The UFC is the world’s largest mixed martial arts organisation, and with that comes many different weight classes for fighters to compete in.
Why the UFC Implemented Weight Classes
The UFC, or Ultimate Fighting Championship, is a mixed martial arts organisation that features different weight classes to create a more level playing field for its fighters. In the organisation’s early days, there were no weight classes and fighters of all sizes competed against each other. The lack of weight classes led to unfair advantages, as heavier fighters often overpowered the smaller ones.
The UFC eventually decided to implement weight classes to make things fairer. There are now eight weight classes in the UFC for men, ranging from flyweight (the lightest) to heavyweight (the heaviest). Weight classes ensure fighters are matched against those of a similar size, creating a more even fight.
Weight classes also help to create more excitement for fans, as they can root for their favourite fighter in each weight division. The UFC has become one of the most popular sports organisations in the world, and weight classes have played a big part in that success.
Below is a list that breaks down the main weight classes, including big names and champions of each division.
The UFC’s heavyweight division is home to the organisation’s most reputable fighters, with the upper weight limit at 265 pounds (120.2 kg). The heavyweights pack a serious punch, and their fights are often the most exciting and unpredictable.
The current heavyweight champion is Francis Ngannou, who earned his title in March 2021. Ngannou is known for having the hardest punch in the world, beating the world record. Scientists have compared his punch to the horsepower of a small family car. He’s faced some of the best heavyweights on the planet, including Stipe Miocic, Alistair Overeem, and Junior dos Santos.
The heavyweight division is constantly evolving, and new challengers are always looking to take the title from the champion. With so much talent in the division, the heavyweight title is always up for grabs.
The welterweight division is among the most competitive and famous in the UFC. The weight limit for welterweights is 170 pounds (77 kg).
The current UFC welterweight champion is Leon Edwards, who defeated Kamaru Usman with a brutal kick to the head. Edwards recently earned his title, ending Usman’s reign in the final moment of their 25-minute bout.
Other notable welterweights include former champions Robbie Lawler and Georges St-Pierre, and contenders like Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal, and Leon Edwards.
The Lightweight division is one of the most competitive and exciting in the UFC. With the upper weight limit at 155 pounds (70.3 kg), there’s a large pool of talent to work with.
Lightweight fighters are some of the best athletes in the world, and the action inside the Octagon is always fast and furious.
Many UFC fans consider the lightweight division their favourite, and with big names like Dustin Poirier, Charles Oliveira, and Justin Gaethje, it’s easy to understand why.
Currently, the lightweight champion title is vacant. It belonged to Charles Oliviera, but because his weight was off by less than a pound, he was stripped of the title.
The UFC’s featherweight division is home to some of the promotion’s most exciting fighters. The upper weight minimum is 145 lb (65.8 kg).
From dynamic strikers like Max Holloway and Jose Aldo to all-around athletes like Frankie Edgar and Brian Ortega, there is never a dull moment in the featherweight division.
The current featherweight champion is Alexander Volkanovski, who has made a name for himself since moving down from welterweight. The Aussie-born Macedonian-bred fighter managed to dethrone Max Holloway from his place back in 2019.
The UFC Flyweight division is the lightest division, with a maximum weight of 125 pounds (56.7 kg).
The current UFC Flyweight champion is Deiveson Figueiredo, ranked #9 best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. He has successfully defended his title a record twice and shows no signs of slowing down.
Other notable UFC Flyweights include Joseph Benavidez, Henry Cejudo, and Sergio Pettis. All three of these men are incredibly talented and have exciting fighting styles. They have also been involved in some very memorable fights.
Despite the immense talent of flyweight fighters like Figueiredo, Benavidez, and Cejudo, the flyweight division is not the most popular among the masses. The UFC has even thought of dissolving the division, but fighter Henry Cejudo made it his mission to save it so that men of his weight could continue their sport.