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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: 989 (71%)
Southpaw: 235 (17%)

Fighters who switch stances: 164 (12%)
Switches (Mostly Orthodox): 85 (6%)
Switches (Mostly Southpaw): 26 (2%)
Switches (Equal Both): 53 (4%)

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: 154

Win Percentage in MMA for Orthodox, Southpaw and Switch Stances

Stance Fighters Fights Won Lost Win %
Orthodox 989 3715 1781 1934 48%
Southpaw 235 1045 548 497 52%
Switches Stances (All) 164 872 496 376 57%
Switches (Mostly Orthodox) 85 480 286 194 60%
Switches (Mostly Southpaw) 26 175 84 91 48%
Switches (Equal both) 53 217 126 91 58%

*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 1253 407 (32%) 225 (18%) 615 (49%)
Southpaw vs Southpaw 111 36 (32%) 13 (12%) 61 (55%)
Switch vs Switch 73 21 (29%) 19 (26%) 33 (45%)
Orthodox vs Southpaw 659 200 (30%) 129 (20%) 322 (49%)
Orthodox vs Switch 561 198 (35%) 105 (19%) 256 (46%)
Southpaw vs Switch 167 49 (29%) 37 (22%) 81 (49%)
2824 911 (32%) 528 (19%) 1368 (48%)


Orthodox vs Southpaw Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Orthodox beat Southpaw 287 (44%) 88 (13%) 56 (8%) 141 (21%)
Southpaw beat Orthodox 361 (55%) 112 (17%) 73 (11%) 175 (27%)


Orthodox vs Switch Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Orthodox beat Switch 232 (41%) 71 (13%) 40 (7%) 119 (21%)
Switch beat Orthodox 327 (58%) 127 (23%) 65 (12%) 135 (24%)


Switch vs Southpaw Fights TKOs Subs Decisions
Switch beat Southpaw 96 (57%) 28 (17%) 19 (11%) 49 (29%)
Southpaw beat Switch 71 (43%) 21 (13%) 18 (11%) 32 (19%)

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 52% of their fights, as opposed to 48% 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 57%
 
 
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