Fighters struggle their whole lives to reach a platform where they are famous as well as respected. They get into martial arts to make their lives out of it. They are not into martial arts just for fun instead they do it as a profession. All fighters need a place where they can thrive as a fighter and earn. One of those platforms is the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).
The Ultimate Fighting Championship has become the face of MMA. It is the dream of every martial artist to reach the UFC. Mainly because of the fame and benefits that UFC provides to its fighters. But getting into UFC is not an easy task. It takes decades to become eligible for UFC.
You must win some championships so that professionals can notice you and help you in reaching your goal.
Table of Contents
- 1. What is UFC?
- 2. How Does UFC Pick Fighters?
- 3. Other Disciplines Necessary For Becoming a UFC Fighter
- 4. How to Become A UFC Fighter?
- 4.1. Become a Fearless Fighter
- 4.2. Stay Focused
- 4.3. Work on Your Boxing
- 4.4. Learn Kickboxing For Striking
- 4.5. Learn Grappling Techniques
- 4.6. Drilling and Sparring
- 4.7. Find an MMA Gym Near You
- 4.8. Develop a Distinctive Fighting Style
- 4.9. Must Know about Age Requirements of the UFC
- 4.10. Know About UFC’s Weight Classes
- 4.11. UFC Judging Criteria
- 4.12. UFC Rules
- 4.13. Mental Game is as Important as Physical Game
- 4.14. Compete in Amateur Fights
- 4.15. Train With Professional Fighters
- 4.16. Find a High-Profile Gym
- 4.17. A Continuous Streak of Wins
- 4.18. ONE FC Fighters
- 4.19. Diet Consciousness
- 4.20. Avoid From Injuries
- 4.21. Create Contacts
- 4.22. An Active Social Media Presence
- 4.23. Attend UFC Fights
- 4.24. Look For a Sponsorship
- 4.25. Be Patient Because It’ll Take Time
- 4.26. Banned Moves In UFC
- 4.27. Apply Directly to the UFC
- 5. UFC Training
- 5.1. Strength Training
- 5.2. Conditioning
- 5.3. Cardio For UFC
- 5.4. Broad Jumps
- 5.5. Weighted Box Jumps
- 5.6. Trap Bar Deadlift Jumps
- 5.7. Med Ball Side Toss
- 5.8. Fight-Specific Med Ball Throw
- 5.9. Constant Training
- 6. Explosiveness For UFC
- 6.1. Kettlebell Workout
- 6.2. Deceleration Drills
- 6.3. Reactive Plyometrics
- 6.4. Band Jumps
- 6.5. Paired Exercises
- 7. UFC’s Code of Conduct
- 8. Elite UFC Fighters
- 8.1. UFC Hall of Famer Ronda Rousey
- 8.2. UFC Hall of Famer Mat Serra
- 8.3. UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes
- 8.4. Randy Couture
- 9. How Much Do UFC Fighters Earn?
- 10. FAQs
- 10.1. Why Explosiveness is Important For UFC Fighters?
- 10.2. What is the Importance of Amateur Fights?
- 10.3. Can Men Fight in the UFC’s Strawweight Weight Class?
- 11. Conclusion
1. What is UFC?
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is an American Mixed Martial Arts promotion company that is responsible for conducting MMA fights. It is the largest MMA organization that allows national, international, and top-notch fighters to earn their name in MMA. Its headquarters is in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. It was founded in 1993 by businessman Art Davies and BJJ pioneer Rorion Gracie. Now, Dana White is the person behind the whole organization.
2. How Does UFC Pick Fighters?
It is not easy to become a UFC fighter. It takes exceptional fighting skills to get into the UFC. It will take at least 5-6 years to get into UFC if you are already into any combat sport. But if you are a beginner, you have to learn, train, compete and master at least one martial art to become eligible for UFC.
Ultimate Fighting Championship is not child’s play at all. Fighters sweat and blood for years to get a chance in the UFC. Having a successive win streak and an exceptional fighting style can get the attention of UFC officials and usually result in the vertical flight of the enthusiast’s career.
3. Other Disciplines Necessary For Becoming a UFC Fighter
It is nearly impossible for a beginner to become a UFC Champion. Having prior experience in martial arts is the fundamental expectation of a UFC Champion.
Boxing is a combat sport that involves punches and takedowns to defeat your opponent. Boxers use hooks and leg attacks to disbalance the opponent's position and hence gain victory. Physical strength matters a lot in boxing. To become a UFC fighter, you must know how to apply punches. And boxing is the best combat sport for learning those punches.
Kenneth Wayne Shamrock
Kenneth Wayne Shamrock, aka Ken Shamrock, is an American bare-knuckle boxing champion who is famous for being the toughest fighter in UFC. He is not only a boxer but also a former wrestler, MMA fighter, and kickboxer. That is why he had such a tremendous UFC record. He has a 28-17-2 UFC record.
Anderson Silva is known as the strongest MMA fighter of all time. He was undefeated in 16 UFC Fights. He is currently a BJJ Fighter and a Boxer.
3.2. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a submission grappling combat sport. It involves joint locks, submissions, and takedowns that are useful to defeat an opponent even greater in size and strength. BJJ is all about strength. It does not focus on the weight or physical bulkiness of the fighter, rather it is more concerned about the BJJ techniques, flexibility, and mobility of the fighter.
Athletes have to learn BJJ submission techniques so that they can submit their opponents via chokes. Body locks such as RNC, arm and leg Triangles, etc are applied to gain victory over your opponent. BJJ is the best martial art to learn submission techniques and choke holds techniques and minimum strength.
Even if you are not a stout grappler, only knowing techniques and their execution methods can pave your way to the UFC arena. but to transform into a great fighter, other forms of martial arts must be mastered.
Charles Oliveira who is a BJJ Black Belt under Jorge Patino, is currently a UFC fighter. Before UFC, he was a rising BJJ grappler who had shown tremendous performance in the colored belt level. In 2007, Charles started his career in MMA. He was so inspired by the Mixed Martial Arts that his inspiration led him to become UFC’s Lightweight Champion in 2021.
Wrestlers are the most dominant athletes in the UFC. Wrestling is considered an all-rounder sport. It is the best sport for a fighter who wants to compete in the UFC. In the start, BJJ was called the base sport for becoming a UFC fighter because of its submission techniques. It happened when the legendary Royce Gracie who was a BJJ practitioner, competed in UFC and eventually became the UFC Hall of Famer.
Nowadays Wrestling is seen as a base combat sport for entering the UFC.
UFC Hall of Famer Kazushi Sakuraba
Kazushi Sakuraba is a Japanese Wrestler who is currently UFC’s latest tournament champion. He is called the “Gracie Hunter” because he defeated 4 famous Gracies, Renzo Gracie, Royler Gracie, Royce Gracie, and Ryan Gracie, in the UFC. He was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in July 2017.
Daniel DeWayne Severn is an American wrestler who competes in the UFC. He is the only UFC Triple Crown Champion. His UFC record is 101-19-1. He is also a UFC Hall of Famer.
Mark Coleman is an American mixed martial artist. He was the UFC 10 and UFC 11 Tournament Champion. Primarily, he is a wrestler who competes in UFC and is among the deadliest UFC fighters.
Taekwondo is a Korean form of martial arts that involves punching and kicking. Head kicks are the most applied techniques in taekwondo. It helps the practitioner to learn punches as well as kicks that will help them to get into the UFC.
Rutten not only competed in Taekwondo but also in Wrestling and Kickboxing. He is the first mixed martial artist who is called an all-rounder as he is exceptionally aware of different martial arts.
To become a UFC fighter you must know a variety of martial arts, and Judo is one of them. Judo is an excellent combat sport to learn and improve throws, takedowns, and submissions.
Karo Parisyan, a Black Belt in Judo is the former UFC Welterweight Contender. He had a 9-4 UFC record where he defeated big names in the sport such as Matt Sera, Nick Diaz, and many more.
St-Pierre is also one of the all-rounded UFC fighters. He is the former UFC Champion with a 13-fights win streak.
Sambo is a martial art that indulges in punches and strikes. It contains many techniques that are considered all-rounded for UFC fighters.
UFC Hall of Famer Khabib Nurmegomedov
Khabib Nurmagomedov is a UFC Hall of Famer and holds the prestigious record of the longest lightweight UFC Champion. He retained the title from April 2018 till March 2021. He is a Sambist and is creating history in the UFC.
Future Star: Islam Makhachev
Islam Makhachev is a former Sambist. He is currently competing in the lightweight division in the UFC and is also the UFC’s Lightweight Champion.
4. How to Become A UFC Fighter?
It takes a lot of courage and effort to become a UFC fighter. Other than courage and effort, the most important thing a fighter needs is determination. Without determination, it is impossible to become a UFC fighter. UFC is a challenging and tough championship.
4.1. Become a Fearless Fighter
Becoming a fearless fighter is the most vital step. If you get afraid easily because of violent fights, UFC is not for you. There are many fighters who try to join the UFC because of the hype. These are the ones who get injured the most as they do not count the drawbacks.
It is the most common saying that if you want to achieve something you must have the guts. But to become a UFC fighter you need just more than guts. You need to step out of your comfort zone and see what’s ahead of you.
4.2. Stay Focused
Outline your goals and then go for them, start taking baby steps. If you want to become a UFC fighter just for the fame, you will definitely not last a single fight. Stay focused on your training regime and do not get afraid when you see other fighters being brutally defeated in the UFC.
4.3. Work on Your Boxing
UFC is an institute that conducts MMA matches. So it involves other martial artists such as wrestlers, boxers, or BJJ fighters. If you were previously a BJJ fighter, now you need to work on your boxing. As there is no Gi involved in UFC, BJJ Gi fighters have to learn grips other than Gi grips. Practitioners must learn how to throw punches and definitely how to defend themselves. Add mat wrestling to your training routine.
You must know basic striking moves such as:
- Distance Management
- Head Movement
- Basic Self Defense
You can also incorporate other martial arts techniques in your boxing such as kicks from Taekwondo or leg movements from Karate. The only purpose of adding other techniques to your training regime is to transform you into an all-rounder fighter.
4.4. Learn Kickboxing For Striking
If you think that learning other martial arts will only make your fighting style a haphazard one, drop it. Learn only the most effective ones such as boxing and kickboxing. These sports will teach you to develop a strong striking game. You will earn punches and kicks.
At one point, you will need to learn other martial arts too. You can learn the important techniques from different forms of martial arts so that you have an all-rounded game.
4.5. Learn Grappling Techniques
In MMA fights, the referee does not stop the fight unless any fighter does anything illegal or forbidden during the fight. So even if you are pinned to the ground and can not move, the fight will not stop. You have to come up with a technique better than your opponent’s to gain the dominant position.
When you are close enough to your opponent, you must go for submissions. The best way to learn submissions is through Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. It will provide you with leverage against a bigger opponent. For learning grappling techniques, BJJ must be your number one option.
Learning submissions will help you to defeat your opponents via blood chokes. You can pin your opponent to the ground and later on apply submissions.
4.6. Drilling and Sparring
Your training regime in order to become a UFC fighter must not be too hard as it can lead you toward injuries. You must develop a smarter way to train rather than just going hard. Of course, hard training is important but to a certain level. Drilling and light sparring are the most useful ways to train for a beginner as you can learn more without going too hard on yourself.
Drilling is more beneficial because it not only makes you an expert fighter but also enhances your muscle memory. During drilling, you throw a technique at your partner and he defends himself and then throws a technique at you. You learn how to attack as well as how to defend.
Sparring means that you apply a technique that you know of and are skilled and confident enough to apply. It looks like an actual fight. Light sparring means that the sparring session is not too hard as you apply techniques while keeping them light.
“I believe the best way to improve is when training is playful - you can not improve when trying to win every sparring round - treat your career as a marathon, not a sprint.”
(Former UFC Champion Georges St-Pierre)
4.7. Find an MMA Gym Near You
Once you feel that you have learned some basic MMA skills, go to an MMA gym. MMA gyms can be costly so in the start, you can go for a local gym. It will teach you basic skills and you will also get exposed to the MMA circuit.
4.8. Develop a Distinctive Fighting Style
Your Fighting style must be different enough to get recognition. It can be your own way for the execution of MMA techniques that make you a distinctive fighter. Being an average fighter won't take you to UFC. You must have something different in you that can get the eye of UFC officials.
4.9. Must Know about Age Requirements of the UFC
The minimum age for becoming a UFC fighter is 18. There are many examples of martial artists that are now constructing their name in UFC because of their prior experience in MMA. MMA fighters between the ages of 21 and 34 are even accommodated and allowed to live in the United States so that they can compete in the UFC.
The UFC's age restriction is approximately 50. A fighter can not fight in UFC tournaments if he is older than 50. You can surely learn MMA but there would be no professional career.
4.10. Know About UFC’s Weight Classes
You must know about UFC’s weight classes in order to fully comprehend UFC’s rules and regulations.
Men’s UFC Weight Classes
|UFC Weight Class||Minimum Weight||Maximum Weight|
|Heavyweight||93 Kg/205 lb||120 Kg/265 lb|
|Light Heavyweight||83.9 Kg/185 lb||93 Kg/205 lb|
|Middleweight||77.1 Kg/170 lb||83.9 Kg/185 lb|
|Welterweight||70.3 Kg/155 lb||77.1 Kg/170 lb|
|Lightweight||65.8 Kg/145 lb||70.3 Kg/155 lb|
|Featherweight||61.2 Kg/135 lb||65.8 Kg/145 lb|
|Bantamweight||56.7 Kg/125 lb||61.2 Kg/135 lb|
|Flyweight||52.2 Kg/115 lb||56.7 Kg/125 lb|
Women’s UFC Weight Classes
|UFC Weight Class||Minimum Weight||Maximum Weight|
|Featherweight||61.2 Kg/135 lb||65.8 Kg/145 lb|
|Bantamweight||56.7 Kg/125 lb||61.2 Kg/135 lb|
|Flyweight||52.2 Kg/115 lb||56.7 Kg/125 lb|
|Strawweight||No Requirement||52.2 Kg/115 lb|
4.11. UFC Judging Criteria
There are 3 judges present outside the ring/octagon who are responsible for the results of the fight. 10 points are to be earned per round in order to win the round from your opponent. Judges are keen observers of the fight. Depending upon where the fight took place, they award points. For example, if fighters spent most of the time on the ground, the grappling technique is considered more and if the fight was in the standing position, striking and kicking techniques are focused.
4.12. UFC Rules
- Each fighting round consists of a 10-must-point system.
- Judges are responsible for the decision of a fight. It can consist of a unanimous, majority, or split decision including draws and no contest depending on the number of judges agreeing/disagreeing.
- Scores are granted upon the effectiveness of their striking and grappling techniques.
- Butting the fighter’s head or eye gouging is considered a foul.
- Fish hooking and hair pulling are also considered foul.
- Fouls are only accessed by referees.
- There are 3 rounds in the UFC and the duration of each round is 5 minutes.
4.13. Mental Game is as Important as Physical Game
You can go to the gym and train with professional fighters to develop a strong physical game. You must trust yourself to the point that even if you lose during any amateur fight, you won’t get disheartened.
A mental game means that you know what technique to use to dominate your opponent’s technique. It also means that you have made yourself mentally strong to a point that even if you lose, you will take it as a challenge. Before winning a physical fight, you must win mentally.
4.14. Compete in Amateur Fights
When you have developed a strong and distinctive fighting style, go for the amateur fights. Competing in the local MMA circuit results in exposure. Fighters get to see you and most likely potential UFC fighters can be fascinated by you and it will surely result in your increased chances of signing up for the UFC.
It also provides you with experience. If you are new to MMA, you must definitely compete. Despite training for a long period, there are many things a fighter can learn only when he is competing. Local league fights are the best source for getting experience and exposure.
Many UFC fighters attend these local fights so that they can find young talent. So it might be your chance. Even if you don’t get signed up for any league, you still have got exposure.
4.15. Train With Professional Fighters
If you get a chance to train with professional UFC fighters, do not miss that chance. UFC fighters will teach techniques and ways of fighting that you might not have developed all those years of training.
Training with UFC fighters gives you an insight into their training and dietary supplements.
4.16. Find a High-Profile Gym
Once you have competed in amateur fights and you are aware of MMA fights, you must leave the local gym and go for a reputable gym. There you will find professional and experienced coaches who will train you specifically for UFC. These are the coaches who have already prepared many UFC fighters. Their training will revolutionize your whole training regime.
4.17. A Continuous Streak of Wins
As mentioned earlier, to become a UFC fighter you need to develop extraordinary fighting skills. Along with skills, you have to win a couple of national and international championships. They will result in making you known to decision-making officials.
There are already a number of fighters who are trying to get into the UFC. If you have a continuous streak of wins along with your name, UFC officials are more likely to contact you as it is also good for their reputation. Your determination and efforts will definitely pay off if you continue to strive at your true potential.
Every fighter develops his/her own fighting style when they are in the MMA career for a long time. This unique fighting style results in an exceptional fighting game that opens the door to success for you.
But that does not mean that if you do not win too often, you are never going to reach UFC. Nothing happens overnight, you need time and a lot of effort for UFC and that’s for sure.
4.18. ONE FC Fighters
Before going to compete in UFC, you must try for the ONE FC Championship. Though there is a hell of a difference between the two championships, still there are many things that are similar between them. For example, the weight division “strawweight” is a women’s weight division in the UFC but in ONE Championship, men compete in it.
The rules for ONE Championship are the same as Kickboxing and Muay Thai but UFC has its own set of rules. Despite the differences, a fighter learns a lot from these bigger championships. Getting into ONE FC is also tough but if you are invited by ONE before UFC do not miss the opportunity. It will make you ready for your goal which is becoming a UFC fighter.
4.19. Diet Consciousness
Along with training, diet is also crucial for your strength. You must focus on carb-heavy food. They will provide you with bouts of energy for a longer period. MMA training is intensive training. It often drains fighters’ energy and makes them vulnerable to certain injuries or diseases.
4.20. Avoid From Injuries
If you want an exceptional UFC fighter, you must stay fit and far away from injuries. UFC is often misunderstood as a brutal and violent championship. It is because it consists of strikes and punches. Punches and strikes increase the chance of injuries. UFC fights are also called blood fights because fighters do bleed during fights.
That is why it is called dangerous. If you can protect yourself from deadly head punches, UFC is the best platform for you.
4.21. Create Contacts
Enrolling in a reputable MMA gym will result in upscaling of your skills. Once you have developed a distinctive fighting style, you must look for the people who can help you to get into UFC. Probably, your fighting technique must be noticed by any fighter and you can reach UFC.
It is still important to know the right people who can pave the way for you. You must start networking as soon as you have won amateur fights. Or you can get a skillful manager who knows how to bring you to the mainstream.
4.22. An Active Social Media Presence
An active social media presence is necessary so that martial arts enthusiasts as well as other fighters can see your progress. It will boost your confidence. It will bring you in front of potential management that will lead you to compete in the UFC.
4.23. Attend UFC Fights
No matter how much you learn or train to become a UFC fighter, you will still lack some things that you can only learn through professional experience. It can develop by training with UFC fighters but still, that is not enough. You must have to attend UFC fights and see for yourself how UFC fighters develop a distinguished fighting style that makes them one of the greatest UFC fighters of all time.
Being outside the octagon you will see how fighters bear the pressure of a strong opponent and also how they gain victory over their opponent. It is an authentic experience that a fighter must have to know what he is signing for.
4.24. Look For a Sponsorship
From training for UFC to entering a UFC tournament, a practitioner requires a significant amount of money. Training at a local MMA gym might not be too costly for the practitioner but when you switch to a reputable gym, your money package must be huge. Training under a professional UFC coach can be a toll on your money expenditure if you don’t have enough money.
For that purpose, you must look for sponsorship. Sponsors can find you if you have an exceptional fighting game and also because of your successive win streak. If sponsors don't reach you, you must look out for sponsorship.
By exemplifying what benefits you seek from the sponsorship as well as the benefits you'll receive, you can become eligible for the sponsorship. This sponsorship will cover your expenses such as your gym and entrance fee and also for your gear. When you don't have to worry about money, you will perform better and achieve your goal.
4.25. Be Patient Because It’ll Take Time
All this time when you are practicing and training to become a UFC fighter, you have to be patient. Becoming a UFC fighter is not a one-day effort. It takes years for a practitioner to become a UFC fighter. Before becoming eligible for UFC, you have to excel in the martial art of your liking. It will lay the base for your UFC training.
After struggling for years, fighters get a chance to fight in UFC tournaments. So do not lose hope and keep on excelling in your fighting techniques.
4.26. Banned Moves In UFC
Though there are many moves that are legal in UFC tournaments whereas banned in other martial arts. There are some moves that are banned in the UFC. A fighter preparing for UFC must be aware of them. Some of them are:
- Pile Driving
- Soccer Kicks
- Hair Pulling
- Fish Hooking
4.27. Apply Directly to the UFC
When you feel that you are completely ready for the UFC, you can directly apply to the UFC Portal. You must go for the people who can help you to reach UFC, but talking directly to UFC is also a good option. You can create a profile and add all your professional achievements to it. In this way, you can easily fight in tournaments such as “Looking For A Fight”, “The Ultimate Fighter” or “Contender Series”.
5. UFC Training
Training for UFC is a hard one. You have to perform high-intensity workouts that will increase your strength as well as your cardio. In the long run, it will help you not to get tired while fighting.
5.1. Strength Training
The most important thing that a fighter needs for his/her UFC training is strength training. A strong fighter can execute as well as escape techniques and moves. For strength training, you can go for either MMA or BJJ intensive workout.
Aerobic conditioning is the most efficient way to develop conditioning for the UFC. More oxygen reaches your muscles and immense power is built in them. You can perform conditioning workouts, especially for UFC. It includes clean pulls, dumbbell bench press, medicine ball throw, and many more. A fighter needs to have a workout that not only increases strength in the body but also induces flexibility in him. This flexibility will later help you protect yourself from injuries.
5.3. Cardio For UFC
Cardio exercises are important for increasing the heart rate of the practitioner and maintaining it for a long period. It is a part of aerobic exercise as oxygen reaches your muscles and increases your muscle mass. Drilling and light sparring is only beneficial when it's the start of your training. You need to have a hard training regime if your goal is UFC.
This workout consists of hard training which involves different exercises that are performed at a faster pace and with heavy weights. It consists of 5 rounds.
Round 1 (Warm-up Round)
|3 minutes||90 seconds|
Round 2 (Shadow-Boxing for 4 minutes)
Shadow-Boxing for 2 minutes
Bodyweight, push-ups and planks for other 2 minutes
|2 minutes||20 reps||20 reps||20 reps|
Round 3 (5 minutes)
|Jabs||Crosses||Jabs & Crosses||Jabs, Crosses & Hooks|
Round 4 (5 minutes)
|Alternating Knee Strikes||Alternating Kicks||Jabs & Kicks||Crosses & KIcks|
|60 seconds||60 seconds||50||50|
Round 5 (5 minutes)
|Forward Rolls||Backward Rolls||Sit-ups||Ground & Pound||Push-ups|
5.4. Broad Jumps
Broad jumps are a part of plyometric exercises. They are performed to enhance your speed and force which will eventually help you in building muscle strength. It increases the explosive power of the practitioner. It is a simple exercise that has long-lasting benefits.
The UFC is all about explosiveness. So in order to become an explosive fighter, you need to develop an explosive fighting style. Broad jumps provide you with that explosiveness.
To perform broad jumps:
- You need to stand straight with your hands pointing towards the roof.
- Bring your hands down and exert pressure on your feet.
- Thrust your hands back and then jump.
- Mark the point where you are standing as A and the other point where you landed after the jump as B.
- Measure the distance of the jump. This distance will keep on increasing once you have practiced broad jumps for a long period of time.
5.5. Weighted Box Jumps
Weighted box jumps are plyometric movements that make you react on impulse. Dumbbell box jumps are specifically the type of weighted box jump. A practitioner holds weight in his hands and goes for the box jump. It not only increases the muscle strength of the practitioner but also allows him to move faster.
It increases the leg power and athleticism of the practitioner.
To perform weighted box jumps, you can use dumbbells as weight.
- Hold dumbbells in your hands and stand in front of a box step or a raised platform.
- Your feet must be hip-distance apart.
- Jump on the box step and bend your knees.
- Add this exercise to your workout to transform into a UFC fighter.
5.6. Trap Bar Deadlift Jumps
Trap bar deadlift jumps are a part of a speed-strength exercise that are responsible for accelerating the practitioner’s force through which his speed and power of attacking his opponent increases. You must start slow as it is good for your tendons.
To perform trap bar deadlift jumps:
- You need to have a trap bar deadlift for easy jumps. If you do not have that, you can go for a barbell deadlift.
- Grab the handles of the trap bar and lift them by jumping so that it activates the muscle fibers.
- When you jump with weight, your knees are the areas where a little force is applied.
- The upper body torso experiences a great amount of force and eventually it becomes easy for a fighter to escape submissions.
5.7. Med Ball Side Toss
It increases the rotational power of the practitioner. So you can easily escape takedowns as your body becomes flexible. Mobility in the shoulders and hips also enhances to a greater level.
To perform med ball side toss:
- Grab a med ball and start at one side of your hip.
- Your other leg must be rotated in the direction of the ball.
- Rotate the med ball to the other side while your opposite leg to the side where the med ball is.
- Toss the ball on the wall and then rotate the ball and your legs to the other side.
- Repeat the process on the other side too.
- It will make your flexors strong as well as your hip mobility.
5.8. Fight-Specific Med Ball Throw
This is the more appropriate way to prepare yourself for the UFC. You stand in front of a wall as if you are in a fight. It provides you with a more realistic scenario. This is a ballistic exercise because you apply a great amount of force on the ball.
To perform fight-specific med ball throw:
- Stand in front of the wall and hold a med ball in your hands.
- The med ball should be at your chin level.
- Move forward as if you are attacking the opponent and throw the ball with your one hand on the wall utilizing all the force in your body.
- Repeat the process with your other hand.
- Your obliques and glutes are the areas that apply the most force in order to throw the ball.
5.9. Constant Training
If you want to develop an outstanding game, you must have a hard training schedule. Only and only constant training will unleash your true abilities as a fighter. UFC is not for an average fighter. You have to show yourself that you are able to carry the weight of pressure as well as the fame that UFC showers you with.
Constant training means that the duration of the workouts increases as your strength increases.
6. Explosiveness For UFC
1 or 2 minutes seems like a little time and one can not accomplish much in it. But FYI, this is the time taken by most UFC fighters to claim the championship. Explosiveness in UFC accounts for the overworking and overpowering of the fighter. You need to have something in you that is beyond reach for other fighters. Having explosive power allows you to knock your opponent down by causing an imbalance in his/her stance.
6.1. Kettlebell Workout
Kettlebell workout is the prime source of strength and conditioning for MMA fighters. These are high-intensity workouts specially designed for athletes who want to increase their stamina and cardio to turn on their beast modes for their fights. In only 20 minutes, you can burn up to 400 calories. The more intense the kettlebell workout is, the greater the burning of calories along with the building of immense power and strength in the fighter.
There are many kettlebell workouts to increase not only your strength and power but also flexibility. Along with flexibility, you can also improve your body posture which mostly becomes a bad one from years of being in a combat sport. Hunched back is the most obvious problem that practitioners face. Kettlebell workouts not only solve back problems but also makes the fighter immune to injuries which are a huge part of UFC.
Following kettlebell workouts can be performed by practitioners who aim for the UFC.
- Kettlebell Swings
- Kettlebell Sit-ups
- Kettlebell Bent Over
- Turkish Get-up
6.2. Deceleration Drills
The main benefit that athletes gain from deceleration drills is the lesser risk of injuries. It teaches your body how to control pressure and function in that environment. For example, submissions have an adverse effect on fighters. They are most likely to tap out without knowing how to get out of it. Deceleration drills instruct you how to decelerate the force without impacting the tissues around the joints.
To perform deceleration drills:
- Stand on a raised surface or a box step.
- Step down from the box step, standing on your both feet, and hold the position for 3 seconds.
- It allows your body to embrace the sudden jump.
- Now again stand on a box step but now jump down and stand on your one foot only.
- It allows you to balance your body on the sudden impact.
- You can also jump high and then land on both feet or one foot.
6.3. Reactive Plyometrics
Plyometrics are essential for enhancing elasticity and flexibility in the body. If you want to become a UFC fighter, you must take your endurance to an insane level. The reps are less in reactive plyometrics as your body takes time to decipher the sudden impact.
To perform plyometrics that can be reactive for your body:
- Place 3 or 4 box steps in front of you with a distance between each of them.
- Stand in front of one box step and jump over it.
- Embrace the change in your position and keep on jumping to the last box step.
- When you reach the last box step, jump and perform 1 squat after you land from the jump.
6.4. Band Jumps
Band jumps enhance flexibility and elasticity in your body. It also allows you to go for submissions and takedowns more easily.
To perform band jumps:
- Take 2 resistance bands and tie them to a heavily weighted dumbbell.
- Take the tied resistance bands over your shoulder and stand straight.
- Now jump and take your hands to the top position while the band stretches as you jump.
- Take a heavily weighted dumbbell so that it stays on the ground as you jump.
- You can use the crossover set-up with the bands by encircling them over your feet.
- Jump as you jumped when the bands were tied to a dumbbell.
- You can also aim for long jumps with the same crossover set-up.
6.5. Paired Exercises
Paired exercise means that you can pair 2 exercises in your workout routine to gain more benefits. For example, if exercise A works on your upper body and exercise B world on your lower body, then combining the 2 exercises will result in a whole-body workout. It provides you with more advantages plus your stamina also enhances to a greater degree.
You can perform compound exercises such as squats and pull-ups at the start of your UFC training and then go for hamstring curls or tricep extensions. Exercises are paired so that you gain more energy and power by performing two exercises at the same time.
Or you can also go for deadlifts and pull-ups. The deadlift will provide you with a sudden pull that will engage your upper shoulder and lighten up your fatigued and retracted scapula. Scapula can be retracted when you perform way too many exercises without the proper rest time or during fights such as submissions and takedowns.
7. UFC’s Code of Conduct
UFC has now renewed its code of conduct policy after the misconduct displayed and faced by the UFC fighters inside and outside the octagon.
|UFC’s Code of Conduct|
|The fighters shall conduct themselves in accordance with commonly accepted standards of decency, social convention, and morals.|
|Disrespect must not be tolerated and any fighter being disrespectful can be disqualified from the fight at any time.|
|Derogatory or offensive conduct, including without limitation insulting language, symbols, or actions about a person’s ethnic background.|
|Inappropriate physical, verbal or online behavior will not be tolerated.|
|Any conduct or activity that undermines or puts risk to the organization or any UFC event must be stopped.|
8. Elite UFC Fighters
8.1. UFC Hall of Famer Ronda Rousey
Ronda Rousey is a wrestler, judoka and MMA fighter. She currently competes in WWE. Before that, she was a UFC fighter. She is a UFC Hall of Famer. She was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in July 2018 in the modern wing. She has a 12-2-0 UFC record. She is called the “Undisputed Queen of Armbar”. When it comes to UFC’s best armbar there is only one name, Ronda Rousey.
8.2. UFC Hall of Famer Matt Serra
Matt Serra is an MMA fighter who competed in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. He has an 11-7-0 UFC record. He was inducted into the pioneer wing of the UFC Hall of Fame in July 2018. He fights in the welterweight division and won The Ultimate Fighter 4 Welterweight Tournament.
8.3. UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes
Matt Hughes is not only a former MMA fighter but also a wrestler. He is a 2-time UFC Welterweight Champion. He was inducted into the pioneer wing of the UFC Hall of Fame in May 2010. He has won 9 championships in his UFC career.
8.4. Randy Couture
Randy Couture is not only an American actor and an MMA fighter and Greco-Roman wrestler. He is the oldest UFC fighter on Earth. He has won 8 UFC championships. He was inducted into the pioneer wing of the UFC Hall of Fame in June 2006. He has a 19-11-0 UFC fight record.
9. How Much Do UFC Fighters Earn?
UFC fighters make a lot of money. UFC is today the most profitable and highly paying platform for MMA fighters. All practitioners aim to become UFC fighters because of the benefits they receive from the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Pays for fighting UFC tournaments range from $10,000 to $3,000,000. And there are also bonuses for Fight of the Night or Performance of the Night.
For the contract fighters, there are 3 tiers.
|Lowest Tier||$10,000 to $30,000 per fight|
|Middle Tier||$80,000 to $250,000 per fight|
|Highest Tier||$500,000 to $3,000,000 per fight|
Also from sponsorships, fighters do earn a lot.
|Fighters with 1 to 3 fights||$4000 per fight|
|Fighters with 4 to 5 fights||$4500 per fight|
|Fighters with 6 to 10 fights||$6000 per fight|
|Fighters with 11 to 15 fights||$11,000 per fight|
|Fighters with 16 to 20 fights||$16,000 per fight|
|Fighters with 21 or more fights||$21,000 per fight|
|Fighters Competing for the UFC title||$32,000 for the particular fight|
|Fighters who are Champions||$42,000 per fight|
10.1. Why Explosiveness is Important For UFC Fighters?
Explosiveness is important in the UFC because there are fighters with different martial arts backgrounds. For a fighter aiming to become a part of UFC, skills of diverse martial arts are necessary to turn him into a hulk so that he can transform into a UFC Champion.
10.2. What is the Importance of Amateur Fights?
Amateur fights provide you with experience. A fighter who knows how MMA fights are is most likely to learn different techniques that will turn him into an excellent MMA fighter.
10.3. Can Men Fight in the UFC’s Strawweight Weight Class?
In the UFC, the strawweight weight division is only for women. Men can not compete in it. But in ONE Championship, men can compete in the strawweight division.
To become a UFC fighter, you need to develop strong and undefeated fighting techniques. You can also go for drilling and sparring techniques and you can evaluate yourself.
Those techniques must comprise different forms of martial arts such as wrestling, boxing, BJJ, taekwondo, and Judo. It will transform you into an all-rounder MMA fighter. You need to increase explosiveness that will untether your grappling skills.
Practitioners can perform various workouts designed for UFC training. You can go for kettlebell workouts or strength training exercises. Plyometrics will help you in gaining strength and elasticity.