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uses cookies to improve performance by remembering your session ID when you navigate from page to page. Please set your browser to accept cookies to continue.However, pankration was more than just an event in the athletic competitions of the ancient Greek world; it was also part of the arsenal of Greek soldiers – including the famous Spartan hoplites and Alexander the Great's Macedonian phalanx.It is said that the Spartans at their immortal stand at Thermopylae fought with their bare hands and teeth once their swords and spears broke.Pankratiasts were highly skilled grapplers and were extremely effective in applying a variety of takedowns, chokes and joint locks.In extreme cases a pankration competition could even result in the death of one of the opponents, which was considered a win.

His body was crowned with the olive wreath and returned to Phigaleia as a hero.

Pankration, as practiced in historical antiquity, was an athletic event that combined techniques of both boxing (pygmē/pygmachia – πυγμή/πυγμαχία) and wrestling (palē – πάλη), as well as additional elements, such as the use of strikes with the legs, to create a broad fighting sport very similar to today's mixed martial arts competitions.

There is evidence that, although knockouts were common, most pankration competitions were probably decided on the ground where both striking and submission techniques would freely come into play.

Later, however, Dioxippus was framed for theft, which led him to commit suicide.

In an odd turn of events, a pankration fighter named Arrhichion (Ἀρριχίων) of Phigalia won the pankration competition at the Olympic Games despite being dead.

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The athletes used boxing and wrestling techniques, but also others, such as kicking and holds, locks and chokes on the ground.

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