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Best MMA Gym: Here Are The Top Camps In The World

City Kickboxing
Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Best MMA Gym: Here Are The Top Camps In The World

The age-old question is where do the best fighters go to train? MMA gyms are popping up all over the world, producing some of the best talents the sport has ever seen from unexpected locations. From Albuquerque to New Zealand, talent can be found damn near everywhere. Everyone tries to claim they have the best MMA gym, but who really is the best? In this article, we will dive into where the best mma gyms are in the world.

Alliance MMA

Location: San Diego, California, USA

Alliance MMA plays host to some of the best fighters walking planet earth today and holds many world champions in different companies. From veterans of the game to up-and-coming talent, you’ll be hard-pressed to find as good a gym. Notable Fighters: Dominick Cruz, Jeremy Stephens, Alexander Gustafsson, Angela Hill, Phil Davis

American Kickboxing Academy

Location: San Jose, California, USA

For this writer’s money, the second-best gym on earth resides in California (stay tuned for the best). AKA has constantly turned out a who’s who of fighters who have made massive names for themselves. When you are surrounded by two-division champs like Daniel Cormier, an undefeated GOAT in Khabib Nurmagomedov, and others, you are bound for greatness. It also helps they have some of the best coaches. Prominent trainers include Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu master Leandro Vieira, Bob Cook, Derek Yuen, Javier Mendez, and Andy Fong. Notable Fighters: Daniel Cormier, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Cain Velasquez, Luke Rockhold

American Top Team

Location: Coconut Creek, Florida, USA

American Top Team (ATT) is one of the most famous gyms in the entire world. It has played host to the only gym versus gym season of The Ultimate Fighter along with the Blackzilans. The gym was founded in 2001 by Dan Lambert, who brought in former members of Brazilian Top Team Marcus “Conan” Silveira, Marcelo Silveira and Ricardo Liborio. ATT has coached numerous champions in Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), PRIDE Fighting Championships, DREAM, K-1, Strikeforce, and Bellator. They also happen to play host to the GWOAT in Amanda Nunes. Notable Fighters: Dustin Poirier, Amanda Nunes, Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal, Yoel Romero, Joanna Jędrzejczyk

City Kickboxing (Best MMA Gym)

Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Here we are, for my money the best MMA gym on planet earth right now. The talent they have in Auckland is insane: Middleweight Champ Israel Adesanya, Featherweight Champ Alexander Volkanovski, and an insane amount of rich talent that’s on the up and coming. Eugene Bareman and Doug Viney founded City Kickboxing back in 2007, and have recently found mainstream success in the past 3 years or so. This gym will be the next Jackson-Wink MMA, churning out champion after champion. Notable Fighters: Israel Adesanya, Alexander Volkanovski, Dan Hooker, Kai Kara-France, Shane Young

Evolve MMA

Location: Singapore, Singapore

While Evolve might be a lesser-known camp in the United States, they have turned out plenty of champions in a number of companies across the world. According to Yahoo Sports Singapore, Evolve MMA has the largest roster of world champions across multiple martial arts sports. It has world champions in Muay Thai, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Mixed Martial Arts, Boxing, Wrestling, and No-Gi Grappling among others, which shows its diversity and the width of its training programs. Notable Fighters: Rafael dos Anjos, Angela Lee, Shinya Aoki

Jackson-Wink MMA

Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA

My old stomping grounds. Perks of living in Albuquerque is you have a good chance to see any number of fighters around the city. Sorry for my trip down memory lane there, lets get back to it. The Jackson-Wink MMA academy was founded back in 1992 as Jackson’s MMA academy but later changed its name to Jackson-Wink MMA. Coaches Greg Jackson and Mike Winkeljohn found uber success in the mid to late 2000’s and this success made notable fighters like Georges St-Pierre, Andrei Arlovski, Nate Marquardt and Jon Jones head to New Mexico. What once was the best MMA gym has since declined just a little, but is still a powerhouse when it comes to talent and championship-level fighters. Notable Fighters: Jon Jones, Andrei Arlovski, Carlos Condit, Cub Swanson, Diego Brandão, Holly Holm, Michelle Waterson, Ali Baguatinov, Donald Cerrone

Fight Ready

Location: Scottsdale, Arizona, USA

Fight Ready has seen a massive uptick in talent and world champions over the past 5 years, which lands them on this list. Head Coach Eric Albarracin has turned out the likes of Henry Cejudo (one of my all-time favorites) Patricky Freire and Paulo Costa. Winner of the Coach of the Year in 2019, Albarracin will look to add to his resume in the coming years and make a name for not only himself but Fight Ready. Notable Fighters: Henry Cejudo, Patricky Freire, Paulo Costa


Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

Head Coach Duke Roufus founded Roufusport back in 2006 and starting out of the starting blocks like a bat out of hell. Most notably fighter Anthony Pettis making a name for himself in the WEC before going to the UFC and becoming a champion. While it may be a little out in the middle of nowhere, best believe there is top talent hanging around in Wisconsin. Notable Fighters: Anthony Pettis, CM Punk, Paul Felder, Belal Muhammed, Sergio Pettis

Sanford MMA

Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA

What was once known as the before mentioned Blackzilans, Sanford MMA plays host to one of the world’s best MMA gyms. Sanford MMA also has some of the top MMA coaches in the world, like Henri Hooft, and no matter where you go in this gym, you will find elite talent all over. Sanford MMA has multiple world champions under their roof and currently the most dominant male champion in Kamaru Usman. Notable Fighters: Kamaru Usman, Michael Johnson, Volkan Oezdemir, Stefan Struve

SGB Ireland

Location: Dublin, Ireland

Listen, SGB Ireland might not be as famous as it once was back in its heyday a few years back, all thanks to Conor McGregor, but it still deserves a top spot on this list thanks to Conor McGregor. The gym was founded in 2001 by John Kavanagh. It might not be the BEST MMA gym in the world, it still holds arguably the biggest draw in MMA today. Notable Fighters: Conor McGregor, Gunnar Nelson, Artem Lobov, Dillon Danis

Honorable Mention For Best MMA Gym:

Team AlphaMale, Tiger Muay Thai

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