After competing in Muay Thai for a decade and winning over 60 bouts and six championships, Joanna Jedrzejczyk transitioned into mixed martial arts in 2012 with the goal of winning a world title in mind.
Three years later, she was crowned the UFC women’s strawweight champion at UFC 185 when she dismantled then-champion Carla Esparza. Following her first title defense on June 20, Jedrzejczyk spoke about what motivates her.
“It’s not all about the money. You know? I’m a champion because I’m a professional athlete. That’s all. I don’t care about the money,” she said.
For some, it’s about fortune and fame, but the 27-year-old Polish fighter’s motivation is the ability to call herself the champion.
“I signed a new contract with the UFC six months ago. I’m happy, but it’s not about the money because if you’re going to think about the money you’re not going to be a champion. If you’re going to work hard, you’re going to become a champion. Then, you’ll have this money,” said Jedrzejczyk.
“This is my motivation,” she said, motioning to her championship belt. “So that’s all.”