Gabrielle – My Story
Hi, my name is Gabrielle Reid. I am 15 years old and I have Hemiplegia Cerebral palsy. I live in Poole, Dorset. I love to do boxing and the training is hard but it is worth it when I get to fight!
Where it all began
I first started boxing when I was 9 years old with my brother Andre and my sister Serena. This is because our mum wanted us to learn self-defence. For my first boxing lesson I was very nervous and shy and I found it very difficult. It took me a few sessions to settle in and really enjoy boxing but one day something just clicked and I finally found something I loved to do and I have never looked back since then!
My First Fight
Fast forward 5 and a half years and after a lot of hard work, dedication and commitment from me, my coach Mo and my family on the 28th of July 2018 I stepped in for my first fight. This was truly one of the best days of my life. I loved it! Every single minute of it! The fight was 3X2min rounds. I put everything I had in to it and got the win. After that day, I knew that this was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Fast forward to the 20th of April 2019 and I’m fought for the second time. Again, I trained hard and got my hand raised as the winner like I said before, the feeling is second to none!
You can watch Gabrielle’s fight here:
A link to the piece by BBC Radio Solent is here
To get to the stage where I was ready to fight it has not been easy there has been some obstacles along the way and it has taken years to get to where I am now. Physically, it takes me a lot longer to pick up certain things for example, skipping about 2 years ago this is something I couldn’t do however I worked up from barely being able to do one skip to know being able to do as many as I put my mind to. Running was another thing I really struggled to do however now I can do this and I can even beat my sister in a race from time to time!! Mentally, there are times when I really don’t believe in myself and I feel like I want to give up but then I look back at how far I have come and where I would be without boxing and I keep going! I couldn’t do this on my own though, I have a great team behind me including the best coach: Mo, my mum, my friends and family. I couldn’t have got to where I am without everything they do for me and I’m so grateful for them all!
Through the years I have been boxing, I have achieved a few things what I am very proud of:
- The ‘Everyone Active’ sports award which I got nominated for.
- Winning my first two fights.
- Raising money for charities and doing my first school assembly which I hope to do more of this year.
- Gaining some amazing sponsor: Anytech Solutions, Luxurycare – More Than Just Care, KR fire safety and Poole Ex-service men’s club. All of these sponsors support me with my training and I am so lucky to have them with me on my journey! Thank you very much to them all.
- A personal Invite from the Mayor of Bournemouth to a buffet reception
Most of all, I just want to be happy and enjoy boxing. However when the time is right I would like to hopefully go to the Olympics. Until then I’m just going to keep enjoying myself and taking every opportunity I get. I would also like to keep inspiring others to achieve their goals and dreams.
Gabrielle is also involved in the Life Changing Choices Project which is run by volunteers at our local church The Good Shepherd. It is a great community activity providing people with an opportunity to do some non contact boxing, in a safe place. The project supports people of all ages and Gabrielle enjoys being part of something within her community linked to the thing she loves most – boxing
“My advice to anyone who wants to take up boxing is to find a gym and coach that will support you and that you are happy to train in. Stay committed, trust the process progress doesn’t come over night… Finally enjoy yourself most importantly and have fun. Believe “
Supporting Cerebral Palsy Sport
Gabrielle has been involved in supporting Cerebral Palsy Sport by fundraising for us. Gabrielle organised a boxing night and raised £102 for our charity. Thank You!
Thank you Gabrielle and we cant wait to hear more about your boxing achievements!