"Boxing training demands that you strike a pose--but Enzo
Giordano’s classes are definitely not for posers. Based at ramshackle premises
Islington, first impressions are not good. Don’t be put off though: walking in with
the man himself is like stepping on to a film set. The lights flick on to reveal a
huge room with battered bags hanging in rows, a boxing ring, a rickety weights
machine and an intriguing collection of posters covering the walls."
"A super-middleweight contender not so long ago, Giordano has been running the club
for six years. He began teaching at women’s gyms in south London but ended up
sticking with this one place where he operates three days a week."
"Throwing punches, I soon discovered is a remarkably addictive. But, as this is boxing
training rather than the sport itself, none of the blows ever land on someone else’s
nose. Beginners should arrive early so that Enzo can demonstrate, with the skill of a
former pro, how to wrap the bandages which serve as protection for your hands and
wrists. He then demonstrates the basic stance and key punches: jabs, crosses, hooks and
upper-cuts. These are the essentials; everything else is practice. The class lasts 90
minutes, but it usually goes on longer as people lose track of time."
"The warm-up a run round the block or a stint on the skipping ropes is followed by
training. Working with a partner, you complete all the stations: sparring in the ring,
medicine ball, pads, weights and hammering blows on various punchbags. The session
finishes with a bout on sit-ups and press-ups. This is a team effort everyone has to
shout the count. I left dirty, smelly and utterly exhilarated. Sure, this is exercise
but not as anyone at a swanky gym would know it." -JE