|Chessboxing Hits Los Angeles|
|By Jennifer Shahade|
|March 16, 2010|
LA Chessboxing club founder Andrew McGregor has a different slant on the sport. The LA Club, which is sanctioned by the World Chess Boxing Organization, requires fighters to wear headgear, reducing the chance of injury and allowing less experienced boxers to fight.
Chessboxing, the European breakout sport invented by a German artist, Iepe B.T. Rubingh finally has a bastion in the USA, the LA Chessboxing Club. But |
McGregor told CLO that European healthcare might make chessboxers there more comfortable with the enhanced risk of their fights. By reducing the risk McGregor wants to open the sport up to more people, including women (who have never contested a chessboxing match before.)
The first ever North-American chessboxing fight took place on Saturday, February 27 at the Fortune Gym in LA. Andrew, "The Fightin Philanthropist" fought Austria's David “King Kong” Pfeifer. Andrew is the less experienced fighter but the stronger chessplayer, so he aimed for a wide open game, while David tried to keep it closed. The chess skills prevailed in this case, as McGregor won by checkmate in the 5th round.
Andrew described his approach after the match, "It was entirely new for me because boxing is instinct, if you think you get hit, out of rhythm, and hurt. If you are fighting on instinct you do the best.
Then, I was approaching chess in a similar manner. For the first time I would move based on what 'felt' right and if the pieces looked beautiful with a healthy relationship between them. It wasn't about beating the man in the ring. Violence like that is personal and selfish (I beat him/he beat me)."
For more on the LA Chessboxing club, check out the official website and watch the video below: