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Gloves Not Guns Youth Boxing Program

By Todd McClamroch in News on Oct 29, 2007 9:50PM

2007_10_29_world_sport_chic.jpgThe United States Olympic Committee awarded an Olympic Opportunity Grant earlier this month to World Sport Chicago. The Gloves not Guns program, run in cooperation with USA Boxing, the Police Athletic League, and the Chicago Park District, promotes the sport of boxing to Chicago's urban youth as a way to stay in shape--and out of trouble.

World Sport Chicago President William Scherr said in a press release, "By motivating young people to spend their spare time in the gym, rather than on the streets, we'll be using sports to change people's lives for the better."

Last fall, Chicagoist interviewed John E. "The Pecos Kid" Oden, author of White Collar Boxing, and he pointed out the benefits of boxing for keeping in shape saying "Boxing is a sport that can be practiced by anyone, regardless of age, background, physical condition, handicap, or disability. It is the best form of exercise." ESPN agrees with him that it is a great source of exercise and went as far as to say "[Boxing] is the sport that demands the most from the athletes who compete in it." (Last on that list from ESPN was fishing which was just behind billiards.)

Chicagoist just hopes this program will create some positive future role models unlike three Romanian boxers who were sent home from the AIBA tournament for shoplifting at Nordstrom's last Friday.

For those interested in seeing competitive boxing, check out the 2007 AIBA World Boxing Championships as they move into the round of sixteen phase tomorrow afternoon.