Answers about Boonchu Gym at Burleigh Head

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Answering your questions.

Answers from Elena Ornig

 You will feel very welcome there.

If you live on the Gold Coast, Australia and are searching for a gym to train in self-defense or fighting in the Ring; or for training for general fitness and health; or simply to join a family oriented Gym with a great friendly atmosphere where you will find a real camaraderie relationship, I can honestly tell you that I know such a place.

Boonchu Gym, at Burleigh  – the very own gym of legendary Muay Thai fighter  John Wayne Parr  ,eight times World Champion,  and his wife Angela Parr –  Black Belt under the MTIA Muay Thai Association and World Champion.

‘John’ Wayne Parr: “Throughout my career I have been a vocal anti-drugs campaigner. My gym has helped mums get fit, families get fit together and helped countless kids to get and stay out of trouble, learn manners and discipline, and gain confidence… My wife and I have been professional athletes and Muay Thai fighters our entire adult lives… We are dedicated to a life of discipline, respect and healthy living and instil these principals into our students and children.”

I was recently talking to Angela Parr and Jasmine Parr (daughter of Wayne and Angela Parr) right there, in Boonchu Gym. I was trying to understand the obvious success of their gym – is it because they are famous or is there something else that draws people to join Boonchu Gym? … Indeed there is a lot to like and to admire about Boonchu Gym, the owners, and the members. One of the members is Jasmine Parr and I was so keen to talk to Jasmine again as she impressed me very deeply when I first met her a couple of months ago. She is clever, kind, polite, cute and pretty; and I can go on and on but instead I just asked:

Picture of Jasmine Parr

I don’t want you guys to fight because Muay Thai is not about making enemies, it is about making friends, training together and having fun.

“Jasmine, this time I would like to ask you – what would be your advice for kids just like yourself if they decide to join Boonchu Gym?”

“I think they should join, because Muay Thai is very good sport, but I would say do not join if you are bullied at school and just want to learn fight. I don’t want you guys to fight because Muay Thai is not about making enemies, it is about making friends, training together and having fun.

I meet my friends at the Gym every Monday and Wednesday when we train together but, you know, every Wednesday is a very special day for us because my mum, Angela, at the end of our training tells us who deserves to take home a special reward for training hard. It’s a big “little champion” belt and you can keep it for the whole week and show it to your family and friends.”

 “I know what you are talking about and when I was here the last time I even took a photo of the little boy who was rewarded with the “little champion” belt. What about you, have you ever been awarded that belt?”

 “I actually won it this week.”

“I am very happy for you, Jasmine. Congratulation!”

“Thank you”

“I remember now that the boy who won it last time said that he would sleep with this belt. What about you?” 

“I will put it on the top of the printer in the lunch room where I can see it all the time and everybody can see it. I want to share it with everybody in my family.”

Boy With a Black Belt

– ” I will sleep with this belt…”

“Wow, I think it is a great idea – to share. That reward for working hard made me think and ask just how hard do you and other kids really have to train?”

“Well, it is not just for working hard but to learn to be disciplined; listen to what your trainer is teaching you.”

“You are right, Jasmine. As far as I understand, every sport, including Muay Thai, teaches one to be disciplined. What particular part of your training routine do you like?

“I like grappling, it is like wrestling, you can get into a position where you can turn or pull your opponent but I want to say that I like all the routines, it is real fun to learn all techniques.

“Let me ask you if I get it right. In Boonchu Gym kids are welcome. They will make new friends and they will have a lot of fun. They will learn many different self-defense techniques and discipline and if they work a little bit harder as little champions they will be rewarded. Did I get this right, Jasmine?”

“Yes, I think it is right and all kids are welcome to come here and say hello, join our Gym and become our friends.”

Thank you very much, Jasmine, and I will see you next time.

Angela Parr was busy a meter away from our conversation with Jasmine. I waited a little till she would have time to answer a few questions.

“Angela, as a trainer, what does your analysis of women who join your Gym tell you and what advice might you offer to share with us for everyone?”

Angela Parr

Angela Parr during training session.

“I started to train in Martial Arts for self-defense, way back, in America. However, in Australia women are less concerned with self-defense; rather they join the Gym for fitness. It’s all about a healthy life style, controlling their weight and getting into shape or staying in shape. I had noticed that some people are bored with traditional fitness clubs and are looking for more structured training. That is exactly what we are offering here – very structured training for all levels, age groups and genders. We train mothers, grandmothers, grandfathers, fathers, teenagers and kids. We have a strong orientation towards family.

Some women have no idea of how friendly the whole atmosphere is in our Gym because when they hear ‘Muay Thai’ or ‘Kickboxing’ they associate it with fighting men and they feel intimidated. But in reality, our own Boonchu Gym is different, and once they get through the door they realise this is a family oriented and friendly environment. As you have noticed, my husband, I and our kids are always here as a family and that is why all families are welcome to come and join. They will feel very welcome here.”

“Thank you Angela.  As for my readers on the Gold Coast who are looking for a successful Gym that is a little different to a dedicated weights and apparatus gym;  one which has a perfectly friendly environment with its main aim being to help people to get and stay fit, to live healthier lives and feel as being part of one big happy family – please go to, read and look around; get your own feeling of Boonchu Gym’s dedicated and friendly atmosphere by going there to meet and say g’day to Wayne and Angela Parr and the Boonchu members and fighters!”

They are more than happy for you to come on down.

Boonchu Gym Fighters

Meet and say g’day to Wayne and Angela Parr; and the Boonchu members and fighters

My warmest regards,
Visit Elena’s profile on Pinterest.

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Written by Elena Ornig

Managing Director of Publishing Company "Julia Sophistique Pty Ltd". Committee member of Australian Computer Association GC Chapter. Member of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Member of the Chamber of Commerce & Industry Queensland. Member of the IT Forum Gold Coast. Sponsor of the Helensvale Writers' Group, Gold Coast. Committee member of the Gold Coast Writers Association Honored VIP Member of STANFORD WHO'S WHO in America. Publisher, writer and blogger.


One comment
  1. What a great series of articles on a living legend,’John’ Wayne Parr, his family and their gym plus an insight into their way of life. I hope very many of your readers take the opportunity to visit Boonchu Gym and see just how good these guys are.

    For you, Elena, a huge thank you. I look forward to seeing more of your interview articles that look ‘beneath the surface’.

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