Retired Bethe Correia calls MMA ‘psychological torture’
Bethe Correia is done with mixed martial arts (MMA).
The former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) bantamweight title challenger made his final walk to the Octagon in October 2021 by dropping a unanimous decision to Karol Rosa. A native of Campina Grande, Paraíba, Brazil, Correia began his career with nine straight wins before missing his only title opportunity against Ronda Rousey at UFC 190 in August 2015 (see highlights). Correia then finished his career with an 11-6-1 record.
Comfortably enjoying her post-fight days, Correia doesn’t reflect on the end of the road as fondly as she would like.
“I felt good physically, but I think it was more mental [aspect]Correia told MMA Fighting of retirement. “There comes a time when you can’t take it anymore. I think 90% of athletes who stop fighting MMA do so because of psychological pressure. We still think we can do it, that our bodies are conditioned to fight, but it’s such psychological torture, it’s no longer fun. At this point, MMA gets a little dangerous. You may have an irreversible injury.
“Working out was no longer enjoyable,” she continued. “I couldn’t stand being asked [at a] high performance and everything perfect. I’m more sad than happy [after training]. In the past, I saw this as a challenge. “I will be better tomorrow, I will train better tomorrow.” Then I started going home sad, I had no desire to train, and that’s a shame. When you get to that point, it’s no longer pleasant for you.
Towards the end of his career, the 38-year-old Correia suffered an eye injury that resulted in several fight bookings being canceled and eventually requiring surgery. She noted how worrisome regular training became when it came to protecting yourself.
With all of that in mind, it may not be the end of ‘Pitbull’s’ fighting days yet as she’s open to mixing things up in the ring like many MMA veterans have begun to do. these last years.
“I want to compete, but not in MMA,” Correia said. “I got a lot of offers from boxing, but let’s all calm down (laughs). I just announced [my retirement from MMA]. Who knows, maybe I’ll compete somewhere, but MMA, [I’m done] always.
“I’m not scared of bare-knuckle boxing because of UFC gloves, I’ve always gone for the smaller ones,” she concluded. “It’s nothing. I don’t think it makes a big difference. I see girls leaving with their hands hurt because there’s nothing to protect [their knuckles], but I would also like to try traditional boxing. I would like this adventure. Who knows, maybe I’ll have fun on both. The best offer [wins]. I think it’s very interesting.