The IMMAF Amateur MMA Rules is an effort to make a standardized set of rules with a high safety level that are fit for international competition. The rules regulate the technical side of MMA whereas the IMMAF World Championship Protocol contains specifications for the competitions such as operations, selection criteria for judges, detailed tournament structure, weigh-in protocol, specifications for permitted equipment etc. This separation is put in place to ensure a clean-cut and universal set of rules that can easily be easily adopted by different organizations in different countries as well as easily combined with different sets of protocols.
The IMMAF Amateur MMA Rules are the result of a best practice review made by the IMMAF Technical Committee on a number of different existing rule sets, with the IMMAF member federations participating in a referral process. National differences have been compared and analyzed with the purpose of finding the optimal rule set that will work on a global basis. These rules regulate competition at the highest amateur level; in the future the IMMAF will also provide rules and recommendations for MMA competition at junior, beginner and intermediate levels as well as safe progression between levels.
The IMMAF will continuously work to develop and establish a common rule set across the world, we encourage the adoption of the IMMAF rules but do not force it. When it comes to national rules it is up to each member country to decide if and how to adopt the IMMAF rules in their respective countries. So a national federation affiliated with the IMMAF can always use their own rule set for national competitions but when competing in the World Championships all contestants will be competing under IMMAF rules.