ONE Championship has evolved quite a bit from its early beginnings.
The Singapore-based promotion arrived in the martial arts realm back in 2011 with the goal of showcasing the best MMA fighters from Asia. Since then, the organization has transformed into a combat sports powerhouse that hosts a jam-packed roster of world-class talent.
Every time ONE Championship puts on an event, it brings nonstop action and highlight-reel finishes to fans all across the globe. But other aspects help the Asian juggernaut stand out from its competition.
Here are three things that make ONE Championship different from other fight promotions.
1. It's more than MMA
In the early days, ONE Championship's events only featured MMA bouts. However, over the course of its rise to global prominence, the promotion began to incorporate other combat sports into its cards.
Submission grappling was the first discipline other than MMA to be featured inside the circle, but muay Thai and kickboxing soon followed.
Nowadays, viewers can expect to see a mix of all four sports across a single ONE Championship event, meaning that any and all types of fans can be satisfied by the action. A mixed card also ensures that each sport, and its athletes, can have some time under the big lights.
But the Singapore-based organization doesn't stop there.
It openly pushes athletes on its roster to seek new challenges by trying their hands at different disciplines – and for MMA legend Demetrious Johnson and muay Thai megastar Rodtang Jitmuangnon, that meant a special-rules superfight earlier this year.
2. The 'walking-weight' system
ONE Championship's weight classes are unlike any other promotion.
The world's largest martial arts organization implements a revolutionary system that ensures athletes stay fully hydrated, fit, and healthy in the lead-up to their bouts. This, in turn, ensures that fighters' safety and ability to compete at the highest level are as strong as possible.
The "walking-weight" system – the first of its kind for combat sports – means multiple weigh-ins and tests take place before and during fight week. Athletes must be within their weight class and pass specific gravity hydration tests all the way up to the final hours of preparation.
3. Rule set that guarantees excitement
With a talented roster packed with warriors from various martial arts disciplines and all competing at their natural weight, firefights are a certainty at any ONE Championship event.
But there is another factor that plays a pivotal role in ensuring that each matchup inside the circle is exciting from start to finish – and that is the Global Martial Arts Rule Set.
Under this carefully tailored set of rules, fighters are encouraged to enter their bout looking to earn a finish or put on a dominant performance for the entire duration of the contest.
Case in point: in the event that a match goes the distance, all three judges will score the bout in its entirety. That means a fighter who plans to win a contest round-by-round will seemingly stand less of a chance at victory against an athlete who shows more damage, striking combinations, ground control, earned takedowns, defense, and aggression.