A BOXING gym in Boscombe aims to be welcoming to everyone as it celebrates its success in its first four years.

BodySnatchers boxing in Sea Road was opened by Marc Plunkett in 2019, after he spent two decades at Poole Amateur Boxing Club as both a boxer and a coach.

Since then, the gym has gone from strength to strength and now has a full under 18s section of members.

One of the coaches is Marc’s son, Marc Junior (MJ), who recently won the Western Counties Light Middleweight Championship, 25 years after his dad.

Bournemouth Echo: Marc and MJ sparring at the gym in Boscombe.

MJ’s victory on September 30 came a day before the fourth anniversary of the opening of BodySnatchers.

The gym aims to be welcoming to everyone, from six-year-olds starting out to pensioners looking for a workout.

“We’re not the typical boxing gym where you’ve got all the tough guys with their tops off and the attitudes and stuff like that, which some people link with boxing classes,” 51-year-old Marc said.

“Here, we get a lot of people who suffer with anxiety, maybe have had problems in the past with addictions and stuff like that.

“When they come in here, no one's being judged and they know that and they feel a lot more comfortable. The aim has been to be a welcoming gym, rather than a really tough gym.”

Bournemouth Echo: BodySnatchers aims to welcome everyone who comes through the door at the gym.

MJ said BodySnatchers is proud of the ‘variety of people’ of all ages from six to sixty that come to the gym.

“We’ve got all these people, some of them are pensioners that just come in for enjoyment. There’s a massive variety, which I think a lot of boxing gyms don’t cater for,” he said.

“With what comes with that ethos, is putting emphasis on things in boxing aside from what you’re doing in the ring.”

The gym supports the ‘knives down, gloves up’ message.

Bournemouth Echo: Inside BodySnatchers in Boscombe.

MJ, 22, added: “It’s a very important message, especially with how things are locally.

“It’s just pushing the ethos, especially to the under-18s, that just coming into a boxing gym, you have to do so much more than just being good at boxing.

“You get development of character, in terms of how to show respect, you get things like being on time, your attitude towards things, effort, work ethic, all these things that are so important in life that good boxing gyms can teach you.

“Some boxing gyms don’t focus on that and they just want to have all the best fighters.

“We want to have the best people, and we try to develop that through our under-18s and the people that come in through the door, they know they have to behave in a certain way to be here.

“That’s a really important thing for us aside from just teaching boxing.”