Kickboxing isn’t just a young man’s sport. Just ask 65 year old Stanley J. Holcomb who has been teaching Cardio Kickboxing at the Hyattsville Fitness Evolution for the past four years. Holcomb, along with his regular class attendees, provides a frequent reminder that age, injury, or lack of experience need not be a deterrent for anyone interested in beginning Cardio Kickboxing classes.
Holcomb’s fitness journey began years ago when he began training, and later competing in Karate Tournaments – ultimately earning the Grand Champion Title in 1999. While training and competing in the classic field of Karate, Holcomb also began practicing Billy Blanks’ Tae Bo. Tae Bo is a combination of Cardio and various martial arts styling that was all the rage for anyone trying to get into shape in the 1990’s. Holcomb ultimately became a certified Tae Bo instructor and opened his own studio where he provided classes throughout the week. Unfortunately, the classes he was provided were not bringing in enough revenue and he was not able to keep his studio doors open.
Holcomb didn’t allow the closing of his studio to stifle his passion for fitness and providing classes for those who were interested, so he began teaching classes at several local studios before he took on his role at Fitness Evolution, where he now teaches two classes per week to a loyal group of attendees of various ages and capabilities. You might ask, “What is it that he does that has people so ready to attend his classes?” He explains that it has taken him learning how to deliver the right combination of high energy moves to boost those attending his classes, along with slowing it down so that those same attendees can feel confident completing the moves. He understands that in a class that takes as much energy as Kickboxing, it is important for him to provide the same energy as he expects those attending his class to exhibit – so he has learned how to ration his energy.
By providing such an energetic and welcoming atmosphere, Holcomb has welcomed countless individuals who might not have previously felt that they had the capabilities or the fitness level necessary to complete these classes. Although each individual attending his classes arrives with a wide range of capabilities, each leaves with the knowledge that they powered through a challenging routine and gave it all they had.
While Holcomb continues to work full time outside of Fitness Evolution, it does not appear that he will be retiring anytime soon – and anyone who has attended his classes can attest to the fact that he still takes a lot of pride and has a sense of purpose in teaching these classes. He has made his passion for fitness, especially fitness inspired by martial arts, into a lifestyle that has allowed him to carry on the art that he has practiced for so long. His career may seem unlikely at his age, but again, Kickboxing isn’t just a young person’s sport.