Dear Roxy 23 – Should the UFC bring back private sponsors for fighters?

Roxanne Modafferi is back to answer your most burning questions about MMA, the UFC, and life in general, 'Happy Warrior' style with her Dear Roxy column.

By: Roxanne Modafferi | 2 months ago

MMA is a sport filled with burning questions. What’s the right way to defend an armbar? What’s the best way to cut weight? How many Demetrious Johnsons would it take to beat on Francis Ngannou? Fortunately, former UFC title contender Roxanne Modafferi has the answers, in her Bloody Elbow exclusive column, ‘Dear Roxy’.

In our last edition, Roxy tackled a few more of readers’ burning quandaries, such as how many weigh-in costumes she has. She also got into the idea of the UFC as a meritocracy. And took a look at the path to getting a title shot and whether it should be made more obvious.

This time around, we’ve got questions on striking a work life balance. We’ve also got someone asking about personal sponsors in the UFC and whether the promotion should bring them back. And the ever popular topic of food and diet; what does eating like a fighter do to someone’s view of daily calorie intake?

Dear Roxy – Work/Life Balance

When you get to work in a way that you control, how hard is it to find a work life balance? — From squeeopolis2

Dear Squeeopolis2,

If you’re referring to me getting a non-UFC job, I’d say it’s hard but I love it. I’m a high-achiever with a lot of energy, so I keep planning things in my schedule during times I should be resting. I have to make myself lay down to watch anime or playing video games, because other than sleeping, that’s when I’m not moving. Now that I’m married, I prioritize hanging out with him to training at night, or seeing movies with friends on weekends.

I’m a teacher for English as a second language for adults (ESL) right now, and I work part time in the morning. In the evening, I teach kids jiujitsu at Tribe Martial Fitness and Martial Arts. A few hours in the mid-afternoon is when I do chores, clean, teach private jiujitsu lessons for extra cash, and spend time with my new husband. I train on the weekends and with my teenage class. I’m not sure why I thought I’d be less tired if I retired from fighting.

Dear Roxy – Sponsors

Do you think that bringing back sponsors on fight gear would attract better talent to the UFC, and incentivize young athletes to take up MMA? — From fibz

Dear Fibz,

Actually, no. To be honest, sponsorship declined a lot over the past decade. I heard stories in the past of undercard fighters making tens of thousands of dollars in sponsorships. Now, sponsors tend to mostly want to give “product” instead of money. We can’t pay our rent with “meal prep” or “gear,” though! It is indeed great to help save on a fighter’s overhead costs, but it’s nothing like what it used to be.  I remember living in Japan and fighting in Strikeforce in 2009. My manager easily got me a Sprawl shorts sponsorship and they sent me $500…

If you’d like to submit your own questions for ‘Dear Roxy’ feel free to email me at, with the subject line “Dear Roxy”, or reach out on twitter @RoxyFighter with the hashtag #DearRoxy. Or simply leave your questions in a comment below on Substack or Look forward to hearing from you all soon.

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About the author
Roxanne Modafferi
Roxanne Modafferi

Roxanne Modafferi is a former UFC fighter with 19 years of MMA experience. She’s fought for titles in the UFC, Strikeforce, and Invicta. A jiujitsu blackbelt, she teaches jiujitsu at the gym, and English in the classroom. Roxanne has self-published three books in addition to contributing articles for this site. In her free time, she watches anime and plays video games (Twisted Metal, Skyrim, etc).

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