ABOUT DON CHARLES

Born in Nigeria in 1962, Don Charles moved with his family to Britain in 1974.
The eldest of five children, he had an admirable work ethic instilled in him from a young age, and excelled during his school years.

Charles' first memories of boxing were of watching bouts in the public parks in Nigeria, with his father an avid fan of the sport and Ali especially. The interest in boxing continued into adulthood and Charles finally gloved up at the age of 19 at the All Stars gym in Paddington, still The Mecca of gyms for him to this day.

At the age of 25, Charles enrolled at the Brixton ABC in Herne Hill where he was coached by Floyd Alexander. Boxers including Danny Williams, Spencer Fearon and Marcus McCrae were there at the time and he sparred with both Williams and Henry Akinwande. Boxing as a super-heavyweight under the name Charlie Eni, Charles had 13 bouts and won 10, retiring at the age of 30.

Charles' route into coaching gained momentum through a security firm he ran where he insisted on training all 150 doormen in boxing so they could handle themselves. Whilst teaching his staff how to box, he refined the methods Floyd Alexander had used at the Brixton club using many of the techniques from his template, creating his hugely successful 'BoxClever' coaching method.

Then in 2005 Charles opened MyGym in an unused plot in Finchley, describing it as a defining moment in his life. Initially Danny Williams agreed to be his first boxer, but unfortunately didn't come to fruition. Then by chance he bumped into Dereck Chisora and Charles persuaded him to go to MyGym for private sessions whilst he trained for the Novices and Senior ABAs. Winning both, Charles became assistant to John Oliver, Chisora's head coach at Finchley.

After Chisora's first two pro fights, a difference of opinion led to him splitting with Oliver and taking on Charles as his head coach. Although this opportunity came out of the blue and he was slung in the deep end, Charles had researched boxing all his life and felt he was ready for the task ahead.

It’s not just his love of boxing that gets people talking. Charles’ love of fashion works well with his training schedule too. His boxers have a killer dress sense as well as a killer knockout punch.

Training sessions are rumoured to finish with a quick jazz number from Charles’ personal CD collection, as well as a dance lesson.

When he’s not down the gym training future champions, you can find Charles at White Hart Lane cheering on his beloved Tottenham Hotspur.