As the biggest mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion in the world, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is going to do everything in its power to ensure the safety of its fighters.
After all, the promotion's notoriety and popularity worldwide would not allow any drop off in this department.
As of now, UFC has already introduced a new weight management policy scheduled to go into effect at UFC 200 that will expect fighters to weigh no more than eight percent of their target weight when they come into fight week. This will try to ensure more healthy cuts leading up to the weigh ins and a direct policy that will challenge issues of dehydration around the sport.
The complete breakdown of divisional weight limits leading into fight week can be found below (courtesy of Jeremy Botter):
Per UFC email to fighters, here are the max fight week check in weights. This could get interesting. pic.twitter.com/q8OtdqCMLL— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) May 20, 2016
Some fighters have also voiced their opinions as a result of the impending policy:
The UFC wants us within 8% of the weight class fight week?? pic.twitter.com/hZz4F5H5S0— Kevin Lee (@MoTownPhenom) May 13, 2016
Well, it now seems as if the promotion is on the cusp of bringing about even more change in the future. In a recent report by Marc Raimondi of MMA Fighting, citing an email sent out by UFC vice president of athlete health and performance Jeff Novitzky to all fighters earlier this week, the promotion is working towards adopting a new weigh-in period.
"UFC is also working with the Athletic Commissions to test the feasibility of extending the weigh-in period, including a multi-hour weigh-in conducted at the host hotel," said Novitzky in his email.
A potential change in weigh-in time would provide fighters with a few extra hours to refuel before a fight. As a result, the crippling dehydration epidemic in MMA may finally begin to decline.
Since bringing on Novitzky and partnering with the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), UFC has begun to even the playing field inside of the Octagon, provide safer environments for its athletes, and force fighters to eat healthier diets outside of the cage.
Hate it or love it, UFC is pushing in the right direction.