A Beginner's Guide: How to Bet on MMA Fights

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a thrilling and unpredictable sport that has grown immensely in popularity over the years. It has attracted countless fans around the globe, and with its rise, the world of MMA betting has also seen a significant surge. But, entering the world of MMA betting can be daunting, especially for beginners. From understanding the odds to knowing the different types of bets, it can all seem overwhelming.

However, the good news is, it doesn’t have to be. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned sports bettor looking to dip your toes into MMA betting, this comprehensive guide is here to help you navigate through the ins and outs of betting on MMA fights. We will cover everything from the basics of MMA betting, how to read betting odds, the different types of bets you can place, to strategies and tips for making the most informed wagers.

So, if you’re a sports betting enthusiast who is passionate about MMA events, specifically the UFC and Bellator, and you’re looking for a reliable platform for placing bets, you’re in the right place. We understand your pain points—the lack of options and difficulty in finding a reliable betting platform for MMA events. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to make your MMA betting experience as smooth and enjoyable as possible.

So, let’s dive right into the dynamic world of MMA betting and start turning your passion for the sport into potential profits.

Table of Contents

Understanding MMA and Its Popularity

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a captivating sport that has gained significant popularity over the past few decades. It’s a combat sport that combines different fighting disciplines — including boxing, wrestling, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and many more — into one thrilling competition. The global fan base of MMA revels in the sport’s unpredictability, the versatility of its fighters, and the sheer excitement that each match brings.

Brief History of MMA

The roots of MMA trace back to the ancient Olympic Games, but its contemporary form started to take shape in the early 1990s. The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) held its first event in 1993, intended to be a one-off showcase to answer the age-old question of which martial art is the best. The event’s success led to the creation of a new sport that would eventually become MMA as we know it today.

Despite initial criticisms due to its perceived brutality, MMA evolved into a regulated sport with a comprehensive set of rules that prioritize fighter safety. Fighters are now classified into different weight classes, and matches are supervised by competent referees who can intervene to prevent unnecessary harm.

The Difference Between MMA and UFC

One common point of confusion for newcomers is the difference between MMA and UFC. MMA refers to the sport itself, encompassing various fighting disciplines and techniques. On the other hand, the UFC is a promotion company that organizes and broadcasts premier MMA events worldwide, much like the NBA for basketball or the NFL for American football.

The UFC is not the only organization promoting MMA, though. There are other international leagues such as Bellator that also hold high-level MMA events. However, the UFC stands out due to its roster of the world’s best fighters and its massive global fan base, making it the most prominent platform for MMA betting.

As an MMA enthusiast, betting on your favorite fighters and matches can amplify the thrill of the sport. Next up, we will delve into the basics of MMA betting to help you make informed bets and enhance your viewing experience.

Basics of MMA Betting

Dive into the thrilling world of MMA betting, where every punch, kick, and round can be a chance to win. The first step in this journey is understanding how to read MMA betting odds and familiarizing yourself with the various types of MMA bets.

How to Read MMA Betting Odds

MMA betting odds reflect the probability of a particular outcome. Let’s take an example of a match between Fighter A (the favorite) and Fighter B (the underdog). Fighter A might have odds of -400, which means you would need to wager $400 to win $100. On the other hand, Fighter B could have odds of +275, meaning a $100 bet could win you $275. These odds are calculated based on each fighter’s implied probability of winning, which is determined by factors such as their past performance, fighting style, and physical condition.

Types of MMA Bets

MMA betting encompasses a variety of bet types. Here’s a rundown of the most common ones:

Moneyline Betting

The most straightforward MMA bet is the moneyline bet, where you simply wager on who will win the bout.

Total Rounds Betting

Total rounds betting, also known as over/under betting, lets you bet on the number of rounds the match will last. The sportsbook will set a round total, and you can wager on whether the fight will last more or less than that number.

Method of Victory Props

Take your betting up a notch with method of victory props, where you bet on how a fighter will win — by knockout, submission, or decision. These bets have higher payouts due to their specificity.

Parlay Betting

Parlay betting involves combining multiple bets into one. While it’s riskier, it offers higher potential payouts.

Futures Betting

Futures betting involves wagering on events that will happen in the future, such as who will win a championship.

Prop Bets

Proposition or “prop” bets are wagers on specific events within a fight, such as whether a fighter will win by knockout or submission, or whether the fight will go the distance.

Live/In-Game Betting

Live or in-game betting allows you to place wagers while the match is ongoing, adding an extra layer of excitement to your viewing experience.

As you delve into the world of MMA betting, remember to make informed decisions and bet responsibly. With a good understanding of how to read odds and the various bet types, you’re well on your way to joining the ranks of successful MMA bettors.

MMA Betting Strategies and Tips

When it comes to betting on MMA fights, it’s not just about picking the favorite fighter or the one with the most wins. It requires a thoughtful mix of research, strategy, and an in-depth understanding of the sport. This section will guide you through some essential strategies and tips to help you make more informed bets.

Importance of Fighter Styles

In the octagonal arena of MMA, fighter styles play a significant role in determining the outcome of a match. Just as in life, it’s a game of rock-paper-scissors, where one style may dominate another under specific conditions. Therefore, it’s crucial to understand each fighter’s preferred style and how it matches up against their opponent’s.

For instance, some fighters are upright strikers who prefer to stand and deliver blows, while others are skilled in wrestling and jiu-jitsu, looking to take the fight to the mat. Understanding these styles and any advantages they give one fighter over the other can help you find value in the MMA betting odds.

Considering Fighter Records and MMA Math

A fighter’s record is often the first piece of data bettors look at, but it’s already factored into the odds. However, records can sometimes be deceiving and it’s important to dive deeper into these results. For example, a fighter’s defeats may have come in closely-contested bouts against elite-level foes, while their opponent may have built an impressive resume against inferior competition.

“MMA Math” is a term used to describe a common mistake made by bettors who compare the records of two opponents and which foes they have won and lost against. While it may seem logical, this thought process can mislead bettors and take attention away from other important factors such as styles and fight film.

Impact of Ring Rust, Injuries, and KOs

MMA is a physically demanding sport with a high risk of injuries. These can sideline a fighter for weeks, months, or even years. As a bettor, it’s important to look into how these injuries impact a fighter upon their return. For instance, does a knee injury affect their speed? Will their opponent look to exploit the injured area?

Knockout losses can also have a profound effect on fighters. While they may not have suffered a physical injury, they can become psychologically affected, becoming extra cautious and losing their edge inside the octagon.

Role of Weight and Reach in Fights

In MMA, weight and reach are two vital factors that can influence the outcome of a fight. Fighters who struggle to make weight and go through drastic measures to do so can be left drained before the fight even begins. On the other hand, a fighter’s reach can give them an advantage, enabling them to connect on more strikes without putting themselves at risk.

In conclusion, betting on MMA fights requires a well-rounded understanding of the sport, the fighters, and various factors that can influence the outcome of a match. Armed with these strategies, you’re now ready to make more informed bets and increase your chances of winning.

Best Practices for MMA Betting

After understanding the basic betting strategies and gaining a deeper insight into the sport, let’s dive into some of the best practices for MMA betting. These practices can drastically improve your betting experience and potentially increase your chances of winning.

Bankroll Management

First on our list is bankroll management. This is the practice of managing your betting budget responsibly. It involves deciding how much money you are willing to risk and determining the size of your bets based on your total bankroll. A common rule of thumb is to never stake more than 1-5% of your bankroll on a single bet. This helps you avoid significant losses and ensures your bankroll lasts longer, giving you more opportunities to place winning bets.

Researching MMA Bets

The next best practice is to conduct thorough research before placing your bets. Keeping up-to-date with MMA news is crucial. It’s important to understand the fighters’ styles, records, and any potential injuries. Look beyond the numbers and delve into past performances, training camp situations, and the quality of opponents they’ve faced. Remember, a fighter’s record is just one piece of the puzzle; a comprehensive understanding of the sport and the fighters is key to making informed bets.

Understanding Underdog Opportunities

One of the most exciting aspects of MMA betting is the potential for underdog victories. While it’s tempting to always back the favorite, MMA odds can be challenging to set accurately, making underdog opportunities a viable betting strategy. Look out for these opportunities and capitalize on them when you spot value. This requires a deep understanding of the sport and the ability to spot discrepancies in the odds.

Avoiding Emotional Betting

Finally, avoid emotional betting at all costs. It’s easy to get caught up in the thrill of the sport and start backing your favorite fighters without considering the odds or their chances of winning. This can lead to unnecessary losses. Remember, successful betting is about making informed decisions, not letting your emotions dictate your bets.

These best practices, combined with a solid understanding of MMA betting strategies, can significantly enhance your betting experience and increase your chances of success. Remember, knowledge is power in the world of sports betting. The more you know, the better your chances of making winning bets.

Legalities of MMA Betting

Before you dive headfirst into the thrilling world of MMA betting, it’s crucial to understand the legalities that govern it. Without this knowledge, you might inadvertently find yourself on the wrong side of the law, turning your betting experience into a nightmare. This section aims to guide you through the legal maze of MMA betting.

Where is MMA Betting Legal?

In many parts of the world, betting on MMA fights is entirely legal and regulated. In the United States, the legality of sports betting varies from state to state. Since the Supreme Court’s 2018 decision to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, numerous states have legalized sports betting, including MMA.

However, not all states have jumped on the sports betting bandwagon. In some cases, online sports betting is legal, while in others, only in-person betting is permitted. Therefore, it’s critical to familiarize yourself with the specific laws and regulations in your area before placing any bets.

Understanding Betting Regulations

Betting regulations are put in place to maintain the integrity of the sport and protect both the bettors and the athletes. These rules can cover various aspects, including the types of bets you can place, the minimum age for betting, and the obligations of betting operators.

In addition to state and federal laws, betting platforms often have their own set of rules. For instance, at Bet MMA, they have comprehensive rules that govern how their services are used, the information they collect, and how they protect your data.

Understanding these regulations is key to ensuring a safe and enjoyable betting experience. It helps you make informed decisions and avoid potential pitfalls that could tarnish your love for the sport and the excitement of betting.

Remember, while MMA betting offers an opportunity to make some money while enjoying the sport you love, it’s essential to engage in it responsibly and legally. Always do your homework and stay within the boundaries of the law, and you’ll be sure to have a positive betting experience.


As we wrap up this beginner’s guide, it’s clear that betting on MMA fights is not only a thrilling way to engage with the sport but also a potential avenue for profit if approached with the right knowledge and strategy. It’s about much more than just picking a favorite fighter; it involves understanding the nuances of the sport, the fighters, and the betting market itself.

We’ve given you a comprehensive overview of how to get started with MMA betting, understanding key concepts like odds, various types of bets, and the importance of research and analysis. But remember, the learning doesn’t stop here. As with any form of sports betting, constant learning, and staying updated on the sport and its athletes is crucial.

As a next step, consider practicing your newfound knowledge with small bets as you gain more experience. Keep refining your betting strategies and remember to always manage your bankroll responsibly. This will ensure that your MMA betting journey is not only exciting but sustainable as well.

Finally, keep in mind that MMA betting is a legal activity in many places, but the rules vary. Always make sure to familiarize yourself with the regulations of your jurisdiction before placing any bets.

From understanding MMA to placing your first bet and developing your betting strategies, this guide has got you covered. So now it’s time to dive in, enjoy the adrenaline-pumping action of MMA, and start putting your betting skills to the test!

And remember, the key to success in MMA betting, as with any other form of betting, is patience, discipline, and consistent learning. Happy betting!