Can You Start MMA at 30?

In this page we will go over whether it's too late to start MMA at 30 years of age, along with reasons, and examples of fighters.

start at mma at 30

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The best age to start Martial Arts is 3 years old. However, that doesn't mean that you can't start MMA at a later age.

In fact, there have been many fighters who have had massive success beginning MMA in their 30's.

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Fighters Who Started MMA at 30

Randy Couture, Daniel Cormier and Yoel Romero all began their MMA career after 30 years of age.

Randy Couture

famously began his MMA career at 34 years old, then went on to win the UFC heavyweight championship 3 times and the UFC Light Heavyweight championship two times.

Daniel Cormier

Also notoriously began his MMA career at 30 years old. He went on to become a UFC 'Double Champ' being able to hold the UFC Light Heavyweight championship and UFC Heavyweight championship simultaneously.

Yoel Romero

Started training MMA at 31 years old and then fought for the UFC Middleweight championship several times.

Although these scenarios are less common, they are certainly not impossible.

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Important Information to Know

There are many aspects that you need to be aware of if you are beginning to train MMA in your 30's.

Whether you are training to be a professional, or training to be able to properly defend yourself, and even if you just love the sport and are looking for new hobbies.

punch mma

Advantages of Playing a Sport in Younger Years

If you grew up playing different types of sports, chances are that you'll have an easier time adapting to the rigorous sport, compared to those that haven't.

Playing different sports growing up provide tremendous advantages as you're able to encounter, and overcome challenges early.

Not only physical challenges by adapting to playing in faster environments vs bigger and faster individuals, but mental as well.

boxing punch

Being able to control your inner voice that wants to convince you to stop, but you keep going as you push your body to its absolute limit.

This is all to say, that these experiences that you've had for years growing up, and that typically take years to master, can give you a tremendous advantage as you transition to the sport of MMA.

Starting in your 30's regardless of your situation will bring on different types of challenges, and there are certain steps that you'll need to take to deal with them appropriately.

Stretching More Before and After Workouts

As you age, your muscles will naturally become tighter and you'll have to take extra steps to loosen them up in your 30's.

Stretching is essential to any human as it helps prevents health problems, loosens muscles, improves range of motion, reduces risk of injury, and helps maintain balance.

mma stretching

Kids and teenagers can easily jump out of bed or the couch and start working out with no problem.

Adults on the other hand will need to stretch before and after workouts for at least 5-10 minutes.

Along with that, you'll want to make sure that you get an appropriate warm up prior to any workout session.

It is essential that your body is loose and warm prior to doing any strenuous activity.

After working out, you'll want to make sure that you do a 'cool down' session in order to slow down the heart rate and it helps regulate blood flow.

After the cool down session, you'll eventually transition to the post workout stretch.

Stretching after a workout gives your body a jump start in recovery.

More Susceptible to Injuries

As you age, you will naturally be more susceptible to injuries.

Knowing this, and taking care of your body to an extra degree, whether it's through meticulous stretching or proper nutrition will pay dividends in the long run.

sport injury

The last thing that any athlete wants to deal with are injuries that will keep them sidelined indefinitely.

Even if it's for 3-4 months, you will still have to rest, potentially do rehabilitation and at worst get your body up to speed when you return.

If you're a professional athlete in your 30's, you can't afford to miss any more time as you have a very short window.

If you're just doing this as a hobby, it will definitely take a blow on your day to day activities as you'll be resting from injury instead of doing what you actually want to do, and get better at.

Shorter Career

A man is considered in his physical prime in his early 30's because afterward, physical mass begins to decline.

Now if you're beginning MMA in your early 30's, chances are that you're already in your physical prime which can be good and bad.

It can be good, as you will feel fantastic and can reach your potential earlier.

mma boxing

It can be bad, as you will need to pick up and master all of your MMA skills quickly, in order to combine that with your physical skills to be the best that you can be.

Reaching this balance is what is considered when a fighter is in his 'prime'.

Due to this, starting at later ages shortens your career.

Whether you're a professional or doing this casually, your body will not have as many years to endure the punishment.

The window becomes much shorter.