Maria and Anthony Archuleta are in the process of fulfilling one of Anthony’s long time dreams – to own and run a boxing gym. Anthony used to box when he was young and remembers how it affected him. He wants to share his passion to influence youngsters.
“I lived in Las Vegas for a while and trained at a gym there. I experienced first-hand how it changed me and saw it changing others. My business partner and coach, Ernie Trujillo and I now want to affect the lives of others in a positive way,” Anthony explains.
The partners began renovating an old auto body shop more than a year ago. Anthony built the boxing ring himself, after purchasing one that broke soon after they started using it.
They met with Executive Director, Liz Ross to discuss the financial plan for The Ring of Champions in Ignacio. Ross helped break-down the cost of the building and other on-going expenses. They then analyzed what the cost for membership should be and how many members they would need to cover expenses. She proposed places they could apply to for grants and funding.
“This is still a labor of love,” Maria explains. “We are not making much money but we see the changes that are happening in the kids that come.” The gym has a double-end bag, an upper cut bag, a bead bag, a heavy bag, a jump rope area and an elliptical machine. They have a separate room for cardio workouts.
Future plans include a sporting goods store where schools and individuals can purchase the clothing and equipment needed for seasonal sports. Their longer term goals include offering after-school tutoring and bringing in guest speakers to talk to the kids.
Anthony says, “Some kid’s parents used to box so they understand the value and how important it is. The kids love it. It gives them an outlet and helps them control their anger. Through boxing they see that their actions have immediate consequences. It’s like a chess game. You have to strategize and anticipate your opponents moves – it’s psychological as well as physical.”