IMMAF certified courses provide education and progression for cutmen and cutwomen

The IMMAF certified Cutman Course is brought to you by Joseph Clifford, who graduated with a BSc. Applied Health Sciences, Dip. Physical Therapy and is a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist.

He is a member of: The Irish Physical Therapy Association, The Irish Exercise Teachers Association and the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Joseph has worked extensively as a cutman in national and international combat sports since 2004 for some of the biggest organizations in MMA including the UFC, Cage Warriors, ACB, BAMMA, KSW, Brave and the IMMAF World Championships and European Open. In Pro Boxing: BUI, EBU, WBA and AIBA, including the Amateur World Championships in 2015 and 2017 and the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Aims of the course:

  • To educate participants on putting fighter health & safety first.
  • To educate participants on the rules and regulations of combat sports.
  • To educate and demonstrate effective hand wrapping skills which include techniques for the most common of hand injuries within the rules and regulations.
  • To educate participants on the potential dangers of concussion, impaired consciousness, working in symmetry with emergency services and implementing emergency response plans in case of injury.
  • To educate participants on the potential dangers of hemostatic pharmaceuticals and encourage participants to use natural alternatives.
  • To educate and demonstrate effective evidence based treatment protocols for venial & arterial bleeds, laceration, and hematomas, nose bleeds etc.
  • To educate participants on the potential dangers of cross contamination, hygiene and sanitation in boxing and MMA.

The course is a culmination of years’ experience and knowledge working at the highest levels in combat sport within MMA, K1, Boxing, Muay Thai and many more. The course is content approved, adopted and recognized and certified by IMMAF, AIBA, the BUI, and SafeMMA. The course has educated to date over 1,100 participants and has traveled globally from Asia, South America, Europe, the Middle East and Baltic States.

The course provides participants with the most up to date techniques, handling skills and evidence based treatment modalities. The course does not endorse the use of dangerous drugs i.e. adrenaline 1:1000. But rather, it teaches participants how to use natural alternatives i.e. hemostatic agents (substance to stop bleeding) in the treatment of wounds e.g. lacerations, nose bleeds and swelling.

The course educates participants to work alongside and in support of event medical teams providing best care and modern treatment modalities to athletes in combat sports nationally and internationally.


Taking place over two days, the course consists of 8 modules. These include:

  • Module 1
    History of Cutmen
  • Module 2
    Primary Purpose & Role
    Making Moral Calls
    Case Studyk
  • Module 3
    Tools of the Trade
    How to Make a Practical and Functional Pro Kit
  • Module 4
    Hand Wrapping
    Rules & Regulations of Hand Wrapping
    The Application of the Hand Wrap
    Commissioning Hand Wraps
  • Module 5
    Cross Contamination, Hygiene & Sanitation
  • Module 6
    Facial Anatomy: Vascular & Neural Networks of the Face & Skull
    Types of Bleeds: Venial V’s Arterial
  • Module 7
    Hemostatic Agents (Drugs That Stop Bleeding)
    Natural Hemostatic V’s Pharmaceutical Hemostatic Agents
    Rules & Regulations: Sanctioned Hemostatic Agents/Drugs
    Coagulation Cascade
    Indications for Using Hemostatic Agents & Contraindications Relevant to Combat Sports
  • 4.00pm
    Handling Skills
    Lacerations, Single & Multiple to the Face, Skull & Ears
    Epistaxis (Nose Bleeds): Anterior & Posterior Nasal Cavity
  • Module 8
    Concussion and First Aid

Day 2

  • 9am
    First Aid CPR & AED
  • 12.30pm
    Recap of the previous day including hand wrapping and treatments
  • 1.30pm
    Explanation of the exam process and points awarded for 3 distinct areas:
    1. Written: 50 points
    2. Practical: Hand Wrapping 20 points, 10 minutes to wrap one hand with points given for comfort, quality, support and legality
    3. Practical: Treatments 30 points

Points will be awarded for the application of the treatment e.g. handling skills, position, and the application of the treatment epistaxis, hematoma & laceration.


Course instructors include:

  • Joseph Clifford (Course Lecturer)
  • Robert Plant (External Examiner): Longest serving Cutman to the UFC. ‘Bob’ has over 3 decades of experience in boxing and MMA bringing his unique teaching style.
  • Ciaran Curran: Owner Director at Emergency Services Training Institute

For more information visit

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