'Kids MMA' Controversy, What Side Are You On?

November 3, 2011

Should There Be An Age Limit To Compete In MMA?

As the sport of MMA has rushed into the mainstream, it has garnered a tremendous following amongst young children – many who have left the soccer or baseball fields behind for floor mats and training gloves to become part of a fast growing sport. But in doing so, have stirred a debate as to weather kids should be allowed to participate in MMA.

Do you think kids should be allowed to compete in mixed martial arts?

Opponents to kids fighting in MMA state that the sport is too violent, and can cause serious injury to the kids, who some argue don’t yet understand that violence is bad. In 2008 Senator John McCain likened the adult version of MMA to “human cockfighting” and wrote a letter to state governors to ban the sport – and some states have.

Those that support it say that kids are well protected in head gear, gloves, and shin guards and are more well protected than some other sports. Also, many parents believe that the exercise, discipline and learning self-defense are good things for children to learn. Even Dana White himself has encouraged kids entry into the sport – which has earned him the scorn of some.

It seems as though it may be hard to find a middle ground between the two sides, and as the sport of MMA grows it will encounter growing pains like this among others things. For the sport to endure, it will have to change and adapt to its increasing popularity and all the scrutiny that comes with that.

Is it too risky for kids to compete in MMA?


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  • I did karate when I was a kid and part of that discipline included sparring. I think it’s important for kids to learn self defense. At the dojo, the trainer taught us to control our strength and only use it in matters of self defense. I can’t believe that the people that train MMA for kids are telling them to go out there and start fights, I don’t think a program like that would be successful.

    It’s good to have some variety in disciplines for kids to learn in self defense, as I see it right now a kid can either learn how to defend himself by learning on the street or learning in a dojo, this gives them another opportunity to learn in a safe environment.

  • I don’t think there should be an age limit to train in MMA, but there should be some consideration when competing in it. I believe kids should be allowed to compete in grappling tournaments at a young age but muay thai/boxing and mma are a little bit different because of the fact that you can get punched in the face.

    This is a good question to ask since MMA is getting bigger and bigger… I’m sure some kind of age limit will be put in place eventually.

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