How Long Do UFC Fights Last?

If you are planning a UFC watch event, it’s important to know how long the fights will last. How long do UFC fights last?

A UFC fight lasts either 3 or 5 rounds. Each round is 5 minutes long. There is a 1-minute rest between each round. This means a 3-round fight will last about 17 minutes, and a 5-round fight will last about 29 minutes when you include rest time.

Read on to learn more about how long do UFC fights last as well as the longest fights ever, and fastest knockouts ever.

How Long Do UFC Fights Last?

In the UFC, there are three kinds of fights – the normal fights, the championship fights, and the non-title main event fights.

  • Standard UFC fights last 15 minutes. They consist of three rounds with each round being five minutes each.
  • Championship fights last 25 minutes. They consist of five rounds with each round being five minutes each.
  • Non-title main event fights last 25 minutes. They consist of five rounds with each round being five minutes each. 

So a standard fight in the UFC has three rounds, and each round is five minutes. This totals to 15 minutes of fight time. Think of these normal fights as undercard matches; it’s a way for fans to see up-and-coming fighters, and also give fighters who aren’t as popular as the main event a chance to show their skills.

These undercard matches also serve another purpose – it will help the viewers feel that they got what they paid for in case the main event finishes quickly.

A championship fight, as the name suggests, is a fight where a belt (the title) is on the line. These fights feature five rounds, and each round is made up of five minutes; the total fight time is 25 minutes. Championship fights are usually the main event, but there are also non-title main event fights.

Non-title main event fights, like championship fights, also feature five rounds with each round being five minutes long. These fights include title shot eliminators, or when the UFC pits two fighters against each other to fill in main event gaps when there is no championship fight. All UFC fights have a rest period of one minute between each round.

The Fastest Knockouts in UFC History

Not all UFC fights last the whole three or five rounds, some fights are finished within seconds from starting. Here’s a look at the fastest knockouts in the history of the UFC.

Jorge Masvidal vs Ben Askren: 5 Seconds

On July 6, 2019, UFC 239 took place in Nevada. For the main fight, Jorge Masvidal knocked out Ben Askren with a flying knee to Askren’s head in a mere 5 seconds.

The whole fight was even faster than 5 seconds seeing how there was a couple seconds spent for the referee to call it off.

Todd Duffee vs Tim Hague: 7 Seconds

This fight was held at UFC 102 on August 29, 2009, at the Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon. Tom Duffee knocked Tim Hague unconscious within 7 seconds of the first round.

Chan Sung Jung vs Mark Hominick: 7 Seconds

This fight was held at UFC 140 “Jones vs Machida” on December 10, 2011, at the Air Canada Center in Toronto, Canada. Chan Sung Jung knocked out Mark Hominick with a perfect right-hand blow and unanswered blows on the floor, causing the fight to be stopped within 7 seconds of the first round.

Ryan Jimmo vs Anthony Perosh: 7 Seconds

The fight between Ryan Jimmo and Anthony Perosh was held on July 21, 2012, in Calgary, Alberta in Canada for UFC 149. Jimmo knocked out Perosh in only seven seconds. This was Jimmo’s promotional debut and also his 17th consecutive win.

Don Frye vs Thomas Ramirez: 8 Seconds

This fight between Don Frye and Thomas Ramirez was held at the UFC 8 “David and Goliath” on February 16, 1996, at the Ruben Rodriguez Coliseum located in San Juan, Puerto Rico. A lot of viewers considered this fight as a severe mismatch, as Frye was 206 pounds while Ramirez was 410 pounds. However, Frye knocked Ramirez out within 8 seconds of the first round.

James Irvin vs Houston Alexander: 8 Seconds

This match between James Irvin and Houston Alexander was held on April 2, 2008, at UFC Fight Night 13 in Colorado. The fight was stopped within 8 seconds of the first round, despite objections from Houston Alexander.

So a full UFC fight lasts between 17 and 29 minutes; however, as you can see, it can end in just a few seconds.

Notable UFC Fights That Went the Full Five Rounds

Now let’s take a look at notable UFC fights that went the full five rounds, so 25 minutes plus 4 minutes of rest – so about 29 minutes total.

What it means when a fight goes the full round is that they were decided via the judges’ scorecards and declared as a win, loss, or draw.

Robbie Lawler vs Carlos Condit

This match was a championship fight where Robbie Lawler defended his UFC Welterweight Title against Carlos Condit during UFC 195 on January 3, 2016, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Lawler kept his title by way of split decision.

This match was memorable due to its violence, as both fighters really gave their all. However, it is believed that this match took its toll on both fighters as they ended up losing their succeeding fights.

Tyron Woodley vs Demian Maia

This match was a championship match where Tyron Woodley defended his UFC Welterweight Title against Demian Maia at UFC 214 on July 30, 2017, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. Maia is an excellent Brazilian jiu-jitsu fighter so Woodley’s game plan was to keep Maia away from him. This match went the full 5 founds, lasting 25 minutes. Woodley won this match via a unanimous decision.

Chris Weidman vs Lyoto Machida

This fight between Chris Weidman and Lyoto Machida was a championship match in which Weidman defended his UFC Middleweight Title at the UFC 175 on July 6, 2014, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. After the full 5 rounds – 25 minutes – Weidman won via unanimous decision.

how long is a ufc fight

We’ve answered the question ‘how long does a UFC fight last’; next, let’s look at the different ways a UFC fight can end.

Ways a UFC Fight Can End

UFC matches are known for the striking and grappling moves the fighters display, but what exactly does it take for someone to win? Here are the different types of victories in a UFC match.

Submission

There are two kinds of submission – the first one is a physical tap out, and the second one is a verbal submission. A fighter may submit if he is unable to defend against strikes or when he is held in a painful submission hold. A submission is actually an honorable way to lose a fight in the UFC.

Knockout

Similar to the submission, there are also different kinds of knockouts in the UFC. The first one is a technical knockout or a TKO – this is when the referee calls a stop to the fight. The fighter may no longer be able to defend himself intelligently.

The fighter may also have an injury resulting from a legal maneuver that is severe enough to end the fight. The second one is a knockout – this is when a fighter is rendered unconscious due to a strike or kick.

Decision

After the full 29 minutes, the fight can go to a decision by the judges.

Decisions in the UFC include:

  1. Unanimous decision – this is when all three judges score the match for the same fighter.
  2. Split decision – this is when two judges score the match for one fighter, while the third judge scores the other fighter.
  3. Majority decision – this is when two judges score the match for one fighter, while the third judge scores a draw.

Draw

After the full 29 minutes, the fight can go to a draw by the judges.

Draws in the UFC include:

  1. Unanimous draw – this is when all three judges score the match as a draw.
  2. Majority draw – this is when two judges score the match as a draw.
  3. Split draw – this is when all three judges scored the match differently.

Other ways a UFC fight can end include disqualification, a technical decision, a forfeit technical draw, and a no contest.

Conclusion – How Long Do UFC Fights Last?

There are three kinds of fights in the UFC – the normal fights, the championship fights, and the non-title main event fights. Since each fight has different lengths, how long do UFC fights last?

A UFC fight lasts either 3 or 5 rounds. Each round is 5 minutes long. There is a 1-minute rest between each round. This means a 3-round fight will last about 17 minutes, and a 5-round fight will last about 29 minutes when you include rest time.

The three different types of fights are as follows:

  • Normal fights consist of three rounds with each round being five minutes each; the total fight time is 15 minutes.
  • Championship fights consist of five rounds with each round being five minutes each; the total fight time is 25 minutes.
  • Non-title main event fights consist of five rounds with each round being five minutes each; the total fight time is 25 minutes. 

All UFC fights have a rest period of one minute between each round.

A fighter can win a UFC match by the following:

  • Submission
  • Knockout
  • Decision
  • Draw
  • Disqualification
  • Technical decision
  • Forfeit technical draw
  • No contest