Physiotherapy for Mixed Martial Arts Fighters

Physiotherapy for Mixed Martial Arts FightersMixed Martial Arts (MMA) is one of the fastest growing sports in today’s world. Its roots can be traced back in Pankration, a fighting style from the ancient Greeks. It is the combined result of combat styles, encompassing all fighting modes. MMA is a type of sport for the “warriors” that would definitely require strenuous forms of training. If you participate in MMA, you’re in a collision sport. Even if you’re dominating your opponent, you can still get injured!

A Sport of Sheer Violence

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) involves various fighting techniques, using a combination of wrestling, boxing, and martial arts to strike and grapple with opponents. Also referred to as no-hold barred (NHB) fighting, ultimate fighting, and cage fighting, has its roots in ancient Greece. During the ancient times, it was referred to as Pankration and was featured at the 33rd Ancient Olympics.

Pankration was spawned from unarmed combat on the battlefield and became an extremely popular sport. It was well-regarded in the ancient Greece and was a climatic final event of the Olympics for centuries. Since the time of Alexander the Great, Pankration attracted attention due to its sheer violence and brutal competition.

Like its pankration predecessor, MMA competition has attracted attention for its sheer violence. MMA competitions were introduced in the US with the first Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in 1993. Adopted the styles of popular Vale Tudo (Portugese for “anything goes”) matches in Brazil, these first UFC matches were marketed as brutal, no-hold barred tournaments with no time limits, no weight classes, and few rules.

In MMA, two contenders wear minimal protective equipment. They unleash a myriad of full force punches, elbow strikes, knee strikes, kicks, stomps, neck chokes, joint manipulations, body throws, and other grappling techniques against each other. To win, a fighter concusses an opponent into defencelessness through blunt head trauma, disables an opponent through joint dislocation, or soft tissue trauma, causes syncope through neck choke, or forces an opponent into submission by any permutation of the proceeding.

Most bouts are usually decided by submission or knockout. A knockout in MMA is defined as being rendered unconscious rather than unable to proceed. It is obvious that there is a high potential for fighters to sustain severe and potentially fatal injuries.

Injuries in Mixed Martial Arts

Injuries, mild or severe, go hand in hand with combat sports. Knockouts and concussions are part of the game.

In general, the injury pattern in MMA is closely similar to that in professional boxing, which includes a very high amount of facial lacerations and fractures, and concussion injuries. The injuries may also include torn biceps, broken orbital bone, dislocated shoulder, and torn knee ligaments. Professional fighters may encounter more injuries than their amateur counterparts.


Training for combat sports such as MMA requires intensity and commitment to compete and train on a regular basis. Because combat sport is always entailed by injuries, getting help from a physiotherapist is beneficial when it comes to managing injuries. A physiotherapist diagnoses, treats, and rehabilitates such high performance injuries so you can get back to training and competing in the fastest way possible.

If you are into mixed martial arts and in need of help with physical preparation and injury management, call us at 9444 8729 today!