Judo teacher's fighting chance
John Dickens • Published 10 Sep 2012 07:00 0 Comments
A FORMER cage fighter who turned his life around after discovering the teachings of judo hopes to inspire unruly teens to stay out of trouble.
Charlie Knight was lured into the underworld of cage fighting to make 'a quick buck', aged just 16.
Trapped with 'the wrong crowd' in an environment he never felt comfortable in, Charlie was looking for a way out - which opened up when girlfriend Danni Batt introduced him to judo.
Charlie, 24, said: "When I was growing up I trained in kickboxing and started cage fighting - I got in with the wrong people and got into a lot of things I shouldn't have and never really felt comfortable.
"I got myself out of that scene through judo - it calmed me down and taught me respect and discipline."
Charlie joined Danni as an instructor at Windsor Judo Club, in Hanover Way, and is now spearheading 'fighting chance' - a programme aimed at teaching troubled teens discipline through judo.
He is running the programme, for youngsters who are referred from the police and social services, at the Lady Haig Royal British Legion, in Stoke Road, Slough. Charlie, from Ascot, said: "It's a programme that I'm really interested in and it's an opportunity I would have liked to have had when I was young."
He added: "Slough is not the most affluent area and the club is open for children to come along and do something constructive."
The first of four 10-week courses, which was held at the West Wing Arts Centre, in Stoke Road, finished last week, with nine children completing the programme. The next free course, starts on Tuesday, September 25, and will coincide with the grand opening of Slough Judo Club.
Danni, who helps run the course, added: "It's all about getting teenagers from a disadvantaged background into something positive.
"We were asked to run the course, but want to make the club permanent for people in the area."
The club will be open for children and adults on Tuesday evenings. For more information visit www.windsorjudo.co.uk