November 21st 2016
Name – Lindsey VanZandt
Nickname – Van Damsel
MMA Record – 3 wins 2 losses
Muay Thai Record – 4 wins 0 losses
Weight – 105 pounds
Team – Precision MMA
Where are you from ?
Wappingers Falls, NY.
How long have you been training ?
Started Tae Kwon Do when I was 7 and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu when I was 13. I am proud to say I have been doing BJJ for 10 years now. I’ve been doing Muay Thai and Boxing for about 7 years and wrestling for about 2.
How did you get in to MMA ?
I fell in love with Martial Arts at a young age. I started watching UFC when I was about 14 years old and I thought it was really cool.
Tell us about your nickname and how you got it ?
My coach Billy Mitchell from Ludus Martial Arts in Jacksonville Florida came up with my nick name. He combined Van Damn and diesel together to create Van Damsel = Damsel for short.
What was the defining moment for you when you knew you wanted to become a fighter ?
In high school I knew I wanted to become a pro athlete and when I was 18 I had my first Muay Thai fight. After being in the ring, I knew fighting was what I was meant to do.
Were your family and friends supportive when you decided to enter the world of MMA?
I love my family and friends and I am so blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life. My family especially are very nervous to watch me fight because they don’t want me to get hurt.
What is your current record ?
3-2 MMA 4-0 Muay Thai
What is your favorite strike or submission to use in a fight ?
They all make me feel some type of way. Just joking. . . I really just love the game as a whole and all submissions have their place and time. My favorite strike is probably the overhand.
Who is your biggest inspiration ?
George St. Pierre and Rose Namajunas.
What team do you train with ?
When you are in the cage d o you like to stand with your opponent or take the fight to the ground ?
I enjoy using both of my skills.
What does being fighter mean to you ?
What does oxygen mean to you?
What weight do you fight at ?
what do you think separates you from other fighters In your division ?
The fact that I am very well rounded, have better foot work, and a better understanding of the game.
If you could have one dream fight who would it be against and why ?
Tecia Torres. She is another girl I have looked up to in my career.
Who has been your toughest fight to date ?
What is your mindset going in to a fight ?
I want to be the best version of myself I can be and have fun.
Who are you fighting next?
what holes or weaknesses do you see in her game that you can take advantage of ?
I think my opponent is a very well-rounded fighter and we are going to put on a show.
What promotion are you fighting for ?
Worlds Collide: Aggressive Combat Championships (ACC) and KTFO.
Date and time of your next fight ?
December 16th- doors open at 6pm.
What do you want to be remembered for at the end of your career ?
I would want to be remembered as a fun, entertaining, talented, humble and a respected champion.
Who has been most influential to you in your career ?
Mike Dore- He saw me training when I was 16 years old and he has helped me with my career ever since.
Billy Mitchell- He has helped me grow so much as fighter and a person.
Brian McLaughlin & Karl Nemeth- They take so much of their time to make me a better fighter, you couldn’t ask for better coaches.
All these guys and many more have influenced my career. I am very thankful and appreciate all these guys and what they have done for me.
Who do you feel has had the biggest impact on the sport ?
Connor McGregor and Rhonda Rousey.
How would you describe your fighting style ?
I’m still growing and finding my own style.
What drives or motivates you ?
I motivate myself with my own dedication, and commitment to making myself the best I can be.
What is something people might not know about you ?
I am a twin. She used to train BJJ with me back in the day. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be where I am today.
What do you think you would be doing if you hadn’t become a fighter ?
I would be doing Nutrition and Personal Training. I love living a healthy lifestyle and I want to help others do the same.
What gets you mentally prepared for a fight ?
Visualization and Meditation.
Do you have any rituals that get you ready to go to step in the cage ?
My pre-fight meal always contains sardines, even though it grosses people out. I always watch Rocky or other fighter movies, the week leading up to my fight.
your backstage about to walk out your music hits what’s going through your head as you walk to the cage ?
This is it. This is my moment. This is what I trained so hard for. Have fun and enjoy the moment.
Who is your favourite fighter ?
George St. Pierre, Frankie Edgar, & Rose Namajunas.
When you’re not training what do you enjoy doing with your free time ?
I like to hang out with my family and friends, read, or do something outside.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in the sport so far ?
Ask me that question again on December 16th : )
What do you think the biggest challenges are for women in MMA ?
Finding training partners near your size. Training with people your size is important, there is different moves that will or will not work.
What advice can you give to young female fighters ?
Never give up and don’t let anyone bring you down. Believe in yourself, be confident, and work hard.
Where do you see women’s MMA in the next 5-10 years ?
I think there will be a couple more divisions in the UFC (atomweight, flyweight, & featherweight). More women will take up fighting.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years ?
I will be in the top 10 in the atomweight division.
What are your goals within the sport ?
I will become Champion. I will be the number 1 atomweight in the world. I don’t care how long it takes.
Is there anyone you want to thank or give a shout out to ?
First, I want to thank God.
Second, I want to thank all my training partners and gyms I’ve been to in the past and present. (Ludus, Smiley’s, Phil Cardella, Relson Gracie schools, UNF peeps, Ricardo, Mike Wacker, Mike Dore, and of course my former gym Precison MMA). Special thanks to my coaches Brian and Karl, and drilling partners: Drew, Fatima, Chris, Nate, and Chelen- getting me ready for my next fight.
And finally, I want to thank my boyfriend, Reggie Mack, and my family, especially my sister Katlynn who has always been there for me.
Sorry if I missed anyone. Love you all!!
To stay up to date with all the latest news from Lindsey click the link below and go check out her fan page