Boxing has made its way into Beaudesert High and is making a thumping impact among students already.
Beaudesert State High School Principal Grant Stephensen has always wanted to bring a variety of health and fitness activities to the school and believes boxing will provide opportunities for students.
“We are trying to provide an external program for students which will hopefully keep them engaged with school and see better attendances,” he said.
The school supplies 30 boxing gloves and installed steel mounts for five boxing bags.
Mr Stephensen contacted Beaudesert Boxing Club and asked owner Justin O’Leary for assistance in running the program.
Mr O’Leary has run Beaudesert Boxing Club for 15 years and loved the idea of bringing boxing to the high school.
“Grant contacted me at the end of Term 3 to start the boxing program at the high school and by the start of Term 4 the classes were in full swing,” Justin said.
“Grant is extremely proactive and passionate about the students at the school, and it shows with how quick he organised all of this,” he said.
Mr O’Leary believes the boxing program will not only help the students physically, but mentally too.
“Boxing is such a great sport for health and fitness, but it is also a sport that teaches discipline, not just for boxing, but for every other aspect of your life,” he said.
Also involved with the program is teacher Luke Stegemann, who has been training at Beaudesert Boxing Club and is a Queensland Boxing referee.
“The younger students are enjoying it a lot and we are hoping to see some of the senior students to attend the classes,” he said.
One of those students is 14-year-old Tom Gill who trains at Beaudesert Boxing Club and won the Queensland Title and Australian Schoolboy title back in 2019.
“At the start there were only a few students but now there are about 20 of us. Everyone is enjoying it so far,” he said.
Tom reiterated what his coach Justin O’Leary had to say about boxing and discipline.
“Boxing has given me opportunities and has helped me become a better person,” he said.
Classes are held at the Multi-purpose Hall at Beaudesert High every Wednesday from 3:15pm for students.