Swedish Mixed Martial Arts Federation joins GAMMA as 76th member. GAMMA

The Global Association of Mixed Martial Arts welcomed one of Europe’s oldest national federations in the sport as its 76th member last Thursday, joining 21 other partners in the continent.

Renowned for a successful national team that has accrued international medals and produced top-tier athletes, the Swedish Mixed Martial Arts Federation (SMMAF) is expected to contribute to the competitiveness of GAMMA’s European and World tournaments. It is mandated by its government to regulate and sanction both amateur and professional MMA in Sweden. Its President August Wallen stands as an original founder of the international amateur MMA movement.

“We are looking forward to being with GAMMA, as an athlete-centred organisation which reflects the priorities of the SMMAF,” Wallen explained. “As an organisation seeking the best competition opportunities and conditions for all, the SMMAF is impressed by the level of support provided by GAMMA and is looking forward to sending a large team to the GAMMA World Championships in Indonesia in December. I am confident that becoming a member will be beneficial for our entire Swedish community.”

GAMMA is an International Federation for amateur MMA, now with 76 nations as members and is hoping for the sport to have a future in the Olympic programme.

“Our defining vision is to achieve Olympic recognition for the sport. Founded in 2018, we are still a young organisation, and we take the long view when it comes to attaining Olympic recognition, which has taken other sports many years,” Alexander Engelhardt, GAMMA’s president, stated on 2 June. “Though despite this, we have already made significant progress: This year we secured the inclusion of MMA in the programme as a demonstration sport at the 2023 African Games in Ghana, an event part of the Olympic umbrella. Here, sharing facilities with boxing, wrestling and chess, we showed that MMA has its place alongside other sports, and we attracted significant media attention across Africa”.

Founded in March 2007, the SMMAF addition no-doubt strengthens the bid for Olympic recognition, which would enable the continued effective safeguarding and governance of the sport, expanding participant and community access to its benefits globally, according to GAMMA officials.

“We are always pleased when we welcome new Members into our GAMMA community, particularly those that recognise our ambition and values,” Engelhardt said. “With the history of the SMMAF, this is particularly significant, and we thank August and the entire SMMAF for their trust. We look forward to having their athletes compete in our World Championships at the end of the year.”