AIM: International Mixed Martial Arts (IMMAF) is firmly committed to ensuring that the sport of Mixed Martial Arts is doping free. IMMAF strongly believes that its Members (including athletes, athlete support personnel, and officials), promoters and supporters have a responsibility to help prevent and to eradicate the use of doping substances and methods in the sport, not only for the health and safety of athletes, but also for the status of the sport.
In pursuit of this aim, in May 2015 IMMAF adopted an anti-doping policy and programme which operates in compliance with the World Anti-Doping Code and its associated International Standards. Anti-Doping Rules and Procedures have been adopted to protect the rights of Mixed Martial Arts athletes to participate in a doping-free sport. IMMAF’s Anti-Doping Policy and programme has been developed to educate and inform athletes and others of their responsibilities and rights; to deter and to detect doping in a way that is scientifically valid and legally defensible; to ensure consistency and fairness; to apply consequences and sanctions for violations of the IMMAF Policy and Rules.
IMMAF encourages its Members (including all athletes and athlete support personnel) to know and understand the IMMAF Anti-Doping Policy and Rules, in particular their responsibilities and their rights to:
Check any medication, treatment or supplement used complies with the IMMAF Anti-Doping Rules; Obtain authorization to use a prohibited medication or treatment in accordance with the IMMAF anti-doping rules, where no permitted alternative exists; Submit to doping control (testing) when requested to do so by an authorised official; Provide whereabouts information, when requested, to enable testing to be conducted, at anytime, anywhere; Inform his or her medical and other support personnel of the need for the strict application of the Anti-Doping Rules and obligation NOT to use Prohibited Substances or Methods, or to violate the Anti-Doping Rules and Policy; Fair disciplinary procedures and application of sanctions for violation of the IMMAF Anti-Doping Rules and Policy; Avoid association with any person sanctioned and/or criminally convicted of doping, or being complicit in the commission of an Anti-Doping Rule Violation; Support IMMAF’s Anti-Doping Policy; Educate him or herself about Anti-Doping.
Notice to Athletes
It is each Athlete’s personal duty to ensure that no Prohibited Substance enters his or her body, and that no use is made of a Prohibited Method. Athletes are responsible for any Prohibited Substance, its Metabolites or Markers found to be present in their sample, or evidence of use of a Prohibited Method.
Check your medications now
Refer to your prescribing physician and seek a permitted alternative. The IMMAF Prohibited List 2021 (which is consistent with the WADA Prohibited List currently in operation) may be found here.
NOTE: The Prohibited List should not be used to check medications, as it is an incomplete list of examples of prohibited pharmacological classes and methods.
Guidance on the status of a medication may be found by searching the national database of the country in which the medication was purchased. Check all constituents carefully. Do not assume, if your medication cannot be found, that it is permitted. Keep a record of the confirmation your medication is permitted.
Athletes should seek advice if they have any questions or doubts about their responsibilities. In the first instance, refer to the National Anti-Doping Organisation (NADO) of your country for advice on permitted medications.
Where no permitted alternative exists, obtain a Therapeutic Use Exemption
For details of IMMAF Therapeutic Use Exemption process contact [email protected] IMMAF will recognize a valid and approved TUE issued by a NADO or other recognized anti-doping organisation for its Championships. Obtain a copy of the TUE certificate and submit this with your Athlete Registration Form, or as directed by the IMMAF Anti-Doping Rules if issued after registration. The TUE certificate must be valid during the period of the Championships and submitted to IMMAF before you participate. Emergency treatment with a prohibited substance or method during the Championships requires a retrospective TUE application, approval and certificate; such treatment may lead to your withdrawal and/or disqualification.
Be aware of the risks associated with the use of supplements
Assess the need for the use of any form of supplement. Seek advice from a medical professional or sports dietician regarding the need to supplement your diet; most nutrients may be obtained from food.
Assess the risk of using a supplement thoroughly. Research the product and company and keep evidence of this research; where possible, obtain a written guarantee the product does not contain prohibited substances.
Assess the consequences of using a supplement containing prohibited substances; you could receive a 4-year ban from sport, you could damage your health. Supplement use is no excuse for a doping violation.
Remember that no guarantee can be given that any supplement is free from banned substances.
Educate yourself about Supplement Risks: the following websites may help to explain the issue further and guide you to make an informed decision about supplement use.
3.1 HFL Sport Science, a leading independent provider of drugs surveillance, doping control and research in sport, operates a quality assurance and certification programme for supplements called “Informed Sport”. The programme helps athletes to minimise risk by enabling them to make informed decisions. Informed Sport works with nutritional supplement manufacturers which have signed up to the scheme to batch-test products for banned substances on the current WADA Prohibited List. Products which have been batch-tested for banned substances bear the ‘Informed-Sport’ logo. Any batch-lines found to contain banned substances are withdrawn from the market by the manufacturers. A review of testing results from the Informed Sport programme in 2012 shows that contaminated supplements were identified in 2 out of 2,678 samples tested (0.07%) and those products were withdrawn.
Athletes can check supplement products against batch testing results and note the batch number and analysis certificates using the informed sport website: www.informed-sport.com. Athletes should check batch testing for each individual product and not assume that if one manufacturer’s product is safe, all products are.
3.2 The NSF Certified for Sport™ program can help athletes identify products (mainly US) that have been tested for purity banned substances, and help minimise the risk of inadvertent doping (www.nsfsport.com). The NSF Certified for Sport mark will appear on the label of a tested supplement. You can consult the full list of certified products at www.nsfsport.com.
3.3 Cologne List® includes sport-related nutritional products such as sports drinks, muesli bars, bread mixes etc. can also be found on the list.
Inform yourself about Testing Procedures, your responsibilities and rights. The following resources will help Athletes and Athlete Support Personnel understand the testing process.
WADA Testing Process Video (available in 12 languages).
WADA At a Glance Series – The Doping Control Process (PDF, available in 3 languages)
Download the full IMMAF Anti-Doping Policy here
IMMAF is advised by Sporting Integrity Ltd on its Anti-Doping policy and programme.