MMA or otherwise known as Mixed Martial Arts is one of the most exciting contact sports around the world, combining influences from disciplines all over the world. What makes MMA both terrifying and thrilling is the limited number of rules involved in the sport and the number of ways one can take down an opponent. With such an extensive set of skills required in MMA, both the actual fight and training can really be taxing on the human body. As such, there are tons of common injuries that MMA fighters sustain throughout their time spent on the sport. Without further ado, here are three of the most common MMA injuries and how to prevent them from happening to you.
Injuries to the knee are so common in MMA because of the various positions that the knees have to be in when performing fighting maneuvers and grappling with the opponent. Not to mention, the force inflicted when kicking and twisting the knee can really take a toll on the athlete’s knee ligaments in the long run. For most players, they experience tears in the various ligaments like the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and the posterior cruciate ligament(PCL).
More often than not, these injuries can be easily prevented by having adequate rest to allow the body to heal itself properly before the next strenuous training episode. Other injuries like inflammation of soft tissue are easily treated with ice and compression. Prevention is always better than cure for knee injuries as discomfort may persist even after recovery, so it is imperative to have enough rest prior to training days.
Another common area for injuries to occur is the hand. Because so much of punching and striking with the fist is involved, MMA fighters are always prone to hand injuries. Despite the use of gloves, many MMA fighters suffer from ligament tears, jammed fingers and even broken bones. For ligament tears and jammed fingers, the injury usually heals on its own without any intervention from doctors. However, the more serious injuries would require medical intervention in order to realign bones or reattach ligaments.
Hand injuries are difficult to prevent but can be avoided if proper care is taken into practising proper form. Players tend to commit mistakes when they’re tired, resulting in injuries to the hand. Besides that, regular replacement of gloves when the cushioning thins out is advisable.
Besides fractures and broken bones in MMA, concussions are a serious threat due to the nature of the game. Having a lack of protective gear for the head, and being able to hit the head and neck area (except for some strikes) puts a fighter at great risk overall.
Prevention of concussions is extremely difficult to eradicate, simply because there is always a chance that one would be struck hard in the head once the fight begins. Besides training on one’s maneuvering and evasive technique, fighters should allow themselves to recover fully from any head traumas before continuing to train. This is to prevent degenerative brain disease from happening due to chronic trauma to the head region.