Breaking barriers: Female fighters to make debut at amateur MMA championships in Russia
The president of the Russian MMA Union, the governing body for amateur mixed martial arts, Radmir Gabdullin, announced on Friday that the organization is taking its first steps to developing Russian female fighters into top-class athletes who can represent the country at international level.
“One of our top goals is to promote women’s MMA, which is highly debatable in Russia,” the Russian MMA chief said, as cited on the Russian MMA Union website.
“One of top priorities outlined by the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF) is to make MMA an Olympic sport. In order to do that, MMA should follow the requirements adopted by the Olympic Charter, including full gender parity. That’s why we need to create all the necessary training and competitive conditions for female athletes.
The MMA boss said that the rules have been adjusted for female fighters to meet safety concerns required at the national championships.
“We held test female competitions in previous years without selecting fighters for the national team. This year there will be a full-fledged selection process at the national championship which will have just one just one round of competition taking into account the small number of competitors.
“The rules have been modified and adapted for female fighters in accordance with nuances of amateur sport which is not as extreme and dangerous as professional sport,” he added.
Last year, Russian professional MMA promotion Fight Nights Global hosted the first female championship bout in the country's history.
Russia's Marina Mokhnatkina and Liana Jojua from Georgia clashed for the inaugural female bantamweight belt for five rounds, with Jojua claiming a majority decision victory.
This month, Jojua inked a four-fight deal with the world's leading MMA promotion, the UFC.Also on rt.com Enter 'The She Wolf': Russia's first female MMA champ Liana Jojua pens UFC deal (PHOTOS)
The first amateur championship to feature female figters is scheduled to take place in Moscow from May 2 to 6.