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Fighter Stance Analysis for MMA

This page analyses statistics for fighter stances in MMA (primarily in the UFC). We have not yet logged stances for all fighters in the UFC, so this page will grow with time (I add stances manually when watching fights). Win % statistics are based on fights logged in our system, starting November 2014. UFC Fighter Stance

Basic Stance Statistics - Number of fighters using each stance type

Orthodox: 813 (71%)
Southpaw: 192 (17%)

Fighters who switch stances: 140 (12%)
Switches (Mostly Orthodox): 75 (7%)
Switches (Mostly Southpaw): 25 (2%)
Switches (Equal Both): 40 (3%)

Note - fighters who switch stances but are predominantly one stance or the other are NOT included in the pure orthodox or southpaw tallies.
Total fighters whose stance we've not yet logged: 18

Win Percentage in MMA for Orthodox, Southpaw and Switch Stances

Stance Fighters Fights Won Lost Win %
Orthodox 813 2710 1287 1423 47%
Southpaw 192 769 412 357 54%
Switches Stances (All) 140 659 370 289 56%
Switches (Mostly Orthodox) 75 357 209 148 59%
Switches (Mostly Southpaw) 25 134 65 69 49%
Switches (Equal both) 40 168 96 72 57%

*Note. It might look weird that we have an overall win % way over 50%. That's because people in this list have beaten fighters we've not yet logged a stance for. Obviously I've watched more successful fighters than rubbish ones, so I've logged their stances more at this stage! :)

Detailed breakdown of stance vs stance win %

When we have both fighters' stances logged for a particular fight in our system, the results are as follows.

  Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Orthodox vs Orthodox 919 315 (34%) 167 (18%) 432 (47%)
Southpaw vs Southpaw 86 24 (28%) 12 (14%) 49 (57%)
Switch vs Switch 55 15 (27%) 12 (22%) 28 (51%)
Orthodox vs Southpaw 481 148 (31%) 94 (20%) 234 (49%)
Orthodox vs Switch 428 137 (32%) 81 (19%) 208 (49%)
Southpaw vs Switch 124 35 (28%) 30 (24%) 59 (48%)
2093 674 (32%) 396 (19%) 1010 (48%)


Orthodox vs Southpaw Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Orthodox beat Southpaw 200 (42%) 63 (13%) 36 (7%) 101 (21%)
Southpaw beat Orthodox 271 (56%) 85 (18%) 58 (12%) 128 (27%)


Orthodox vs Switch Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Orthodox beat Switch 180 (42%) 49 (11%) 31 (7%) 98 (23%)
Switch beat Orthodox 246 (57%) 88 (21%) 50 (12%) 108 (25%)


Switch vs Southpaw Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Switch beat Southpaw 70 (56%) 20 (16%) 16 (13%) 34 (27%)
Southpaw beat Switch 54 (44%) 15 (12%) 14 (11%) 25 (20%)

Analysis of UFC / MMA fight stance statistics

As you might expect, most fighters in the UFC use an orthodox stance. That's no surprise. The main question you were probably wondering when you found this page: Does being a southpaw give you an advantage in MMA? Well, given that around 10% of the population is stated as being left handed (southpaw), the fact that the UFC has 17% southpaws would suggest it certainly helps! The stats also suggest that southpaws have a higher success rate, with southpaws winning 54% of their fights, as opposed to 47% for orthodox fighters. More interestingly, fighters who switch stances have an even higher success rate than both orthodox and southpaw fighters, with a combined win percentage of 56%
 
 
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