THRIVING Redditch-based boxing club Studio ABC is keen to add more potential stars of the future to its ranks after making a successful switch to the town.
Studio was formerly based in Birmingham but, with coaches Gary Blower, Brian White and Carl Dickens all having strong links to Redditch, the move to the Fitness Unlimited gym in Millsborough House is already proving to be a wise decision.
Studio hosts a weekly coaching sessions for kids, whilst squad sessions for juniors and adults take place four nights a week and the coaching and training team believe there is great potential to build upon.
Blower said: “Carl and I run the kids class and Brian and I look after the squad sessions. The juniors are really shining and we have moved some of the kids into the junior squad sessions now, which is a sign of the progress they are making.
“With how popular the kids session is becoming, it’s highly likely we will make the sessions twice a week, possibly shortly into the new year, such is the success we are enjoying.
“A few of the lads came with me when we switched from Kings Norton but most of the lads are from Redditch and it’s really fulfilling to be on to something so good in the town.
“I boxed for the original Redditch club at Fitness Unlimited in the eighties and it was always an ambition of mine to be able to coach here, so it’s gone full circle really.”
Retired former middleweight Dickens is a popular face among the boxers, in particular Studio’s younger fighters, having enjoyed a 9-4 record in his professional career which began under the stewardship of Blower before Dickens, now 35, made the switch to the Eastside gym in Digbeth.
Dickens, aka ‘The Wallop’ to his loyal and large fan base during some all-action bouts, decided family had to come first when he retired, but he is thrilled to have not hung the gloves up completely.
“It’s great to be involved in something like this and I said as soon as I retired that I’d like to get involved coaching with Studio,” said Dickens, formerly of Winyates East.
“We are taking some kids off the streets and I can see some of these boys going a long way. There have been up to 25 kids a session and that’s a great number.
“Having the mix of ages has provided a great spirit at the club and there’s plenty of talent to work with.”
Blower added: “We are a self-funded club so it’s important we continue to attract new faces, but we want people to take it seriously. We will provide an introduction to boxing initially and if boxers have the talent and will to take it further we can get them registered and have their medicals completed, etc, with England Boxing.
“People can see the gym, meet the coaches and talk to us about what we can offer to help you become the best you can be.”
Rising Studio star Jay Van Gelder is busy working with Blower as he gears up for a big night at the England Boxing National Development Championships final on the last weekend in October. Van Gelder has already defeated the Midlands champion to reach this stage.
Blower said: “I’ve got high hopes for Jay and a number of our boxers. To have a national champion would be a brilliant achievement.”
Both male and female potential new recruits can find more details about Studio ABC by visiting the club’s Facebook page or calling Blower on 07712 622428.