Monday, June 29, 2015

How did you get into sport?

PIC via EosFitness
On this blog I usually focus on people who are succeeding at some level, but it's good to remember back when some of us started out.

That first wobbly long bike-ride, the first time a punch connected with pads, the first time you ran without heaving up your lunch too ... the good times.

This video below I spotted on Vimeo started today's post. Shot in Master Toddy's MuayThai gym in Bangkok - where British fighter Emma Thomas trains - it features two women who may be in their very first boxing class ever.

You can see the trainers just fully chilling out, no need to worry about getting tired or hurt in this class. But I love how encouraging they are - even as they struggle to hold back laughter at how ungainly the women are,  they are pulling them along the path.

Eventually these women can cross the barrier from puffing through a little exercise to doing sport. Women asked why they avoid sports often list feeling intimidated and unfit at the top of the list. That can be changed.

It's a great thing to watch as so many women think just because they gave on sport after school that it can never feature again. Or maybe it never featured. I often wonder where talented women cyclists or rowers or boxers come from as in school we are usually pushed towards team sports like netball or basketball. 

How did you get into your sport?


Callie Muay Thai in Thailand from Dale Riley on Vimeo.


(UPDATED - Tuesday as this post had not uploaded on Monday as planned)

Friday, June 26, 2015

Laila B - an actress gets in the boxing ring

Laila B PIC via Facebook

How often have you heard about an actor who really  beefed-up and took on a huge physical challenge to play a boxer? A lot, right? How often do those boxers actually fight? Hardly ever.

In this latest Kickstarter project on women’s boxing, the team at “Laila B” are taking a more hands-on approach.

David Williams from the production team contacted me with this intriguing blurb: “In the midst of an identity crisis, Laila B. crosses paths with a deceased woman and discovers her first pair of boxing gloves.”

Unlike documentaries featured here before this is a scripted story inspired by true events in producer and actor Amy DePaola’s life. If you’re into film, they say it’s done in “cinéma vérité” or truth style.

Main character Laila B gets attacked outside her apartment. At first distraught, she later hears of a similar attack which resulted in the death of another woman. This makes her re-assess her own situation and she grabs what she sees as a second chance at life with both hands. Or both gloves.
De Paola says: “Part of cinéma vérité is to shoot what is really happening and be a fly on the wall. So I’m actually training to fight, and I am really, really scared.”
Amy de Paola via Kickstarter
She will take part in a fight on October 7th as part of charity boxing event “Haymakers for Hope Belle of the Brawl”.  

Their Kickstarter goal for Laila B is $7,000 (€6,200) of which just over $4,000 is already raised.

So what are you paying for? The crew has just this week gone into production so that final push over the line is what they’re looking for help with at this stage.

People have different opinions on Kickstarter and its value. But I think if you don’t like it, then don’t get involved.

I spoke to VICE’s Lindsey Newall about crowdfunding in sport for "The Expensive Road to Thailand, Crowdfunding in MuayThai."
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