A unified committee of representatives from state athletic commissions around the country have announced their plans to conduct a study on the dangerous trend in mixed martial arts of kicking opponents in the head. The maneuver has come to increased attention in recent months, as several fighters have used the technique to end their bouts victoriously, and it has left participants and observers alike questioning if the move is not just a bit too brutal.
“I understand this is a combat sport,” said UFC Welterweight Champion Kamaru Usman, “but also, we’re human beings, you know? You see somebody throw that kick out there and snap someone’s head back into an unnatural position and you start to wonder if this is something we really need to be allowing in our sport. You could sprain a tendon in your neck so easily when it hyper-extends to the side like that.”
For now, the controversial technique remains legal, with proponents free to throw it to their heart’s content, and their opponent’s discontent. Expect to see more of it on every card you watch, and the corresponding flood of tweets questioning whether or not it’s cool.