Why Do MMA Fighters Lose To Boxers? Deep Analysis

There is no doubt that MMA fighters are some of the toughest athletes in the world. However, when it comes to boxing fights, they often don’t fare as well as boxers. So why is that? The training and career often differ significantly between boxers and MMA fighters. But there is more to it than it meets the eye. 

So why do MMA fighters usually lose to boxers? MMA fighters generally lose to boxers due to the simple fact that each athlete is better at their own sport. Boxers will almost always win boxing fights if matched against a non-boxer. The opposite will also be true. MMA fighters will almost always win an MMA fight if faced against a boxer.

But there are some key reasons why MMA fighters lose to boxers, and it isn’t just because boxers punch harder.

Key Reasons Why MMA Fighters Lose Boxing Matches

There are a few reasons why MMA fighters might lose to boxers in a fight. For one, boxing is a pure striking sport, while MMA includes both striking and grappling. This means that boxers have more experience with stand-up fighting. 

Boxing matches are more extended than MMA fights, so boxers may have an advantage in stamina. Additionally, boxing gloves are much larger and heavier than MMA gloves. This means that boxers can deliver more powerful punches. To know more about how to increase punching power, ensure to check our article about kettlebell exercises for punching power.

Boxers win over MMA fighters in a boxing match because MMA fighters are not used to the boxing rules and techniques boxers use. Boxers logically have more experience in boxing matches than MMA fighters do. As a result, boxers usually have an advantage over MMA fighters in boxing matches.


Boxing is a sport that has been around for centuries, and it remains popular today. Boxers come in all shapes and sizes and from all over the world. Some famous boxers include Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, and Oscar De La Hoya.

Boxing is a sport that requires incredible strength, speed, and agility. It is also a sport that can be very dangerous. When most people think of boxing, they think of two men in a ring, punching each other. However, there is more to boxing than just two men punching each other.

Boxing is a sport that requires great skill and technique. Boxers must be able to dodge punches, and they must also be able to deliver punches of their own.

MMA Fighters

MMA has become one of the most popular sports in recent years. MMA fighters are mixed martial artists who compete in MMA competitions. MMA is a full-contact combat sport that uses both striking and grappling techniques.

MMA fighters use a variety of techniques to defeat their opponents. Techniques include punches, kicks, elbows, and submission holds. Many MMA fighters have backgrounds in other martial arts disciplines such as boxing or jiu-jitsu.

Now, let us dive into the specifics of why boxers come out on top.

Number Of Fights  

Boxers often have much more fights during their career than MMA fighters. This is simple – boxing is much more established than MMA. There are more opportunities for boxers to fight. This means that boxers are generally more experienced than MMA fighters in fighting in the ring.

Boxers can also start fighting earlier in their careers, which gives them a further advantage. While MMA fighters often have to wait until 18 years old to fight professionally, boxers can start professionally at 16. This means that boxers usually have two or three years more experience than MMA fighters by the time they reach the professional level.

Competition is also much more skilled for younger boxers. There are more severe boxing gyms and clubs worldwide. This means that boxers can learn from better coaches and spar with more challenging opponents. All of this helps to improve their skills and make them better fighters.

Receiving Less Damage Overall

MMA fighters have to worry about punches, kicks, and takedowns. This means they often sacrifice their legs to avoid being taken down. This makes it difficult for them to stand and trade punches with a boxer who only worries about punches.

An MMA fighter can win a fight by submission, which means they can choke or hurt their opponent until they tap out or pass out. This isn’t possible in boxing, where the only way to win is by knockout or decision. Boxers don’t have to worry about being choked or hurt in a fight.

Also, boxers don’t have to worry about getting hit with an elbow or a kick to the head. In MMA, these strikes are legal and can cause severe damage. This means that boxers can focus on throwing punches without worrying about getting hit with a dangerous strike.

Boxers, however, get a lot of damage to their head and body. Over time, this can lead to serious health problems like brain damage. Most of the punches in boxing are thrown to the head, so boxers are more likely to suffer from brain damage than MMA fighters.

Length Of A Fight

Boxing matches are typically much longer than MMA fights, which gives boxers more time to study their opponents and develop a game plan.  This can be a disadvantage for MMA fighters.

They may not be able to adjust on the fly as well as their boxing counterparts. By the time a boxing match ends, the boxers will have already thrown hundreds of punches, whereas an MMA fighter may only have thrown a few.

The Different Styles Of Fighting

Another big difference between these two sports is the style of fighting. Boxing is a stand-up sport that focuses on striking with your hands. MMA is a mixed martial art that incorporates both striking and grappling. 

This means that boxers are usually more skilled at punching and landing clean shots than MMA fighters. On the other hand, MMA fighters are often much better at takedowns and submission holds than boxers.

Many MMA fighters solely focus on wrestling or BJJ, which gives them an advantage when the fight goes to the ground. However, this can be disadvantageous if the fight stays on the feet. This is because they may not have the same boxing skills as their opponents.

Size Of Gloves

Another key difference is the size of the gloves that each fighter uses. Boxing gloves are much larger than MMA gloves, meaning boxers have more padding around their hands. This extra padding protects them from cuts and bruises and gives them more power when throwing punches.

MMA fighters have to be more careful with their punches. They can cause severe damage to their opponents or themselves. 

MMA fighters might feel more comfortable wearing smaller gloves, but they must be more precise. Boxers can also use their more massive gloves for better defense, blocking, and deflecting punches more easily.

For example, boxers use the “Philly shell” technique to protect their heads by tucking their chin and bringing their gloves up to cover their face. This technique wouldn’t work in MMA because the gloves are too small.

The Rules Prohibit MMA Fighters

The rules of boxing are much more restrictive than the rules of MMA. In boxing, fighters are not allowed to kick or knee their opponents, which removes one of the most effective tools in an MMA fighter’s arsenal. This can be a big disadvantage for MMA fighters when they step into the ring against a boxer.

MMA fighters often use their punches as a setup for kicks or takedowns, but in boxing, they are not allowed to do this. Finally, boxers can focus solely on striking their opponents without worrying about being taken down or kicked.

If The Roles Were Reversed

However, if the roles were reversed and an MMA fighter were to fight a boxer in an MMA match, the MMA fighter would most likely win. This is because MMA fighters are more well-rounded and have more techniques at their disposal. In addition, the rules of MMA allow for more striking and grappling, which would give the MMA fighter a significant advantage over a boxer.

It’s also worth noting that some boxers have transitioned into mixed martial arts, such as Randy Couture and James Toney. But, these fighters had to make significant changes to their training and fighting style to be successful in MMA.

Overall, boxing differs from mixed martial arts, as reflected in how fighters prepare for their matches. 

What Requires a Higher Amount Of Stamina, Boxing Or MMA?

The answer to this question depends on the person’s individual physical capabilities and training methods. For example, a highly trained boxer may have more stamina than an untrained MMA fighter. However, suppose both fighters are equally trained and physically fit.

In that case, the MMA fighter will likely have more stamina because boxing generally relies on short bursts of energy. While MMA necessitates a more constant level of endurance. In addition, the amount of time spent in each round also plays a role in determining which sport requires more stamina.

Short Term Endurance

Boxing matches consist of three-minute rounds, with one minute of rest between them. MMA matches can last up to five minutes per round, with a minute of a break between. This means that, in general, an MMA fighter will have to endure more continuous physical activity than a boxer.

Therefore, they will likely require more stamina. MMA fighters must be able to wrestle, which takes a lot of stamina and physical endurance. Wrestlers are known as the most demanding athletes. 

Long Term Endurance

However, boxers might have more endurance in the long run. This is because boxing matches last for 12 rounds, while MMA matches only last for three, sometimes five. This means they will have to endure more rounds of physical activity than an MMA fighter.

Ultimately, it is difficult to determine which sport requires more stamina. It depends on the individual fighters and the specific circumstances of the match. However, MMA fighters generally need more explosive energy for a shorter time. So, Boxers need stable energy over a long time due to the nature of the sport.

Let’s compare boxers and MMA fighters with sprinters and marathon runners. In this case, MMA fighters will be sprinters and boxers marathon runners.

Why Do Boxers Punch Harder?

There are a few reasons why boxers tend to punch harder than MMA fighters. For one, boxing is a sport that emphasizes power punching. At the same time, MMA is a sport that emphasizes a more well-rounded striking game.

This means boxers are trained to put all their weight behind their punches. While MMA fighters are trained to be more technical with their strikes.

Another reason why boxers punch harder is because of the gloves they use. Boxing gloves are much thicker and heavier than MMA gloves, which adds more weight to each punch. This extra weight makes it easier for boxers to generate more force behind their punches.

Finally, boxers tend to have better punching techniques than MMA fighters. This is because boxing is a much more technical sport than MMA. Boxers spend a lot of time learning how to throw punches correctly.

They also spend a lot of time perfecting angles at which to throw the punches. This gives them a significant advantage when it comes to punching power.

All these factors combined make boxers some of the hardest hitters in all combat sports. Also, it makes boxers punch harder than MMA fighters. However, it should be noted that some MMA fighters do pack a serious punch. So, while boxing may have the advantage regarding punching power, MMA certainly has its share of hard-hitting strikers.

Which Is Safer MMA Or Boxing?

MMA and boxing are both dangerous sports. However, some differences between the two sports make one more dangerous than the other. In rare cases, injuries are common in both sports and death can occur in either sport.

MMA is a more recent sport that has only been around for a few decades. Boxing, on the other hand, has been around for centuries. MMA fights usually occur in a cage, while boxing matches occur in a ring. One is not more dangerous than the other inherently.

MMA fighters are allowed to use their elbows and knees, which can cause severe damage to their opponents. Boxers are not allowed to use these strikes. MMA fighters are also allowed to take their opponents to the ground. They can use submissions to force them to tap out or knock out their opponents. Boxers are not allowed to do this.

The rules of MMA allow for many different ways to win a fight, while boxing has only one way to win – by knockout. This means that MMA fighters have more ways to seriously hurt their opponents.

So, which is safer – MMA or boxing? It really depends on how you look at it. MMA is more dangerous if you’re just looking at short-time injuries. However, if you’re looking at long-term effects, boxing is more dangerous. For a complete list of the most common boxing injuries, be sure to read the following article.

Can A Muay Thai Fighter Or Kickboxer Beat A Boxer? (Boxing Rules)  

While Muay Thai fighters and Kickboxers would have a much better chance of winning against a boxer than an MMA fighter, the answer is still no. Here’s why:

The main difference between boxing and Muay Thai/Kickboxing is that you are only allowed to use your fists in boxing. While in Muay Thai/Kickboxing, you can also use your elbows, knees, and shins. This means that Muay Thai fighters and Kickboxers have a much greater range of motion with particular strikes. They can therefore inflict more damage on their opponents.

Rules Advantage

However, boxing has one significant advantage over Muay Thai/Kickboxing: the rules. In boxing, you cannot kick your opponent in the head. While in Muay Thai/Kickboxing, head kicks are allowed. This means that a boxer can keep his distance from a Muay Thai fighter or Kickboxer and pick him apart with jabs and crosses.

Another big advantage boxing has over Muay Thai/Kickboxing is the fact that in boxing, you can enter the clinch as a sort of protection. You can hug your opponent and stop him from hitting you in the clinch. In Muay Thai/Kickboxing, however, the clinch is more of an offensive weapon, where you can knee and elbow your opponent.


Muay Thai fighters and kickboxers also don’t have the perfect boxing technique. For example, when a kickboxer throws a hook, he cannot rotate his heel fully. The Kickboxer must, at least to some extent, keep his heel planted to block an incoming low kick. Kickboxers also cant dodge punches by ducking since they would get kicked into the face.

So while Muay Thai fighters and Kickboxers would have a much better chance, they probably will still lose to the boxer. The main reason is that boxing has much better rules, which protect the boxers and give them a big advantage.


As you can see, there are several critical differences between boxing and MMA. These differences give boxers a significant advantage over MMA fighters in boxing matches.

Despite these differences, there have been some notable exceptions where MMA fighters can defeat boxers. However, these cases are few and far between, and it is generally accepted that boxers have the upper hand in boxing matches. 

A fighter who trains regularly in one combat sport is expected to have an advantage over the fighter who trains in a different combat sport. This is because each sport’s skills, techniques, and strategies are very different.

Gregori Povolotski

I have been practicing martial arts since 2007. For as long as I can remember, I have always had a huge passion for combat sports, especially Muay Thai and boxing. Helping people on their martial arts journey is what drives me to keep training and learn new things. Read More About Me

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts