How to get your GAB license and become a pro MMA fighter in the Philippines

chris hofmann mma philippines

So you want to be a pro MMA fighter in the Philippines? Then you’ll need a GAB license first.

For those who don’t know, GAB stands for Games and Amusement Board, and you’ll need their approval to compete as a pro MMA fighter in the country.

Fortunately, getting a GAB license is relatively easy. We spoke to Oliver Evangelista of GAB’s boxing division and Kenner So of the GAB Chairman’s Office, and they gave us the rundown of what you need to do to get your license to fight pro.

Requirements

Here’s the list of requirements you’ll need to provide:

a. Application form (which you can download here or get at their office in Makati)
b. Photo (Size 2” x 2”)
c. NSO/ PSA Birth Certificate
d. Parental consent for boxers or MMA fighters under 18 years old (just have your parent write and sign a letter/ document saying he/ she is allowing you to fight as a pro)
e. Trainer Certificate from a GAB Licensed Trainer (This certificate is a form that your trainer can fill out. Your trainer must be a GAB Licensed Trainer.)
f. Medical requirements

  • Chest x-ray (PA views)
  • 12 leads ECG
  • Drug test (DOH-IDTOMIS)
  • Hepatitis B Antigen (Elisa Method)
  • CT Scan of head without contrast

When it comes to your medical requirements, you can consult with GAB (or with hospital staff of a different facility) on how to get these done and how much they’ll cost. Should your coach be a GAB Licensed Trainer already, then he should know these details by now.

Cost

Fighters have to pay P860 for a GAB license, which would be valid for one year. To become a GAB Licensed Instructor, your instructor needs to fill in his own forms and pay P820, which is valid for two years. Both fighters and instructors are urged to renew their licenses before their birthdays to avoid penalty.

Timeline

Can you get a GAB license before booking a fight? No, you can’t. According to GAB representatives, you’ll need to provide proof that you’ve been invited by a promotion to compete professionally. Only then will they consider licensing you or not. GAB representatives also say that all circumstances about your potential professional fight are taken into consideration: Your health, your instructor’s say, and your amount of fight experience as opposed to your opponent’s, etc.

Despite that, GAB representatives say that you’ll be able to get your license, should you get approved, within days after filing your application.

Even two-division URCC champion Chris Hofmann attests to GAB’s efficiency. “Overall it’s a pretty easy and simple process,” says Hofmann. “You get your application form, get checked by the GAB doctor, get the requiered medical exams like blood count, urinalisis, drugtest, ECG, chest x-ray–at your expense, of course–and then pay the GAB application fee.”

Contact Info

If you wish to visit or contact the GAB office, then here’s their address and their phone number:

2/F Legaspi Tower 200,
Paseo de Roxas St.,Legaspi Village, Makati City
Philippines, 1226
Tel. (+632) 840 0274 & (+632) 813 7109

You can also visit their website: gab.gov.ph.

Gab Pangalangan

Gab Pangalangan is a former collegiate national Judo champ and the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of DojoDrifter.com. You can find his other works in the Philippines' leading magazines and websites.
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