Simon Kean: The Will Of A Champion
SIMON KEAN IS AN IMPRESSIVE MAN. 6 FEET, 5 INCHES, 240 POUNDS OF MUSCLE, AND AN INTENSE GAZE THAT SHOWS HOW DETERMINED HE IS TO WIN. THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT THE 28-YEAR-OLD BOXER COULD HAVE YOU ON THE GROUND IN A MERE INSTANT WITH A JAB OR AN UPPERCUT. LUCKILY, THE FEELING DISSIPATES AS SOON AS HE SMILES. ORIGINALLY FROM TROIS-RIVIÈRES, KEAN IS HAPPY TO PRACTICE HIS PROFESSION AND SHARE HIS PASSION FOR BOXING, WHICH BEGAN AT THE AGE OF 15.
-By Stéphane Le Duc
-Photographer Robert Ferron
Ever since he decided to dive head first into professional boxing, Simon Kean (8-0, 7 KOs) has maintained a perfect record, with eight victories in an equal number of fights. To attain this level of excellence, perseverance and discipline are essential, even with his talent. “Training for boxing has two components. There is physical conditioning, and boxing training. The two go hand in hand. It takes two to three months of preparation before a big fight. More boxing rounds, longer runs, and heavier weights. When the fight date comes closer, you dial down on frequency but increase your intensity. During the last week leading up to the event, you do lighter, 30 to 45-minute workouts, while maintaining your intensity. The goal is to regain your energy after the weeks with a heavy workout load."
Training has to be intense for the man who won gold at the Canada Games, two bronze medals at the Pan American Games and took on the international boxing elite at the London 2012 Olympic Games. “For boxing training, I hit pads with my coach. I hit bags, I do shadowboxing, I work on my movements, my footwork, dodging, and I jump rope. In terms of physical conditioning, I run, swim, jump, bicycle, and lift weights. I do a lot of ab exercises, push-ups, as well as coordination and speed exercises. Ideally, each workout lasts two hours, and I do them six times a week, although I might miss one from time to time.”
Over the past few years, more and more people have started including boxing in their workouts. As Simon Kean notes, boxing is a complete sport: it works your arms, legs, and coordination, not to mention endurance, which is just as essential as physical strength. “Swimming and cycling are also great ways to train, since they are good activities for cardio with fewer chances of injury since you’re not putting any weight on your body. Swimming also requires coordination and concentration on your breathing. It works all the muscles of your body, unlike running, which is hard on your back and knees. However, running is good for thinking and preparing mentally by visualizing success and upcoming fights. Psychologically it relaxes me so it’s a great activity for me.”
The goal the heavyweight boxer has given himself for the next two years is to make it to the World Championships. “Even though each fight scares me, I am learning to control that fear. I like the survival instinct that humans were given. I like to fight!” A sizeable challenge that measures up to Simon Kean’s talent and will.