In the gym with Boris: Why I’m supporting DC Academy

DC Boxing Club LogoThis week we’ve invited Boris from DC Boxing to give us a few words from the gym floor. Boris may be relatively new to the club, but he is already proving to be a great asset to the club. His commitment and constant enthusiasm serve to remind us why we are putting ourselves through 380 miles of Scottish weather for DC Boxing, so without further ado…

My name is Boris and I’m one of the boxers at DC Academy. With 35 years I’m too old and probably not even talented enough for competitive boxing, nevertheless and though I only started four months ago, I feel very much at home and accepted in the club. There is a really strong sense of togetherness in the gym, probably because everyone feels equally pushed to the limit after a hard training session, regardless how different we may be outside the club.

The challenges are always changing. Right at my first night I thought the coach would be joking when towards the end of the session he asked for 12, then 11, then 10, etc… press-ups and I could hardly do 10. It’s still not my favourite, but now I can do it. And while I just started the training to complement my fitness programme as a runner, I soon realised there is so much more to boxing than hitting a bag. It’s the precise orchestration of technique, speed and power combined with an incredible need for stamina that makes boxing such a varied sport. I think this is where DC Academy has a great advantage: Ivan and the other coaches want to make sure that we understand how to put it all together and practice until it works; they make it clear that just sparring alone doesn’t cut the mustard if you want to be a good boxer.

Boxing and boxing training can teach you a lot, also about yourself. Your limits but also possibilities. In that respect it is probably no different to martial arts. Talent and physical ability aside, some key ingredients are discipline, dedication, and commitment. Hard work. Self-control. Sounds familiar? Of course. Good old values we should try to teach children. It always makes me happy when I arrive at the gym and the Juniors are still pounding the bags. They might not want to see it that way (hey, we’re talking about a bunch of teenagers), but this is where I feel DC Academy makes a difference at a time when the councils close down youth centres and other facilities. The club gives these youngsters something to do, provides them with an opportunity to identify and overcome their limits, to become confident. And I rather have that happening in a bout than bullying others in the streets.

Boris' Shed (Boris not included)

Boris' Shed (Boris not included)

The club’s current location is best described as a shed, and although that has its own charm to it, there is a lot of room for improvement. We’re not talking about luxury. We’re talking about necessities; a new ring, a few more bags, even gloves or skipping ropes. The membership fees are small to allow everyone to enter the club, and I think this is an important and positive difference to more exclusive venues. It is thanks to the great engagement of people like Phill and Heley that we can now plan ahead and save towards a new ring. I’m happy to do my bit, and I hope I could convince some of you to click on that yellow little ‘Donate’ button on the right and make a small contribution towards DC Academy.

Interview with a DC Boxer

Justin from DC Boxing has kindly answered a few questions about the club for us. Justin is one of the clubs senior boxers and recently won DC Boxing’s Dedication and Achievement award. He’s always the first person to offer advice and encouragement to other boxers, so we thought we’d ask him to answer a few questions for us.

Justin won DC Boxing's Dedication and Achievement award

Justin won DC Boxing's Dedication and Achievement award

1) What is your role at DC boxing club?

Boxer/Coach. I like to help others as my boxing career is nearing its end at 35.

2) How did you get involved/interested in boxing?

I got involved in boxing watching mike Tyson with my brother in those days it was on terrestrial TV. And of course, there were the Rocky movies.

I’m interested in boxing because it’s a great way to keep fit and it brings all sorts of different people together.

3) Describe a typical training session…

A typical session is cardio, coupled with technique; we go over certain things we need to improve on. Sometimes sparring is involved and hopefully what we learn outside the ropes helps us when in them.

4) Why should people raise money for DC Boxing?

Raising money for the club will benefit everyone associated with the club.

The club needs more equipment as it is growing each week. The club is expanding into the adjacent building and renovation work needs to be done for it to be a fit for people to train in. Once repairs and renovations have been completed the club could do with another boxing ring, but the priority is completing the extension in order to provide enough space for new members to train.

5) Boxing has been getting a lot of media attention in the UK recently, for example Amir Khan, David Haye, do you think that British Boxing is on the up?

British boxing is very much on the up, Amir Khan recently winning another world title and Carl Froch to come. Very exciting times and I think this encourages the youngsters to the gym.

6) What sort of people train at DC Boxing?

We have a wide variety of  people who train in our gym, ranging from the young to the old, from men to women. All circles of life where each individual has a story to tell.

7) What sort of person would you recommend boxing to?

I would recommend boxing to absolutely anyone. Give it a go and see where it can take you. It’s certainly changed my life.

8) What do you think about the sponsored trek to raise money for DC Boxing Club?

The sponsored trek for the club just shows how much our club means to the boxers, they care about the club and don’t think they should just turn up for a session and forget it until the next one. Everyone wants to get involved personally. And physically. A great club that means so much to them. The donated trek just goes to show the boxers what it means to the others.

On a personal note well done to both the walkers from DC and we appreciate your efforts.