Local boxing gym aims to inspire kids

Posted at 8:18 AM, Mar 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-02 17:08:53-05

Chesapeake, Va. - 757 Boxing Club and Fitness is on a mission and that mission goes beyond helping people with fitness goals.

The gym is run by Reginald Barnett Sr., Shannon Brown, and Michael Royster, and has been open in Chesapeake since September, 2014.  Since then, it has been a life changing experience for many young people.

“It turned my life for the positive,” said Jabir Cole, who’s been coming to the gym for the last 8 months.

Prior to that, he and his mother, Cornesha Haley admit he was having a lot of troubles.

“In school he wasn’t on the right path, it was almost as if he had given up,” said Haley.

Haley and her son moved here when he was 10-years-old. She got married, but later divorced. That’s when she says things started to go downhill with Jabir.

“My son felt like he has lost his place. Unfortunately he kind of started acting out in school and his grades started reflecting that.”

It wasn’t until Jabir joined 757 Boxing Club and Fitness that he really decided to turn his life around.

“My coaches changed my life. I had kind of lost my drive and this gym really gave me something to work for like my work ethic. I applied that to school,” said Jabir.

Cornesha points to the way the instructors embrace the kids when it comes to talking about the difference that they’ve made in her sons life.

“How they wrap their arms around them, and showed him that there are people out here who care.”

Reginald Barnett, is the founder of 757 Boxing Gym and Fitness. He says his goal coming is was to get as many kids off the street as possible.

“We have enough problems on the street as it is, so we want to get all the kids in here to keep them off the streets because this is a good avenue for them,” said Barnett.

The ultimate goal for Reggie, Shannon, and Mike is to move into a bigger facility and impact even more lives.