BOXING coach Bianca Johnson, 19, believes Nicola Adams’ Olympic success has ignited a passion for the sport among the fairer sex, and done a lot to change people’s perceptions of female competitors.
Adams, trained at the EIS in Sheffield, became the first female boxer in history to win an Olympic medal, much to the delight of Bianca.
“She was amazing, and thoroughly deserved it,” said the Intake coach, who works for Sheffield promoter Dennis Hobson. “She put everything into that [gold medal] victory and it has brought so much publicity to girls’ boxing. It showed everybody what women can do and probably changed a lot of people’s views.”
The win has already impacted on the area, with Adams’ gold medal having inspired a number of newcomers to join the ranks in Bianca’s Saturday morning beginners classes at the South Yorkshire Sports Academy.
“I’ve had at least five girls join up since Nicola’s win,” she said, before explaining how several of her other pupils have also stepped it up a notch in light of Team GB’s Olympic success.
“I’ve got three or four girls in particular who are about ready to compete, and they’ve really been putting their heart and soul into it over the last couple of weeks. They’ve even been arriving at the gym before me to do some extra skipping!”
Bianca watched the GB boxers in training prior to the Olympics, and was particularly impressed with super-heavyweight Anthony Joshua - who she correctly predicted would win a gold medal, but thought the girls looked in great form as well.
“They were very sharp, and looked in top shape. Now I’ve had some of my girls asking after the likes of Nicola and Natasha (Jonas). They want a piece of it for themselves!”