The Florida Fire Drakes (Facebook | Instagram) is a mixed martial arts team that specializes in the high-impact sport of Armored Combat and they’re aiming to become one of the best teams in the country.

Armored Combat is exactly what it sounds like, a full-contact, gladiatorial-like combat sport where people fight each other while wearing roughly 70 lbs of medieval armor with recreational, blunted medieval weapons. These aren’t Ren Faire actors or LARPers, these are trained MMA athletes that compete in points-based matches to be the last one standing.

Matches are scored by hits, trips, throws, and disarms, but you can also win outright if your opponent submits or is knocked out – which totally happens. Fights can range from one-on-one matches to all-out melee battles with 50-100 combatants.

The armor is expensive, and hand-crafted from steel or titanium, or sometimes aluminum (though it doesn’t offer as much protection). The weapons range from smaller maces to swords and battleaxes, all of which are historically accurate for the chosen time period but have a blunted edge – though they still pack a wallop.

The combat is more than blindly wailing about with blunt objects though, and Coach Cory Alexander of the Fire Drakes, shared that he trains his team in the fundamentals of Judo, circuit training, powerlifting, weapons techniques, and grappling as well, so they’re more well-rounded warriors on the field.

The Fire Drakes train at the American Combat Club’s new digs on Orange Blossom Trail at 2001 N. Orange Avenue [GMap] three times a week and you can join them for a small fee of $100 a month. The gear is considerably more expensive and can set you back about $4,000. Check them out via the social links above and be sure to watch our behind-the-scenes visit below.

Brendan O'Connor

Editor in Chief of

Leave a comment

Have something to say? Type it below. Holding back can give you pimples.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.