why don’t mma fighters use fma

why don’t mma fighters use fma

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a combat sport that combines various martial arts disciplines, such as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, and wrestling. However, one martial art that is rarely seen in the MMA arena is Filipino Martial Arts (FMA). This article aims to explore the reasons why MMA fighters don’t commonly use FMA in their training and fights.

Lack of Exposure and Awareness

One possible reason for the absence of FMA in MMA is the lack of exposure and awareness. FMA is not as widely known or practiced compared to other martial arts like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or boxing. As a result, MMA fighters may not be familiar with the techniques and strategies of FMA, leading to a lack of interest in incorporating it into their training.

Furthermore, FMA is not as heavily promoted in mainstream media or popularized in MMA competitions. This lack of exposure makes it less appealing for fighters to invest time and effort in learning and integrating FMA into their skillset.

Focus on Specific Techniques

Another reason why MMA fighters don’t commonly use FMA is the focus on specific techniques. MMA fighters often prioritize techniques that have proven to be effective in the cage, such as striking, grappling, and submissions. FMA, on the other hand, emphasizes a wide range of techniques, including weapon-based techniques, which may not be as applicable in MMA fights.

Due to the limited time and energy available for training, fighters tend to concentrate on developing expertise in techniques that are more directly applicable to the MMA rule set. This focus on specific techniques may leave little room for incorporating FMA techniques into their training regimen.

Training Adaptation

FMA training methods and philosophies may also pose challenges for MMA fighters. FMA places a strong emphasis on weapon training, including sticks, knives, and swords. While these weapon skills can be valuable for self-defense or traditional martial arts, they are less relevant in the context of MMA fights where weapons are not allowed.

Additionally, FMA training often involves partner drills and choreographed sequences, which may not translate well to the dynamic and unpredictable nature of MMA fights. MMA fighters typically train for real-time, unscripted combat scenarios, and may find it challenging to adapt the more structured training methods of FMA.

Specialization in Other Disciplines

why don't mma fighters use fma

MMA fighters often specialize in specific martial arts disciplines that have proven to be effective in the cage. For example, many fighters have backgrounds in wrestling, boxing, or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. These disciplines provide a solid foundation for success in MMA and may leave little time or motivation for fighters to explore and incorporate FMA into their training.

Moreover, MMA fighters are constantly evolving and refining their skills in their chosen disciplines. They may prefer to invest their time and energy in improving their existing strengths rather than diversifying their training by adding FMA.

Rule Limitations

The rules and regulations of MMA fights also play a role in the limited use of FMA. MMA fights have strict guidelines regarding the use of certain techniques and equipment. For example, strikes to the groin, eyes, or back of the head are prohibited. FMA, which includes a wide range of strikes and target areas, may not align well with these restrictions.

Furthermore, FMA incorporates weapon-based techniques, which are not allowed in MMA fights. This limitation prevents fighters from fully utilizing the techniques and strategies of FMA in the cage.


While Filipino Martial Arts (FMA) offers a rich and diverse set of techniques and strategies, it is not commonly used by MMA fighters. The lack of exposure and awareness, focus on specific techniques, training adaptation challenges, specialization in other disciplines, and rule limitations are some of the factors contributing to this trend. However, it is important to note that individual fighters and trainers may still choose to incorporate FMA into their training based on personal preferences and goals.

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