CENTER— Center Schools art teacher Angel Ramos has fulfilled a dream he kept alive for many years, traveling cross country to boxing tournaments, trying to fit in boxing sessions with other sports, and struggling to find a way to both attend college and continue boxing.
His dream came true this summer when Ramos Boxing Gym opened on Worth Street in Center next door to Aventa Credit Union. Now Ramos can offer Center youths a close-to-home, affordable program that will help them learn discipline, promote fitness and keep them off the streets.
Some of the students at the gym have lost weight since starting training and others have toned up, Ramos said. The gym features a treadmill, exercise bike, exercise board, punching bags, sparring equipment and a boxing arena.
“Boxing builds character,” Ramos noted. “It teaches you a lot about respect. It humbles you and kids learn that life comes at you and has its ups and downs.” These are lessons young people need to learn in order to function in the adult world, he added.
Ramos was a Golden Glove in 2010 and fought two professional fights a few years back, he related. “I always had this dream but wanted to get my degree,” he said. “So I was always trying to box while going to school. Now when I am here, I love it; time flies.”
Boxing is not as popular as it used to be so training gyms are hard to find these days, especially in rural areas, Ramos explained. Denver hosts a lot of youth boxing, and he has attended shows there. But boxing is an expensive sport, mainly owing to equipment costs and funds needed to travel out of state to compete.
Sponsors are the answer, he said, because they can help with equipment and travel expenses. And hopefully over time, the Center gym will be able to find some sponsors of their own.
Ramos said he is willing to work with the community and families to make classes as affordable as possible. Classes in metro areas can cost as much as $60-70 a class. But here, training students pay $25 a month and classes cost $35 a month for children seven and older. Adults also can train.
Children’s classes run from 5 to 6 p.m. and adult classes from 7 to 8 p.m. The gym is open 5- 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday. At some point Ramos also hopes to offer scholarships for children earning high grade point averages.
For more information, call Ramos at 719-468-1029 or Google Ramos Boxing Gym, Center, Colo. for his website.