TEAM CONTENDER

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GARRY BELL

Contender Head Coach

Contender head coach Garry has dedicated his life to martial arts, and loves to help fighters and keep-fitters reach their goals. A King of the Ring British champion in his fighting days, Garry’s commitment to kickboxing has seen him voted into the UK Martial Arts Hall of Fame and shortlisted for a Middlesbrough Gazette Coach/Mentor of the Year award. He likes to include techniques learned from hosting seminars with some of the biggest names in K-1 in his training sessions.

NATHAN DRYDEN

Contender Junior Coach

Nathan is a skilful and up-and-coming lightweight fighter and our Contender junior coach and PT instructor. He has experience in boxing as well as traditional kickboxing, and is the Contender Promotions British champion and semi professional CPFF 60kg title-holder.

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JACK COOPER

Contender Coach

A traditional Muay Thai warrior with a style that’s built to last, Jack is one of the best domestic fighters in the ruthless 70kg division, and a British and European champion. He brings a wealth of knowledge and in-ring experience to each training session, having lived and fought in Thailand and competed for premier organisations like Yokkao and Muay Thai Grand Prix, where he is now under contract.

TAIF COOPER

Personal Trainer

Originally from Australia, Jack Cooper’s partner Taif brings a diverse athletic background to our gym. She was a state and national-ranked gymnast, has four muay thai bouts under her belt, and trained extensively in London and Thailand. Taif also has a background in strength and conditioning.

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LEIF TAGGART

Personal Trainer

Leif really needs no introduction when it comes to Teesside martial arts. A lifelong fighter who’s been kicking it in kick-fighting since he was a small boy, you name it, he’s won it: including world, British and European titles. WKL world champion Leif’s technical and gritty displays in the thai boxing arena have also made him a viral social media hit.

KAY SZOMA

Personal Trainer

If you want to learn from a heavy hitter, you’ll be in ideal hands with our resident heavyweight Kay. The Poland-born big man boasts numerous coaching credentials, and is an active fighter who tests himself in boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai and mixed martial arts. Kay’s long list of wins includes a WKA super heavyweight title sudden finish in less than 20 seconds.

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