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Does a transgender female MMA fighter have an unfair advantage? Options · View
lafayettemister
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 7:21:48 AM

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Post Operative Transgender MMA figher Fallon Fox


Does her biologically male body... muscular and skeletal body give her an advantage? If she is banned from fighting women, would she be at a disadvantage fighting men?





When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates
Nikki703
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 8:03:52 AM

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I am really not sure. I do not know how much the drugs used when a man transitions to a women will deplete his/her strength. There was a tennis player in the 70's, Renee Richards who was born a man and competed against women. While she may have been physiaclly stronger than most of the women she competed against, she didnt do all that well since tennis is more about skill and not just strength.

I am sure added strength is an advantage in MMA but I believe skill plays a larger part in success. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

However, I am pretty confident she will get her ass kicked if she fights men!
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 8:06:19 AM

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It's not just hormones - it's definitely a difference in physicality that will give her an advantage over female fighters. There's muscular/skeletal differences and probably also a distinct reach advantage over females of her weight class. If you look at guys like Jon Jones who have massive reach advantages over opponents - you can definitely see how physicality (and how you're born) comes into play. Yes, a lot of it is skill, but your physical make-up can definitely tilt things in your favour. If she's blasting through her competition and getting all these KO's, yeah, I can see why they're questioning things.

Aside from Ronda Rousey, the talent in high-level women's MMA is pretty shallow at the moment. You can look at fighters like Cris Cyborg who have been busted for PEDs and arguably look pretty masculine but this is a result of steroids/hormones - her baseline biology/physicality is still female. I don't know about whether post-op transgender people have to continue hormone therapy over their lifetimes, but if yes - I can't see how they'd even get past the testing requirements for many pro fighting organizations.

I'm not sure how to get around this one for Fallon Fox, but it sounds like an uphill battle. She'll probably need plenty of physical/hormonal assessments to get licensed in certain areas but even if they establish an even playing field, the whole "yeah, but she was born a man" is going to haunt her forever if she becomes successful in the sport.




lafayettemister
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 8:20:35 AM

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Dancing_Doll wrote:
It's not just hormones - it's definitely a difference in physicality that will give her an advantage over female fighters. There's muscular/skeletal differences and probably also a distinct reach advantage over females of her weight class. If you look at guys like Jon Jones who have massive reach advantages over opponents - you can definitely see how physicality (and how you're born) comes into play. Yes, a lot of it is skill, but your physical make-up can definitely tilt things in your favour. If she's blasting through her competition and getting all these KO's, yeah, I can see why they're questioning things.

Aside from Ronda Rousey, the talent in high-level women's MMA is pretty shallow at the moment. You can look at fighters like Cris Cyborg who have been busted for PEDs and arguably look pretty masculine but this is a result of steroids/hormones - her baseline biology/physicality is still female. I don't know about whether post-op transgender people have to continue hormone therapy over their lifetimes, but if yes - I can't see how they'd even get past the testing requirements for many pro fighting organizations.

I'm not sure how to get around this one for Fallon Fox, but it sounds like an uphill battle. She'll probably need plenty of physical/hormonal assessments to get licensed in certain areas but even if they establish an even playing field, the whole "yeah, but she was born a man" is going to haunt her forever if she becomes successful in the sport.



I thought about that too. It would almost do her more good, give credibility to her claims, if she lost. If she wins all her fights, then that will always follow her. And eventually lead all the "normal" women to stop fighting her all together.





When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates
Nikki703
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 8:31:43 AM

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lafayettemister wrote:


I thought about that too. It would almost do her more good, give credibility to her claims, if she lost. If she wins all her fights, then that will always follow her. And eventually lead all the "normal" women to stop fighting her all together.


She is really in a "no win" situation. No way she can compete with men and if she beats up on all the women, most will say it was only because she was born a man.

I have never seen her compete. Is she really skilled or were her wins due to just overpowering her opponent?
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 8:36:11 AM

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Nikki703 wrote:


I have never seen her compete. Is she really skilled or were her wins due to just overpowering her opponent?


I don't know, but her most recent win was a KO at 39 seconds into the first round... That's pretty intense by WMMA standards.


Edit: Just looked it up - her other most recent win was a TKO at 2 minutes into the first.


Nikki703
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 3:51:34 PM

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Dancing_Doll wrote:


I don't know, but her most recent win was a KO at 39 seconds into the first round... That's pretty intense by WMMA standards.


Edit: Just looked it up - her other most recent win was a TKO at 2 minutes into the first.


Do you know how many fights she has had? I can only find records of 2 fights. This one looks like it was just brute strength.

Dancing_Doll
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 5:06:42 PM

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Nikki703 wrote:


Do you know how many fights she has had? I can only find records of 2 fights. This one looks like it was just brute strength.


I think it's been 2 professional fights, but I believe it's a total of 5 MMA fights total (all of which she's easily won). I found this article that brings up a whole other issue - that being that up until now, she hasn't disclosed to her opponents that she used to be a man. Personally I think that's awful. Fighters have the option to turn down fights and that should have been disclosed up front. An injury can put an athlete out anywhere from a couple of months up until a year for something like an ACL injury. Her opponents should have had the right to to know the potential risks before agreeing.

Article Link wrote:

None of Fox's opponents knew they were stepping into the cage against someone born a man when they duked it out with Fox.

"I consider myself to be a pretty strong female, and she's hands down the strongest person I've ever fought," Alyssa Vasquez told MMAjunkie.com.

Vasquez faced Fox in an amateur bout in Rockford, Ill., this past April, and did so without any idea that Fox was a transgender woman.

"I thought she was taking steroids or testosterone or some type of enhancing substance," Vasquez said. "That's what I assumed."

Fox immediately shot for a takedown during her fight against Vasquez, achieved full mount and then finished the fight via armbar before the end of the opening frame. Vasquez said Fox's strength was evident almost immediately, which led her to suspect that the loss might not have been completely legitimate.

Fox says she wants to continue fighting women, and perhaps move into the UFC ranks.

"She's gotta win some real fights to even talk about the UFC," UFC President Dana White said. "It's not like transgenders who play golf or baseball. UFC is a contact sport."



sprite
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 6:50:58 PM

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well, i don't really know the sport that well, but from an outsiders perspective, if she keeps winning fights in less than 2 minutes, #1 - who's going to want to fight her and #2, who's going to want to watch her? i mean, it's about the entertainment value - if you pay to go see a match knowing that the outcome is going to be that this one gal ends the fight in 90 seconds, wouldn't you rather go pay good money to see one that lasts for a lot longer? seems to me that she'll not get much of a fan base going that way - is that a fair assessment?
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 7:41:39 PM

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sprite wrote:
well, i don't really know the sport that well, but from an outsiders perspective, if she keeps winning fights in less than 2 minutes, #1 - who's going to want to fight her and #2, who's going to want to watch her? i mean, it's about the entertainment value - if you pay to go see a match knowing that the outcome is going to be that this one gal ends the fight in 90 seconds, wouldn't you rather go pay good money to see one that lasts for a lot longer? seems to me that she'll not get much of a fan base going that way - is that a fair assessment?


Not necessarily. Ronda Rousey has won 7 out of 7 of her MMA fights by first round armbar submission and she's pretty much the poster girl for the sport at the moment. Some of the entertainment value in this case, however causes the predictability factor to be offset by her personality and the hotness factor - so people still want to see her fights. Many have argued that it's not much a competitive division when she keeps clearing out opponents with such ease, but I think this will change going forward as WMMA gains more notoriety.


cheeseball
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 7:48:53 PM

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I would think that she would have an edge on the competition because of the upper body strength advantage. Not a clear cut black and white issue though. dontknow
sprite
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 7:58:54 PM

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Dancing_Doll wrote:


Not necessarily. Ronda Rousey has won 7 out of 7 of her MMA fights by first round armbar submission and she's pretty much the poster girl for the sport at the moment. Some of the entertainment value in this case, however causes the predictability factor to be offset by her personality and the hotness factor - so people still want to see her fights. Many have argued that it's not much a competitive division when she keeps clearing out opponents with such ease, but I think this will change going forward as WMMA gains more notoriety.


yeah, but Rhona looks like this...



while Fallon looks like this..



i hate to say it, but in a sport that i assume is mostly male spectators, and Fallon having been a man, Rhonda's sex appeal factor is probably going to give her a large edge in popularity.

btw, i'm all for Ms Fox's choice and i hope she does well, this is just me thinking out loud about the reality of things.

another thought: if she's as overpowering a fighter as she appears to be, whoever takes her down is going to get lots of brownie points, right? :)
Kitanica
Posted: Thursday, March 07, 2013 11:09:30 PM

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Absolutely. A man shouldn't be allowed to compete against women, same as women should have their own separate rankings. For a sport like mma coed just isnt feasible.
He can identify as a woman, and have surgery but at the end of the day he's a surgically altered chemically changed man.
An apple can be painted orange but it's still an apple. some people may not like that I said that but that's just my opinion.
If your born a man your a man till the day you die, how you may feel and act and present yourself throughout your life is your choice however. If he feels he was born a man despite being a woman he's free to live his live as any other woman and should be shown the same respect, but he's still man and competing in a competition against women gives him an unfair advantage, men have more upper body strength. That's physiology, in a sport where people can be killed it needs to have certain rules. As some of us know when the ufc started back in yesteryear nothing was off limits, would we let a man compete back then against a woman? Surely not, but when it comes down to it it's the choice of his opponents. Rhonda and any other female mma fighters building the foundation of womens ufc have to decide whether they want to fight at a potential disadvantage against an opponent. As far as I see nowadays you get a call and you accept or reject the fight. It's always your choice until you walk into the octagon and the door closes behind you. Then if you want out you forfeit a win.

Ive never seen this transgender fighter compete and I don't know his personal stats of height and weight apart from the photo sprite posted so I can't say whether he has a distinct advantage but the potential is there. I don't see why someone like Frank Mir or silva can't compete if this guy will be allowed. it's DNA, were born with it and we may not like what we get dealt but facts are facts, he is a man. Though it does bring up an interesting question of what makes a man a man and a woman a woman, I was asked a question once about a boat.

something along these lines: If you have an old wooden sailing ship and you have to replace a piece of wood on it, then another and another is it still an old wooden ship? At some point after x amount of boards and planks have been replaced can it be called a new ship? If it's made of entirely new parts and it no longer has any of the original materials how do you classify it? is it your old ship in spirit or a new ship or a hodgepodge somewhere between. So its hard to say about him having a definable advantage apart from his body structure, and hormones. once you add in hormones and such it blurs the line and somewhere in between you have to ask is that a man or a woman. Your mentality and how you perceive yourself as one gender or ther other don't factor into a fight nor should it.

I still consider him a man and it's my personal opinion that transgender fighters shouldn't be allowed to compete in a womans division. If he wants to compete against men I'd let him and if women would accept him as an opponent then sure but I would never place him in the womans division against 100% female opponents because he's not 100% female.

I want to know if he requested to fight in the womans, or is it just wanting to compete and not knowing which division.
Is this a matter of him wanting to compete against woman specifically by choice as if getting easy wins? If he just wants to be a fighter he should be open to fighting both sexes as they will have to put him in a division if they allow him to compete. Would a woman who has had hormone therapy and surgerys be allowed to compete against men in their weight class? Theres your answer.
It's a sort of double standard. What would we do if a transgender female wanted to compete in the mens division? is it any different from a man wanting to compete in a womens division? I wouldn't let a woman compete in the mens division so my de facto answer is no, a mans at an advatange against women, and women are at a disadvantage against men in this sport. That doesn't mean women haven't destroyed men in fights before but just in general, they ARE at a disadvantage and the odds are not in their favor.

Just on a side note Rhonda needs to stop using her armbar 100% of the time or people will question women fighters still.
I expected the carmouche vs rousey fight to be a slugfest. They both promised an exciting fight an I missed it but I know rousey submitted carmouche first round with that arm bar she's famous for. It brings up the question is she just gonna submit everyone with no KO's. I find that boring as mma is mixed martial arts and fights pretty much get boring once it goes to the ground (most of the time) the two guys go to the ground and they lay there wiggling, no punching, no elbows, no fighting, just rough foreplay until the end of the round or they stand up. that's not all the time but most of the time.

(I hope I didn't offend any transgender members who may read my post, it's nothing personal and your free to live your life as you choice, but I will address you by your birth certificate gender and your DNA. XY= Male XX=Female. I hope you don't take it as an attack, it's just facts.)
Kitanica
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 12:01:25 AM

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Nikki703 wrote:


Do you know how many fights she has had? I can only find records of 2 fights. This one looks like it was just brute strength.



I watched that clip you posted, that's not really brute strength, once you get past the legs and your sitting on someones stomach it's over, she almost got out of it but he got the armbar and she didn't have much choice. That's somewhat average for ground game. I'd consider brute strength when the opponents are body slamming, hammer fisting and using elbows. The blonde girl went in quickly with some sloppy kicking and punching. but if she didn't know he was transgender that fight should have never happened.
ByronLord
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 5:20:44 AM

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This is like debating the rules for the fights with plastic chairs outside the ring in WWE.

Of course she should be allowed to fight. But her opponents should be allowed to tag team and the arena should be covered in a four inch layer of red jello.

There solved, you got any more questions to ask?

Kitanica
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 8:06:27 AM

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Ufc and wrestling are nothing alike so um.. Yeah, no.
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 8:06:58 AM

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Kitanica wrote:


Just on a side note Rhonda needs to stop using her armbar 100% of the time or people will question women fighters still.
I expected the carmouche vs rousey fight to be a slugfest. They both promised an exciting fight an I missed it but I know rousey submitted carmouche first round with that arm bar she's famous for. It brings up the question is she just gonna submit everyone with no KO's. I find that boring as mma is mixed martial arts and fights pretty much get boring once it goes to the ground (most of the time) the two guys go to the ground and they lay there wiggling, no punching, no elbows, no fighting, just rough foreplay until the end of the round or they stand up. that's not all the time but most of the time.


Actually she had some legit trouble in that first round with Carmouche. She was close to getting submitted herself. I think everyone was holding their breath there. There's no doubt she is the driving force for bringing WMMA into UFC because of her marketability so it would have been a huge upset for her to lose that fight. I agree though that the rest of the competition is still shallow because nobody can figure out how to solve those armbar submissions. The only other female that might offer serious competition is Cris Cyborg, so once she's back from PED suspension and *if* she's willing to drop down to Ronda's weight class - there might be a serious contender for that belt.

The thing with KO's is that they're not as common in women's MMA than they are in the men's divisions, in part because of size/strength of smaller human beings. Even in the men's lighter weight classes like flyweight and bantamweight - nobody expects KOs from those guys - it almost always ends up as decisions or submissions. The little guys are exciting to watch because they move dynamically but there's not a lot of power behind their fists. So, I don't expect WMMA to ever be as show-stopping as the KO power found in mens' 170+ weight classes.

I actually enjoy watching ground game though, aside from the wrestling 'lay and pray' styles you mentioned above which are definitely boring. But some of the best Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighting occurs off the back - and submission specialists like Demian Maia and Nate Diaz can be pretty exciting with their ground game. But you have to enjoy the art of submissions. Some do and some still prefer straight KO's with heavy-handed ground and pound. I don't think people many enjoy watching the guys who rely almost solely on wrestling though. As you said - of all the styles in the MMA arsenal, wrestling can be a bit of a snoozefest.


Magical_felix
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 8:07:23 AM

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If you are born a man you should not be able to fight women. They don't allow it in the olympics for a reason. I think it's kinda ridiculous to be honest. They are men.



Kitanica
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 8:57:12 AM

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Dancing_Doll wrote:


Actually she had some legit trouble in that first round with Carmouche. She was close to getting submitted herself. I think everyone was holding their breath there. There's no doubt she is the driving force for bringing WMMA into UFC because of her marketability so it would have been a huge upset for her to lose that fight. I agree though that the rest of the competition is still shallow because nobody can figure out how to solve those armbar submissions. The only other female that might offer serious competition is Cris Cyborg, so once she's back from PED suspension and *if* she's willing to drop down to Ronda's weight class - there might be a serious contender for that belt.

The thing with KO's is that they're not as common in women's MMA than they are in the men's divisions, in part because of size/strength of smaller human beings. Even in the men's lighter weight classes like flyweight and bantamweight - nobody expects KOs from those guys - it almost always ends up as decisions or submissions. The little guys are exciting to watch because they move dynamically but there's not a lot of power behind their fists. So, I don't expect WMMA to ever be as show-stopping as the KO power found in mens' 170+ weight classes.

I actually enjoy watching ground game though, aside from the wrestling 'lay and pray' styles you mentioned above which are definitely boring. But some of the best Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu fighting occurs off the back - and submission specialists like Demian Maia and Nate Diaz can be pretty exciting with their ground game. But you have to enjoy the art of submissions. Some do and some still prefer straight KO's with heavy-handed ground and pound. I don't think people many enjoy watching the guys who rely almost solely on wrestling though. As you said - of all the styles in the MMA arsenal, wrestling can be a bit of a snoozefest.


Yeah I'm referring to the outmatched guy constantly taking the other guy down and just holding him on the mat for points and avoiding standup with him. Some ground game is more fun to watch, but alot of the time it's sloppy cuddling sessions. It just bothers me when they don't bother throwing one punch despite the fact the ribs are wide open while they're laying there.
The refs should really step in and separate them after 30seconds of no movement. I like good ground game, the same as I like good standup. The only thing I hate more than the cuddling on the ground is when one pushes the other against the fence for two minutes. At least throw some knees in there or an elbow at close range. Some guys just like bear hugging I guess lol.

Im not saying not to use the armbar I'm just saying switch it up now and then or people will go oh it's rousey.. Armbar in 1 minute, it's a bit of a slap in the face when three or four fights all end in under a minute from tapouts and your out 65$ and a pizza.
100$ gone for 15 minutes. It's happened. You don't want ufc to become ya know.. The same thing each match. Will people watch her if she's 20-0 with all submissions by armbar? It'd be impressive yes but I'd tune out to her events after 12-13 and flip to ncis for 5 minutes and wait for the next matchup. I think it might hurt the image of womans ufc, they're finally being taken seriously and now she's the posterchild for winning the first womans match. I just don't want her to waste it. I'm sure alot of people will still not take it seriously or find it gimmicky, I just don't want it to get a bad reputation like the wnba.

I'll have to find it on YouTube and watch it.
JohnC
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 10:33:12 AM

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Interesting read, and great responses.

My view..... she should NOT be allowed to compete... for the reasons others have stated.

Dancing_Doll
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 11:01:30 AM

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Kitanica wrote:


Yeah I'm referring to the outmatched guy constantly taking the other guy down and just holding him on the mat for points and avoiding standup with him. Some ground game is more fun to watch, but alot of the time it's sloppy cuddling sessions. It just bothers me when they don't bother throwing one punch despite the fact the ribs are wide open while they're laying there.
The refs should really step in and separate them after 30seconds of no movement. I like good ground game, the same as I like good standup. The only thing I hate more than the cuddling on the ground is when one pushes the other against the fence for two minutes. At least throw some knees in there or an elbow at close range. Some guys just like bear hugging I guess lol.

Im not saying not to use the armbar I'm just saying switch it up now and then or people will go oh it's rousey.. Armbar in 1 minute, it's a bit of a slap in the face when three or four fights all end in under a minute from tapouts and your out 65$ and a pizza.
100$ gone for 15 minutes. It's happened. You don't want ufc to become ya know.. The same thing each match. Will people watch her if she's 20-0 with all submissions by armbar? It'd be impressive yes but I'd tune out to her events after 12-13 and flip to ncis for 5 minutes and wait for the next matchup. I think it might hurt the image of womans ufc, they're finally being taken seriously and now she's the posterchild for winning the first womans match. I just don't want her to waste it. I'm sure alot of people will still not take it seriously or find it gimmicky, I just don't want it to get a bad reputation like the wnba.

I'll have to find it on YouTube and watch it.


Yeah, but when these guys have huge holes and weaknesses in their stand-up game they end up having to default to the only thing they're good at to survive the rounds. There are still some old school guys around that are more purely wrestlers and grapplers (compared to the new breed fighters that train in all styles from the beginning). They don't care about fan appeal or what makes things most exciting - they want to win to get that paycheque and avoid getting cut by the organization. Unfortunately for these guys that never try to finish a fight, they will never move up the ranks and they're easy choices to cut when they fuck up. Technically pro wrestling and grappling is supposed to be very complicated - it's just not much fun to watch (I dated a wrestler in school and I was bored out of my mind at his matches). Personally I think the refs are usually pretty good about separating them if there's a stalemate on the ground or against the fence though.

As for Rousey, subs are legit wins and each win means big bucks for her so I can't blame her for going with what she's good at. I'll still enjoy watching her, but admittedly it's also to do with who she is (a hot badass girl. lol). I think ultimately the sport (and its fighters) have to remain well rounded - the pure striking and the 'Just Bleed' mentality would bore me too. I think the lay n' pray guys will end up being phased out in years to come. These days you can't get into MMA unless you're well trained in all disciplines because all the younger guys are and the talent is getting thick compared to the early days of MMA when just being really good at one discipline was enough to carry you. Women's MMA hasn't evolved as fast though which is why the armbars are always getting the easy wins (so far).



niceguy89
Posted: Friday, March 08, 2013 5:14:11 PM

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Unless I get more details, here is how I see this. She was born a man. Then she decided to become transgender. She still has the build of a man. Yet the genitals of a women. That gives her the strength of man and the look of a woman. For it to be fair, anyone getting in the ring with her needs to know this.

Fox is a women with more strength. If another woman still wants to compete against Fox who are we to say that is unfair?
Magnuson
Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013 9:00:47 PM

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Well look at the Olympics, Russians and Chinese made women that were more man then woman and they got kicked out.

MMA goes by weight class, I think pound for pound a woman could kick a mans ass, they feel less pain, they can stand more pain, their attention is better, they are more determined, and they are more viscous in that situation.

I am Magnus a single man, straight, 55.
Buz
Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013 9:13:26 PM

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His/her previously male hormones that developed his/her body gave his/her denser muscle fibers than females develop, therefore, Yes, she does have an advantage over other females. But without the continued infusion of testesterone at the male level (without testicles) could be a distinct disadvantage against males. But having said all of that we may have to just see how she does in her upcoming matches.

Would you place a money bet on her?

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Guest
Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 3:40:50 AM

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Ronda Rousey is a fun fighter to watch (that and she is damn sexy). And it's good that she is the poster child for WMMA because of the growth she inspires, allowing other women who wish to fight to have the opportunity.

As for Fallon Fox, I'm just reiterating what many of already mentioned; she grew as a man and thus has innate advantages that come with growing up with that level of testosterone.

So no, Fox shouldn't be fighting other women (though I feel for her because then she won't have anyone to fight thus potentially losing her passion).
WellMadeMale
Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 3:51:08 PM

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lafayettemister wrote:

Does her biologically male body... muscular and skeletal body give her an advantage? If she is banned from fighting women, would she be at a disadvantage fighting men?




If ya can't beat 'em... pay someone to do it for you.
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