Published at Tuesday, 17 December 2019. Female. By Aiden Cox.
Originally promoted as a competition to find the most effective martial arts for real unarmed combat, competitors from different fighting styles were pitted against one another in contests with relatively few rules. Later, individual fighters incorporated multiple martial arts into their style. MMA promoters were pressured to adopt additional rules to increase competitors safety, to comply with sport regulations and to broaden mainstream acceptance of the sport. Following these changes, the sport has seen increased popularity with a pay-per-view business that rivals boxing and professional wrestling.
Previously, Japan-based organization Pride Fighting Championships held an opening 10-minute round followed by two five-minute rounds. Stomps, soccer kicks and knees to the head of a grounded opponent are legal, but elbow strikes to the head are not. This rule set is more predominant in the Asian-based organizations as opposed to European and American rules. More recently, Singapore-based organization ONE Championship allows soccer kicks and knees to the head of a grounded opponent as well as elbow strikes to the head, but does not allow head stomps.
In the UFC, women’s MMA is currently restricted to just two weight classes: strawweight, for fighters weighing up to 115 pounds (52 kg), and bantamweight, for fighters weighing up to 135 pounds (61 kilograms). Other MMA organizations, however, have sanctioned women’s bouts in several additional weight classes, including featherweight, with an upper weight limit of 145 pounds (66 kg) and atomweight, for fighters weighing up to 105 pounds (48 kg).
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