Ecosse ABC is a boxing charity helping kids in the local community of Coatbridge. The gym’s aim is to encourage kids to participate in boxing at their own pace, and those who choose to do so can become an amateur at grassroots level, under the watchful eye of trainer Mark McGuinness.
The gym encourages kids to grow their social skills and live a healthy lifestyle.
Mark has experience at boxing under well-known coach Rab Bannan:
“I did boxing for a short time under Rab Bannan – a legend and Ricky Burns’ former trainer – at The Barn. Once I left The Barn, I did a lot more boxing on and off for years.
Why did you decide to open a boxing gym?
“It originally started in our local community centre as kids were always hanging around with nothing to do. I was still very interested in boxing and decided that’s what I was going to do.
“We currently have approximately 70 kids registered – most of them for fitness. There are few who want to progress as far as they can.”
Mark regularly visits primary schools to introduce boxing to the kids. As a result, many boys and girls have joined the gym to have fun and keep fit. He added:
“My daughter always told me the different sports representatives who visit the schools for health and wellbeing projects. Boxing hadn’t been represented – so I applied to active schools plus was accepted.”
Autism is close to Mark, he explains:
“Both my wife and I have family members with autism, most of the kids struggle to cope with sports (concentration element etc) – We just adapt to the environment they need.”
Ecosse Boxing Gym recently joined Boxing Scotland and is now registered as an official amateur boxing gym. A proud Mark said:
“It was a very proud moment; it was like “YES” we’ve finally made it. We have kids coming on who will be asset to any competition boxing.
“Hopefully we can get involved in all the tournaments coming up, as a new club we still have to find out more information on what and when we can enter.”
Autism class 5-6pm (Tue)
6-7pm (Mon, Wed, Thur, Fri)
£2 per session (aged 6+) or £15 per month.
Club Contact: Mark McGuiness
Address: Unit 60 Fountain Business Centre, Ellis Street, Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, ML5 3AA