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This study verified the performance probabilities by mixed martial arts rounds by the same athletes, doing paired comparisons of time–motion and actions before and after 10 y. The sample was composed of 845 Ultimate Fighting Championship rounds of 45 athletes separated into before (M1, age range 34–44 y) and after (M2, age range 44–54 y). Motor-control (takedowns, submissions, chokes, locks, strike actions to the head, and body and leg strikes attempted and landed) and time–motion (high and low intensities and standing and ground times) analyses were done. The main results showed significant differences (P ≤ .05) in total strikes landed (M1 22 [13; 34] > M2 18 [10; 31.7]), total strikes attempted (M1 41 [24.5; 62] > M2 35 [21; 48]), single head strikes attempted (M1 19 [9; 34.5] > M2 16.5 [9; 28]), single body strikes landed (M1 1 [0; 4] > M2 1 [0; 2]), single body strikes attempted (M1 2 [0; 5] > M2 1 [0; 3]), takedowns attempted (M1 1 [0; 2] > M2 1 [0; 2]), standing combat time (M1 2:10.28 [1:38.95] > M2 1:55.56 [1:32.17]), and low-intensity time (M1 2:11.45 [1:38.95] > M2 1:56.26 [1:31.89]). Variables that increased the probability to be associated with over the years were body strikes landed, head strikes landed, total strikes landed, and single strikes attempted, whereas body strikes attempted, head strikes attempted, total strikes attempted, and submission attempted had a negative association with mixed martial arts years of experience. Therefore, M2 athletes should be focused on standing combat time combined with strikes-landed actions, targeting the head—it has the highest potential performance probability and avoid unsuccessful body-strike attempts and submissions—which has the lowest potential performance probability over 10 years.

dos Santos, Miarka, Queiroz, de Carvalho, and Brito are with the Laboratory of Physiological and Motor Analysis in Health and Performance, Physical Education Dept, Federal University of Juiz de Fora, Minas Gerais, Brazil. dal Bello is with the Physical Activity and Sports Science Master Program, Santo Tomás University, Santiago, Chile. Beneke is with Philipps-Universitat Marburg, Marburg, Germany.

Miarka (miarkasport@hotmail.com) is corresponding author.

Supplementary Materials

  • Supplementary Table 1 (PDF 182 KB)