Partnership with Swedish Hospital Helps Local Youth
Boxing program for area youths gets boost from
Boxing is one of the country's oldest sports, and it's not one
for the weak or timid. But it's also not a sport for those who
aren't physically fit. Those who participate in boxing matches or
classes become some of the fittest athletes around.
To help youths in the Seattle area achieve these fitness
benefits and learn more about health and wellness, Wimmer Solutions
is sponsoring four participants in a month-long training program at
Cappy's Boxing Gym called
the Four Fitness Principles Project. Four area youths who otherwise
would not be able to afford it will be trained in boxing
fundamentals and undergo related fitness training throughout the
month of May.
"Wimmer Solutions teaming with us like this is making it
possible for us to do what we do best," said Tricia Turton, a
former amateur and pro boxer who is head youth coach at Cappy's
Boxing Gym and is overseeing the program.
Also sponsoring the program is Swedish
Medical Center, which donated funding and is supplying medical
personnel to educate the participants and others on the health
benefits of boxing and fitness. They will also monitor the
participants' blood pressure and pulse over the course of the
Some employees of both Wimmer and Swedish are among the adults
who take boxing fitness classes at Cappy's, and were eager to have
their companies involved as program sponsors.
"Getting Wimmer involved for me was an opportunity to have an
immediate and direct positive impact on the local community," said
Matt Petersen, who serves as Managed Services
Director at Wimmer Solutions and has trained at Cappy's for more
than two years. Cappy's location in Seattle's Central District
gives the 14-year-old boxing gym the opportunity to "reach out to
local kids who are generally underserved by other community
programs if they even exist," he said.
Competitive boxing and community
Cappy's, started in 1998 by veteran Seattle boxing
enthusiast Cap Kotz, offers boxing lessons, competitive boxing,
and boxing fitness classes for adults and youths, and instructs up
to 50 youths from King and Snohomish counties with two- and
three-day-a-week classes. Cappy's also trains an amateur team of
boxers who aspire to fight in the Olympics. And it offers numerous
community outreach programs, and each year pays the cost for
training five youths.
The four participants in the Four Fitness Principles Project are
all girls, 11 or 12, who are sixth graders at nearby Washington
Middle School in the Central District and who eagerly volunteered.
"I've never done any boxing before, and I thought it would be
interesting," said one, Nyela Richardson, 11. Another, Mari Lilly,
11, said, "I wanted to get better at defending myself." Both admit
that getting into great shape won't be easy for them, but they vow
to put in all the hard work required to achieve it. "I'll be
stronger," Richardson said. "I'll be faster," added Lilly.
Olympics heightens boxing interest among
Interest in boxing among girls and women has climbed in recent
years, due at least in part to the addition of women's boxing in
the Summer Olympics beginning in the 2012 London games, Turton
said. A former rugby player, Turton herself became a boxer and
competed for six years for Cappy's in 16 amateur and 12 pro fights
before becoming Cappy's head youth coach.
Amateur boxing stresses safety, as all participants wear
headgear and follow strict rules, she said. "There are far more
head injuries in soccer and football."
Boxing, she added, "is a metaphor for life." Wimmer's Petersen
says of the sport: "Boxers are some of the fittest athletes, and
the workouts at Cappy's are always engaging, and offer chances to
learn new things, techniques, and awareness. All those things
appealed to me and my wellness, as I have never been one who lifts
weights or runs on a treadmill. I need to be engaged, and boxing
definitely offers that as well as personal challenges."
Cappy's is opening its doors to the public on Saturday, May 12,
for an exhibition of
boxing and fitness demonstrations. The event is free, with a $5
donation requested. More information about the Saturday Night
Sizzler is available on Cappy's Facebook Event Page. The gym's biggest event of
the year is October 6 when it sponsors the third annual Central District
Boxing Revival - twelve amateur bouts, to be held at the nearby
Garfield Community Center.