A Brief History of The Boxing Institute

Before The Boxing Institute existed, many of the current students attended The Fight Centre Brisbane, a predominantly kickboxing facility based in Springwood. Before that, many of those students attended Ironfist Muay Thai based out of Burbank in Brisbane’s South.

The progression from Ironfist to The Fight Centre first happened when Ironfist had to close its doors at the end of 2014, leaving the members without a boxing gym and a permanent place to train. This is when Ben Johnston and James Jarvie decided to step in and create a gym where all of the past and present members of Ironfist could train. And thus The Fight Centre was born!

The Fight Centre was located in Watland street, Springwood and started out as nothing but a room with a boxing ring and some padded floor space. The facility was very bare but served the purpose of providing a place for members to train and despite the lack of equipment in the new facility… they trained hard!!!

Once everything had settled and classes were busy, The Fight Centre slowly began to build and was able to install heavy bags and were also able to improve the quality of the flooring, providing a safer training environment. Since Ironfist was one of the most successful kickboxing gyms going around before its closure, The Fight Centre had a staple of strong Muay Thai fighters when it first started, including a few world champions. In order to allow the fighters to improve their punching technique and ability, The Fight Centre added in a boxing class every week on Fridays with Coach Brenden Henwood, an experienced ex-amateur boxer. This Friday boxing class became so popular that they decided to add another class on Mondays, which also began to overflow in next to no time.

Once again, The Fight Centre added another class on Wednesdays to try and keep up with the students thirst for boxing knowledge. It had started to become apparent that boxing was becoming its own Sport in the gym, and not just a training session to help the kickboxers learn to punch better. With this, the kickboxing gym started to see real boxers developing in the classes.

By 2017 there was no room in the gym to add more boxing classes and the floor space was not big enough to fit anymore students in each class. This is where plans for The Boxing Institute first came about. With a few of the boxing students starting to show good promise and ability, some of them started to compete in amateur boxing tournaments and professional boxing bouts. This meant that the fighters competing needed the opportunity to train more frequently than three times each week.

With space being too tight at the Watland Street facility, The Boxing Institute was formed in 2018 just 1.5km away in Slacks Creek, where boxing classes began to operate morning and night Monday to Friday. This has seen a huge improvement in boxing students’ ability and has also allowed for more students to attend each class. Not only can more students learn at once, but the bigger floor space has given them more adequate room to move around and has resulted in better quality of training drills which involve footwork and sparring. This space in itself has been one of the biggest improvements and has resulted in more capable fighters, simply because they can now practice to move around with confidence, without worrying about who may be standing too close to them as they do so.

The Boxing Classes have also increased in depth by having multiple coaches run classes. Rafael Vilches, a boxer, kickboxer and MMA fighter, now takes care of the 5 AM and 6AM boxing classes in the mornings. Coach Brenden Henwood still runs boxing classes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday afternoons and Cory Nicholson who still currently competes as an amateur boxer and kickboxer, runs the evening classes on Tuesday and Thursday. With these three different styles, the students get a full range of the different ways that they can move, defend, and attack.

The introduction of kids boxing classes makes for an educational 45 minutes and The Boxing Institute is ready to take on and guide the next generation of talent into the Logan boxing scene. Kids classes are for students aged 6 to 12 years old and cover the fundamental boxing skills. This allows them to have a fantastic base of technique that can then be built upon as they get older and join in with the more experienced students.

There are also many teenagers that take part in the adult classes and compete at amateur tournaments. These students make fantastic role models for the students in the kids boxing classes. One of the teenage fighters Jacob Hill, works directly with the younger students where he helps teach the kids boxing classes.

If you are interested in trying out a boxing class, The Boxing Institute hosts beginner classes every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:45 PM. These classes are a fantastic way to try out boxing with other students at the same level as you.