In the ancient Greek Olympics, hundreds of years before Christ, in a certain way, MMA was disputed. The style, denominated pancrase, which arose from the fusion of pugilism and grappling, was one of the most important feats at the Games and was quite similar to MMA. In it competed the great warriors and, among the moves performed, locks and chokes were already incorporated, as were kicks and punches. After having died off for thousands of years, pancrase didn’t again find its place upon the return of the Olympics, in 1896 in Athens.
Over the years, styles like wrestling, boxing, judo and taekwondo became a part of the Olympics. Common to gentle art practitioners is the dream of Jiu-Jitsu one day becoming an Olympic sport, and if it were up to UFC president Dana White, MMA would be in, as well.
“You see wrestling, boxing, judo, taekwondo, all these things that are permitted in MMA,” says White in analysis to MMAJunkie.com.
The UFC top brass participated in a meeting in New York with other sympathizers of the idea, but asserts that he does not represent the International Olympic Committee. Dana guarantees his support, but does not believe he carries much weight in making the dream come true.
“It will take time. I’m the one who’s been saying it should be an Olympic sport, and I hope to see it become one before I die. But I don’t believe I’m the one who’ll make it happen. But it’s one of my goals and I feel it’s inevitable.”