Slap fight. Hidden gem of combat sports


Maybe you saw a video or two while browsing Youtube really tall men slapping each other in what appears to be some sort of organized event. You said to yourself, “Why am I looking at this?”, And you continued. Then you saw Logan Paul take part in a similar style event. You ask yourself: “What is really going on here?” The answer is slapping fights. Don’t worry, we’ve done the research and are ready to tell you more.

What is Slap Fighting?

Slap Fighting is a combat sport, or at least, a self-proclaimed combat sport. The origins of slapping fights are rather unclear, but the concept itself is long-standing practice and has its place in popular media. However, its competitive style tournaments are much more modern. The era of modern slap wrestling popularity was ushered in by Russian tournaments that pitted contestants against each other. The winners of these tournaments would receive cash prizes, respect, maybe a title belt or a trophy, but most of all… fame, for being the toughest man in town.

Vasiliy Khamotisky, better known as “Dumpling”, is one of the most famous competitive slappers in the world. He gained his popularity thanks to his enormous slapping power which neutralized his opponents. The slap star even shared the table with the MMA oddity Zuluzinho in perhaps one of the most interesting moments in combat sports in 2020.

The competitive fight against slaps goes international

Thanks to social media like YouTube, competitive slap fights have become an international phenomenon. In the USA, SlapFIGHT Championship, a competitive anti-slapping organization was born. “The first American organization to fight against the slap” joined YouTube in 2014 and is run by CEO JT Tilley.

In one video published on April 28e, 2021, Tilley announces the creation of World Slap Fighting Alliance, a union between SlapFIGHT and PunchDown, a Polish slap fighting league. Tilley announced that through this training, organizations, “… will work together to build this sport and hopefully propel it into 2022 as a mainstream sport.”

International merger

The formation of the World Slap Fighting Alliance is the greatest moment in the history of combat sport. The merger poses an interesting challenge as the two leagues have different rules. Tilley goes on to explain in the video, “We don’t have the same rules. We don’t have the same type of athlete. We have weight classes in the United States. They didn’t have any weight classes there… Of course they have a limit on the number of rounds they do in their title fights; We dont do.”

This challenge doesn’t seem to bother Tilley, however; as he goes on in the video, stating, “The more we talked, the more we realized that it was going to be a lot harder to build this sport away from each other, than together. And so, for lack of a better term, we kind of formed the alliance because, uh, working together has always been better in my experience.

The video continues for over twenty-five minutes and explains a new ranking system, unification and rule changes, weight classes, upcoming PPVs, global expansion, media opportunities, among others.

The next big thing?

Slap fights might not be the first thing that comes to mind when someone thinks of “combat sports”; however, this fresh alternative brings a breath of fresh air to the combat sports community. In its early days, the UFC was to be a flawless fight that surrounded its fighters with an electric fence surrounded by alligators. That same UFC is now the premier mixed martial arts organization in the world. Who knows what the slapping fights will look like in five years. Are you going to watch the slapping fights?

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