UFC Gym opens first branch in Abu Dhabi with 24-foot Octagon and MMA-inspired classes

The gym, affiliated with Ultimate Fighting Championship, spans three floors of a villa in Mohammed bin Zayed City

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UFC Gym has opened its first branch in Abu Dhabi. The gym, affiliated with Ultimate Fighting Championship, is the third to open in the UAE with the other locations in Business Bay and Jumeirah Beach Residence in Dubai.

The facility spans 1,600 square metres over three floors of a large villa in Mohammed bin Zayed City. The ground floor features a multifunctional freestyle fitness area while the first floor has a signature 24-foot Octagon, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu mat and a kick-boxing area. The second floor contains the strength and cardio workout equipment as well as group fitness studio.

With Abu Dhabi dubbed "fight island" as a number of mixed martial arts events were held on Yas Island during the pandemic, it's no surprise that a UFC Gym has also made its way to the capital. So, for those who want to train like a fighter, here are five things to know about the newly opened UFC Gym in Abu Dhabi:

There are more than just MMA-inspired classes

The schedule currently features classes for Brazilian jiu-jitsu, boxing, kick-boxing, a cycling group and yoga, and there are plans to include Zumba in the future as well. Children aged 12 to 15 can also take part in classes aimed at getting the youth interested in fitness and a healthy lifestyle.

They offer their own boot camp style workout 

UFC Gym offers its own specialised class called DUT, which stands for Daily Ultimate Training. Despite the name, there are no kicks or punches. Instead, the 50-minute class is taught as a boot camp that sometimes incorporates battle ropes, jump ropes, TRX, plyo boxes, kettle bells, free weights and more. Participants go at their own pace and the class is open to all fitness levels.

There’s a user-friendly app

Members will have access to the UFC Gym app that allows for easy booking of classes up to 48 hours beforehand. The app also offers other features, including a look at all the certified UFC gym coaches, the class schedule, access to home workout videos, and membership information.

UFC coaches are specially trained

Most UFC Gym coaches hired have a mixed martial arts background. Upon joining the gym, they have to pass a rigorous certification programme and must also take part in a yearly seven-day intense training session to keep up to date with latest happenings in the fitness industry. Coaches are also reassessed throughout the year.

UFC stars have also trained in the gyms in the past

With some of UFC’s biggest names flying in to the UAE to compete, a number of UFC fighters have stopped by a UFC Gym to get in a workout as part of their regiment ahead of a big bout. In January, Conor McGregor brought his entourage as he stopped by the JBR branch ahead of his fight with Dustin Poirier at UFC 257.