Social Question

drClaw's avatar

How do you feel about fight sports? Does this influence your perception of those of us who participate?

Asked by drClaw (4452points) September 8th, 2009

For thousands of years humans have fought each other for sport, from the brutal fight-to-the-death gladiators of Rome to today’s Boxers and Mixed Martial Artists (UFC/MMA). Do you feel that fight sports are healthy way for people to exert their aggression in controlled environments or do they perpetuate an old way of life that no longer has a place in modern society?

How does your opinion of fight sports influence your view of people who participate (be it training, competing, or simply just watching) in them?

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38 Answers

deni's avatar

Fights are interesting to watch. I don’t have cable, and I never watch tv anyhow, so therefore, I don’t watch fights, but even though this is a little sad to say, anytime you see a fight in real life, you are interested. Usually it’s just two dumb teenagers fighting over something stupid at the mall, and no one really gets hurt, but I think because I never see fights, when I do see them I’m like “wow! people intentionally trying to harm each other, right in front of my eyes!” Sad, weird, entertaining, whatever. I don’t think less of people who participate in them competitively or watch them for fun.

Darwin's avatar

My husband loves watching UFC but quite frankly I can’t understand the attraction. However, it takes all kinds to make up a world, and it is certainly better if people who like to fight and are good at it fight other people who like to fight and are good at it. And what says there is no aggression in modern society? Have you ever watched people drive?

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

never been a huge fan. but sometimes it’s cool to watch two 220 pound men in spandex beat the living hell out of eachother in a cage…

drClaw's avatar

@Darwin good point about driving. I personally love fight sport, training and watching. I guess I am mostly interested in finding out peoples reasons for being completely against them.

Darwin's avatar

We just don’t want you guys to turn on us. We would lose and it would hurt. ~

teh_kvlt_liberal's avatar

Real fights are more entertaining than the homoerotic UFC or WWE
I also like female mud wrestling and catfights at my school :D

DominicX's avatar

My only opinion regarding the people who play (I am really not interested in fight sports) is that boxing causes brain damage. Seems like a stupid thing to do, therefore.

drClaw's avatar

@DominicX boxing is def hard on the brain. I’ve met guys with permenant slurs because of it. My question then to you would be do your feelings on the subject change your perception of someone who fights (do you think less of boxers)?

dpworkin's avatar

When I was younger, boxing, at any rate, seemed a different matter. For one thing, there was a boxing match on TV every Friday night, so it was much more a national pastime than it is now.

For another, there were genuine American heroes in boxing. Mohamed Ali, George Foreman, Sonny Liston, Sugar Ray Robinson, were all taken seriously as part of the National dialog, especially Ali who was reviled in his youth but came to be worshiped for his courage, honesty and vision.

They were towering figures; we have no one like them any more.

Buttonstc's avatar

I prefer brains over brawn.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

There’s enough violence in the world already.

YARNLADY's avatar

My perception of someone is not based solely on their favorite sport. I don’t like football, boxing, car races, or skiing, but I’m not about to base my friends on that.

DominicX's avatar


Well, I don’t think it’s an intelligent choice to subject yourself to that, just as I don’t think it’s an intelligent choice to take up smoking. I don’t think I would go as far as to say I think less of them, though.

SheWasAll_'s avatar

hand to hand combat turns me on, is that weird? Muhammad Ali is one of my idols, not because of his boxing career but because of his view on the world. I hate theatrical things like WWE, but martial arts are amazing and demonstrate incredible discipline and passion. The actual fighting may not be an appealing thing, but the drive and the enthusiasm in those people is awe-inspiring.

tinyfaery's avatar

I must say that I think there is something a bit off with someone if they like to get the shit beat out of them/like to beat the shit out of people. Just being honest.

dpworkin's avatar

@tinyfaery Shit beating was never the point of classic boxing. Perhaps a little research is in order. There is a lot of information available right from the very computer you used to post your uninformed answer.

tinyfaery's avatar

My opinion is uniformed? I couldn’t give a shit about the history of boxing. I only need to use my eyes to see that people are beating each other, which I think is ridiculous. Me thinks the brain damage is there to begin with.

dpworkin's avatar

Enjoy the rest of your evening and thanks for your thoughtful contribution to the discussion.

Darwin's avatar

I wonder if liking fighting has something to do with testosterone levels? I know my levels are low because I am a girl.

kevbo's avatar

I enjoy MMA. I like watching strategy and tactics unfold, getting a feel for the balance of ability between opponents, and admire the discipline involved.

The film “Redbelt” speaks to
the aspects of MMA that I appreciate most.

Dr_C's avatar

I enjoy watching fight sports.. would not care to participate in them. This preference in no way alters my perception of the people who participate or choose not to. People are people no matter what their hobbies.

rottenit's avatar

I never understood the MMA fighting, it became popular when I was still involved in martial arts training. Part of me thinks that it gives martial arts a bad name, people dont see the ture path of the warrior all they see is the violence and brutality of what’s happening on the televised fights.

OpryLeigh's avatar

I’m not into watching them myself but each to their own. As long as everyone involved is there out of choice then I see no problem.

drClaw's avatar

@rottenit I can definitely understand your point. Back in the early day of MMA it was less a mixture of martial arts and more of a drunken brawl between monstrous men. However today I believe that is changing rapidly with champions like Lyoto Machida and Anderson Silva who have proven that the counter striking techniques as well as the discipline of karate are invaluable skills in combat.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I don’t enjoy watching it. I don’t understand why others enjoy watching it. But if two adults want to beat each other up, fine by me. I support ultimate fighting as long as there’s consent no more no less than I support cannibalism if there is consent. However, I don’t buy the whole ‘this is how real men are – full of animalistic testostorone, blah blah blha’

JLeslie's avatar

I am not keen on watching people beat each other up. I just don’t get it? I respect the skill of martial arts, the training a boxer goes through, just leave off the actual fight at the end please.

bennihan's avatar

I have a very strong opinion of this issue. I have been training brazilian jiu-jitsu and Mixed Martial Arts for a couple of years now.

Fighting is the most natural thing to come to someone. Fight or flight. To test yourself physically and mentally against someone else in combat is one of the biggest challenges one can face.

As far as those who might call it vulgar or bloody it can be at times but it’s all a part of the game. For anyone who debates whether it is a sport or not UFC is probably the most intensely trained sport possible.

To be elite you have to be well rounded in striking, wrestling, submissions, and be prepared for every aspect.

If you don’t like watching it that’s fine but don’t be afraid when the UFC takes over as the biggest sport in the world FIFA style. Everyone can relate to fighting whether you’re American, Brazilian, Russian, etc and with the diminishing of Boxing due to crooked promoters and a weak heavyweight division the market is wide open.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@bennihan perhaps fighting when it’s fight or flight is ‘natural’ but training for an event, scheduling that event and appearing in a fight at a specific time with a specific opponent is not fight or flight – it is therefore not natural according to the way you define it…testing oneself physically is an interesting venture so to each their own, definitely…

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

I’ve seen them a few times and it’s very stimulating/exciting from the spectators seat.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@hungryhungryhortence why were you excited? can you elaborate?

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: I’ve always enjoyed boxing to watch the body in motion and the cage fighting stuff is even more engaging, like wrestling but not so cheesy. I feel the same way when I watch runners and horse racing. It’s the movement of the bodies, I think- the muscle movement.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@hungryhungryhortence that’s interesting, I get that way about dance

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

I like boxing more than UFC, I realize and understand the toughness and talent of UFC fighters but I just don’t like how much they really kick the crap out of eachother, especially when they go to ground.

I used to take Jujitsu so I know how difficult it is to control your opponent on the ground but well they do those hammer swings on top of each other it just looks brutish.

That said, the only boxer I’ve ever enjoyed watching was Ali. For being as big as he was, he was just so graceful, and an insanely strategic and intelligent fighter, so impressive.

Zen's avatar

I used to box. At the time, there weren’t many opportunities to compete, I prefer not to go into detail. But the point is – I could’ve competed, but chose not to. I liked the training, but didn’t want to actually fight (and get my pretty face smashed in).

kevbo's avatar

Just watched “Tyson” which is out on DVD. Amazing how self aware he is and how classic is his story.

deepdivercwa55m's avatar

I admit that I have a problem with my anger. I am too aggressive. Boxing helps me control myself. Now I am not that animal I used to be. I love it, and I am 3 years unbeatable !!

Zen's avatar

I used to box. I don’t like it at all anymore, as it can result in serious bwan damaj.

w2pow2's avatar

Boxing is a barbaric sport and should be banned…
But until it is I’m going to watch every singe fight!

Seriously though I’ve always loved fighting sports. I was the kid on the playground who always looked for a fight just to get experience.

Now the closest thing I ever come to melee combat experience is choreographing fights for random films/ plays. I don’t mind it though- fight choreography is super fun!

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