Elevation Fight Team is quickly becoming one of the best teams in all of MMA right now, with fighters such as former UFC Bantamweight Champion TJ Dillashaw and Neil Magny on the team.
Besides having a great team, Elevation Fight Team may now be preventing future head injuries for all MMA fighters, as they have teamed with a company known as NeuroSlam. The goal for the collaboration is to help prevent head injuries for MMA fighters.
"We're all interested in health, we're all interested in fighters, and we're all interested in performance," said Dr. Chad Prusmack to MMA Fighting. "This was to get some ideas of what role does MMA practice and MMA sparring have on this biomarker. Good, bad, other, that's not the role here. A more formal protocol, we have to work on. So we're working on research protocols to evaluate brain trauma."
While the work didn’t begin until just a few months ago, this is a work in progess, something Elevation Fight Team President Lester Bowling admits.
"It's obviously all a work in progress," Bowling said. "We'll see. Only time will tell if it works, but we're very proud to be one of the first ones out there that's actually implementing this into our training."
UFC veteran Neil Magny admits that he had to rely on the advice of caches if he got hit to hard while sparring, or to simply just ignore it and keep going, but now things are starting to change in the gym.
"Before, if I were to get hit in training or took a pretty hard shot, it would be up to my coach to tell me, ‘You took a couple hard shots. Take a couple weeks off and then get back to training after that,'" Magny said. "But to have something to actually base that off of instead of just winging it — ‘oh, I think two weeks is good enough, let's see how you feel' — they can say it based on a number. Your first instinct as a fighter when that happens is, ‘Let me at him, let me in there coach. You need someone on the outside to say, ‘Nah, you took a pretty hard shot, dude. You're done for the day. Let's pick it up next week and see how you feel.' That's the biggest tool to have in training."
Magny also says that he knew there was going to be health risks when he became a fighter, which is something everybody who enters MMA needs to know.
"When I decided to be a fighter, it's almost like a risk that came with it," said Magny. "If I go my entire career without getting a concussion, that would be great. But at the end of the day, it's something that's associated with the sport. It's almost like a work-related hazard. It comes with the territory. The biggest thing is knowing when to pull back."
It is unknown yet on or when other fight teams may do a similar program, or if the UFC can adopt what is being learned into the sport at all.