Recently I was asked how I defined community.
As the gym develops and gets some years behind it, I really think this through. I talked to OG yesterday…..(you may know him as coach Richard Wells) and he reminded me that I once said that our gym was a place where everyone came together to suffer.
OG also talked about how our gym is a hub. We are the centerpiece for a lot of people. They come in and then go out on the many spokes that carry them home, to work, family, vacation and other activities. We are the central hub where they come to express themselves fully, in a precarious mix of anonymity and exposure.
Our coaching staff, does a remarkable job of holding this space, all the while teaching excellent boxing fundamentals from the ground up. I push myself and the coaches push themselves into the depths of discomfort so we can better sit in our gym member’s presence and allow them the space to face themselves.
You can feel the bravery once you walk into Arcaro- it is undeniably palpable. We all face so much in an unspoken fury of 3 minute rounds. We all appreciate these walls and the bags because they rarely speak out loud what we reveal on the inside. In moments when words are necessary, the coaches are there to guide, to lead by example, to take on what needs to be taken on, to represent the silence. If you aren’t ready to take it on, I think that Arcaro probably isn’t the best fit for you and that too is ok. We all have our places to be.
All of us coaches are fallible and honest in that regard…..we are empathetic, kind, stern, demanding, hard, expecting, patient and capable of accountability within and outside of us. We embrace boxing and the pursuit of greater skill in and out of the ring.
We give the community an opportunity to take shape and hold its malleability while we stay constant in our pursuit of self knowledge and better boxing.