Nurse Gets Her Kicks Dishing Out Pain

Nurse Gets Her Kicks Dishing Out Pain

(Stock Photo)

Daily Record; Glasgow (UK)

September 14, 2009

A petite former nurse who packed in her job to become a full- time kickboxer has clinched a European title.

Joanne Calderwood only took up fighting because her mum thought it would be good for her to learn self-defence.

But yesterday, she beat Spaniard Maria Curriki on points in Glasgow to claim the 53kg European crown in the martial art of Muay Thai.

And she said: “It’s a fantastic feeling.”

Slim blonde Joanne, known in the fight world as Jojo, is now the UK No2 and undefeated in her last 12 bouts.

But it’s a far cry from her previous role as a nursing support worker at Glasgow’s Yorkhill Hospital.

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Joanne, 23, said: "I was working out in the community, making sure kids who had been in hospital were looking after themselves properly.

“It was a very rewarding job but, unfortunately, I couldn’t fit in all the training so, since March, I’ve been training full-time and working as a personal trainer.”

Joanne began learning martial arts when self-defence classes started at a gym near where she grew up in Kilmarnock.

She said: "I was 15 or 16 at the time when we heard about this new course.

“They were called Beat The Bullies classes and, while I wasn’t bullied, my mum thought it would be good for me to learn some self- defence.

“I got right into it straight away and, from there, I’ve just become more and more focused.”

Joanne now lives in Lanark with her boyfriend, fellow martial arts competitor James Doolan, 30.

She said: "Taking up Muay Thai fighting was the best thing I’ve ever done. I’m fit and healthy and really take care of my body.

“Plus, I know I can look after myself if there’s ever any trouble.”

© YellowBrix 2009

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