New Site Helps You Find Sparring Partners: Introducing SparGym
By Nat Wilkins
When Oleksiy Shevchukevych, the founder of SparGym.com, reached out to us last week, it wasn’t the first time I’d heard of the new site. Just a few days earlier, it had streamed through our @bkfights Twitter feed, and caught my attention. “This fills a real need, if it works out,” I thought to myself. I’d dare to venture that most boxers, either amateur or pro, have at times struggled to find equally matched sparring partners, or perhaps wanted more variety than they’ve been able to source. After all, it’s good training to get in the ring with people bringing as many different styles as possible.
Still in its early days with a few dozen fighters in the database, mostly in NY, SparGym aims to put sparring partners at your fingertips. The site is free and for both amateurs and pros, Oleksiy tells us.
So how does it actually work? Pretty simple. After registering at spargym.com, you search the database by age, gender, weight, height, stance, location and experience level. Find a match, then you send a sparring request through the system and wait for a response. Once you’ve made contact with the new partner, work out the timing and other details with them. All that’s left to do is pack your gym bag.
I signed up for an account. Registration took all of about two minutes. Then I went through the database and coincidentally zeroed in on Oleksiy as a potential match. From there, it was one button click to request a spar. A couple hours later, I received a system-generated email with a time, date and location Oleksiy had proposed for the sparring session. After clicking a link in the email, I was back in the system and counter-proposed a different time with a note about why I needed to make the adjustment. Very straightforward.
“We all know that if you are serious about boxing you have to spar regularly and with a variety of sparring partners. It’s always been the problem to find a new sparring partner. The issue is not that there is not enough boxers, but that it’s really hard to connect,” Oleksiy noted. “Another big problem is to find sparring partners for women boxers and young boxers. SparGym is created to address all these problems.”