A young man from Salford has been using the platform of Instagram to motivate people with home workouts during the coronavirus pandemic.
Alex Murphy, 19, from Eccles, is currently studying sports coaching and development at Edge Hill University and has always been a massive sports enthusiast.
Mr. Murphy said: “All my life I’ve been brought up with sport and quickly grew a passion for it.
“Once I finished college I had two options – get a trade and start work full-time or go to university to study sport to try and get a career in something I love.
“So far I’m happy with my decision because I’m enjoying the course and its allowed me to learn more about the sporting industry”.
Alongside his studies, Mr. Murphy coaches boxing at Eccles Boxing school, a position he took on at just 15-years-old.
“Boxing has been a massive part of me since a young age.
“I started volunteering to coach at my boxing gym just so I could give a little bit back and that’s probably been one of the most pivotal decisions of my life.
“Now, I do one-to-one coaching, run the gym on a Wednesday night and I have my coaching badges so I can corner some of the other boxers”, the 19-year-old said.
And the Salford lad is no stranger to boxing rings, his most recent fight last month, a win through a unanimous points decision, making it 30 amateur bouts under his belt.
“When I first started I had no intentions to fight nevermind have 30 of them.
“I remember getting leathered in my first fight and the weird thing was I loved every minute of it.
“Even with my experience though I am always learning”.
Mr. Murphy has been going to the Salford boxing gym in Eccles since it opened in 2012, feeling at home even in the early days when the gym had yet to establish itself.
“Brian Gardner (head coach) has built his business up incredibly.
“Now the gym is always full and the vibe in the group sessions is amazing.
“It’s like one big family and everyone has a good laugh whilst working hard”.
So with his academic sporting knowledge combined with his four-year coaching experience, Mr. Murphy recently decided to do his part during the coronavirus pandemic and provide his Instagram followers with some home workouts.
“In times like these all people need is a bit of positivity, and I feel like my workouts will provide that.
“The positive feeling you get after a workout can brighten up the day so I feel that it’s definitely important to put them (home workouts) on.”
The 19-year-old initially set up his coaching page in 2018 to try and attract his own clientele, after helping out head coach, Brian Gardner, with sessions and receiving great feedback.
But he admits it was a slow start.
“I only had like two clients for the whole of the first year, but I stuck at it and the Summer after my page took off and I started to get noticed.
“Not everybody can afford to pay for one-to-one’s or even group sessions, so I like to think the content I put up is beneficial for those who struggle financially”.
And the amateur boxer highlighted that social media has been a massive factor in helping to put his name out.
“Without Instagram, I wouldn’t be able to do my job and make money.
“Most pages will just consist of workouts and transformation pictures, which is why I started to upload boxing fundamental videos so people get to learn the basics and is something a bit different”.
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Mr. Murphy is hopeful that his posts can push people to make the most of a pretty gloomy time for everyone at the moment.
“Now’s the time where it’s easy for people to sit in and start to feel down, so if a workout pops up on their phone it gives them a chance to get out of their room for a little bit.
“Fitness is extremely important for some people right now, especially those who suffer with mental illness. You know what they say – healthy body, healthy mind.
“I know that’s not always the case but if my workouts help only one percent of people who watch them then I’m happy”, Mr. Murphy said.
So what does the future hold for the young Salford boxing coach?
“I have the opportunity to turn professional when I feel ready so I’m waiting until I finish my uni course in two years and then I’ll turn over.
“If my career takes off then it’s happy days, but if not then I’d love to coach professional athletes instead”.
In the meantime, you can follow everything that Mr. Murphy is up to on his Instagram page, with plenty more workouts to come to keep us all busy.