Club Profiles: Mixed Martial Arts

How to get involved with Mixed Martial Arts at the University of York

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About the sport/club…

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is one of the most all-encompassing martial arts. It was originally created to allow for practitioners of different martial arts to compete against each other (think boxers against sumo wrestlers or karate champions versus Graeco-Roman wrestlers, etc). Since the 1990s it has evolved into its current form, whereby athletes in the sport train in all three aspects of fighting (striking, wrestling and grappling) and compete one on one against each other (most often in octagonal fenced rings, known as “cages”). We also occasionally send team members to compete in purely striking or grappling matches.

When are trials?

We recruit members throughout the year, so anyone can come along and also state their interest in competing. The Committee will decide on who is ready and able to be matched for competition. We are hoping to compete in a Fight Night at Bradford in mid-November so recruitment for that will start ASAP in the First Term! However, there will be other opportunities to fight later on during the year, so no need to worry if you miss out on the first go.

Can beginners get involved?

Yes, they can! Anybody can come down and try the sport: the first two sessions are free! We cater to various levels of ability and anyone, whether they are a black belt in Jiu-Jitsu or a total novice in fighting can come and train. We are also having a “Give It a Go” session on Monday 12th October. If anyone who comes to train finds at times that it is too challenging, or that they would like to take their time, the club will be completely understanding and will do its best to help you train at an optimal pace.

Why should you try this sport?

There are any many reasons to get involved with MMA. It’s a lot of fun and we provide a welcoming and safe environment. People in our club come from so many different backgrounds that there is a great opportunity to socialize with a very wide and diverse spectrum of interesting people. Moreover a lot of people in the club have backgrounds in other martial arts and MMA is a great starting point to go and investigate further fighting disciplines. Because of the varied nature of the sport you can also realize very quickly which area of martial arts you are either strongest in or wish to develop in more. We are a very accessible sport and, contrary to the ’90s image of MMA, not a brutal underground fight club, but a community of athletes. Lastly, MMA fosters a great sense of camaraderie through intense training, fantastic socials and a shared fascination and love of the sport.

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