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Classic Kickboxing Is Creating Boxing Champs of All Levels

By Pamela Sosnowski

The interior of Classic Kickboxing with its punching bags, regulation sized boxing ring, and exposed brick walls may seem intimidating to a beginner boxer. Owner Mauricio Gonzalez Guzman, however, wants all members to know that her Pasadena boxing studio is actually designed for everyone from the person who's never thrown an undercut to the professional fighter.

"Classic Kickboxing's culture is supportive, welcoming, and non-intimidating," he said. "Our studio is unique in that we cater to all levels of experience from novice to the professional with our different offerings: classic, elite, and personal training. We pride ourselves in giving our students a clean and safe environment to train in and our staff and coaches are friendly, respectful and helpful."

The classic training program provides an introduction to boxing fundamentals and is suitable for all levels. Classes in the program including kickboxing boot camp, self-defense, and Savante-Thai boot camp, which incorporates components of Thai kickboxing. The self-defense class teaches how to apply kickboxing moves to protect one's self with techniques that include escaping from common grabs and holds and counteracting strikes that an attacker may use.

Elite training is for those that want to step up their boxing and fighting game and learn more advanced techniques. Sessions at this level include boxing taught by professionals that combine Olympic and professional boxing moves, bag work, and competing with other qualified students. Muay Thai, a form of martial art practiced in Thailand that uses stand-up striking moves, is also part of Classic Kickboxing's elite program.

Classic Kickboxing's trainers have real world experience in boxing and martial arts, and all have competed and acquired a variety of titles and Olympic medals. Guzman stresses that although her staff can throw some serious punches, all are gentle when it comes to offering guidance to students.

"We offer several classes throughout the day, seven days a week to accommodate our students' schedules," he said. "Our coaches are accomplished athletes who are professional, genuine, and patient. They make sure students are safely working out and growing."

Personal training for individuals and small groups is also available to help hone in on specific areas that need improvement and are customizable to meet a member's fitness needs. Classic Kickboxing also offers nutritional guidance and sports medicine to provide a well-rounded fitness program.

To help maintain its cleanliness, Guzman and her staff enforce some basic rules of etiquette. Students must bring their own gloves, wraps, and a towel. Although gloves and wraps are provided for a newbie's first class, bringing their own and tossing used wraps helps keep the atmosphere pleasant for all members and coaches. Members are also discouraged from free styling during classes; following an instructor's direction ensures they can progress in a safe manner towards their boxing goals.

Since the gym opened 15 years ago it's been featured in television commercials, advertising, and photo shoots. It's also attracted top fighters such as Evander Holyfield, Oscar De La Hoya, and Freddie Roach. Guzman says he was inspired to open Classic Kickboxing for pretty much the same reasons he learned boxing.

"What I love most about kickboxing is the feeling it gives me," he said. "I feel empowered, strong and energetic. That is what I hope our students will feel, all while having fun."

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