Mixed Martial Arts has a long track record of controlled brutality but as it has grown, various leagues have introduced light gloves, outlining illegal attacks, and other preventative measures aimed at protecting their athletes.
Sergio Non, an MMA columnist for USA Today, argues for the use of wrestling shoes or other protective footwear, but many of the fighters don't want the additional gear.
Arguments for the use of wrestling shoes are the need for additional protection from kicks to the head, foot protection to lessen impact on kicks, and adding the protection to keep toe and upper ankle injuries to a minimum.
On the flip side of the argument, mixed martial arts purists want to keep the protection to a minimum or at the very least let it remain optional.
Having shoes or other foot protection remaining optional basically keeps them out of the octagon completely because they lessen the blow from kicking significantly and nobody wants to take that disadvantage with them into the fight.
I don't think that wrestling shoes are necessary for MMA to continue to grow as a sport. However, I could see the requirement implemented in the future to extend the fighting careers of the sport's biggest attractions.
I'm interested to hear your thoughts on the addition of wrestling shoes to fights, so take part in the poll after the break.