The first time I practised shadowboxing I felt anxious because I was aware I was no longer the only person involved in my new sport. I realised that entering the ring was forming a partnership of respect with the other person I am sparring with. It is much more than hitting a bag or pad it is about the mental and physical strength taking you to the next level of confidence.

The psychological safety was key to progressing my training beyond spending one hour with the coach every few weeks. This was a pivotal moment in my progression from hobby to a new passion that would shape the next few years of my life. I wanted to have an opportunity of demonstrating my new capability and the target was the games to be held in Hong Kong in 2022. When I discovered that Boxing had been removed from the list of sports I decided to create the world gay boxing championships because I believe everybody should have the same opportunities to compete in sport.

Anxiety is something that should not hold you back. I use fear as a source of information guiding me to making a decision aware that I may be uncomfortable. I do not underestimate the enormity of the next few years and delivering on promises I have made to the community. People are believing me and have committed their time, energy and resources joining me to make the boxing championships happen.

The anxiety of boxing my shadow is now a passion to make a difference!