Below is our interview with Rizin's Miyuu Yamamoto. Miyuu is competing in Rizin's women's tournament and will face Irene Rivera on October 15th in the first round. We would like to thank Miyuu for taking the time to answer our questions.
1. You made your debut after a very successful wrestling career and after you were 40 years old. Can you talk about why you got into MMA? What was the decision process like?
Miyuu: I was training for the 2016 Olympics but I couldn't compete at the Olympic trials (somehow) even though I got my Canadian citizenship. It hurt me pretty bad but I didn't wanna stop training. Because I work hard everyday. So I decided to continue wrestling for the 2017 worlds. But my heart wasn't there and I couldn't focus on my training. At the same time Mr. Sakakibara was asking me to fight for Rizin. I guess that was the right timing for him to ask me lol I was looking for a new passion, like a new mountain to climb. It seems like a big decision to make but it wasn't for me lol. Just like a kid who found a new toy
2. What is it like being in the Yamamoto family? Many outside of Japan may not realize that your father was an Olympic wrestler, your sister was a world champion wrestler, your son is very rlented wrestler and MMA athlete, and your brother is Kid Yamamoto?
Miyuu: Hmmmmm surrounded by people with strong personalities lol (I definitely am one of them lol) Training is great! My bro is our coach and I still can't believe and it amazes me that I train with my son! I never thought my life would be like this! I just can't thank god enough. This is the best part of my MMA life. I was living in Canada, my son was living in Hungary, my bro (KID) lives in Japan but now were are all living in the same place!
3. What is it like training for and fighting on the same events as your son, Erson?
Miyuu: Sorry, if I answer in the same way but it's amazing! Like I said, I never thought something like this would happen but oh my life! This makes me thing that everything has a reason, I couldnt make the Olympics because of this! The best thing was waiting for me 🏽
4. In your last fight, you picked up your first win. Your wrestling looked great, but you also seemed to have real punching power. What was it like getting your first win and can you talk about the fight a bit?
Miyuu: I believed in myself, my team and everything I'd done for that fight. But still that was a crazy happy feeling lol, my corner was crazier lol. My son, BJJ coach and Muay Thai coach were my corner. If you watch my fight again you'd laugh because they were crazy lol. Anyways, yes I wanted to keep standing for the fight. Because I've worked on my boxing too. But the last round Cassie kept coming forward (she is such a fighter 🏽) so it was like a reaction to take the shot. A habit. But I was happy that I finally won a fight.
|Miyuu when the fight was over|
Miyuu: Well I think almost everyone has a larger record because I'm a rookie . So I'm just gonna drag them into "my fight" and show the world what I got.
6. If all goes well, you may fight Rena again in the tournament. How would you fight a second fight with her differently? Are there any other fighters that stick out to you in the tournament?
Miyuu: Yeah, we will probably fight again in this tournament. It wouldn't be the same for sure. We both have progressed, like her grappling and wrestling have gotten better and my standing has gotten better. That's all I can say for now lol. Those girls are good fighters and I will be prepared for anyone.
7. Can you talk about your training? It looks like a lot of Krazy Bee has moved down to the new gym in Okinawa, what has that been like? What is your schedule like?
Miyuu: Yes, we just opened up the new Krazy Bee gym its called Krazy Bee Itoman (That's where the gym is in Okinawa). It is not as big as Krazy Bee Tokyo and we just started, but all my coaches are great. Our head coach, Kid, is great 🏽. He teaches us not only MMA training but also how to take care of our bodies. He studies a lot about nutrition and condition training and stuff. We have Muay Thai, BJJ, no-gi, wrestling and boxing. Just like any other fighter.
8. You competed on the highest stage of wrestling, what are the similarities and differences to MMA?
Miyuu: They are both the same in that we have to beat anyone standing in front of us lol. Differences are MMA has so many more painful possibilities to get hit with lol. And it's very different feeling when I walk into the MMA ring. I can't explain exactly but you really have to be ready for war. That's pretty crazy and exciting feeling, I can't get that feeling from wrestling. It's just different.
9. Can you talk about what you do in your free time, what stuff do you do outside of the gym?
Miyuu: Chasing my kids lol. They make me crazy in many ways (driving me crazy and crazy happy lol). Raising the kids is what I'm doing when I'm not trying lol. Go to the beach of being lazy at home. Watching the movies in my bed....just like a regular mom I think?
10. Is there anything you would like to say or anyone you would like to thank?
Miyuu: I would like to thank so many people that support me and my family. My brother KID, I know its not easy to teach family members (I talk back to him sometimes...that's because I'm his sis but that's wrong because he is my coach) but he is still here for my son and me. He doesn't give up on us. I'm the luckiest fighter that I have an amazing coach like hi,
And my kids...Erson, Ernon and Mia. Sometimes I feel bad that their mom is always choosing a crazy lifestyle that they have to deal with. But they know I love to live on the edge and I can't live without them lol. They are my everything! They got my back ️
And my dad, mom, other family members, coaches, teammates, friends and fans! I wouldn't be here without them! Huge thank you to all 🏽️
In case if you didn't know I will win the tournament (shhhhhh)