“I was a contractor making good money,” Tom Aspinall’s dad BOLD decision 18 years ago paves way for UFC 295 title fight

Tom Aspinall's father, Andy Aspinall, shared his inspirational story of quitting his job to help his son with BJJ training.


“I was a contractor making good money,” Tom Aspinall’s dad BOLD decision 18 years ago paves way for UFC 295 title fight

Tom Aspinall with his father Andy Aspinall (via IMAGO)

Tom Aspinall became one of the best mixed martial arts fighters from the UK and rose to the limelight in the UFC. However, the man behind his success was none other than his father, Andy Aspinall. His father’s journey in shaping Aspinall as the fighter he is today was truly inspiring. He started coaching his son when he was young and guided him throughout his MMA career.

ADVERTISEMENT

Andy Aspinall worked in the IT sector for about 25 years. He was a contractor for a long time and then became an IT manager. This was the same time Tom Aspinall was getting good at Jiu-Jitsu. So he decided to quit his job and help his son in Jiu-Jitsu as there weren’t many schools teaching it. Here is what he said in an interview with Talksport.com:

I was a contractor for a long time making good money and then I was an IT manager. I got offered a redundancy payment that I didn’t have to take, but Tom was very good at jiu-jitsu and there weren’t many jiu-jitsu schools open. I just decided to teach jiu-jitsu and hoped that Tom at 12, and my other son at 9, would teach jiu-jitsu because they’d have a career then.
Andy Aspinall (via Talksport.com)

Andy Aspinall was happy that he left his job as he didn’t like the work environment and wanted a quiet life. Later, he became a jiu-jitsu instructor at Team Kaobon. He was a prominent Jiu-Jitsu practitioner and had earlier done a bit of boxing, judo, and wrestling. This helped him in teaching Aspinall when he became passionate about mixed martial arts. Ever since he has stayed alongside Tom Aspinall for his fights even after entering the UFC.

In hindsight, the bold decision that Tom Aspinall’s father made has worked out pretty well. Tom Aspinall grew up into an MMA prodigy and is now fighting for the UFC interim-heavyweight championship. And his other son, Joe Aspinall is making a living as a Jiu-Jitsu instructor.

ADVERTISEMENT

Tom Aspinall’s Jiu-Jitsu journey with his father Andy Aspinall

Tom Aspinall started training in martial arts at the age of seven. Since his father was associated with BJJ, Aspinall got hooked on it and started training in Jiu-Jitsu. He initially trained at Leigh Self Defence Studio, Manchester.

Later, his father joined Team Kaobon and that is when Aspinall showed interest in mixed martial arts and transitioned to MMA. However, the British fighter has earned a plethora of accolades in Jiu-Jitsu.

Tom Aspinall
Tom Aspinall (Source: IMAGO)

Tom Aspinall, in his early years in martial arts, earned a brown belt and won a few BJJ tournaments. As such, he became a 3 time British BJJ champion in 2016. Later, he won the British Open in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in all belt classes except black belt.

Now, Tom Aspinall is a black belt. Unsurprisingly, since he transitioned to MMA, he hasn’t competed much in BJJ tournaments. But he said that his love for Jiu-Jitsu was always there and he would train in it regularly.

ADVERTISEMENT

Currently, Tom Aspinall is fighting for the UFC interim heavyweight championship against Sergei Pavlovich in UFC 295. His rise to the top of the promotion was an inspiring story. He has an MMA record of 13 wins and 3 losses. A win in his next fight would make him the third British UFC champion.

In case you missed it: