Welcome to the Mark Robinson Mixed Martial Arts Website
Mark Robinson, the Gentle Giant, is one of South Africa’s most accomplished sporting personalities. Mark has achieved national colours in the following sports: Judo, Swiss Wrestling, Greco-Roman Wrestling, Freestyle Wrestling, Swiss Wrestling, Sumo Wrestling and Powerlifting.
Mark Robinson comes from a long line of successful sportsmen. His grandfather, father and some of his uncles have all attained world titles in various fighting disciplines from Wrestling to Judo and Karate, but none have achieved the levels of success that Mark has.
Besides holding countless national titles, Mark has also held world titles in Powerlifting, Sumo Wrestling, Submission Wrestling and Extreme Fighting.
Mark’s love affair with weight-training was soon accompanied by a desire to start amateur wrestling. Having been crowned national heavyweight champion in Judo and Swiss Wrestling in his late teens, Mark soon found himself at the very pinnacle of local and international competition. With only a few months of training to speak of, he managed to win the South African title and even qualify for the 1996 Olympic Games by defeating life-long students of the sport at the Acropolis Wrestling Grand Prix in Greece. Although eventually unable to compete at the Games due to budgetary restrictions on the part of local sporting authorities, Mark went on to win numerous national titles before trying his hand at the ancient sport of Sumo Wrestling in 1996.
Again, with only a few months of training under his belt, Mark found himself representing South Africa at the World Sumo Wrestling Championship in Japan. To the amazement of the sporting world, Mark defeated the 7ft tall, 300kg reigning champion in the final of the event. This victory was validated by a 3rd place in the 1997 finals in Japan and then another 1st place in 1998.
Mark’s wrestling career then took an interesting twist when he was invited to compete at the World Submission Wrestling Championships in Abu Dhabi in 2000, a forerunner of the ‘No-Rules’ fighting events that have taken the world by storm. True to form, Mark was crowned heavyweight champion on the day. After briefly relocating to Atlanta, US, Mark took up Extreme Fighting and yet again found himself holding a world title after defeating 6 ft 4 Golden Gloves Boxing champion and Jiu Jitsu expert Joe Leyva in less than 90 seconds.
Robinson, often referred to in South Africa as the ‘Gentle Giant’ is widely known as being a very humble and respectful man, despite also being recognised as one of the strongest and talented fighters (in various sporting codes) in the world.
Mark lives in Johannesburg with his wife Deirdre and young daughter Candice, who seems to have inherited some of her father’s athleticism.
• South African Powerlifting Champion – 1983, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88
• World Powerlifting Champion – 1990
• South African Strongman Champion – 1984, 86, 88, 89, 90
• Second Place South African Strongman Contest – 1996
• All African double deadlift record (675 kg/1485 lbs)
• Team Strongman Championship – 1999
• Springbok Colours for Judo – 1982
• South African Judo Champion – 1982
• Springbok Colours for Swiss Wrestling – 1982
• Springbok Amateur Wrestling Colours (Freestyle & Greco-Roman) – 1994
• South African Wrestling Champion (Freestyle & Greco-Roman) – 1994
• Second at All African Greco-Roman Wrestling Championship – 1994
• First Place in Defence Open Championships (Freestyle & Greco-Roman) – 1995
• Winner of trials for African Games – 1995
• Winner of trials for Acropolis Grand Prix – 1996
• Top 5 finish in Acropolis Grand Prix, Greco-Roman for Olympic Qualifier – 1996
• South African Greco-Roman Champion – 1996
• World Sumo Wrestling Champion – 1996
• Winner of Sumo African Championship – 1998
• World Super Heavyweight Invitational Champion – 1998
• World Extreme Fighting – Mixed Martial Arts – defeated Joe Leyva in 1 minute 22 seconds – 2000
• Winner of ADCC World Submission Championships – 2001