The UFC is will open its third Performance Institute training facility later this year, and the location will be in Mexico City, promotion officials told ESPN. The building is targeted to open in the fourth quarter of 2023.
Currently, the UFC has Performance Institutes in Las Vegas and Shanghai, China. While the original Performance Institute at UFC headquarters in Vegas is mostly for veteran fighters who live in the city or travel to it, the Shanghai version is used largely to develop young fighters in that region of the world.
The Mexico City Performance Institute will be used similarly to the Chinese one, signifying the UFC's commitment to developing MMA talent in Latin America.
The multimillion-dollar facility in Mexico will be more than 32,000 square feet, about the same size as the original complex in Vegas. It will feature expert trainers in MMA, strength and conditioning, sports science, physical therapy and performance nutrition.
"Some of the greatest athletes in combat sports history have come from Mexico," UFC president Dana White said in a statement. "Our teams at the PI are the best in the world at what they do, and we know that by making the resources and training available in the country, Mexico can become one of the greatest sources of MMA talent in the world. This is a massive opportunity for the sport of MMA and for athletes throughout Latin America."
The UFC has more than 150 Latin American athletes, more than 20% of its total roster. Sixty-six of those athletes are from Spanish-speaking countries.
Mexico, specifically, is in somewhat of a boom period in MMA. UFC flyweight champion Brandon Moreno is the first Mexican-born titleholder in UFC history. Two other Mexican athletes, Yair Rodriguez and Alexa Grasso, will challenge for UFC titles in the coming weeks, and a third, Irene Aldana, is the likely next challenger for Amanda Nunes at women's bantamweight.