The dream of seeing Mixed Martial Arts competition included in the Olympics may be closer than you think thanks to the creation of the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation. The newly formed board’s goal is, as stated on their website, “To further the development and recognition of the sport of Mixed Martial Arts, enabling international competition through the organization of national MMA federations around the world.” Specifically the process will involve educating the public and creating a system of rules/safety measures consistently applied regardless of region.
Having MMA recognized by the Olympics is also a goal of the IMMAF, calling such status the “ultimate achievement and highest formal recognition possible for any sport.”
The UFC has already gotten on board with the IMMAF in hopes of seeing international events regulated as stringently as those in the United States, even allowing the organization to maintain a presence at this weekend’s UFC on Fuel 2 event in Sweden.
“In order to maintain the successful growth of our sport, it is important to invest in resources that will develop and cultivate it at an amateur level. Having an umbrella organization that will oversee and help build the sport on a global level will not only provide advanced and ever-improving safety standards but will also create a unified global model to help introduce the sport to new markets,” said UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta in an official press release on the matter. “It is our hope that it will also take us one step closer to witnessing the inclusion of the sport of MMA on the Olympic program.”
Though it will be years before fans ever see their favorite fighter winning a gold medal for his/her MMA prowess it looks like the first step on that journey has taken place.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC