The 2022 IMMAF Amateur MMA Awards will officially take place on February 15th, in Belgrade, Serbia, with the best athletes, national federations, coaches, officials and more to be formally recognised for their achievements and commitment to mixed martial arts over the past year.
The exclusive black-tie ceremony features as part of IMMAF World Championships Week from February 10th – 18th, which takes place as part of Serbia BRAVE International Combat Week 2023 in conjunction with the Serbian MMA Federation and BRAVE Combat Federation.
The ceremony will gather representatives from over 63 national federations in addition to the IMMAF Board of Directors, staff members and media.
In this fifth edition of the Awards, the highly coveted Best Senior Male Athlete and Best Senior Female Athlete awards will be presented, having been previously won by the likes of Bagdat Zhubanysh (Kazakhstan), Ramazan Gitinov (Bahrain), Sabrina Laurentina de Sousa (Bahrain) and Michele Montague (New Zealand).
Across 2022, four continental championships took place – Africa, Asia, Europe, and Pan America – which were very important for the individual development of athletes, coaches, officials and, consequently, the sport. In each event, amateur MMA fans saw new stars emerge, along with new countries debuting on the IMMAF platform.
The full shortlists for Best Senior Male Athlete, Best Senior Female Athlete, Best Junior Athlete, Newcomer of the Year and Green Hill Performance of the Year will be announced in the lead up to the 2022 IMMAF World Championships.
IMMAF President Kerrith Brown said: “The 2022 IMMAF Amateur MMA Awards present a fantastic opportunity to recognise and celebrate the achievements of our athletes, officials, teams and member federations for their hard work over the past year. 2022 was a historic year for IMMAF, with the introduction of closed continental championships for the very first time, allowing for greater competitive development in each IMMAF region. Alongside this, IMMAF has taken huge leaps forward with its certification and education programmes, providing our members with learning opportunities and resources around coaching, youth development, officiating and medical safety. Following on from our recognition by WADA as a Code Signatory in 2021, we continue to educate members on the importance of a safe and clean sport at all levels of MMA.”
The 2022 IMMAF Amateur MMA Awards will also feature the introduction of a new award through our health and hydration partners Cellular Fitness™ in collaboration with renowned British professional boxer Michael Watson, titled the Michael Watson Award, From the Shoulders Up™.
Michael’s career ended prematurely following a world-famous fight in 1991, during which he sustained a serious brain injury. After 40 days spent in a coma, six brain operations and a year’s-worth of rehabilitation, Michael survived, but was left in a wheelchair. Demonstrating true fighting spirit, Michael has spent the last 30 years learning to walk again, and even completed the London Marathon, walking two hours a day for six days.
Michael is now teaming up with Cellular Fitness to inspire and educate athletes to think more about mitigating injury “From The Shoulders Up”, and to keep playing the sport they love with as much protection as possible, championing solutions for achieving optimum cellular fitness. The award will recognise a medic who has gone above and beyond in caring for athlete’s health From the Shoulders Up.
- Best Senior Male Athlete
- Best Senior Female Athlete
- Best Junior Athlete
- Newcomer of the Year
- Green Hill Performance of the Year
- National Federation of the Year
- Host Federation of the Year
- Official of the Year
- Cutsperson of the Year
- Most Proactive Federation in Coach Education and Training
- Most Proactive Federation in Youth Development
- Best Partner Federation for Raising Medical Safety Standards
- Best Partner Federation for Promoting Anti-Doping
- Michael Watson Award, From the Shoulders Up™