As we are nearing the end of another school year, the team at Up & Under Sports took the time to spend a day with the brilliant charity, Empire Fighting Chance for a team building day.
Empire Fighting Chance is an amazing charity set up in 2006 to help young people experiencing significant challenges in their lives by using a combination of non-contact boxing and personal support. Their programme is used to inspire over 3,500 young people each year and each person will benefit from a personalised programme built from 5 services: non-contact boxing, mentoring, education, therapy and careers.
We arrived in our gym kit and were met by Sophie, Empire Fighting Chance’s Fundraising Officer. Sophie gave us a very warm welcome and introduced us to the fantastic work the charity does to support young people. We had a tour of the gym, where Sophie hinted that we were to be put through our paces throughout the day!
This was followed by a session led by Sam Kotadia, a very well respected sports psychologist who works closely with the team at Empire Fighting Chance. Sam has worked with many professional athletes and young people coming through the charity and was kind enough to share some of his experiences with us and how sports psychology impacts the work they do and how it can relate to the work we do in our schools. A key message was to focus on the things we can control, looking at what actions we can take to help achieve our goals without focusing on the outcome, which often we can’t control. We talked about how this action-based approach could fit within our team and organisation to help us continue to grow and deliver the best possible service to our customers.
We then got to try our hand at boxing in a practical session by one of the charity’s own coaches, Harvey Hemsley. Harvey led us through a high tempo, heart raising, boxing fitness session. We got to have our chance at doing the sorts of drills and activities the team use to reach out and connect to the young people they help.
Back to the classroom for some lunch and a discussion on our developing our company values and what actions we can focus on to help us achieve these. Then we were back to the gym to improve our boxing technique, jabbing, uppercuts and blocking – being careful to only hit the pads and not each other! It was great fun and pretty exhausting, we now have a bigger appreciation of how fit, and disciplined boxers have to be!
We rounded up the day by setting some personal short term goals for ourselves to emphasise the key message of the day – focus on actions not outcomes in order to achieve your best.
We are extremely grateful to everyone at Empire Fighting Chance for providing us with such and inspirational, thought provoking, challenging and fun day!
We look forward to working more closely with them in the future.