Does Boxing Make You a Better Professional MMA Fighter?
Is boxing a martial art form? This common question related to Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) often puzzles people. Is boxing good for MMA? Well, boxing helps to build a firm base to improve your striking game. It is advisable to practice boxing before stepping deep into MMA fights. Wrestlers from around the world have created history in MMA fights by leveraging their grappling acumen. Many reputed MMA fighters have won world championships by using their boxing techniques to knock out opponents during decisive matches.
Boxing vs MMA
Boxing and Mixed Martial Arts are two of the most popular combat forms. Is MMA better than boxing? This age-old question is often debated among MMA and boxing enthusiasts across the globe. The answer to this question is highly subjective and requires a good understanding of both these combat sports. Let’s delve deeper to understand the intricacies of both these sports and compare how they differ.
People often wonder who will be the winner of a fighting contest between a professional MMA fighter and a professional boxer. Well, the outcome depends on multiple factors. In a fight with MMA rules or no rules, an MMA fighter has a higher probability of winning the match and beating the boxer within the same weight category. When it comes to a fight under the boxing rule-set, boxers are more likely to win the fight since they are well aware of all the technicalities that will earn them the pointers.
A boxer is highly proficient inside a boxing ring since they are trained in one particular combat form over a long period. However, an MMA fighter has to spend their training time on multiple martial art forms so that they have the flexibility to attack and defend against their opponent during MMA fights that have a very different rule-set. From a layman’s point of view, both boxing and MMA can appear very similar since both are combat sports that require defending and attacking an opponent. Let’s explore both the art forms individually to understand the difference.
Boxing in brief
Boxing is one of the oldest and most popular combat sports that involve landing punches on the opponent to score points or knock out your competitor. Boxers can use a combination of punches to do the same. So how many rounds in boxing are usually there? Well, boxing matches are divided between three to twelve rounds where each round lasts between 1 to 3 minutes. Knocking an opponent to the ground can give you a momentary break during any round. If the fallen opponent gets up before the referee counts to 10, the fight will continue or else the standing boxer will be considered as the winner.
Understanding Mixed Martial Arts
Mixed Martial Arts is a relatively new form of combat sports that was officially created in the early 1990s. It involves multiple combat techniques, including wrestling, striking, grappling, and boxing. MMA fighters also have to develop highly effective self-defence techniques. In MMA combat matches, players have the flexibility to use different fighting techniques to defeat their opponent inside the ring. However, reputed MMA leagues like the Ultimate Fight Championship (UFC) have a certain rule-set to stop MMA fights from turning into street fights. The whole fight is spread across multiple rounds and the player that wins a greater number of rounds is declared as the winner.
Boxing and Self-defence
If you are heavily invested in MMA fights, you must have noticed that building a strong defence is as important as a counterattack. Boxing can help one learn the art of self-defence that can be used during MMA fights. It provides you with the ability to block an opponent and fight them when needed. Besides this, it helps in improving your overall fitness, bolsters your motor skills, and keeps you mentally prepared for a fight. Let’s delve deeper to learn how it helps.
Defending yourself against a hard blow during a fight is as important as throwing an intense punch. Blocking a strike can be very tricky and may involve multiple techniques taught during boxing. One of the most crucial blocking techniques that are often used by fighters inside the ring is protecting the head and body using forearms. Keeping the arms up is often taught to boxers to help them safeguard their face and block a punch quickly. Another important blocking technique that is massively used is light footwork. Shifting the bodyweight back and forth easily is considered an enormous advantage for fighters. The light footwork technique also allows them to dodge an attack quickly.
Improving your striking accuracy plays a key role in increasing the speed and power of your punch. Executing your punches with precision will do more damage to your opponent. Learning about all the punches that your opponent might use during a fight is vital. This will help you prepare an effective counterattack strategy after understanding your opponent’s fighting technique. To land a powerful blow, it is advised to plant your foot and swing your hips rather than just using your shoulders to throw a punch.
No matter what sports you are practicing, discipline plays a key role in helping you make the most of it. Discipline prepares a fighter to keep the emotions out of the fight and focus on the game. Remaining calm during boxing and other MMA sports is crucial. It helps the fighter to read the opponent carefully and plan an impactful counter-attack. It will also help you maintain the right balance to moderate your strikes and defences. Disciplined fighters are more capable than those who have a casual take.
If you are looking for a well-rounded workout that can improve your fitness game, boxing should be your go-to option. Since boxing requires you to use the muscles from various parts of your body, including your hips, thighs, calves, etc. it provides a good way to work out your body. A full-body workout that entails running, striking, jumping and weight-lifting can help you build endurance, which is highly advantageous during MMA fights.
What stops an excellent boxer from getting knocked to the ground after a powerful blow? Well, it’s their light feet work and firm stance that allows them to quickly dodge a move from their opponent and prepare a counterattack. Learning how to remain stable on the feet is crucial for boxers since they are heavily engaged in face-to-face combats. Boxers are taught how to quickly get back on their feet in case they get knocked down by an opponent’s punch. These skills also come in quite handy during MMA fights.
Boxing helps you develop some crucial motor skills that form the basis of a good self-defence mechanism. Maintaining eye contact with the opponent to watch all their moves and prepare a counter move accordingly is taught during all boxing MMA training. This helps fighters to develop swift hand-eye coordination and a rapid reaction time, which they can leverage during MMA matches. Practicing these movements will train your brain better to recognize your opponent’s movements. Boxing practice also helps to build quick reflexes which are the biggest weapon used in any combat sport.
Being mentally prepared for the fight is as important as practicing your best moves and self-defence techniques. If you are frequently getting inside the ring, it will make you more familiar with the fighting environment and prepare you mentally for bigger fights. Being comfortable to face your opponent with the right mindset plays a crucial role in how you perform during a fight. It is essential to become familiar with taking a hit in the head and stomach so that you are not astonished when it happens inside the ring.
You can be the best fighter inside the ring and still lose the fight if you lack confidence. Your confidence is the most important element for winning a fight. If you are confident that you are better than your opponent and can withstand their moves, you will be in a better position to achieve it. Boxing can offer you the needed confidence to face and defend yourself from a mighty opponent during an MMA fight. Facing professional fighters during boxing matches constantly makes you feel at ease during crucial matches.
Importance of Boxing as a Martial Art Form
Boxing is considered a crucial element of contemporary Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). Boxing is a combat sport that supplements other martial arts techniques used during MMA fights. The boxing martial arts have been refined and perfected over centuries to develop an effective striking system. The importance of boxing for MMA fighters is often underestimated. It is the best combat form to teach standing-up fighting skills that involve head movements, footwork and different punching methods. Practicing boxing can indeed help you become a better MMA fighter.