Venturing out from Europe for the first time, Denmark’s Maria Hougaard-Djursaa is eager to face the top level talent of Invicta FC, and her first opportunity will come in the form of Amanda Bell November 1st at Invicta FC 9.
Corey Smith: You initially began down the martial arts path when you took up Muay Thai. What led you to Muay Thai? What were those first experiences like?
Maria Hougaard-Djursaa: Actually, I saw an article in a newspaper and decided to try Muay Thai. I just loved it right away and from then on I was hooked.
CS: How long were you training exclusively in Muay Thai before adding in other martial arts? What prompted you to branch out?
MHD: About a year and half. My ex husband, he started training MMA and I followed.
CS: You have faced off against some of the top talent in all of Europe. What do you think that level of competition has done for your overall skill level?
MHD: It pushed me to develop, so you can say they made me the fighter I am today. The level in Europe is very high and all my fights have been tough.
CS: Your bout at Invicta FC 9 on November 1st will be your first outside of Europe. Do you anticipate any extra challenges? Anything you look forward to doing while in the United States?
MHD: I am very good at adapting, so I do not think it will be that different for me to fight in the United States. I really look forward to meeting the other female fighters in real life.
CS: What are your initial goals within the Invicta FC Featherweight division?
MHD: I want to show that I belong there. Fighting the best females in the world. Be the best version of me.
CS: On November 1st, you will step into the Invicta FC cage for the first time against Amanda Bell. What are you expecting out of the matchup?
MHD: I think this is a great matchup. We both come to fight, and no doubt, we could make “Fight of the Night”. Amanda is a tough opponent and I really look forward stepping in the cage with her.
CS: What is your mood on fight night? Do you have any routines or superstitions that you have to perform?
MHD: I just want to walk around alone so I can focus.
CS: Who generally accompanies you to the cage? What type of feedback and coaching do you prefer from your corners?
MHD: My coaches. I like short sentences. Most of the time I know what to do, but I need my coaches voice to keep me calm and collected.
CS: Aside from fight preparation, how much MMA do you watch purely for enjoyment?
MHD: As much as I can get away with. Being a single mom and studying along with MMA does not leave much time for anything else.
CS: Outside of the gym and MMA, what types of activities do you enjoy for fun? What helps you to relax?
MHD: Outside the gym, I just enjoy life with my son Malte. That for me is the best way to relax and have fun. Every other weekend when Malte is with his dad, I use my time spending time with friends and family.
CS: Lastly, MMA takes a team to succeed alone inside the cage. Who would you like to thank?
MHD: I would like to thank Malte’s grandparents for helping me take care of him while I train and while I am away for my fights.
MHD: My sponsor’s Claussloth.dk and Fit4fight.dk, and my team Fightgym.dk.
MHD: My coaches David Rosmon, Kasper Topperup Andersen, Morten Hougaard Djursaa and Mikkel Vestergaard Laursen.
MHD: My manager Otto Knudsen, Tue Trnka, my family, friends, the team behind InvictaFC, and last but not least all the fans for believing in me. THANK YOU!!
Invicta FC 9 takes place November 1st live from the RiverCenter in Davenport, Iowa.
Tickets are on sale via the Ticketmaster link below.
The full card will air live via UFC Fight Pass. Click below to subscribe to UFC FightPass.