a good Mixed Martial Artist you should first go to boxing or kick-boxing or muay thai or judo training academy to build a solid background in one or two of these disciplines. Then you should go to MMA academy in order to add weapons and techniques from other disciplines into your game.

It is often said that Mixed Martial Artist is lack of everything and king of none. This perception in my opinion is wrong. In my opinion you cannot be a good Mixed Martial Artist unless you are very good at one of the disciplines of martial arts at least.

Disciplines of Mixed Martial Arts:


As we all know that boxing was and still the most famous combat sport of this world. It is a martial art that falls into the category of striking. It only involves the use of hands. The only way to fight in boxing ring is by hands to punch the opponent in the face and body.

Boxing is basically a step-up based, a comparatively long ranged, hand to hand combat sport which does not allow the use of kicks, throws and takedowns.

Kick boxing:

In simple words

Kick Boxing = Kick + Boxing

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So, if you simply add some kicks along with boxing in your game you become a kick-boxer, kick-boxing is also a martial arts that falls in the category of striking. It focuses on stand-up game and it is also a comparatively long-range hand to hand sport. A kick-boxer usually tires to keep her opponent at a distance by throwing punches and kicks to the face and the body and the legs of opponent in order to avoid takedown and clinches.


Wrestling is completely different martial art form from boxing and kick-boxing. Wrestlers love taking their opponent to the ground and dominate them from a top position. However they don’t like when they are taken down by their opponents. It is hard for them to fight off their back. So wrestling is focused on two things:

  1. Takedown
  2. Takedown defense

All the strategies in wrestling are based on these two things. Wrestling has various sub-disciplines like Amateur wrestling, Catch wrestling etc.

Muay Thai:

Muay Thai, the love of people of Thailand, martial arts that lie under the category of striking. In boxing you can throw punches, in kick-boxing you can throw punches and kicks. Now take two steps ahead and you are at the stop of muay thai where you can throw the punches, kicks, elbows and fists.

Muay thai is known for its versatility and it unique techniques that allow muay thai fights to throw most powerful, most efficient, most viscous kicks and knees

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu:

Known as BJJ, this martial art is quite unique as it enables you be to on the offense, when apparently you are on the defense.

It is a martial art based on the ground game. It involves a various variety of submissions which makes BJJ practitioners very dangerous as they can trap their opponents in a submission hold at any time and finish him by choking him out breaking his arm or leg or simply by forcing him to tap out.

Most commonly known submission hold are Rear-naked choke, knee bar, arm bar, arm triangle choke etc


If you look deeply into it sambo is not a single martial art, it is the complete Mixed Martial Art in itself. It involves free-style wrestling, sudo, leg-lock, striking and grappling weapons like punches, knees, elbows and even head butts. It is the home sport for Russians and usually practiced by them. Fedor Emalianenko and Khabib Nurmagernedor are two big examples of Sambo practitioners in Mixed Martial Arts.

  Mixed Martial Arts- An Introduction Part 2

Sanshou and Sanda:

Sanshou and Sanda are Chinese martial arts. They usually involve striking and take-down. They are not very commonly used by Mixed Martial Arts however cung le is a good example of Sanshou based fighters in Mixed Martial Arts.


If you add Korean martial arts and Chinese martial Arts you get taekwondo. However the highlight feature of taekwondo is the huge variety of kicks in this discipline. It focuses on the variety of kicks and the techniques to throw the powerful and high-speed kicks.

Some of the most important types of kicks are spinning kicks, head kicks and leg kicks. This technique is based on two principles:

  1. Speed is more important than size or strength, when it comes to generating power in the kicks
  2. Relax and Strike principle

Relax and strike:

This principle focuses on the importance of relaxation between striking and blocking. It states that fighter should relax himself when he is blocking and tense his muscles when he is striking. This helps to generate more power.


Judo is a close range, full contact, hand to hand combat sport and martial arts. The shining aspects of this art are throws, take-downs and submission holds. Its origin lies in Japanese martial arts but now has become a famous sport in Olympics. There are different extremes and forms of this post which cannot be mentioned here.


Karate yet again a full contact, striking based combat sport whose origin lies in the Japan but progress and development belongs to China. It is not very commonly used in Mixed Martial Arts but two of the very dominant men in Mixed Martial Arts used karate such as Chuck Liddell and George Saint Pierce who were expert in Kenpo karate and kyokushin respectively.


This article is the first part of the series “Mixed Martial Arts-An Introduction” which discusses the origin and introduction of Mixed Martial Arts briefly and also introduces the major disciplines of it.







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