MMA is a sport while UFC is an organization. The latter is an institution that organizes MMA competitions. Simply put, UFC is like the NBA. Meanwhile, MMA is like the game of basketball. Anyone can train to play MMA, but only a few people are allowed to fight in the UFC.
What are the differences between MMA and UFC?
If you’re new to mixed martial arts, it’s normal to confuse MMA with UFC. This is because of the combat sport that the two terms are associated with. But, these terms are actually completely different from each other. Let’s take a closer look at the things that make them different.
MMA is a Sport
Mixed martial arts, or MMA, is actually a sport. It is a full-contact combat sport. Here, an athlete utilizes different forms of martial arts. This includes boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, wrestling, judo, and jiujitsu, to name a few.
Anyone can study and master MMA. This is all thanks to the MMA gyms scattered throughout the country.
UFC is an Organization
Ultimate Fighting Championship, or UFC, is actually an organization. It’s a company that promotes mixed martial arts. It organizes MMA fights.
Anyone can watch UFC. However, not everyone is qualified to fight for a UFC title.
MMA Existed First
MMA is the reason why UFC existed. This is because the sport has already been played hundreds of years ago in ancient Greece.
However, during that time, MMA bouts don’t have rules to ensure the safety of the athlete. In fact, you’re at risk of dying if you joined an MMA fight during its early years.
But, after the Brazilian brothers, Carlos and Helio Gracie, reintroduced the sport in the 20th century, MMA started gaining more attention.
In 1993, UFC1 was formed to host its first MMA tournament. But, back then, its rules are the same as how it was first played in 648 BCE.
In 2001, however, the UFC management started creating rules to keep the fighters safe.
Both are Related to Martial Arts
MMA is a form of martial arts. UFC, on the other hand, is an organization that promotes mixed martial arts. Hence, both are related to martial arts. Because of that, some people easily confuse one with the other.
For those who are new to mixed martial arts, it can be quite hard to tell the differences between MMA and UFC. But, in case you get confused, MMA is like the sport basketball and UFC is like NBA.