Cat Zingano Biography

Cat Zingano weighing in.
Zingano weighing in for the UFC. Courtesy of

Cat Zingano Biography Introduction:

Prior to April 13, 2013, female MMA fighter Cat Zingano was only a known entity to hardcore women's MMA fans, which at the time wasn't exactly the majority of the population. But on that Saturday night, Zingano took on Miesha Tate, one of the more recognizable women in the game for the right to coach on TUF 18 vs. Ronda Rousey. What's more, the winner of their fight would eventually get a shot at Rousey's UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship.

In other words, the stakes couldn't have been higher in the then undefeated fighter's UFC debut.

What we found out about Zingano on that day is that despite Tate's ability to control her with wrestling early on, the woman from Broomfield, Colorado would not quit. And by round three, she had turned the tables on Tate, using her own wrestling to take her down. And after some ground and pound proved effective, a couple of standing knees dropped Tate and ended her night.

That night Zingano went from someone few had heard of to a big time women's MMA fighter with a name. Here is her story.

Date of Birth:

Cat Zingano was born on July 1, 1982 in Broomfield, Colorado.

Martial Arts Background:

Zingano began wrestling at age 12. She eventually became a four time All American and four time national champion in the sport. In fact, she went on to compete internationally as an member of Team USA, training with Olympic medalists.

By 2007, Zingano had begun training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, which she currently holds a purple belt. She also trains in Muay Thai. In fact, Zingano has become proficient enough in the ancient martial art to win a professional Thai boxing match in Thailand.

TUF 18 Coach:

As was said earlier, by defeating Miesha Tate at the TUF 17 Finale, Zingano earned the ability to coach opposite Ronda Rousey on The Ultimate Fighter 18 (TUF 18).

TUF 18 represented the first time in TUF history that women were the main coaches on the show. Unfortunately for Zingano, a knee injury forced her out of the coaching spot, which was given to Miesha Tate, the fighter she had defeated to earn it in the first place.

Losing to Ronda Rousey:

After coming back from her knee injury to defeat Amanda Nunes by third round TKO at UFC 178, Zingano finally got the chance to take on Rousey at UFC 184.  The fight went horrifically for her, as her attempt to be aggressive early on backfired.  Only 14 seconds into the fight, she was defeated by armbar.

Personal Life:

Zingano is married to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt Mauricio Zingano. They have a son named Braden, which makes her the first mother ever to compete in a UFC fight. Zingano is also an instructor at Zingano Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Some of Cat Zingano's Greatest Victories:


  • Zingano defeats Miesha Tate by TKO in round three at the TUF 17 Finale: Early on, Zingano was controlled in this fight by Tate's wrestling. But then in round three we saw her heart shine through, scoring a takedown of her own along with some ground and pound that softened her opponent up before knees on the feet ended things. Huge win for Zingano, who achieved a TUF 18 coaching position opposite Rousey and a title shot with the victory. Fans truly took notice of her sheer power and strength in this one.
  • Zingano defeats Carina Damm by second round TKO at Crowbar MMA: Winter Brawl: By defeating Damm in convincing fashion, Zingano announced herself as a valid upper echelon MMA fighter. Coming into the fight, Damm held a 15-4 record and held status in the sport. So adding another loss to her record meant something.
  • Zingano defeats Karina Taylor by first round armbar at Ring of Fire 32: Respect: Every professional MMA fighter remembers their debut. When Zingano made hers back in June of 2008, she took home a first round victory.