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ROCK gives parents, kids an after school option

ROCK gives parents, kids an after school option
ROCK gives parents, kids an after school option | ROCK gives parents, kids an after school option
Special to the Press
“Team ROCK gives me something to do besides sitting on my butt at home playing video games,” said 14 year-old Carter Goode.
Goode is a member of an after-school boxing program in Dresden run by coach Brandon Taylor.
ROCK is a Christian-based organization that stands for “Reaching Our Community Kids” and is composed of three parts: tutoring, cardio conditioning and boxing.
Thirteen children are in the program and come by bus to the gym. Once there, the students put up their belongings and quickly get to work on their homework. Two volunteers help with any problems the kids may have with schoolwork.
Spencer Giannoni, age 11, believes the tutoring is important.
“It helps me to make better grades in the future,” he said.
Fellow teammate Quea Taylor, the 10 year-old son of the coach, agreed, saying, “it helps me keep my grades up and I get to learn more.”
Brother Ricco Taylor, age 12, added, “I get the skills to be a boxer. I get the discipline and the right amount of educational help.”
Taylor is strict on discipline and the children seem polite.
Jason Gallimore, a parent with five children in the program, said his children are more well-mannered since being a part of Team Rock. His son Nathan, age 13, agreed.
“Ever since I started boxing, I have been doing good,” Nathan Gallimore said. “I used to get grounded and get whippings and had to write sentences at home, but now I am a pretty good kid.”
Courtney McMinn, 13, says the program helps her at school.
“I used to get into a lot of fights at school and I didn’t know how to control my anger,” she said. “This gives me an outlet to control my anger.”
Rylee Wilson, 12, concurs.
“My attitude used to be really bad and now here we have to be really well-mannered,” Wilson said. “My attitude has gotten better.”
Anthony Sexton, 13, said, “We are not allowed to fight outside the gym, period. If we do, we will get a 30 day suspension or worse be kicked out of the gym.” These rules has also helped 11 year-old Curtis Gallimore. “I used to be in a lot of fights. Since I have been here we can’t fight outside the gym. People have been making me mad but I haven’t done anything about it because I don’t want to lose any of this at the gym.”
Little brother Jason Gallimore, age 10, adds, “ It helps me with discipline and I am getting into a lot less trouble.”
After 45 minutes of tutoring, the children eat a snack and then get ready for conditioning. Coach Taylor runs the kids through 30 minutes of exercises to get them into better condition. Rylee Wilson says, “When I first started I was sore, but I am getting used to it. I’m getting into better shape and gym at school is easier.” Sister Payton Wilson, age 13, adds, “I’ve lost a bunch of weight since I started here.”
Goode says the program is helping him to be more muscular “When I started two years ago I weighed 115 pounds and now I weigh 156. Most of the gain has been in muscle.”
After the conditioning, the children spar with each other. Coach Taylor pairs up the kids and gives them tips on how to improve. Sexton says this is really helping him. “My footwork is getting better and my fat ratio is down. I used to weigh 130 but now I am at 116 pounds.” Quea Taylor adds, I’m getting to be a better boxer and I have fun with my friends.”
The children have bonded together. “The people here are nice and they respect me for myself, “ says Sexton. “ I feel like they are practically family. I hang out with them almost every day. We are a team and we do it together.” 9 year-old Payton Doster says, “The kids are all fun.
The family aspect at the gym is important to Coach Taylor. “One thing about this program is I expect the best from the kids and I also expect the best from their parents. I tell the parents if you don’t want me in your business, this isn’t the place where your child needs to be.”
Taylor adds, “ I’m one to ride a kid if they are wrong but I will go to the end with them if they are right.”
Taylor has been a cage fighter for the past five years and holds a title belt. He will have his first professional boxing match in February. “It gets a little hard sometimes to run the gym and also box myself, but I have people around me who volunteer to help pull us together. We are a family here.”
Taylor wants to thank all of his volunteers and “I especially want to thank Joyce and Buck Hurt for the use of the building and to our sponsors West Tennessee Wholesale, Gunslinger Guns, Pizza USA, Computer Express and Southern Ink.”
The program runs Monday through Thursday from 3 p.m. until 5:30 p.m. During the summer the hours will vary, but Taylor plans to keep the kids busy in the community. “We will do a reading program at the library and we are going to volunteer at the nursing home. We want to do different things in the community such as a program for drug-free awareness.”
To enroll a child in the after school boxing program, call Taylor at (731)-220-5617 or come to the gym at 210 West Main Street. Published in The WCP 1.24.13