Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a full-contact combat sport that involves striking, grappling and fighting techniques from other full-contact combat sports and martial arts such as Boxing, Jiu-Jitsu, Judo, Wrestling, Muay Thai, Taekwondo among many others. With an ever-increasing global audience, the sport has been growing in popularity in the last decade. Los Angeles Times television critic Howard Rosenberg seems to be the first person to have used the term mixed martial arts (MMA) during the first-ever UFC event in 1993, though the question of who actually coined the name is still in debate. The UFC is the main MMA promotion in the world; others include Bellator MMA, One Championship, World Series of Fighting, and the all-female Invicta FC. MMA fights like the ones showcased in UFC events are really a current and updated version of a Brazilian combat sport called “Vale Tudo” or “everything is valid” in Portuguese. Out of the 567 active fighters in the UFC, more than sixty percent come from the USA (256) and Brazil (98). There are only twenty-seven Latin American fighters, two of them from Colombia, Alex “Rolo” Torres and Freddy “El Profe” Serrano.
Late last year Colombian Accents had the opportunity to talk to Rubian Ospina, a native of Andes Antioquia who since 1989, has been practicing wrestling, jiu-jitsu, and mixed martial arts. He shared with us a bit about his own personal story, and how he got involved in the mixed martial arts movement. A Panamerican Games champion and three times jiu-jitsu Colombian National champion, Rubian also remembers how bullying helped persuade him to train, learn and improve his combat skills when he was still a teenager, and how watching the sport on TV inspired him to pursue his dream some years later, of being a wrestler, jiu-jitsu and MMA fighter. Rubian is currently a martial arts trainer at his own academy. He is also the proud father of David Ospina a talented 14-year-old jiu-jitsu fighter, who recently finished seventh (7th) in the 55 kg. category at the under 18 Jiu-Jitsu World Championship held in Athens Greece in March 2015.
Name: Rubian Ospina
Place of Birth: Andes, Antioquia, Colombia
Occupation: Martial Arts Trainer
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