Although MMA fighters are alone in the octagon on fight night, it doesn’t mean they don’t have an entire team behind them. Most professional MMA fighters in the UFC, Bellator, and other MMA promotions join a professional fight camp or mma gym to help them prepare for fights. For most fighters, training at a top mma gym has a huge advantage when compared to a smaller gym. At a larger gym they have access to multi-disciplinary coaching, and they get to train with some other top fighters from around the world.
Iron sharpens iron, which is why professional fighters choose to spar and train with other professionals. Elite fighters will learn from each other’s skill sets and can support their disciplined fighter lifestyle, this is the type of discipline you only find in the best mma gyms in the world. World class gyms make world class fighters. Every world class fighter wants to train at the best MMA gym in the world with other world class fighters.
Before a fight, an MMA fighter will usually undergo an intensive training regime for several weeks (6-12 weeks depending on the fighter). This is often weeks of hard training and dieting so that they can make their fight weight. Most professional fighters have a dramatic weight cut required to make fighting weight, and a fighters camp is an important part of this process. Most professional fighters have a dietitian that works with them, this is usually something a bigger mma gym will also provide.
Many people think MMA fighters only have a set of MMA gloves and a mouthguard on fight night, little do they know they have an entire team behind them. It’s important to have this type of conversation because it creates competition within fight camps and MMA gyms. So what is the best MMA gym in the world? Let’s take a look below.
The Best MMA Gyms in The World
Alliance MMA located in San Diego, houses some of the best fighters in the world. Founded in 2007 by UFC fighter Brandon Vera, Alliance MMA has been very successful in developing some of the best fighters in the world. Although Vera no longer runs Alliance MMA, Eric Del Fierro has done a great job in the management of many professional fighters. Alliance MMA hosts fighters from the UFC, Bellator, Invicta FC and almost every major fighting organization. Former UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz calls Alliance MMA his home.
Notable Fighters: Dominick Cruz, Jeremy Stevens, Alexander Gustafsson, Angela Hill, Phil Davis
Longo and Weidman MMA
The Longo and Weidman Mixed Martial Arts Facility (Law MMA) located in Long Island, New York, is one of the top mma gyms in the north-eastern part of the United States. Formally known as the Serra-Longo Fight Team, the Longo Weidman MMA team is doing just fine after the name change. Ray Longo is the owner and head instructor at Law MMA. This is an MMA team that you should look out for in the future.
Notable Fighters: Chris Weidman, Al Iaquinta, Aljamain Sterling, Gian Villante
Kings MMA located in Huntington Beach, California, is one of the best mma gyms in the world. The gym itself is headed by coach Rafael Cordeiro, who has previously won “Coach of the year” awards. Some of the best fighters in the world train at this gym in Huntington Beach. Many Brazilian fighters such as Fabricio Werdum and Lyoto Machida choose to train at Kings. With their recent expansion into West Hollywood, Kings MMA shows that it has no signs of slowing down.
Notable Fighters: Fabricio Werdum, Lyoto Machida, Wanderlei Silva, Kelvin Gastelum, Marvin Vettori
Nova União is an MMA team located in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. Since founded in 2008, the team has become synonymous with the likes of Jose Aldo Jr and Renan Barão. Fighting legend Bj Penn was once a member of team Nova União as well. With locations in over 40 countries world wide, Nova União is one of the strongest MMA teams and camps out there. Nova União also has a pro team full of BJJ competitors, so they are top-notch in all forms of martial arts.
Notable Fighters: Jose Aldo Jr, Renan Barão, Junior Dos Santos, Leonardo Santos, Ketlen Vieira
Team Alpha Male
Team Alpha Male is notorious for developing some of the top Bantamweight, Featherweight and Lightweight contenders in the world. Former UFC fighter Urijah Faber created Team Alpha Male in 2004, which is located in Sacramento, California. Some of the best mma fighters train at Team Alpha Male. UFC fighters such as Chad Mendes and Cody Garbrandt call Team Alpha Male home. With a new state of the art location in Sacramento, Team Alpha Male is here for the long haul.
Notable Fighters: Cody Garbrandt, Chad Mendes, Darren Elkins, Cynthia Calvillo, Clay Guida
Tiger Muay Thai
Tiger Muay Thai is a martial artists paradise. Located in Phuket, Thailand, Tiger Muay Thai has one of the most diverse MMA gyms in the world. Not only is Phuket, Thailand one of the most beautiful places on earth, the gym is actually top of the line too. With beginner, intermediate, advanced and even pro level classes offered, Tiger Muay Thai is absolutely one of the best mma gyms in the world. They also offer a fitness class 9 times a day with some of the worlds best instructors.
Notable Fighters: Valentina Shevchenko, Tarec Saffiedine, Dan Hooker, Ben Nguyen
Roufusport martial arts is one of the top mma gyms in the world, it just so happens to be located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin of all places. This also happens to be the gym that former world champion fighter Anthony Pettis, and new UFC fighter CM Punk train at. Roufusport has a long heritage of top fighters from around that world that choose to train with master Duke Roufus. Roufusport also offers an online training academy so that is something to definitely look into if you’re interested in an online academy that is top of the line.
Notable Fighters: Anthony Pettis, CM Punk, Paul Felder, Belal Muhammed, Sergio Pettis
If you’re heard of Conor McGregor then you’ve probably heard of Straight Blast Gym Ireland (SBG) as well. SBG is a great gym that was founded by John Kavanagh and boasts some of the top fighters from UFC, Bellator and even Cage Warriors. SBG is also the home of the “Twitter Goat” Artem Lobov. We decided to include SBG Ireland on this list because they’ve grown to become one of the top European MMA gyms in the world.
Notable Fighters: Conor McGregor, Gunnar Nelson, Artem Lobov, Dillon Danis
Jackson-Wink MMA is one of the best mma gyms on the west coast. Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Jackson-Wink MMA houses some of the top fighters in the world. Jon Jones, who some believe to be the worlds best fighter, calls Jackson-Wink MMA his home. Other fighters such as Holly Holm, who famously was the first to beat Ronda Rousey, also calls Jackson-Wink MMA her home. Jackson-Wink MMA is one of the best mma gyms in the world because of the amount of top talent that train there.
Notable Fighters: Jon Jones, Holly Holm, Carlos Condit, Cub Swanson, Lando Vannata, Ray Born, Michelle Waterson
American Kickboxing Academy
AKA or the American Kickboxing Academy is home to multiple championship fighters. Located in San Jose, California, AKA is one of the best mma gyms in the world. Created in the 1980’s by Javier Mendez, AKA continues to show why they are one of the best mma gyms in the world today. With UFC world championship fighters Daniel Cormier and Khabib Nurmagomedov both training at AKA it’s hard not to get starstruck.
Notable Fighters: Daniel Cormier, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Cain Velasquez, Leon Edwards
Hard Knocks 365
Hard Knocks 365, formally known as the “Blackzilians”, is a top mma gym located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The facility itself is amazing, with over 30,000 square feet of space you could easily get lost in this gym. The amount of professional fighters that train out of Hard Knocks 365 is absolutely amazing. Hard Knocks 365 also has some of the top mma coaches in the world. Henri Hooft the main striking coach is absolutely world class.
Notable Fighters: Michael Johnson, Luke Rockhold, Volkan Oezdemir, Stefan Struve, Kamaru Usman
American Top Team
Last but not least, American Top Team (ATT) is one of the best mma gyms in the world. Located in Boca Raton, Florida, ATT is only a few miles down the road from Hard Knocks 365. There might not be a better facility in the world than the one that American Top Team trains out of in Boca Raton. “There are probably four or five great teams that are capable of putting out world champions, and American Top Team is one of them.” – UFC President Dana White. We actually agree with Dana on this one, ATT is clearly one of the top mma gyms in the world.
Notable Fighters: Dustin Poirier, Amanda Nunes, Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal, Yoel Romero, Joanna Jędrzejczyk
So which MMA Gym is the Best in the World?
This is a great question to ask, however there really is no right or wrong answer. All of the gyms that are shown above have the right to say that they’re “the best mma gym in the world”. From world class facilities, to world class coaches and world class fighters, all of the gyms mentioned in this article are the best mma gyms in the world. If you’re fortunate enough to live in one of these areas around the world do yourself a favor and join one of these gyms.
In the unlucky chance that you don’t live by one of these gyms and don’t live by any mma gyms at all, you should visit our MMA workout at home article. If you have any comments or believe we forgot to add an mma gym to our list please leave a comment below.