Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now

How Mixed Martial Arts Was Created

Posted on January 12, 2017 by Helen Yankovskaya

mma-historyIn recent years we witnessed how new, unique type of sport had been originating. Before it was created, martial arts techniques were divided into striking (box, kickboxing, karate, taekwondo, etc.) and grappling (Greco-Roman and freestyle wrestling, sambo, judo).

So called “mixed style”, created at the beginning of the 90s, has literally changed the world of sport martial arts and made many fans view their favorite sports from new perspective.

The idea itself isn’t that new. Ancient Greeks created the combat style, called pankration, which was included in the program of ancient Olympiad. It allows using almost any striking or grappling technique. There was long lasting fights in the parterre (where rules allowed using numerous techniques).

But, nevertheless, these competitions weren’t properly organized and some of them (such as pankration or Japanese Middle Age championships) disappeared. At the beginning of the 90s we became closer to answer the question that for a long time kept people wondering. And that question is who is stronger: whale or tiger, bear or lion. Mixed style tournaments and championships tried to answer this question. They began almost simultaneously in different countries.

Betting and MMA

There is a lot of fans of mixed martial arts, and the most experienced of them have found a way to turn a favorite pastime in the way of earnings. When betting on UFC league, you can easily raise capital and warm up the excitement of confrontation of the favorite boxers. With the ability to bet on mixed martial arts, bookmaking offices got a new portion of the gamblers. Bookmakers give attention to the players with the latest news from the world of MMA, making it easier to their customers to make more accurate predictions.

Founder of MMA

But let’s get back to the topic of MMA itself. So, who was the founder of modern “mixed style”? Some say that the date of birth of mixed martial arts is the day first UFC tournament took place. That was in December 1993 in USA. But Americans borrowed this idea of integrated rules for fighting inside octagonal ring from Brazilians. Many will wonder why Brazil. This country doesn’t have any developed, strong schools teaching traditional Olympic sports (wrestling, box) or Asian martial arts which were highly advertised during last decades thanks to Hollywood and Hong Kong movies. The thing is, Brazilian traditional martial art was for long in the shadow of Western or Asian techniques. Capoeira was the only martial art Brazilians knew.

Today USA, Brazil, Japan and Netherlands are major countries in the world of mixed martial arts. The range of historico-geographical, cultural and socio-economic factors can explain why these particular countries became MMA world leaders.

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