Rule number one. The UFC isn't a sport. MMA (mixed martial arts) is the sport, the UFC (Ultimate Fight Championship) is a league where some of the best MMA athletes compete for a title.
Saying you train UFC is like like saying you train NBA, NFL, Premier League or F1 rather than saying you practice the actual underlying sport.
So the UFC is like what the Premier League is to football (in England).
So talking about titles, what weight classes are there available in the UFC.
- Strawweight up to 115 pounds
- Flyweight over 115 pounds to 125
- Bantamweight over 125 to 135 pounds
- Women's Bantamweight over 125 to 135 pounds
- Featherweight over 135 to 145 pounds
- Lightweight over 145 to 155 pounds
- Welterweight over 155 to 170 pounds
- Middleweight over 170 to 185 pounds
- Light Heavyweight over 185 to 205 pounds
- Heavyweight over 205 to 265 pounds
The most active weight class at the moment seems to be the Lightweight division. Athletes also cross over weight classes for what's known as 'champ champ' status.
Which martial arts should you learn for MMA? The primary fighting styles found in MMA include wrestling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), kickboxing, boxing, Muay Thai, Taekwondo, Boxing (striking) and Karate.
Straight from the UFC's website:
The following acts constitute fouls in a contest or exhibition of mixed martial arts and may result in penalties, at the discretion of the referee, if committed:
- Butting with the head
- Eye gouging of any kind
- Biting or spitting at an opponent
- Fish hooking (act of inserting a finger or fingers or one or both hands into the mouth or nostrils or a person, pulling away from the centerline of the body)
- Hair pulling
- Spiking an opponent to the canvas on his head or neck
- Strikes to the spine or the back of the head.
- Throat strikes of any kind, and/or grabbing the trachea
- Fingers outstretched toward an opponent’s face/eyes
- Downward pointing elbow strike (’12 to ‘6 strike)
- Groin attacks of any kind
- Kneeing and/or kicking the head of a grounded opponent
- Stomping a grounded opponent
- Holding opponent’s gloves or shorts
- Holding or grabbing the fence or ropes with fingers or toes
- Small joint manipulation
- Throwing opponent out of ring/fighting area
- Intentionally placing a finger into any orifice or any cut or laceration of an opponent
- Clawing, pinching or twisting the flesh
- Timidity (avoiding contact with an opponent, intentionally or consistently dropping the mouthpiece or faking an injury)
- Using abusive language in the fighting area
- Flagrant disregarding of the referee’s instructions
- Unsportsmanlike conduct that causes injury to an opponent
- Attacking an opponent after the bell has sounded the end of the period of unarmed combat
- Attacking an opponent on or during the break
- Attacking an opponent who is under the care of the referee
- Interference from a mixed martial artist’s corner or seconds
1) Disqualification may occur after any combination of fouls or after a flagrant foul at the discretion of the referee.
2) Fouls may result in a point being deducted by the official scorekeeper from the offending contestant’s score. The scorekeeper, not the judges, will be responsible for calculating the true score after factoring in the point deduction.
3) Only a referee can assess a foul. If the referee does not call the foul, judges must not make that assessment on their own and should not factor such into their scoring calculations.