LANSING, MI -- Gallo Boxing Gym gives young people the opportunity to learn boxing fundamentals and self discipline.
Right next to Lansing Board of Water and Light’s Construction Division, sits the warehouse that contains Gallo Boxing Gym. It has boxers ranging from age 7 to 60 years old. Punching bags, uppercut bags and speed bags of all different sizes hang from the ceiling. They have a cage for mixed martial arts. However, the centerpiece is their full sized boxing ring. They also have a weight room with dumbbells, barbells, bench and leg presses and other machines.
Currently, they are concentrating on training boxers aged 7 through 16 for the USA Boxing’s Junior Olympics tournament and the Golden Gloves Tournament.
Joseph (Joe) Bermudez,Sr., the owner, said, “Boxing teaches life skills and fitness at the same time. A lot of people do not understand that while we are conditioning the body, we are also conditioning the mind.”
Joe has been in the boxing industry since 1984. He was introduced to boxing through his stepbrother, Isydro Lopez and his late cousin, Juan Bermudez. It was with the encouragement of his cousin, Juan, that they decided to open Gallo Boxing Gym.
Joe said, “I have been in the boxing industry for 30 years. I have seen a lot of changes since my son, Joe (Joey) Bermudez, Jr. started training and coaching the boxers about 6 years ago. He teaches a specific style of boxing that has created several world and national champions.”
Over the years, Joe’s mission has changed from not only building champions but to work as a mentor, build relationships and to give direction to young men and women. He stated that his mission compliments Joey's which is to work together to train and produce champions.
Joey’s stepson, Dominic Jones, 11-years-old, recently won the Jr. Olympics State Championship title in Flint, MI. He will be fighting at the Ohio regionals in June. The winner of the regionals will advance to the national tournament.
Jones has been boxing since he was 7-years-old. In 2015, he was a finalist in the national championships.
The Bermudez family is no stranger to the boxing world. Joe's youngest son, Sirilo (Lilo) Bermudez, who is 13-years-old also boxes. Lilo recently lost 30 pounds to compete in the Golden Gloves Tournament in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Currently, there are about 30 fighters training at the gym. One of Gallo’s boxers, Andreal Holmes, is an alternate on the 2016 USA Olympic boxing team.
Joe said, “I enjoy working with young people and helping them to not only train their bodies but to also retrain their minds. We work very closely with the parents to make sure the boxers are following a strict code of ethics. If they do not, we will not allow them to box. However, we help them get back on the right track towards being champions in the ring and out of the ring."
Gallo Boxing Gym is located at 735 E. Hazel Street. The gym hours are Monday through Friday from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. For more information, contact Joe at 517.402.7567.
This article was printed in the May 15, 2016 - May 28, 2016 edition.