A social club in England narrowly retained its operating license last week after letting minors as young as eight compete in mixed martial arts (MMA).
The U.K.’s Guardian reported that The Greenlands Labour Club in Preston, Lancashire, drew the ire of concerned citizens when it featured a MMA bout between two youngsters on a September fight card. Video of the match outraged viewers, and they quickly pressed the Preston City Council to review the Club’s license.
“This example of cage fighting among young children is particularly disturbing, especially as they are not even wearing head guards,” a spokesperson for the British Medical Association (BMA) told The Guardian after the match.
“Boxing and cage fighting are sometimes defended on the grounds that children learn to work through their aggression with discipline and control,” the spokesman continued. “The BMA believes there are many other sports, such as athletics, swimming, judo and football which require discipline but do not pose the same threat of brain injury.”
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