Tea Gardens Lions donate airbike to boxing gym

Kiara, one of the avid boxers, using the new airbike.

YOUTH physical and mental fitness has been augmented by Tea Gardens Lions’ significant donation of an ‘airbike’ to the local Boxing Club on Wednesday, 6 March.

“We originally approached the Tea Gardens Lions to ask them for help funding the airbike’s purchase,” Rob Wylie from the Tea Gardens Hawks Nest Boxing Club told NOTA.

“At their next meeting, the Lions voted unanimously to pay for it entirely.

“The kids, Steve Pietsch, Phil Wallis and I are very appreciative of the Lions and Lionesses, who have been big contributors from when the Club started, having also funded our rowing machine and rubber floor mats.”

Rob equates the airbike’s workout to boxing fitness, involving all parts of the body in strenuous movement.

“It is a particularly gruelling piece of equipment, good for building up cardio-vascular endurance.

“It will become a part of our nightly training program with all the boxers being able to use it, amping up the training circuit inside the gym at the Hawks Nest Scout Hall,” Rob Wylie explained.

Amanda Sykes from Tea Gardens Lions spoke to the benefits the Boxing Club offers the community.

“The Tea Gardens Hawks Nest Boxing Club has been running for eight years, with volunteer leadership from Phil Wallis, Steve Pietsch and Rob Wylie, who are passionate about connecting with the youth in our community.”

The club is totally dependent on donations, receiving no government funding, and the price for a youth to train is only $3 per session.

A generous recent contribution from the Police Charity Golf day enabled the club to pay its rent and insurance, therefore keeping the cost of participation low.

The Club runs two sessions per week on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5pm, with recent attendance hitting record highs of around 24 youths.

While it is aimed at local young people aged thirteen to eighteen, however, several have returned as they grew older, taking on leadership roles around training.

“The Boxing Club is very grateful, having record numbers, and a big focus this year on youth mental health.

“The club is about building strong character, confidence, fitness and encouraging healthy lifestyles through boxing, which is a great tool for resilience,” Rob added.

By Thomas O’KEEFE

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