Mixed Martial Arts – Combat Forms

Traditional Martial Arts has certain disciplines and training on improving one’s fighting style. Some of the popular disciplines are as follows −

  • Stand-up − Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Boxing, Kyokushin Karate, Taekwondo, Sanshou and Combat Sambo are trained to improve stand-up strikes.

  • Clinch − Judo, Sambo, Sanshou, Jujutsu, Freestyle and Greco-Roman Wrestling are trained in order to improve clinching, takedowns and throws.

  • Ground − Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Sambo, Submission wrestling, Judo and some other arts are trained in order to improve ground control and position of a fighter, and also to use submission holds to defend against them.

Most of these styles are inherited directly or indirectly from their traditional forms.

Initially, MMA was practiced only by competitive fighters but it is no longer the case. The sport has become more mainstream and taught all over the world. People learn one or other form of MMA for safety and fitness, regardless of their age.


Boxing is a very popular combat form and it is widely used in MMA. Majority of the strikes during the stand-up fights are boxing punches. Many boxing punches account for the most number of knock downs and knockouts in MMA competitions.

Many aspects of boxing like kicks, combinations, and blocking techniques like slips etc. are highly valuable to MMA. Some fighters who use boxing in MMA are Cain Velasquez, Junior dos Santos, B.J. Penn, Dan Hardy, Nick Diaz, and Shane Carwin.

Muay Thai

One of the best technique for striking in MMA is combining Muay Thai with boxing. Its versatility is its vital characteristic. Kicks, throws, clinch holds etc., according to long range, middle range and short range! One can learn all these techniques in Muay Thai.

As the name indicates, it originated in Thailand. Muay Thai is also referred to as “Art of eight limbs” as it makes use of the legs, knees, fists and elbows.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu got most of its popularity in the early 1990s when its expert Royce Gracie won both the second and fourth UFCs, against fighters who practiced other larger styles like boxing, karate, taekwondo. Since then it has become a popular fighting style.


Karate is also known as Kyokusin and Full Contact. It has been very effective in the sport of MMA. It has the core foundations of kickboxing and in striking techniques. Styles of karate are practiced by some of the popular MMA fighters like Chuck Liddel and Bas Rutten.


Taekwondo, also called as TKD, is used extensively by some of the MMA fighters. Anderson Silva, in his book admitted that TKD had influenced in largely in his style at the beginning of his career.