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More women are stepping into the MMA ring

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More women are stepping into the MMA ring

By Paul Marble, Jessie Garcia. CREATED Jul 21, 2014

MILWAUKEE - It's fight night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center, but it's not just for the guys.  Women are also getting into the act.  From amateurs to professionals, more and more women are stepping  into the cage to duke it out.

Raquel "Rocky" Magdaleno is a Professional MMA Fighter.  She says, "Nothing compares to being with one other person on a stage with all the lights on you."

Mixed Martial Arts combines many techniques including kick boxing, boxing, wrestling and jiu-jitsu.  Before they step into the ring, combatants need to be well versed in all the styles.

At Roufusport MMA Academy, fighters learn and refine their art.  Jennifer Dacquisto and Kali Robbins got hooked once they tried it.   Both started out to get in shape, but it grew from there.

Jennifer says, "MMA, martial arts.  Any of them you can get a good workout.  It grows you as a person emotionally, mentally and physically."

Kali adds, "I can see why people would wonder why I do it.  But I guess the only answer is that I love it."

While it's still a male-dominated sport, that's starting to change.  In fact, one of the largest fight leagues, UFC, created its own female division.

Duke Roufus, co-owner at Roufusport explains, "I think you're going to see this sport just flooded with women because, again, there's not as many sporting opportunities for women to be a professional athlete."

What about the stereotypes that the sport is too tough and brutal for females?  Kali says, "I would just like to see women educated about it and not so scared of it.  And again, you don't have to do this to fight.  You can do this to have fun." 

Jennifer adds, "People are always gonna say, 'you're gonna hurt your face.'  Just cause you're a woman it's like people think that it's not something you'd want to be doing."

All the sweat and strain builds a comradery among them, and prepares those who want to go in the ring both mentally and physically.  As these fighters thrill the audience with skill and toughness, their future looks brighter than ever.

Raquel "Rocky" Magdaleno says, "Women are so marketable in the sport.  So I think it's just going to keep getting better and better.  And I think women's fights are probably more exciting than men's fights."

These women hope the crowds keep coming for years to come.