Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Write It Down

Rick (Riccardo) brought a friend of his, Mike, to the gym.  Both had some great ideas about building up the boxing program at LaFollette Park.  Mike suggested that I write down what I want the program to accomplish over the next few weeks and months.  We need to have a plan to start with. 

Initially, I wrote a lot about what I expected to go on in the gym.  Most of that involved the training process.  What I had concerning behaviors and goals that the participants should aspire to came much later as situations came up. Those went up as signs on the wall which few people read.  Now I see that I need to form a more comprehensive plan. 

I need better cooperation from parents, guardians, and youths which remains extremely elusive.  Rick and Mike said, "We have to make them want to be here."  That's not going to be easy in light of kids who resist learning the discipline needed for the sport, parents, and guardians whose only interest in the program is that it is free, the fact that the team sports get more attention, park district limitations on the boxing program, etc.  This is going to take a lot of work, but it's worth giving it a try.

Jazzmyne, a teenage girl, showed up to announce that she had signed up for the boxing class last week.  The computers have been down at the field house for over a week, so I was not able to check on registrations.  But then, I was not expecting anyone to sign up this late in the season.  Jazzmyne had taken up boxing a couple of years ago at Portage Park.  She remembers some of the basics, but we've got to work on re-learning a lot of the techniques. 

Once again, I was irritated by the boys in the first class who keep trying to incorporate street fighting antics into boxing.  "What if I punch like this?" Keith asked, pretending to deliver a blow to someone who was on the canvas.  "The referee won't allow it," I answered.  Then Keith decides he would come at the question another way in hopes of getting the answer he wanted.  "What if they grabbed me in a certain way?" Keith asked. "It does not matter," I said, trying to keep some anger out of my voice.  "The referee will stop it.  Realize that boxing is NOT a street fight.  It has rules."  One of the purposes of boxing is to keep kids off of the streets, not giving the kids a pass to give better beat downs on these streets. 

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