Tidewater Female Fighting in Virginia Beach is breaking ground with their amateur all female submission grappling. They’ve taken ground and pound to a different level, thinking outside the box to reduce injury still remain ultra competitive. TUFF houses a training facility where the girls get to learn the skills of submission grappling. Secretaries, pet store workers, dental assistants, girls from all different walks of life are mild-mannered by day but turn into TUFF girls by night.
Every ten weeks or so TUFF holds live events where the fan following has doubled in size going into numbers of 200 or more, since early 2008. What’s the draw? These girls mean business. This is no glorified T&A show. It’s real submission grappling, with a twist. No striking, no chokeholds, no armbars. The rules come in to protect the girls from serious injury but still allow them to remain competitive. How do you win? Once you’ve rolled with these young ladies you quickly realize that body scissors and headlocks are just as effective as a choke. It makes you think outside the normal realm of traditional MMA to come up with different ideas on how to get someone to tap.
The girls are very committed to their chosen sport. “I was curious but cautious at first,” says Jaimie, a paralegal from Virginia. “But now I love the adrenaline rush and all the girls are like extended family. I’ve yet to have a day where I didn’t want to do this.”
The rest of Team TUFF echo those words, also stating how it’s built their confidence. “I found a sport that I can do well where before I didn’t consider myself an athlete,” explains Bria, a pet store clerk.
The girls are also finding that they themselves are building fan followings, based on their performances which included a 40 minute marathon match between popular grapplers Lizzie and Cherry which ended in a draw -a testament to their endurance that has been remarked upon many times over.
TUFF is always looking for new recruits. So if you think you’re TUFF enough check out tuffbeach.