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Key MMA Training Equipment to Source in 2023

An MMA practitioner strikes a high pad with a kick

Mixed martial arts (MMA), a form of combat that integrates aspects from several martial arts disciplines, is gradually becoming one of the most popular spectator sports in the world. 

As such, we’ll take a look at the key considerations for wholesalers looking to source MMA training equipment in 2023!

Table of Contents
Market prospects of MMA training equipment
How to choose the right wholesale MMA training equipment
Top MMA training equipment in 2023

Market prospects of MMA training equipment

The rapid growth and vast potential of the global MMA market is more than evident, with the worldwide market being valued at US $1.3 billion in 2022 and expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6%, climbing to a new high of US $1.7 billion by 2028

North America is the world’s largest MMA market, accounting for about 45% of the global MMA market share.

Considering its steady growth, the MMA sector clearly offers favorable selling prospects. Below we’ll take a look at how wholesalers can take advantage of this growing trend and unleash its full potential through improved product selection. 

How to choose the right wholesale MMA training equipment

Two MMA fighters wearing gloves

Unlike other martial arts such as karate, taekwondo, judo, and Brazilian jujitsu, which all come with universally recognized belt systems differentiating skill level and experience, MMA has no internationally standardized belt or ranking system. This could be seen as both a positive or a negative from the perspective of a wholesaler.

For example, the absence of uniformity brings its own challenges, such as added difficulty in determining a niche market or finding a specialized discipline. Meanwhile, this lack of standardization generally steers MMA practitioners toward purpose-driven training product decisions, rather than based on experience or level. Such an expansive perspective broadens the overall scope of purchases, thereby opening up diverse product range opportunities for sellers.

That’s also why when selecting MMA training equipment for retail, it is paramount to concentrate on products aligned with the common MMA-specific training focus, such as striking and grappling compared to ranking or skill level. Quality and durability are the next most important criteria for choosing the right MMA training products, considering the intensity and rigor that they will be used to train.

One male MMA fighter putting another in a headlock

Protective gear, as well as the relevant recovery equipment, are also integral to the safe practice of this particularly aggressive sport.

Finally, given today’s emphasis on cost-effectiveness, technology integration, and future tech potential, sellers will want to assess these factors too. For example,, wholesalers may want to stock smart training gear, such as those integrated with sensors and easily accessed via apps, while also keeping in mind price considerations. 

Top MMA training equipment in 2023

Technique-based training equipment

A female MMA practitioner practicing with a speed bag

Be it for striking or kicking, most MMA training calls for stringent precision and sustained effort. Punching bags are just one type of training equipment that can help facilitate precise accuracy and hard work. They usually come in a variety of styles, including heavy bags, speed bags, and freestanding bags.

Over the previous 12 months, the keyword “punch bag” has been one of the most popular, highly sought-after Google Ads keywords. It holds an average low six-digit monthly searches, with a ‘high’ competition index at a consistently high-level score of 100 out of 100. Such a high level reflects the intensity of the bidding wars among Google advertisers vying for that particular keyword. 

Comparatively, the keyword “speed bag” receives less attention but still maintains an equally remarkable level, averaging 40,500 monthly searches over the past year. Most traditional speed bags hang at head height to assist fighters in their speed and improving hand-eye coordination, training the user to react quickly as the bag swiftly bounces back following a punch. Free-standing speed bags, meanwhile, are ideal for training in limited space or places where mounting a suspended speed bag might not be feasible. Free-standing heavy bags can also provide greater portability and flexibility over traditional hanging heavy bags. These heavy bags are essential to cultivating strong punches and kicks as well as fine-tuning accuracy and synchronization.

A sitting dummy for advanced MMA practitioners

In addition, grappling dummies make for excellent training companions for MMA trainees wanting to excel in grappling – one of the most critical skills. They come in many forms but can mostly be divided into standing dummies, kneeling dummies, and submission dummies. 

Submission dummies in sitting positions are among the most popular grappling dummies by seasoned MMA fighters as they help to sharpen ground and pound skills – a combination of grappling control and striking force that is usually reserved for experienced practitioners.

Kneeling dummies and standing grappling dummies are great for less experienced MMA trainees looking to develop their throw, takedown, secure hook, and ground strike techniques.

Protective gear

A set of colored EVA mouthguards

MMA training and competitions can be brutal. A study revealed that as many as one in every four MMA athletes have suffered a minor brain injury. That’s why protective gear, such as mouthguardsd, are extremely important in MMA practice. This is underscored by high Google Ads keyword monthly searches, averaging 110,000 per month for the previous 12 months.

Mouthguards made from EVA (ethyl vinyl acetate) are preferred, protecting the fighter’s jaw from strikes to the head or face. MMA gloves are equally critical to safe MMA training, as indicated by its ranking as the foremost protective equipment in the Mixed Martial Arts Unified Rules set by the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF).

MMA gloves with a fingerless and open-palm design

MMA gloves are unique compared to most other martial arts in that they have a fingerless, open-palm design that is tailored to aiding maneuvers such as grappling. Meanwhile, their outing padding covers and protects the fighter’s knuckles.

There are also some body-specific protective equipment used to protect certain body parts during MMA practice. For example, shin guards with padded cushions are worn on the lower leg to protect the shins and feet from the impact of kicks or blocks. Likewise, groin guards protect the groin via a cup that fits over the genitals area.

Of all the MMA training equipment, recovery equipment, aiding in injury and trauma recovery, is perhaps the most underestimated or neglected. In reality, in a sport as injury-prone as MMA, recovery essentials are a necessity.

Massage foam roller comes with handles and small, spiky protrusions

Massage foam rollers are one such recovery essential for self-myofascial release (SMR), a self-massage technique designed to provide muscle recovery comfort by releasing muscle tension and trigger points. This item has steadily garnered more than 3,000 average monthly searches over the previous 12 months on Google Ads.

Another versatile tool useful for muscle recovery are resistance bands, which come with adjustable elasticity to train muscle flexibility and strengthening. Recovery routines with resistance bands can help to enhance blood circulation to injured or sore areas, thereby expediting the healing process.

Lastly, ice packs are another essential piece of MMA recovery kit that should not be overlooked. They usually come in bag or wrap form and are crafted for body parts that are typically vulnerable or susceptible to injuries in MMA practice. These ice bags can be applied to inflamed or swollen body parts to help reduce pain and bleeding by numbing the nerves in those regions.


The increasing popularity of MMA is driving worldwide demand for equipment related to this dynamic combat sport. With such a rise, it’s important that wholesalers select the most relevant MMA tools. Particularly useful training tools include those that refine skills, such as grappling dummies and punching bags, as well as those vital to protection, such as MMA gloves, mouth guards, and shin guards. In addition, recovery tools, including items like resistance bands, ice packs, and massage foam rollers, are equally important. Thousands of such items can be found on Alibaba.com.

Finally, to learn more about the best sourcing opportunities, industry insights, and the latest business trends, explore regular wholesale updates at Alibaba.com Reads today.

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