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Mixed martial arts is widely regarded as the fastest growing sport in the world – certainly combat sport – and nowhere is interest greater than in the Middle East. This is reflected not only in the arrival of high-level events from the likes of the UFC to the UK-based Cage Warriors, but also in the mushrooming of specialty gyms for MMA training.

Even if you don’t fancy rolling around a cage with a highly skilled animal trying to remove your face for 15 minutes, MMA is an ideal fitness regimen and training discipline. Here are five places to try it out.


Contender MMA Training Center
Aiming to be the driving force of MMA in the region, Contender MMA is equipped with top-of-the-line training equipment and world-class teachers. It seeks to provide a whole range training in MMA, other martial arts and no-contact fitness training. It also boasts its own training octagon cage that fighters use to gain real-time experience, as well as separate striking and grappling mats to ensure customers get the most of their training.

Where: Heidelberg Giordano Building, Sheikh Zayed Road
Phone: 04 346 9990


MMA Fitness Center
MMAFC is an ideal gym for those of all levels, offering a safe environment for beginners through to expert practitioners. There are a number of different programmes and classes are offered, and as fitness is a strong component, it’s popular with a wide range of people. Not that the classes are any less punishing, of course.

Where: Discovery Gardens & TECOM
Phone: 04 450 8808


Ultimate Fitness Services
Among the many training services for groups and individuals provided by UFS across Dubai, they now offer a special MMA programme along with ultimate strength and conditioning classes. They come to you, or a mutually satisfactory location, to make the pain a little easier to bear.

Where: Wherever you arrange
Phone: 04 222 2059


Muay Thai & Capoeira Sports Club (Abu Dhabi)
MMA is a close cousin of Muay Thai, and this centre in Abu Dhabi has expanded to include classes in kick-boxing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu and MMA with qualified coaches. Capoeira, that slightly perplexing fusion of martial arts and dance, is also taught – if your fists fancy a break.

Where:  National Cinema Building, Najda Street, Abu Dhabi
Phone: 02 676 9658


Pride Fitness & MMA Training Center
Hoping to make combat sports more accessible to the average person, Pride Fitness promotes active healthy lifestyles through training in various combat sports including Muay Thai Kickboxing, Western Boxing, Brazilian Jiu- Jitsu, Wrestling, and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA).

Where: The Curve Building, Sheikh Zayed Road
Phone: 05 56632124


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