Sydney has a bunch of great fitness boxing classes but when you’re ready to learn some more serious techniques, where’s the best place to train? To find out, we asked boxer and writer Lizza Gebilagin to share her top tips for where to take your skills to the next level:
Bondi Boxing Club, Waterloo
Wait, Bondi Boxing Club is actually in Waterloo? Uh yep, that’s right. The original gym called the beachside suburb home for more than 10 years before outgrowing the premises and moving to Waterloo last August. “It’s a bit of a quirky name,” owner Tony Del Vecchio says when asked why he kept “Bondi”. Location-confusion aside, this gym has a number of world-class professional fighters who teach boxing classes, so you can expect intense workouts with an emphasis on good technique. As Tony says, “You may never see the ring in your entire life, but you’ll train like someone who does.” Try the classes free for a week, then casual visits are only $15.
Bodypunch Boxing Gym, Lakemba
Since 2005, Billy Hussein and his team at Bodypunch Boxing Gym have catered to beginners and professionals alike. Their motto: “We don’t train boxing, WE TEACH!!!” (note: their shouty emphasis, not ours). In the beginners’ class, you’ll learn about the correct stance, footwork and punching technique, while the experienced/intermediate class is for those who want to put those skills to the test through sparring. Sounds intimidating? Our girl crush and national boxing champ Lauryn Eagle holds women-only classes twice a week (check their FB for updates), plus regular ongoing box-fit sessions at the sister gym, Eagle Fitness, including classes for mums. Casual visits cost $15.
Grange High Performance, Smeaton Grange
Camden may be famous for mountain bike trails, boutique shops, and picturesque wineries, but in boxing circles, it’s known for producing an impressive number of fighters. Four professional boxers, two word champions, 11 Australian champions and 15 state champions to be exact. And all under the care of head coach Anthony Redward at Grange High Performance. Anthony isn’t just one of the nicest guys in boxing, he also happens to be the NSW state coach, so you know you’re in good hands. Besides the classes for fighters, Grange High Performance also offers cardio boxing, conditioning and functional fitness, and ladies-only classes. Casual visits cost $15.
Boxing Works, Sydney
Unlike the name suggests (we see a pattern here…), Boxing Works offers more than regular boxing classes. And once you learn that owner Larry Papadopolous is a former mixed martial arts fighter, it makes sense. This gym is great for anyone who also wants to learn Muay Thai, Brazilian jujitsu, Japanese jujutsu and Olympic wrestling. There are subtle differences at the three locations, too. Kings Cross is where most of the amateur boxers train under coach Ben Savva, the three-story Surry Hills building has a big weights room for those wanting the usual gym facilities, and Tramsheds is the prettiest, most hipster-looking boxing gym you’ll ever step foot in. Oh, and the Sydney Roosters have been known to train in Tramsheds, in case you wanted a side of eye candy with your workout. An 8-day trial costs $40, casual visits cost $30.
Blacktown PCYC, Blacktown
While most PCYCs offer good boxing classes, Blacktown PCYC has a great rep for fighters under head coach Rodney Williams. And, as you now know, this high quality training extends to the fitness classes as well, which they offer for all ages and skill levels. One of the coolest parts about training in Blacktown is that English boxing legend and world champion Nigel Benn is one of the coaches. If that doesn’t mean much to you, just know this: his professional record stands at 42 wins, 35 of those by knockout. Enough said. Membership at a PCYC is $20 for 12 months, then it’s $8 per class.
Need some new boxing gear? Check out local Sydney brand Unit Nine – they’ve got our favourite boxing gloves (pictured above), gym towels, and skipping ropes. And while you’re here, why don’t you sign up to our newsletter? You’ll love it. Promise.