Certainly, Peter Welch’s Gym is a mecca for conditioning. Arguably, the boxing regimen creates some of the world’s most perfectly conditioned athletes. And that includes women, too: The membership numbers at PWG are about evenly split between guys and gals.
Last Sunday was a big day at PWG. It was crowded and the workouts emphasizing body punching were underway. The guest of honor, the once welterweight champion Micky Ward from Lowell, came in around 12:30 p.m. He was there to demonstrate his body punching techniques, some of which involve coming in low and to the left on the torso, while avoiding the opponent’s quick jabs to the head.
Ward has achieved well-deserved fame for his boxing courage and endurance. He’s a welterweight (approximately 140 pounds). He is one of the very few professional boxers to have fought in three consecutive Ring Magazine’s Fights of the Year – 2001, ’02 and ’03, once against Emanuel Burton and twice against Arturo Gatti. Ward still lives in Lowell, where he operates his own gym.
A contingent of ultimate fighters dropped in at PWG last Sunday as well, welterweight champ Robbie Lawlor among them. UFC President Dana White had been in town since the UFC weigh-in the day before. He’s a Southie lad himself; he and Peter Welch are close friends. Sunday evening was the night of the Ultimate Fighting Championship at the Garden. Ultimate Fighting takes place in an octagon, rather than the so-called “squared circle” of a boxing ring. And it is, in fact, “ultimate.”