Athletes often make sacrifices for their sport and sometimes are forced to drastically alter their physical appearance to make the cut. That’s exactly what Invicta FC fighter Samantha Diaz recently did when she needed to make a weigh-in and was 0.2 pounds over the 116-pound weight cap.
To complete in the 116-pound strawweight class for her debut fight as a professional, Diaz decided to cut her long mane at the weigh-in to try to make the weight.
— esther lin (@allelbows) November 17, 2016
Her efforts weren’t in vain — the 23-year-old weighed in at 115.9 after the cut, just making the requirement. If she hadn’t, she would’ve been fined 25 percent of her fight purse for missing weight.
“I love my hair,” Diaz said. “It took me years to grow, but it’s all right,” the woman said as she was receiving the cut. Check out how long her hair was before the haircut.
Diaz admitted that she would probably cry about the missing locks after getting some water and hydrating. Fellow MMA fighter Leslie Smith, who was present at the weigh-in, commended Diaz for her dedication. “This is pretty gangster,” she said. Diaz was overcome with emotion upon finding out she had made the weight-limit class and immediately went to hug the woman who had cut her hair.
Check out this video documenting her entire weigh-in.
MMA fighting isn’t the only sport that requires major hair sacrifices.
In 2015, Russian tennis player Svetlana Kuznetsova cut her own hair in the middle of a match to win the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) finals. Her thick ponytail had been affecting her performance in the game, which led her to the drastic measure. In a postgame press conference, Kuznetsova said, “Every time I would hit a good shot, it would hit my eye every time, and I had [to] struggle.”
“I thought, OK, what’s more important now, my hair, which I can let grow, or the match? I thought, OK, I got to go for it right now, and that’s it. I was not thinking too much, though. I was just trying to get the best of me. … I don’t even know how much I cut there,” she said.