It is no secret that this is the period of feasting with Christmas just barely a month ago and Chinese New Year approaching soon. With many (including this writer) also setting new resolutions to lose weight in 2020, Kenneth talks to WBA Boxing World Champion Drian Francisco who is also the head of Evolve MMA’s boxing program, on how Boxing could be the answer to burning off those festive weight.
How did it all start for you and professional boxing?
My father was a professional boxer, so at age 6, I picked boxing up for the first time. I was really nervous starting out, but my father was a great teacher and built a strong foundation for me. Once I got into it, I knew I was passionate about the sport and wanted to pursue this. My father’s guidance was instrumental in my journey towards becoming a World Champion and the fighter I am today.
After winning so many titles, why did you decide to be a trainer at EVOLVE MMA as the next step?
EVOLVE MMA is widely recognised as Asia’s top martial arts academy so it was a no brainer for me when making the decision to head up its boxing program. Building a foundation in any martial arts form is so important, my father taught me that. I have been given an opportunity to pay it forward to share my expertise and knowledge with the students who come through these doors and who want to learn more about the sport under the World Champion instructors here. I know someday soon, I will help create a World Champion in MMA and boxing.
Boxing is a dangerous sport even for professionals and there would be safety concerns for people thinking of taking it up. How would you convince them to give it a try here at EVOLVE MMA?
Boxing is more than just a combat sport. It’s a well-rounded workout that truly challenges your mind but also engages every part of your body. I have said it before, boxing is truly as much a mental game as it is physical. Once you start to get a hang of it, boxing will also help to develop endurance, strength, improve agility and hand-eye coordination.
Safety is our number one priority here at EVOLVE MMA. You learn from the best here, and the World Champion instructors have spent a lifetime training and teaching the arts and thus know how to create a fun and safe learning environment. They know how important it is to get the basics pat down with executing proper technique before advancing to a more advanced level when deemed ready. We have programs for people of all ages and experience levels.
It is no secret that one of Singaporean’s favourite past time is eating. With the festive season upon us (Christmas in Dec and Chinese New Year in Jan), many would be looking for ways to lose the extra pounds gained after all that feasting. How can Boxing be a good alternative to your standard exercises like jogging or Tabata?
Boxing is not just an engaging sport for your mind and body but empowering for many too. Boxing is a full-body exercise that works all areas and muscle groups. Boxing helps people feel more confident. It’s a different form of confidence when you feel like you’re getting good at a new sport and also learning how to defend yourself. It really grows on you, and that’s the beauty of martial arts and also choosing the right gym. Here at EVOLVE MMA, there’s a tight knit community that’s inclusive for all. The environment and people you surround yourself with is vital towards your growth as an athlete and also your transformation, be it physical or mental and the benefits are endless.
However, bear in mind that in order to effectively shed weight and change your physical appearance, you also need to commit to a lifestyle change by eating right, resting right and being disciplined enough to put in the hours at the gym.
Lastly, for someone (like this writer) who has not done much exercise after he has completed his reservist commitments years ago, what would you recommend as warm up exercises first before even attempting to give boxing a try?
Boxing is a lot more accessible than most people may think, and is a great form of exercise for people of all ages and fitness levels. Our World Champion instructors are always on hand to help, from basic level exercises to advanced sparring techniques, so really – the biggest piece of advice I have is to just start. You’ll never know what you’re capable of until you try, and you might really surprise yourself.
Thank you Drian for your time.
Photos courtesy of EVOLVE MMA
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