(Ronda Rousey armbarring Meisha Tate)
While most people are aware of her MMA credentials, Ronda Rousey has beenaround competitive/combat MMA for years.
Rousey captured the Strikeforce World Championship last night armbarring MeishaTate in the first round, in spectacular fashion. Using Judo has herweapon was her key and looking back to her career prior to MMA, you'll see why:
At just 17, Rousey qualified for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, becoming theyoungest judo player in the entire Games.
Also in 2004, Rousey won the Pan American Championships, her first of 7US Senior National titles, and a gold medal at the 2004 World Junior (under 20) Judo Championships in Budapest, Hungary.
In April 2006, she became the first U.S. female athlete in nearly 10 years towin an A-Level tournament as she went 5-0 to claim gold at the Birmingham WorldCup in Great Britain. Later that year, the 19-year-old won the bronze medal atthe Junior World Championships, becoming the first U.S. athlete ever to win twoJunior World medals.
In February 2007, Rousey moved up to 70kg (154lbs) in the middle of a tour ofEuropean tournaments. Her first competition at 70kg was the Austrian World Cup,she went 5-0 to claim the 2nd of her 3 world cup titles.
at year Rousey suffered a major knee injury that locked her right knee inplace. She still fought in the 2007 Pan American Championships in order to earnpoints to secure her position at the 2008 Olympics. After earning abronze medal she was flown straight home to undergo knee surgery. A few monthsafter the surgery she fought in the Pan American Games in Rio de Janerio andbeat the Brazilian Christina Aguiar in the finals.
Six months after moving up, Ronda won the silver medal at the 2007 World JudoChampionships, defeating defending world champion Edith Bosch in thesemi-finals.
In August 2008, Rousey competed at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.She lost her quarterfinal to the Dutch ex-world champion Edith Bosch butqualified for a Bronze medal match through the repechage bracket. Rouseydefeated Annett Boehm by Yuko to win a bronze medal (note: Judo offers twobronze medals per weight class). With the victory, Rousey became the firstAmerican to win an Olympic medal in women’s judo since its inception as a fullOlympic sport in 1992.