How many rounds in a UFC fight?

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How many rounds are in an average UFC fight?

One of the first questions any new MMA or UFC fan undoubtedly winds up asking themselves is how many rounds are in a normal fight and how do they work? Luckily we have exactly the primer you need to make sure you have a full grasp on how rounds in the UFC work right here.

The standard UFC fight has three rounds, with each round being five minutes long. There is a bell at the start of each round that signifies the round has officially begun, a clapper that goes off with 10 seconds remaining in the round so fighters know when a round is about to end, and another bell at the end of the round to signify the round has officially ended.

In between rounds, fighters get 60 seconds to recover and receive coaching from their corner coaches. Fighters are given a choice between remaining standing and taking a seat on a small stool while their team tries to get them hydrated, lower their heart rate, and implement whatever adjustments they see fit. At the end of the 60-second break, the referee will signal to each corner to tell the fighters to stand up and prepare for the beginning of the next round and to get coaches out of the cage and back to their respective corners.

From there it is rinse and repeat for three rounds at which point a fight goes to the judges scorecards, so with three five minute rounds and two 60 second breaks, the standard MMA fight is 17 minutes long (barring a finish).

The only deviation from this standard is for title fights and main events, which are always contested over the course of five rounds instead of three. This is why you will hear commentators and fighters refer to rounds four and five as the “championship rounds”.  Other than the extra two rounds, the breaks and everything else in a title fight remains the same. It should also be noted that the UFC has begun booking more non championship five round co main events, like Leon Edwards vs. Nate Diaz. 

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