In 2016, Joanne Calderwood packed up her belongings and moved to the other side of the world in a bid to become a future UFC champion. Moving from her native Scotland to her new found home in Canada, The Ultimate Fighter season 20 alum joined the renowned TriStar gym, home to legendary fighters such as George St-Pierre and Kenny Florian.
She started her Tristar membership with a win over Valérie Létourneau at UFC Fight Night 89, but “JoJo” suffered a first round defeat to Jessica Andrade by Guillotine Choke at UFC 203.
“After UFC 203, when I lost to Jessica by guillotine in the first round, I was like aww sh-t. I was mostly disappointed in myself. It goes so fast, you go back and you see the doctor and you get your get your gloves off and you think sh-t, I just lost.”
Although only her second career defeat to date, Calderwood took the loss hard believing she had let down her gym and coach.
Thankfully, the Glaswegian has since turned the defeat into a positive and found a renewed sense of purpose in the gym, helping people exercise and train while battling Parkinson’s disease as she prepares to redeem herself inside the UFC Octagon.
“I just like helping other people, and especially when it involves training, more training and I can see myself teaching them something I know.
I just get positive vibes from them and obviously, they’re fighting a different way from us, but I just want to help and give back.”