Sharing your talents with the community is a no brainer for retired heavyweight boxing legend Hayden H-bomb Wright.
The former professional boxer began his career in 2015 with a TKO (Total Knock-out) win and the rest is history, but these days the Yangebup local is knocking us all out with his work as a respected youth mentor.
He is Quintessentially Cockburn!
Retiring in February this year with another TKO win, Hayden has four years experience running his own free boxing programs for local youth from his home-based Yangebup Boxing Club.
In July he began heading up a new free weekly boxing program at the City’s Cockburn Youth Centre, attracting up to 12 participants each week, and lots of regular new faces keen to learn the skills of self-defence.
But the coach and mentor said some of the most important aspects of the program had nothing to do with boxing.
“It’s more about passing on boxing’s complimentary but all-important lessons for leading a healthy, active lifestyle, and building confidence, self-respect and discipline, while making new friends and connecting with the community,” Hayden said.
Hayden has three titles to his name – WA, South Queensland and Australian Journeyman – but says the biggest lessons boxing taught him were to keep going especially when things get hard, to stay focused on maintaining physical and mental health, to value friends and family, and get involved with your community by helping it out.
The disability support worker and father of three children under five bucks the ‘hard man’ stereotype common in boxing, and has a natural desire to share his skills with the community, especially kids struggling to fit in.
“Growing up is tough, often kids feel like outsiders. Boxing is a way to feel part of a team even though it’s an individual sport,” he said.
“It’s an outlet for physical energy for everyone, and staying active is often the key to good mental health and getting to know and be proud of yourself. Plus you make great friends in the community along the way.
“That’s why I started the free weekly session at my boxing club, to help out the local kids that didn’t really have a lot to do to keep busy in their spare time.
“I am excited to offer a similar model once a week at the City of Cockburn’s youth centre, where I can share my skills with some new kids who are up for a bit of a challenge.”