Over the past decade, MMA has become a premier fighting sport that, to many, has surpassed many other fighting sports due to its violent aggressiveness and style diversity. UFC is probably the organization responsible for bringing MMA to prominence by being the first to air on mainstream television. They are also the organization responsible for bringing prominence to women’s MMA primarily through Ronda Rousey.
Now there is news of MMA now expanding their horizons beyond wrestling and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. As a matter of fact, it may have come about due to the popularity of the premier television series Game of Thrones. Apparently, Russian MMA now has knight battles in the ring complete with armor, sword, and shield.
M-1 Medieval (also known as Friday Knight Fights) is an organization that pairs fighters to battle like knights, reminiscent of duels seen in television shows such as Game of Thrones and Camelot. Each battle consists of three rounds, three minutes long, in which the knights – fully armored in chain mail and metal plating – swing swords and defend with shields. Though the danger is real, there are rules and regulations incorporated for safety. For example, swords are blunted and knights are not allowed to use the point of the blade for stabbing.
It should be also noted that M-1 Medieval spawned off of Russia’s biggest MMA organization, M-1 Global. The reason why is because knight duels were originally a part of MMA matches. According to Fansided, MMA fighters would dress up as knights and go into the ring to face off to the delight of MMA fans. This only happened in between fights as filler. As time went by, the knight duels established their own following, resulting in the creation of an organization that caters to men in full-body armor squaring off in Medieval fashion.
The most recent duel during Friday Knight Fights has been attached above. Check it out and decide for yourself if the hype surrounding M-1 Medieval is truly warranted.
[Image via Denis Doyle/Stringer]