Birmingham, UK.: A new English Mixed Martial Arts Association, EMMAA, was launched today in Birmingham, UK. Led by international referee Marc Goddard, as President, a total of nine founding directors – including former UFC title challenger turned TV analyst Dan Hardy – have established EMMAA under the auspices of the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF | WMMAA) to represent the national MMA community with the following purposes:
- The education, training and safeguarding of young people, competitors and coaches in MMA.
- To develop the amateur sport with the long-term goal of seeing MMA at the Olympic Games.
- To harness the benefits MMA has to offer wider society.
- To represent English MMA internationally with the development of a national team via domestic competition.
- The installation of a national rankings system.
- To promote a positive image of mixed martial arts.
The main objective of the Association is the development of MMA as a sport discipline. EMMAA shares the International Olympic Committee (IOC) belief in sport’s power to connect people. The organization will promote MMA as a sport for everyone, regardless of origin, social status, race or religion. The mission of the organization is education at a grass roots level in order to minimize risk in the discipline. The Olympic Spirit and fair play are the principles that the Association will instil in the youngest generation. Alongside sport development and regulation, the long-term goal is to see MMA into the Olympic Games.
The EMMAA Board is made up of:
- Marc Goddard, IMMAF Director of Regulatory Affairs
- Dan Hardy, the first Englishman to fight for a UFC world title
- Rosi Sexton, England’s first ever female UFC fighter
- Leon Roberts, International referee
- Paul Sutherland, MMA judge and coach
- Nick Peet, fight sports journalist and media consultant
- Martin Shotbolt, EMMAA lead for NGB registration
- Nigel von Sachsenburg, MBA, business consultant
- Dr Abad Ali, MBBS, MRCGP, DCH. DRCOG, Sports & Exercise diploma
EMMAA President Marc Goddard says:
“Personally, I am thrilled, excited and ambitious to share the future of mixed martial arts that we hold a collective responsibility to. The invitation and formation of the inaugural board in my eyes needs no introduction and we all share and hold the same passion for this wonderful sport. United we stand.”
The first activities of the English MMA Association will be:
- Outreach to clubs, fighters, officials, doctors and all participants for national registration.
- Unification of processes for participant safety, medical issues, personnel, licensing, rules and regulation, equipment, etc.
- The launch of a series of amateur tournaments, culminating with the inaugural English national championships – EMMAA National Finals in 2020.
- Develop a relationship with Safe MMA around athlete health registration.
- Lobbying for the regulation of MMA licensing with Sport England.
- Building a cooperative relationship with the Team GB Olympic Committee.
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Founder, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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