Two local women face off in MMA match at Wild Horse Pass Casino
CHANDLER, Ariz. (KSAZ) - Women's mixed martial arts (MMA) is growing in popularity and two valley moms are facing off at Wild Horse Pass Casino Saturday night.
Fox 10's Marcy Jones talked to the women on how they balance training and fighting along with raising a family.
In one corner, there's Gabriella Oschsenfeld, the 5 foot 3 inch, 115 pound fighter they call the "Ice Queen."
In another corner is Arianne Christiansen, coming in at 5 foot 2 inches and 150 pounds, who earned the nickname "Baby Rambo."
"I used to wear bandanas all the time," Christiansen said.
Despite their differences, they both play one major role outside of the cage: mom.
"One fight that I took a couple of years back, I had to be at her recital the hour before my fight. I mean that's the reality of it," Christiansen said.
Christiansen says she discovered MMA after a fighting for custody of her daughter in a divorce.
"It was just one of those things that I fell in to. It gave me hope. It gave me a way to fight back. It gave me something to think about besides everything that was going on," Christiansen said.
Ochsenfeld says she's been a fighter her whole life, and wants to empower more women to join in.
"I really encourage women to get involved and learn how to protect themselves and do it on a daily basis so it's like second nature," Ochsenfeld said.
Owner of Spartan Nation Combatives and Fitness, Ochsenfeld still finds time to homeschool her son.
Being a mom, you really have to learn how to prioritize and make time for what's important
Even though only one will walk away with a title after the fight, when it comes to balancing work and home life, both are winners.
I know she's a grappler, and you know I'm not too shabby on the ground either. But my stand up's even better so I'm feeling pretty confident," Christiansen said.