The Monroe sisters, Star & Kaylee, are already on their way of being stars in Muay Thai and MMA. Kaylee recently won the Junior Muay Thai Super Bantamweight Championship Title, and Star will be fighting in June on the Muay Thai Global (MTG) card in Jackson, CA.
They fight out Combat Fitness/Team Tsutsui in Concord, CA under World Champion George Tsutsui.
We caught up with the sister to talk about their rising careers.
Wombat Sports: How did you get started in Muay Thai?
Star: Our gymnastics academy was across the street from where our dad trained Jiu Jitsu and Muay Thai and we would spend a lot of time hanging out over there with him. At home we would also watch Muay Thai and MMA with our dad and ask him to show us some moves. It usually ended up in all of us wrestling and somebody getting hurt. Our mom hated it.
Wombat: What do you enjoy about it?
Star: Muay Thai allows me to set goals for myself and work hard at obtaining them. There is nothing better than going home after a great workout and realizing I finally understand that technique, once you know it you just want to keep training it. I also really like being able showcase my skills in the ring.
Kaylee: Muay Thai allows me to stay in great shape and watch myself progress, the harder I train. You get what you put in. My Dad always tells us Hard Work Pays Off. I love being in the ring against an opponent, its really unlike a team
sport, you can’t blame anyone else for a bad performance.
W.S.: How have your friends and classmates reacted to it?
Star: My friends initially thought I would break or lose badly, because they thought I was a girly girl. Now my friends are so supportive, they think it’s totally cool, and they encourage me to win and train hard. We have a lot of support, not only at our gym, but at our fights as well, it’s awesome.
Kaylee: My friends all think our training is so cool. They support us at fights and sometimes they even train with us at our home gym. My friends follow us on our Webpage, Facebook, and Twitter. It’s like they are with us all the time, we post a lot on social networks.
W.S.: How about your family?
Star: Our family is really supportive of our training; it’s a really big part of our lives. If we are not training or fighting, we are supporting a friend or teammate. Our dad trains with us and helps coach us, he also corners us during fights, its great. Our Mom is also really involved she records our fights and supports our gym as well.
Kaylee: Our family loves watching us fight. Our Dad tells us he is our biggest fan. He trains with us, helps coach us, and even corners us in fights. Our Mom always makes sure we have dinner when we get home from the gym, it’s usually kinda late and we are starving.
W.S.: What comes naturally to you in fighting?
Star: I like to consider myself a pretty well rounded fighter. I would say my hands are my most deadly weapons. I usually get out of sticky situations with fast hands.
Kaylee: I really am a fan of push kicks and clinch work. I am starting to really put my combinations together though so hands are also on the list as well.
W.S.: What have you found difficult?
Star: The most difficult for me is finding personal time for myself, I also like hanging with friends but not much of that occurs anymore. I really have to learn time prioritization as well with school, training, and chores our time is pretty much taken up.
Kaylee: Not having as much time as I would like for my friends.
W.S.: It is pretty obvious you ladies are fans of Tiffany Van Soest. Have you had the opportunity to meet her and is there anyone else you look up to?
Star: I have not met her personally; I have chatted with her on Twitter and Facebook. Tiffany is our favorite female Muay Thai Fighter…. Tick, Tick, Boom! I look up to Ronda Rousey for helping pave the way for woman in combat sports. Her accomplishments beginning back in the Olympics are awesome. I also look up to the entire Can’t Stop Crazy Crew, they are beasts. Our trainers Sir George Tsutsui, Ms. Angel, and my Dad are the top on my list.
Kaylee: Tiffany is our favorite fighter and I can’t wait to meet her. My dad said if we keep our grades up he would get us a couple of private lessons with her. I also look up to my trainers Sir George Tsutsui, Ms. Angel and my Dad. I don’t tell her much but my big sister is awesome and really good at almost everything, I also look up to her.
W.S.: How do you feel about the future of females in kickboxing?
Star: I believe the future for females in Muay Thai is going to grow rapidly. Muay Thai has been picking up a lot of media coverage, people are starting to see how exciting the sport really is and that females can put it down just like the males do.
Kaylee: The future for females in Muay Thai is bright, I believe females bring added flavor to Muay Thai. Who doesn’t want to see a good girl fight?
W.S.: What are your aspirations in fighting?
Star: Keeping a positive vibe for young females in combat sports. Continuing to test myself with greater challenges, tougher opponents and continuing down the road to become a Pro Muay Thai Fighter.
Kaylee: I would like to inspire other young female athletes to follow their dreams. I really hope that I can prove how hard work and determination pays off. I hope to continue to grow as a Muay Thai fighter and to represent my family and Team well.
W.S.: Anything you’d like to add?
Star: Never give up, keep pushing forward following your dreams, keep positive people around you, and always remember………HARD WORK PAYS OFF.
Kaylee: Stay positive, stay humble, and stay working hard……HARD WORK PAYS OFF.