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What Are The Health Benefits Of Mixed Martial Arts?

Posted: June 17, 2021

If you’ve never tried mixed martial arts, you must be wondering how can it benefit you? Mixed martial arts is the most effective form of self-defence, but what people don’t realise are the health benefits of mixed martial arts. 

Mixed martial arts, or MMA, training has exploded onto the scene, most noticeably from the 20th Century.

The combination of striking and grappling has gained many new followers due to the promotion of the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship), and more and more people are signing up to their local gyms.

MMA from the outset can be seen to have only physical benefits, such as helping you get back in shape and lose weight. But, what goes unnoticed, Is the mental benefits.

In this blog, we will discuss the Physical AND mental health benefits of mixed martial arts. So, if you need the motivation to improve your health after a long, hard, lockdown, read on!

Does MMA Help You Get In Shape?

Yes. The most noticeable difference from the outset of MMA training is the physical benefits.

The power, strength and stamina required by the athletes that compete are astonishing. MMA training incorporates all of the 7 primal movements.

The 7 primal movements include pushing, pulling, lunging, squatting, bending, twisting and walking.

You will indirectly recognise these movements if you go to a gym, as all the machines aim to incorporate them.

If your gym routine has become a bit tedious, you want to socialise as well as train with new people, this could be perfect for you!

MMA Promotes Weight Loss and Fitness

Martial arts is the perfect option for those looking to lose weight or improve their cardiovascular endurance in a different, fun way. When it comes to burning calories, there is no comparison to running on a treadmill or learning a new skill.

Running on the treadmill for approximately 60 minutes can help you burn 600 calories whereas MMA will help you burn 700-900.

Whether you take a class an MMA class in person or online, it’ll get your blood pumping, resulting in improved heart health and consequently, lowering the risk of chronic diseases.

Combine all of this with a healthy balanced diet, and you’ll achieve your fitness goals.

According to Human Kinetics Journal, acute weight loss is greater in MMA.


Does MMA Help Mental Health?

Yes. Most of us know the physical benefits of MMA, but a few only realise the mental health benefits the training brings.

For me personally, the mental health benefits of MMA are unquestionable. The physical aspect of training will improve your physique, and naturally make you feel comfortable and more confident within yourself.

Learning a new skill is always daunting but the rewards once you practice and master can give you a real confidence boost.

There aren’t many sports like MMA that will focus your mind. The relief of anxiety and depression that you achieve when you are being forced to push all the noise and distraction out of your mind.

While MMA is technically an individual sport, I can guarantee, you’ll never face your challenges alone.

The social benefit of training means that when training, or life outside of the gym, gets hard, you’ll have multiple people to turn to. There will be another student/teacher within the gym who will be willing to listen if you ever need to talk.


Knowing how to defend yourself will automatically put your mind at ease. This is not saying you should go and inflict pain on others, this isn’t what MMA is about. It means if you’re ever in a dangerous situation, the skills learnt inside the gym will come in handy when you’re confronted on the outside.

As you learn new things and push your body to new limits, you adapt a can-do attitude that will carry over to other aspects of your life. Your mind goes from "I can't do this" to "I can do this."

MMA training allows you to find out truly who you’re and what you’re made of.

Experience The Health Benefits Of Mixed Martial Arts 

Ellis Academy of Self Defence specialises in Royce Gracie Jiu-Jitsu training in Surrey. We teach both adults and children.

And with our virtual training programmes, we can offer martial arts training outside the immediate area.

For more details about our programmes, and how we can help with fitness, self-defence and self-confidence, please contact us.