Former UFC women’s strawweight title challenger Claudia Gadelha has confirmed her retirement from competition at the age of 33 after revealing the worrying effects of a concussion she suffered in her last bout.
Brazilian veteran Gadelha was a fan favorite among the female ranks but said she will no longer be competing inside the UFC Octagon due to the lingering ill health she experienced following her unanimous decision loss to China’s Yan Xiaonan in November of last year.
Taking to Instagram, ‘Claudinha’ explained the decision to fans while thanking them for their support.
“I wanted to explain to you guys what is going on so that you understand. I don’t want anyone to think that I’m sad, because I’m very happy with what’s going on with my life,” said Gadelha.
“In November of 2020 after a fight I had a really bad concussion and I had post-concussion syndrome, which is the symptoms of a concussion from a long period of time.
“I suffered with the symptoms for a little while. It was very frustrating because my headaches were like a knife stabbing the back of my head. I was nauseous, I was throwing up, feeling very bad.”
The fighter added: “I couldn’t even go for a walk, I couldn’t train, it was very frustrating.
“So I took some time away from the sport and I started studying nutrition at IIN [Institute for Integrative Nutrition] and I kind of fell in love with nutrition and health and performance, and I started studying other things because I needed my energy for something in life.
“Without health we are nothing. I had to rush to the hospital at the beginning of my concussion, twice I ended up in the emergency room.”
Gadelha said she had mulled a return to the Octagon but realized that her fighting days were over when she feared more head trauma.
“I had a lot of feelings like, ‘I’m going to beat this and go back and fight.’ And other times I would just feel like ‘I shouldn’t be fighting anymore’ because I had other opportunities in life,” said Gadelha, who faced Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the women’s 115lb title in a thrilling finale to the ‘The Ultimate Fighter 23’ back in 2016.
“I took a little bit more time, I went back to the gym and tried to train, I started getting hit in the head and having anxiety from being hit in the head and being afraid of going back to where I was at the beginning of the concussion.
“I did a lot of brain treatments. But then a lot of other opportunities showed up in my life.
“The UFC offered me the chance to work with new talents from Brazil, help them to understand a lot about the business side of fighting and things like that.
“And I thought, ‘You know what, that’s a good thing for me to do.’
“I’m not going to be one of those athletes who retires and forgets about everything they learned. I’m going to take all that knowledge I learned when competing and transfer that to other areas of my life.
“I don’t feel like I belong there anymore, I don’t feel good in the Octagon anymore, it makes me more happy today to help younger talents,” added Gadelha.
The Brazilian leaves active MMA competition with an 18-5 career record, including a 7-5 ledger under the UFC banner.
After making her professional debut in her homeland back in 2008, Gadelha emerged as among the most popular female fighters on social media, with almost 1 million Instagram followers.
MMA manager Ali Abdelaziz praised Gadelha as a “pioneer” for women’s MMA as he tweeted his appreciation.
I wanna congratulate one of the Pioneers woman of MMA @ClaudiaGadelha_ she is not only a great fighter, she is also a great human being, it was an honor to be a part of your legacy 🙏🏾
— Ali Abdelaziz (@AliAbdelaziz00) December 18, 2021
https://ift.tt/2hpq7SJ 18, 2021 at 02:59PM
from RT – Daily news