Despite the popularity of boxing as a means to stay in shape, the number of proper boxing gyms in NYC has plummeted over the years. This weekend, I spent a day filming in the world renowned Gleason’s Gym in DUMBO. The environment is simply inspiring. Every angle of the gym provided a visual feast to the camera’s lens; the walls are wrapped with the faces of champions.
This boxing gym is a place of pure inspiration. Though everyone from Muhammad Ali to Mike Tyson have trained in Gleason’s, a novice can easily see themselves hitting the bag there even if only for a good workout. The sweaty smell of the air is the perfect accompaniment to the worn ropes on the ring and fading paint on the lockers. The gym is clearly a melting pot of race, gender and age. Boxers range from small children to men well into their fifties. And while I was there to shoot one particular female fighter whom had recently won the Golden Gloves Tournament, I was overwhelmed by the number of ladies training tough as nails. Like the boardwalk of Coney Island or the small shops of the Lower East Side, Gleason’s Gym is one of the very special old-world parts of New York that simply can’t be replicated.
Thank you for all of your help and generosity Bruce & Fire.