Nov 11, 2021, 08:00
Door Editorial The Hague FM
They started three years ago in a garage, were voted the best boxing school in the Netherlands this summer and will open their newest location on Saturday. BBG Boxing Club in the Schilderswijk is growing fast. ‘The old location is really a Rocky movie. Now it is two or three times as big’, says owner Saïd Bettah about the new location on Rubensstraat.
‘We started with a group of friends, about six or seven people. On 60 square meters’, says Saïd in the radio program Hague Bakkie. Out of the boxing gym within a month. Searched for a new space together with the municipality.
And that’s a lot bigger. There are now sixteen punching bags instead of six and there is a boxing ring. The gym now has about a thousand members. At the boxing gym they find the family atmosphere very important. “The bigger you get, the harder it is, but it’s not a very family atmosphere when you come in.”
Said’s wife came up with the idea to also give classes for women. He didn’t expect much from it, because with women’s sports he thought more of aerobics, Zumba and cross fit. ‘But I misjudged it. Half of the members are women and my wife has started teaching. I am proud that they are so involved.’
Boxing was an early start for Saïd. “I’ve boxed since I was thirteen.” He took part in competitions, but his own boxing school was his dream. ‘The idea of starting your own boxing gym in the Schilderswijk has always stuck with me. I always say it is the most beautiful neighborhood in the Netherlands, but there is little to do.’
Good for the Schilderswijk
The boxing gym also has a social function, says Saïd. ‘We have become more than a gym.’ That is important for the neighbourhood, he says. ‘Gyms that are well organized in the neighborhood can be counted on one hand. That’s a shame. We should have more gyms, because sports participation is low there.’
With the bigger gym, the bigger dreams become too. For example, Saïd is already in talks with the Dutch Boxing Association to organize championships in the Schilderswijk. Like the South Dutch Championships. “They’ve inspected the al ring.” They are still discussing which round it will be, the preliminary rounds, semi-finals and finals.
But first the grand opening this Saturday at 12:00. The youth participates in demonstration matches and alderman Arjen Kapteijns (GroenLinks) comes by for the official opening and also steps into the ring.
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