UFC refers to Ultimate Fighting Championship. It started in 1993 as a professional mixed martial arts organization offering elite-level fights. The sport of mixed martial arts involves the use of unarmed combat. According to UFC rules and regulations, unarmed combat refers to any form of competition where a blow is struck which, under reasonable circumstances, would be expected to result in injury. It allows for a combination of techniques from different disciplines of the martial arts, including grappling, submission holds, and striking.

MMA regulations, as seen in the UFC, incorporates aspects of other types of sport competitions. For instance, bouts are evaluated and scored by three judges and competitors are divided up into classes based on their weight. The classes range from the strawweight class to the super heavyweight class, similar to regulations governing the sport of boxing implemented by the World Boxing Federation.

The UFC also implements a multitude of safety regulations to protect the players relating to equipment and activity. All contestants are required to wear a mouthpiece during competition and must be approved by the attending physician before the round can begin. The female mixed martial artists wear a chest protector and the males wear a groin protector during competition, while all competitors wear gloves, approved by the commissioner. Shoes and any form of foot padding is prohibited during a competition.

Being an MMA fighter requires hard work, dedication, and a high level of physicality necessary to become proficient in the multiple disciplines of combat training, which is required before being allowed to compete in a bout. According to UFC regulations, MMA fighters can incorporate elements of a variety of combat sports, such as boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Kyokushin Karate, Muay Thai, Taekwondo, and multiple types of wrestling, including freestyle, and Judo.

The UFC estimates almost all MMA fighters are first trained in boxing to develop their striking skills, although some techniques are modified to enable MMA fighters to better protect their torso.

The International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation explains that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu focuses on grappling and ground fighting. It is also a popular system of self-defence because it allows an individual to subdue a larger opponent with little to no strength.

The UFC incorporates taekwondo and Muay Thai, both styles which focus on kicking techniques. According to World Taekwondo, the emphasis on kicking results from the belief that the leg is the strongest limb with the greatest reach. As such, its use allows for strikes while remaining out of reach of their opponent, which is why the techniques are favoured by MMA fighters.

According to the UFC, MMA fighters usually train in one or more types of wrestling because getting the opponents shoulders to touch the mat, known as a fall, is an automatic win in the bout. It also helps teach fighters who prefer to avoid wrestling the best methods to stay on their feet.

The UFC emphasizes the mental and emotional motivations of fighters as a critical component of success. Fighters must have the necessary drive to withstand and recover from their extreme physical exertion, not only in bouts, but in training as well.

While there continues to be a debate about whether MMA fighting should be considered a sport or not, regardless of where you stand on the qualification of MMA fighting as a sport, it is undeniable that MMA fighting and training is a full body workout. In the UFC, rising to the top is a full-time job requiring optimal levels of physical fitness, mental fitness, and body control.

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