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Limassol's youth learn dedication and persistence, while building character in the ring!

Most people may relate champions with money or consider championship an enemy for healthy emulation and athletic ethos. Even more people may relate boxing with bullying and violence. But, when you see athletes representing values such as humility, dedication and hard work, and transcend these values to the young generation of Limassol, you know that tomorrow may rise a little better.

Champ Boxing Academy is a boxing club founded in Linopetra, Limassol in 2006. In 2011 the boxing club, originally called “Protathlitis” (Champion), was renamed into MetaQuotes Champ Boxing Academy, after a crucial collaboration with the internationally known giant, MetaQuotes Software Corporation, which is now the official sponsor of the Academy. Far from any typical sponsorship, the 2 partners are connected by a deeper philosophy for life and of how each one of us manages to make use of inner powers, to make a difference and stand out through the difficulties.

“It is for the very few. If we speak for an international career, it is all about very high goals. It asks for devotion and desolation, a life different than the life of the rest of your friends or the people of your age,” mentions the founder and coach of the Academy, Savvas Kokkinos.

And this is where the course of the Academy meets the path of MetaQuotes. The company, based in Limassol, but spreading its wings all over the world, is among the companies that know how to invest in people’s personal powers and perspectives. “We believe in effort, persistence, hard work, focus in 1 goal: ever-growing progress,” stresses Fivos Georgiades on behalf of MetaQuotes. All these values manage to come to life and become a great, practical school for young and older ones, a school different than any other.

In a short amount of time, you can see a difference in their character, a different behavior, humility, a proper attitude towards their co-athletes. (Savvas Kokkinos, coach)

Who can learn how to box?
Boxing is for kids, men and women of all ages and athletes can try it, either to become champions, since it is also an Olympic Sport, or just for entertainment and exercise.

What is the best age for someone to start boxing?
There are no age limitations for someone who wants to do boxing. But, for those who want to do competitive boxing, the best age is 10 – 40 years old.

Is boxing a dangerous sport?
A typical injury is always possible in boxing, but it is as common as in any other sport. For the children’s classes, danger is almost nonexistent, since all children use a full protective equipment during the fight (sparing) and they are constantly supervised by a specialized coach. In fact, in certain ages, children athletes do not exercise body contact at all, which totally eliminates injury danger.

We believe in effort, persistence, hard work, focus in 1 goal: ever-growing progress. (Fivos Georgiades, MetaQuotes Senior Manager)

What can someone get out of this sport?
There sure are plenty of benefits for one’s character from boxing. The constant exercise of the sport helps the athlete stay in shape, increasing in strength and resistance. But, there is a huge benefit for one’s mental health, too, since it makes you confront your fears. Punching a bag or the pads helps you release your anger, your stress and aggression. In a technical training level, with a speedbag or a jumping rope, you can develop discipline and focus and in the same time you can relief your mind from anxiety.

What distinctions did you achieve?
Personally, as an athlete, I have been competing on a national level, in international meetings abroad, in 3 European championships, in Mediterranean games, in Commonwealth Nations Games, in Pre-olympic tournaments, where unfortunately we did not make it to the Sidney Olympic Games in 2000, and afterwards in Athens Olympic Games in 2004.

As a coach, I had the opportunity to participate in Commonwealth Nations Games for men in 2010 in India, with an athlete from our club. In 2014 we received 2 bronze medals in international youth games abroad: 1 with Michalis Ioannou at the international tournament in Serbia and 1 with Andreas Kokkinos at the international tournament in Lithuania.

It helps you release your anger, your stress and aggression… you can develop discipline and focus and in the same time you can relief your mind from anxiety. (Savvas Kokkinos, coach)

What do you keep from all these years in this sport?
There is a very rough road towards becoming a champion, especially in Cyprus. But, I can see a positive change in the athletes, from the moment they enter the Academy. In a short amount of time from the moment they start exercising the sport, you can see a difference in their character, a different behavior, humility, a proper attitude towards their co-athletes. Some newcomers can act a little bit strange some times towards the others, but in time they change, they become part of a family. If they don’t, they will leave. If they stay, they will build their character and this is very satisfying and inspiring to me, to keep going on with this difficult, but very beautiful work of ours.

Some will still beleive that boxing is violent and aggressive, that it is a dangerous sport to do and there is absolutely no reason for someone to try it, even though it has been around since the ancient times. But, fortunately, those who do boxing in Limassol are all about dissolving all these fables and stereotypes, since their work represents values and lessons that can actually save our body and soul

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