Friend of Eighty6, Niki Gittus gave us 5 minutes to catch up with him about Unit 85 Boxing, his new boxing training company.
Tell us a bit about your background in boxing and any particular highlights.
I first went to the gym when I was nine, just to try it out really. Both my dad and my brother went with me and just instantly fell in love with the sport the whole concept of tactics and out-witting someone has always appealed to me – being better than your opponent in every way possible is a skill I tried to achieve everyday I was in the gym. I’ve had many highlights in my career but one that stands out to me is winning the national championship and putting the gold medal around my dad’s neck after I was presented it. It was something I always wanted to do as a thank you to him always believing in me and taking me all over the North East for the best training and sparring, giving me the opportunity to be the best I could be.
How did Unit 85 Boxing come about?
I started Unit 85 the second week of January this year as I’d lost interest in boxing massively throughout 2015. I had people telling me I still had a lot to give back to the sport which I loved for so many years, there were three main people who made me realise there was something still left in the basement to pass on so I owe a lot of where I am with Unit 85 to my wife, my dad and to my best mate Stev for constantly telling me to coach people and give something back.
What do you enjoy most about training people?
My enjoyment from training people is seeing the progression that they make and explaining how different styles, movements and techniques work but what really makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up is seeing someone you have taught pulling off a technique you have shown them without you actually telling them to do it that’s when you know that your training has paid off.
Do you need any prior fitness training or boxing experience to come and train at Unit 85 Boxing?
To me boxing is one of the toughest sports to date so one of the toughest sports needs the toughest training, but at the same time, anyone of any gender, experience or age (preferably minimum age of 10) can benefit from training at Unit 85. I don’t limit myself as I want people of all types of levels and goals, as it makes me work more to provide the right training to achieve the right results needed.
What’s your best training tip you always teach your clients?
The one main thing I tell all of my clients I’m teaching is to relax and breathe. Boxing is not as complex as people think if you simplify the technique to the level of person your working with. I always say if you don’t have fun in one of my sessions or at least smile you can have a free training session – I stand by satisfaction guaranteed!