OWNERS of a boxing gym say they are considering putting on extra sessions for women as they’re proving a knock-out success.
Women are flocking to take up the macho sport at professional boxer Tony Jeffries’ gym, The Olympian, in Ryhope.
Phil Jeffries, co-owner of the gym on Leechmere Way, says: “We’ve been running the sessions for a while and we’ve had an unbelieveable response.
“We’ve had women of all shapes and sizes, from all walks of life, from professionals to housewives, coming down to be put through their paces.
“It’s proving so popular we are thinking of putting it on for two nights a week because there’s so much demand.
“The sessions are carried out in a really relaxed manner, they aren’t pushed into anything they don’t want to do.”
The gym is closed to men during the sessions except to coach Sean Bent.
Phil said: “It’s not so much about being competitive with the women, they see it more as a way of keeping fit or losing extra pounds.”
Lene Brow says she has really taken to the sport and uses the sessions as a way of keeping fit.
Among those to take part is Krysy Roczynski, 35, from Houghton.
She said: “I used to attend a boxing club in Sunderland, but there weren’t enough ladies attending in the end and it had to close.”
The dental hygienist added: “I found out about the sessions at Phil’s gym through my fiance and have been going since just before Christmas.
“I think because it’s perceived as a male-dominated sport women are put off from going.
“But you don’t go along with the intention of getting in the ring and fighting people, it’s not like that.
“You are not restricted to the sport of boxing - it’s more about an all over body workout.”
Women’s boxing first appeared in the Olympic Games as a demonstration bout in 1904 but it was banned in most nations for most of the 20th Century.
The British Amateur Boxing Association sanctioned its first boxing competition for women in 1997.
Women’s boxing is now a relatively populat sport with an increasing fan base. There are a number of official bodies and fights are held in more than 100 countries worldwide.
•Female boxing sessions are held at 7pm on Thursdays at The Olympian. Tel: 07747611020.