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Why Wrestling is the Best Style for UFC

In the UFC a fight can end in a few ways, but if it doesn’t go the distance, it will either be by a knockout strike or if it goes to the ground, by submission. It’s these finishes that are why nearly every UFC fan has their own opinion on what is the best martial art style for MMA. 

The fans of more striking will say stand-up art like Muay Thai or kickboxing. A true enthusiast of fighting arts will naturally gravitate towards a discipline as rich and diverse as Jiujitsu. However, there is one style that often goes overlooked: wrestling. 

Wrestling is certainly not fake as it is extremely effective inside the octagon, and many purists consider wrestling as the most important to learn for MMA fighters. 


What is Wrestling? 

Wrestling is a sport practiced in various styles by two competitors, involving forcing an opponent to touch the ground with some part of the body other than his feet; forcing him into a certain position, usually supine (on his back); or holding him in that position for a minimum length of time. 

There are two types of wrestling promotions, competitive wrestling and WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment). It is the WWE that leads people to believe wrestling is fake. Yet in fact, they are still highly trained athletes and perform some incredible moves, but the wrestling is entertainment-based, featuring storyline-driven, scripted, and partially choreographed matches. 

Many famous characters have taken a shine to WWE including Tyson Fury and Logan Paul. Wrestling as a sport Many think wrestling is only a choreographed sport, when in fact, it’s also an Olympic sport. According to the Olympics website, there are various ways to win a wrestling match. 

The History of Wrestling

Found in historical civilisations and cultures around the world, wrestling boasts a rich history. A time-commemorated technique of combat, this sport has persevered for millennia as a way to assess fortitude, expertise, and bravery. The goal is to overpower or outmanoeuvre opponents via grappling moves.

Throughout the world, wrestling serves as a symbol of strength, talent, and tradition. Thriving as a competitive sport and martial art, it’s far ruled using worldwide bodies like United World Wrestling (UWW), making sure policies are upheld and organising international competitions. The long-lasting legacy of this game speaks volumes about its popularity.

Ways to Win in Wrestling

In wrestling, the primary goal is to defeat your opponent with the aid of attaining specific conditions or scoring factors throughout a match. Wrestlers can try to rate factors by way of executing legal holds, throws, takedowns, manoeuvring the opponent to expose his back to the mat for several seconds or by way of executing reversals. 

Here are some commonplace approaches to winning in wrestling:

Pinfall: One of the most decisive ways to win in wrestling is via pinning your opponent. To obtain a pinfall, you have to hold each of your opponent’s shoulders to the mat concurrently for a specific duration, typically a few seconds (the precise length depends on the wrestling regulations getting used). When the referee counts the shoulders down, the match is immediately over, and you are declared the winner.

Technical Fall: A technical fall is when you outscore your opponent by way of an extensive margin at some stage in the match. The precise point difference required for a technical fall varies depending on the wrestling rules but normally involves building a sizable lead, such as 10 or 15 points, over your opponent. As soon as this margin is reached, the match is terminated, and you are declared the winner.

Points Victory: If neither a pinball nor a technical fall happens at some stage in the match, the winner is determined using points. Wrestlers can score points for various moves and manoeuvres at some point in the match. 

For instance:

  • Takedown: awarded whilst you take your opponent from a standing position to the mat at the same time as maintaining control, earning 2 or greater points.
  • Escape: provided whilst the wrestler on the bottom escapes from the control of the top wrestler, earning 1 point.
  • Reversal: awarded when the wrestler on the bottom reverses the position and gains control over the top wrestler, earning 2 points.
  • Near Fall or exposure: points are presented for nearly pinning an opponent, meaning you keep their shoulders at an angle close to the mat however no longer enough for a pin. The range of points for a near fall varies primarily based on the duration of the near-pin position.
  • Disqualification or Forfeit: once in a while, a wrestler might also win using disqualification if their opponent violates the guidelines time and again or engages in unsportsmanlike behaviour. Instead, a wrestler might win by using a forfeit if their opponent fails to appear for the match.
  • Injury Default: In the occasion of harm all through a fit, if a wrestler is not able to retain, their opponent wins by injury default.
  • Superior decision (international styles): In some global varieties of wrestling, a match can be gained using a superior decision. This happens when one wrestler leads using 8 or extra points at any point during the match.
  • Sudden Victory or Overtime: If the match ends in a tie at the end of regular time, some wrestling competitions have an overtime duration called “sudden victory.” The first wrestler to score any points in the course of this period wins the match.

Why is Wrestling Considered the Best for MMA? 

Wrestling and MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) are disciplines that are inextricably linked. The emphasis on takedowns and ground dominance in wrestling provides a strong foundation for MMA fighters, allowing them to excel in all elements of the sport, from grappling to punching and submissions. Wrestlers’ superior takedown and ground control skills have had a significant impact on the evolution of MMA, producing well-rounded and adaptable fighters.

In MMA, no style is not necessarily better than another, it is simply what works best for the individual fighter. Some fighters work better on their feet than they do on the ground. 

But what makes wrestling so good is that it can dictate a fight, which makes it the best base discipline for an MMA fighter. 

Wrestling uses very effective takedown moves that can put any striker on the deck. Skilled wrestlers will not only dominate with wrestling, but they become more effective strikers, submission artists and overall athletes than the rest. 

What Wrestling Moves Are Effective in MMA? 

Wrestling has many great moves that transition seamlessly into MMA. Here are a few of the common wrestling moves in MMA:

The Penetration Step 

The penetration step is used in many offensive attacks in wrestling. It helps you cover the distance between you and your opponent. To successfully execute your penetration move, it is crucial to start from a solid and well-balanced stance. The foot will step forward, your knee will drop over your toe, and your trail leg will swing up back to your stance. 

Single and Double-leg Takedown 

The single and double-leg takedowns are some of the most versatile techniques you can execute to take someone down. All that’s required is to grab a leg (or two), and you’re on your way to completing the technique. 

These takedowns are applicable in most grappling rulesets and don’t depend on grabbing the opponent’s uniform. This means that these are must-learn techniques if you train in submission grappling and mixed martial arts. 


 A “sprawl” is a defensive technique used to escape takedown attempts. It is commonly used in mixed martial arts and grappling-based combat styles such as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and wrestling. When executed correctly, a sprawl often leaves you on top of your opponent in a position called the top sprawl position.

Final Thoughts 

Wrestling is an extraordinary and time-honoured style of fighting that offers a multitude of benefits, especially when incorporated into your MMA training regimen. It stands as a foundational discipline in the realm of combat sports, dating back centuries with its roots deeply embedded in various cultures around the world. By immersing yourself in the art of wrestling, you embark on a journey that not only elevates your physical prowess but also nurtures a sense of discipline, mental fortitude, and strategic thinking.

Wrestling is a great style of fighting to learn, especially if you want to incorporate it into your MMA training. It will increase your physical strength and stronger grappling. Additionally, wrestling’s emphasis on takedowns and control techniques can significantly enhance your defensive skills, allowing you to thwart opponents’ attempts to take you down and create opportunities for counter attacks during MMA bouts.

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