Is MMA Good for Fitness? (Strength, Cardio, Weight Loss)

Is MMA Good for Fitness? (Strength, Cardio, Weight Loss)

With the global popularity of MMA rising every day, it is not strange that a lot of people want to utilize MMA training as a way to get in shape, build strength, and lose some weight. It is somewhat orthodox that in order to get in shape and get an ideal body one has to go the to gym and lift weights or do fitness classes. That type of training might be a bit boring for some people, so they want to see if MMA can produce the same results?

MMA is very good for fitness. It is very good for improving strength and cardio, as well as building muscle and losing weight in the process.

In this article, we will walk you through some of the things you have to know when talking about the sport of MMA and the correlation with benefits on your body.

While diving into MMA as a fitness routine, wearing the right gear ensures smooth performance; consider checking out our article on the Top Shorts for MMA where we have analyzed and ranked the best options to help you find your perfect match for both comfort and performance in your training sessions.

Does MMA Get You in Shape?

MMA is a combat sport that is a mixture of all the other martial arts. It contains striking, grappling, clinching. MMA takes elements from boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, wrestling, taekwondo, and all other sorts of combat sports.

Because of that, MMA is a very demanding type of physical activity. For example, in boxing, there are a lot less different types of movements than in MMA. Footwork and punching are needed for boxing. On the other hand, in MMA, you have to strike with each limb, be able to wrestle, put your opponent to the ground, get up, grapple on the floor, etc. All of these actions take a lot of energy.

That being said, when doing MMA, your whole body, every single part of it is used. There is also a lot of transition and different kinds of movements which all take a lot of energy to perform.

Just because of all that, MMA is a very good way to get yourself in shape. Through time, your whole body will transform, you will get stronger, more functional, have a good condition. Put simply, MMA can be seen as a full-body workout. And what better way to get in shape than doing full-body, high-intensity workout?

To get a better understanding of how exactly does MMA training look like, and why it is a perfect way to get you in shape, take a look at the article we wrote about MMA training.

As we said, being a full-body workout with a focus on striking, grappling, clinching, your will soon become stronger, more functional, flexible, have better conditioning and mobility, and improve your movement in general.

What Muscles Does MMA Work?

We already said that MMA can be seen as a full-body workout. How does that translate to the muscles worked during MMA training? Simple. MMA works literally all muscles in your body.

One thing that we have to say, is that MMA is really good in building that, often heard, “core strength”. People often mix core with abs or six-pack. Abs are just part of your core. The core consists of abdominals, obliques, glutes. They all together build core and contribute to its strength, which is responsible for that “whole-body strength”. Your core is the foundation for all the different kinds of movements, and with MMA, you can build that core strength perfectly.

While learning and improving MMA greatly enhances core strength, the right gear is crucial too – these Best MMA Gloves are particularly excellent, aiding in not just strike precision but also in your training comfort.”

On top of that, just through simple punching, you will work your arms, shoulders, chest, back, and even legs to generate that punching power. Being able to kick also requires a lot of leg muscles involved, as well as mobility in legs.

Grappling exchanges on the floor will, for example, work your neck muscles. Something that you wouldn’t probably even consider to train if going to the gym. So, that’s why we say that MMA training can develop some muscles that otherwise can be neglected.

Part of MMA is also wrestling, and you know what they say about wrestling; “Once you tried wrestling, everything else in life is easy.” So, here is another good way to further work all sorts of muscles in your body.

To sum it up, MMA will work your whole body, literally every muscle you have.

Does MMA Training Help You Lose Weight?

To clear things up. There is no magic way to lose weight fast and easy. In order to lose weight over time, you simply have to consume fewer calories than you burn. So, you can conclude that one of the ways to do so is to burn more calories. MMA can help you with that. MMA can help you lose weight.

To lose weight, you will need to have a good diet plan and do some exercise. MMA comes handy in that. It is very hard to say exactly how many calories you can burn with one hour of MMA training, but it ranges from around 500 to around 700 calories. It is a lot.

Choosing MMA training to help you lose weight is very common nowadays, so we created this cool infographic to give you a starting motivation:

The 5 Step Process to Lose Weight with MMA
Image source: Way of Martial Arts

On top of that, we wrote a complete article, a step by step guide to help you lose weight with MMA. Be sure to check it out!

What Are the Benefits of MMA?

Physical benefits like improved strength and conditioning are not the only benefits of MMA. On top of building muscle, losing weight, getting stronger, and more fit, if you do MMA you will also grow as a person and get mentally fit.

Let’s not lie. MMA is hard. It takes a lot of dedication and effort to show in every class. Classes themself are hard. One MMA session can exhaust you a lot. You will sometimes have muscle soreness. You will sometimes feel like quitting. But if you manage to push through that adversity, you will grow.

Not only in MMA. But in life. Through the time of training MMA, you will get more disciplined. You will start to feel better. That will translate into your everyday life. You will soon have more energy for everyday tasks. You will feel better at your job, more focused, sharper. As we said, MMA doesn’t only build biceps muscles but brains muscles as well.

Through your MMA training, you will get mentally stronger. More prepared for adversity in life. If you go through an hour of striking, wrestling, grappling, don’t you think you will soon be able to sail through your job tasks?

On top of all that, MMA is one of the best ways to learn to defend yourself. You simply never know when you will get into an uncomfortable situation where you will have to fight for your life. MMA is the perfect way to learn how to be able to defend yourself from danger. In fact, we wrote an article where we explain everything you need to know about MMA for self-defense.

Also, be sure to check out our complete list of 15 reasons why MMA is good for you. We go through everything that you will learn and accomplish through your MMA journey.

That’s it from this article. As you could saw, MMA is the perfect way if you want to choose it as a way to get fit and do it like fitness exercise. On top of that, you will grow as a person and learn valuable life skills.

Recently, we got asked a lot about what age is too old to start with MMA. If you are maybe an older person, be sure to check this article about MMA and age out. We explained why there is no such thing as too old for starting with MMA!

Also, if you still haven’t chosen which martial art you will start with, here is our complete guide to every martial art that you could start with. It will help you a lot with choosing the right one!

We hope you soon start with your martial arts journey and we wish you enjoy the process! Hope you enjoyed the article and keep following us for more about the world of martial arts and combat sports!

Vladimir Vladisavljevic has been training in the art of kickboxing for over seven years, holds a Taekwondo black belt, and has a master's degree in sports and physical education. He's also a huge mixed martial arts fan. He's a big deal in Bulgaria as a mixed martial arts commentator, analyst, and podcaster.
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Vladimir Vladisavljevic

Vladimir Vladisavljevic has a master's degree in sports and physical education. He has been training in kickboxing for over seven years and holds a Taekwondo black belt. He's also a huge mixed martial arts fan. Vladimir is a big deal in Bulgaria as a mixed martial arts commentator, analyst, and podcaster. He was known as The Bulgarian Cowboy in the Western world. In addition, he has a YouTube channel where he talks about his love of esports, one of the fastest-growing fields in the world. Our testing and reviewing method.
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