Kids who grow up in homes with three-car garage, attend prep schools and wear designer jeans generally do not make good octagon fighters. So it is with Rose Namajunas, the UFC strawweight champion who grew up in a tough neighborhood in Milwaukee, witnessed violence far too often and has talked about being sexually abused.
"I definitely have always been one for being to myself and trying not to let my negativity affect other people. The same way you do footwork drills and cardio training, I had to do self-talk training."
She was a black belt in taekwondo at age 9, graduated to karate at 11 and started training at the Roufusport MMA Academy as a senior in high school.
After her honest interview in the famous Tough Talks, she was regarded as one of the most liked fighters in women's strawweight division. Namajunas on FOX Sports' tough talks aired on 06 2014 said:
"Every mistake is just an investment in my future"
Rose Namajunas also said that she wasn't worried about having the easiest path to make it to The Ultimate Fighter finale because she was ready for any challenge the show presented her.
Namajunas was a heavy underdog going into her UFC 217 match-up with then-undefeated champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk last year in New York. Namjunas, however, had her own chapter to write in Annals of UFC history. She had already emerged from The Ultimate Fighter as a surprising finalist for the inaugural strawweight title.
Joanna Jedrzejczyk was a heavy favorite and very few of UFC fight followers anticipated Thug Rose to win but after all that trash she talked before the fight, Joanna Jedrzejczyk was humble in defeat. As per TMZ's video chat with Thug, Joanna privately congratulated Rose Namajunas after losing at UFC 217.
Before the fight, the former undefeated strawweight champ had told Namajunas that she was gonna snatch her soul from her body.
"There are perks that come with being a champ and they are 1. Name 2. Recognition and 3. Traveling first class."
That’s what Rose Namajunas has enjoyed since capturing the UFC women’s strawweight title last November at UFC 217 in Madison Square Garden. Namajunas, 25, was a big underdog when she took on longtime unbeaten champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk of Poland. She said she felt someone was looking over her that week in New York.
‘I’ve dealt with a lot worse in my life’ than Joanna Jedrzejczyk and her trash talk- Thug Rose
The life and career of Rose Namajunas is an open book and it’s a moving tale. The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s No. 4-ranked strawweight keeps little in reserve when discussing the tumultuous journey she has been through to reach her current position of being one win away from claiming the title.
That turmoil has driven Namajunas (6-3 MMA, 4-2 UFC) throughout her time in mixed martial arts, but the difficult times did not end with adulthood. For recent fights, she has been accompanied by Mishka, an emotional support dog, to help her deal with issues relating to her mental struggles. Namajunas wants her experiences to be a source of inspiration for those going through their own mental dilemmas.
She debuted in the UFC as a young, pretty girl who could fight. She’s since been in this weird no man’s land where she wants to downplay her looks and yada yada.
I’m guessing it’s about female empowerment and loving your body as it is, which is all well and good if you’re a mid-20s cage fighter.
Rose Namajunas Won Joanna again in UFC 230 and solidified that she was a dominant champion and even in her seven months-long absence from the UFC fight scene, she remains one of the most awaited champ to possibly return to the Octagon, and she is reportedly planning to return to defend her UFC title on 2019's January.
Rose Namajunas is a well established UFC Women's Strawweight fighter and current UFC champion. Her current estimated net worth is reported to be well over $1 million and earns around $250 thousands per fight appearance.