The English Mixed Martial Arts Association (EMMAA) launched their MMA Industry Programme yesterday, in what was a ground-breaking moment for the sport in the UK.
The EMMAA certified two-year course, available to school leavers aged from 16, provides students who have a passion for MMA the opportunity to combine academic studies and recognised qualifications with a full-time elite training schedule.
Students, parents and coaches attended the launch at the Programme’s first site in Liverpool, and were blown away by the gold standard approach into developing the next generation of MMA industry leaders.
EMMAA President Marc Goddard said: “What an amazing turnout and it was all so positive. It really was a thing to behold. I’m so excited for the future of MMA here in England. We are making small but incremental steps in the right direction.
“I was thrilled to be in attendance and see the fruition of a recognised qualification and genuine pathway for these youngsters embarking on their MMA journey. Special thanks to Dean Garnett for his belief and hard work and to all Team England coaches, representatives, and all at the EMMAA.”
Students will be provided with the opportunity to earn while they learn and study towards a variety of recognised coaching badges and BTEC diplomas, all while also enhancing the levels of coaching and programming at their home clubs.
Programme director and EMMAA Director of Development Dean Garnett said: “This Industry Programme has been eight years in making, and while there was a real sense of achievement with the success of the launch, EMMAA won’t be happy until every young person with potential has access to this programme.
“For so long the goal has been to get to this point, to launch, but we already have a fresh goal and that is to grow and offer the course nationwide. We are determined to transition mixed martial arts from being the fastest growing sport to the most accessible also.”
EMMAA plan to develop further educational hubs around the country with the aim that every heavily populated region in England will have their own EMMA certified Industry Programme serving local fighters and clubs inside the next 3–5 years.
Also, in attendance at yesterday inaugural course launch was England national team Performance Director Matt Thorpe, who added: This is a landmark step for English MMA that will not only see the development of world class sports coaches in our industry, but also see the development of a pathway for athletes looking to progress from grassroots through to the IMMAF World Championships.”
For more information on the MMA Industry Programme visit englishmmaa.org.
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