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What is Mixed Martial Arts?

Frank Chenault, Big Sur

Frank Chenault taught himself to surf in Big Sur, CA, and eventually transformed his passion for the sport into a professional career. Since surfing in his youth in Big Sur, CA, Frank Chenault has only continued to improve at the sport. In addition to surfing, he is also an active enthusiast of other sports that ultimately help him with surfing, such as Mixed Martial Arts.

As the name suggests, Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a combat sport that combines elements from other combat sports and martial arts disciplines, including boxing, karate, wrestling, tae kwon do, judo, jiu-jitsu, and more. Professional MMA fighters typically have training in one or more other fight disciplines. The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is the most popular MMA competition.

Non-main event UFC competitions consist of three five-minute rounds, while main-event fights and championships are five rounds. The rounds are scored by three judges, with the winner of each round receiving 10 points, and the loser receiving nine or fewer points. In the event of a draw, both fighters receive 10 points for the round. The scoring system only comes into play if the fight lasts all five rounds. An MMA fight may also end by knockout, technical knockout, disqualification, forfeit due to injury, or submission.

Each MMA fighting organization can creates its own rules, but the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts have been enforced by the UFC and are widely used by many other MMA organizations. The rules specify the 11 weight classes for men, ranging from straw-weight (maxing out at 115 lbs) to super heavyweight (over 265 lbs). The rules also include fighting prohibitions, such as head butts, eye gouging, attacks to the groin, biting, throat-jabbing, or hair-pulling.


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