Mixed Martial Arts is shedding its brutal image and is on its way to becoming a mainstream sport. SixDegrees spoke to practitioners and enthusiasts about MMA’s rise, appeal and potential future.
IF YOU’VE never been to a Mixed Martial Arts fight, you may picture this scene in your head: in the centre of a hall, surrounded by up to 3,000 cheering people, is a cage. In it, two men (or women) hit and kick each other and block each other’s strikes using techniques of various types of martial arts. After a while of fighting on their feet, the two fighters eventually end up grappling on the floor until one of them gets the upper hand that ends the match — for example, by putting the other fighter in a chokehold after which he submits or, more rarely, passes out.