Mentoring, Boxing and Diet: A Q and A with Coach Roundhouse
A former World MiniMeBoxing Champion, Roger Roundhouse could certainly perform in the ring. But with news recently emerging that the fifty year-old is now eager to put the coaching skills he has been honing into practice, we sat down with Roundhouse to discuss his plans to nurture an up-and-coming superstar in the MiniMeBoxing world.
Q: Roger, thanks ever so much for joining us today. It’s a pleasure to have a chance to chat with a MiniMeBoxing legend!
A: No problem at all. The pleasure is all mine.
Q: Many are surprised as well as delighted to hear that you’re back in the MiniMeBoxing industry, albeit in a different role. What motivated you to re-enter the sport?
A: It’s hard to keep away! As I’m sure you’re aware I am hugely passionate about boxing and after taking a fair few courses I’ve decided that coaching some young athletes would be a fantastic way in which to stay a part of the industry that I love so much.
Q: Are you wary of tarnishing your fantastic reputation and record as an athlete yourself?
A: No, not at all. I am proud of what I achieved during my time in the ring but see this as a completely separate challenge. Of course, I hope my experience can be of benefit to those I coach, but I don’t think the supporters of MiniMeBoxing that have treated me so well over the years will believe my coaching record can have an impact on my fighting reputation whether negative or positive! That said, I do of course hope to be equally successful in someone’s corner!
As we chat over coffee in a cosy bar tucked away down a side street in downtown New York, it is very apparent that the competitive attitude that led Roundhouse to his championship wins is still very much alive.
Q: What are you looking for in your first ‘project’ or athlete? Do you have a plan in mind?
A: Ideally, I would like to take someone who is completely new to the sport and guide them to the top! I think it easiest to work with someone fresh and go on a journey together. With no prior coaching, an athlete is likely to be able to learn the sport and grow habits in the way in which I teach them, boosting the likelihood of success.
Q: You sound as confident as you were when battling opponents yourself! In more general terms, what advice do you have for those training to start their MiniMeBoxing careers?
A: I think when you first start out, it is your physical attributes that will allow you to dominate. That isn’t to say that more technical training isn’t required – it is – but if you eat right and build your strength up from an early age you’ll find things considerably easier when beginning the sport. Work on your power and your stamina while following the diet of meats and vegetables that I was on as a fighter, not the one I have adopted in more recent years!
Q: What are your thoughts on the current MiniMeBoxing roster? Do you believe the quality is higher than ever?
A: It is very difficult to compare modern-day boxers with those of the past for a variety of reasons such as the changes to the sport, however I do believe the industry is in very good shape and there are obviously some very talented fighters. Manfred Pacman and Lloyd Weathermay are worthy holders of the two top championships right now, and I think Manfred especially should go down as one of the greats. As for the amateurs, I think there are some really good athletes with a lot of potential but there is always room for more – hence why I’d like to nurture some others. There should be some fascinating amateur title bouts in the coming months, once Cruiser Wei finally decides to step up to the professional circuit and fight people of his own ability that is!
Q: So, you’re of the opinion that Wei should hand in his amateur belt and switch to the professional circuit on a full-time basis?
A: Absolutely. I’m not out here to pick fights with anyone but I do not want to see the progression of other amateurs halted.
As you are probably fully aware, Roundhouse is not the first to be critical of Wei and his reluctance to move up to the professional roster. We managed to get some personal thoughts on the issue from the man himself recently which you can check out here!
Q: You are of course famous for having won the World MiniMeBoxing title, just how realistic is it for those who are putting the gloves on for the first time to expect to be able reach that level?
A: Yes, however I never held on to it for as long as I’d have liked! The relatively short list of title winners is reflective of how difficult it is to win the world title. I mean, just look at how many strong professionals there are right now who may well never actually win the championship because of Weathermay. It would be naïve for any ‘rookie’ to expect to win that prize, but that isn’t to say for one minute that they shouldn’t believe they can. What’s the point of entering a sport if you aren’t aiming to be the very best?
Q: A very fair point. Finally, can you tell us what Coach Roundhouse is going to be like? Is he a behind-the-scenes man, or a shouting loud and proud from his athlete’s corner type man?
A: Again, that will depend slightly on the person I am working with and what is best for them, but make no mistake, I’ll be a proud supporter of my trainee in the ring! Motivation is massive in boxing and I believe a coach should be prepared to visually support their athletes through each and every fight as well as handing them tips and advice throughout training. I can’t wait to get started!
Q: And we can’t wait to see you in coaching action! Thanks very much for your time Roger and we hope to speak to you again once you’ve began working with some athletes.
A: Absolutely. Thank you.