Are Men vs Women MMA Fights Allowed? (All Examples)

Are you wondering if men vs women MMA fights are allowed?

In this article, we’ll look at whether men vs women MMA fights are allowed, all examples of men vs women MMA fights taking place, and whether women can beat men in MMA fights.

Are Men vs Women MMA Fights Allowed?

Men vs Women MMA fights aren’t allowed in promotions that follow officially regulated MMA such as the Official Unified Rules of MMA, or the Global Mixed Martial Arts Rule Set (a blend of Asian and non-Asian rules) which promotions like One Championship and other Asian MMA promotions follow.

You can’t find a rule specifically mentioning men vs women MMA fights to be illegal, mainly because it’s seen as common sense. However, throughout the Unified Rules of MMA, male and female contestants have some separate rules which are gender applicable and therefore show a clear divide.

Men and women MMA fights aren’t allowed based on safety reasons and are separated much like weight classes are. Weight classes are kept separate to keep MMA fair and keep winners determined by skill rather than weight advantage.

The same applies to separating men and women. Even in the same weight class, men are biologically stronger than women due to having more lean muscle mass and women having a higher essential body fat percentage. This is just one factor, but it’s enough to make male vs female MMA fights illegal.

In response to intergender MMA fighting, here’s a statement from the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF) clarifying their position.

‘Although neither the promoter nor competitors have any association with IMMAF, as the international governing body for amateur mixed martial arts, I feel it is important that I state our position. IMMAF categorically disagrees with this intentionally scandalous form of entertainment, which does not represent the sport of MMA or its values and puts women at risk.’

The other reason men vs women MMA fights aren’t allowed is anti-violence against women laws around the world.

The idea of a man vs woman MMA fight first emerged in 2013, when Shooto Brazil scheduled a historic fight for December 20 between Emerson Falcao and his female opponent Juliana Velasquez.

Both Emerson and Juliana accepted the fight but it was canceled due to Brazil’s law of anti-violence against women.

Because of these laws, men vs women MMA fights are illegal in most countries around the world.

Has There Been Any Men Vs Women MMA Fights?

Yes, there have been many men vs women MMA fights; however, only at the exhibition level.

MMA promotions not adhering to official MMA regulations of any kind and that don’t have laws preventing violence against women have managed to sanction men vs women MMA fights. The two countries where men vs women MMA fights are taking place are Poland and Russia.

Remarkably enough, in 2017, the Russian government passed a law decriminalizing domestic violence which doesn’t require hospital treatment – making it an administrative rather than criminal offense. This led to a sharp rise in domestic violence against women in Russia over the past 5 years.

Poland also has a domestic violence problem (mostly against women), but in February 2021, the Polish government passed the ‘anti-violence act’, which hopefully means a decline in violence against women. 

Still, neither Russia nor Poland have specific laws of anti-violence against women, which makes it no wonder that male vs female MMA fights occur there.

The first men vs women MMA fight occurred in 2020, promoted by Nashe Delo Fights in Russia. It featured professional female MMA fighter, Darina Mazdyuk, vs male Youtuber, Grigory Chistyakov.

Darina weighed 135 lb and Grigory 529 lb, and despite the huge weight difference, Darina showed her class and dropped Grigory with some jabs and hooks, before finishing him with ground-and-pound just 90 seconds into the first round.

In 2021, another intergender MMA fight took place in Poland, promoted by MMA-VIP. 

The fight was between Ula Siekacz, a female arm wrestler, personal trainer, and now MMA fighter, and male MMA fighter, Piotrek Muaboy Lisowski. Both parties accepted the fight and even had a tense face-off where Siekacz pushed Muaboy.

Muaboy won the fight in the second round via TKO by taking Siakacz down and finishing her with ground-and-pound in the full mount position before the referee intervened.

At the same MMA-VIP event, another man vs woman MMA fight took place and saw Michal ‘Polish Ken Doll’ Przybylowicz beat Wiktoria Domżalska. Both intergender MMA fights received huge backlash on social media. 

Regardless of this, Russia’s Epic Fighting Championship promoted three men vs women MMA fights in 2022.

The first of which featured Alexander Pistoletov​, a 50-year-old male adult film actor, vs Sasha Mamaha, an online blogger. Sasha had a clear weight advantage, being at least double Alexander’s size.

The weight advantage didn’t matter, as Alexander won the fight via submission in the third round. However, as a fan had interrupted the fight twice by trying to attack Alexander, Mamaha’s team disputed the finish, and the fight was extended a round. At the end of the fourth round, Mamaha won via decision.

Its second men vs women MMA fight featured Yulia Mishko, a 28-year-old female weighing 286 lbs, vs two male family members, a 75-year-old Vietnam war veteran weighing 148 lbs, and his 154 lbs 18-year-old grandson.

The fight went the distance and somehow resulted in a draw, despite Yulia knocking down both her opponents in the first round and not much else happening in the rest of the fight.

In its third men vs women MMA fight, a 529 lb male, Grigory Chistyakov, faced off against 132 lb female Aleksandra Stepakova.

Throughout the fight, Grigory used his massive weight advantage to press Aleksandra against the cage but was seemingly too out of shape to throw strikes when he had her there. With the few strikes Grigory connected and the control time he racked up, he won the fight via decision after three rounds.

Here’s a video showing some of these fights in action:

Can Women Beat Men in an MMA Fight?

Anything is possible in the sport of MMA, but a woman beating a man in a professional MMA fight of the same weight class is extremely unlikely. Men are bigger, stronger, faster, and more athletic – especially when concerning MMA professionals at the top of their game. 

However, men and women will never compete against each other in professional MMA because it wouldn’t get sanctioned and laws prevent it.

There’s a better chance of a woman beating a man in an exhibition MMA fight, where they’re able to compete across weight class divisions. If a woman was a 145 lb featherweight and she was fighting a male 125 lb flyweight, the weight advantage would give her an advantage and the fight would be more even.

However, although there haven’t been enough examples, as seen above, even when women have a huge weight advantage, they’re still likely to lose to a man when both are untrained martial artists.

The one time a woman was successful against a man in an MMA fight was when professional female MMA fighter, Darina Mazdyuk, beat male amateur Grigory Chistyakov, despite him weighing 529 lbs and her only 135.

This shows that women can beat men in an MMA fight when the woman is trained and skilled in martial arts and the man is unskilled and untrained. The weight advantage a woman may have in an exhibition man vs woman MMA fight is secondary to skill.

The Bottom Line

It’s highly unlikely that a man vs woman MMA fight will ever be promoted by a professional or legitimate MMA promotion, because the Unified Rules of MMA prevent it, as do laws of anti-violence against women and sane minds.

Despite prevention in many countries, there has been a number of men vs women MMA exhibition fights held in Poland and Russia because they don’t have laws of anti-violence against women and their MMA regulatory bodies are corrupt and terrible.

Answering whether women can beat men in an MMA fight is hard to answer because there haven’t been enough examples. In a professional MMA fight, women would never beat a man unless they had a ridiculous weight advantage.

In exhibition MMA fights, we have examples of women beating men when the woman is a trained professional and the man is a morbidly obese amateur. 

However, when women had a huge advantage, they were still unable to beat men. This shows that martial arts training and acquiring skill is the most important factor in women beating men in exhibition MMA fights and outside of a professional setting (self-defense).

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