As a bartender, it’s not only your job to serve drinks but to also make sure people are having a good time. You’re a cocktail connoisseur, the life of the party, and a shoulder to cry on, all rolled into one. Plus, you’re surrounded by alcohol and working odd hours – it’s easy to let your health slide.
Bartender Boxing is a brilliant way to promote health and wellness in professional bartenders. The training program gives bartenders a reason to stay sober, work out, and focus on their mental well-being. Bridging the gap between health and bartending, the Bartender Boxing Organization (BBO) brings physical fitness to the bar industry. Plus, the non-profit – sponsored by Tequila Cazadores – raises funds for charity.
Founder of the BBO, Raj Nagra, has long supported health in hospitality. By being involved both with bartending and boxing for most of his life, it was natural for him to connect the two in order to bring wellness into the hospitality industry. BBO is Nagra’s way to give back to the community that has long been an important part of his life, professionally and personally.
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A few of the hits I've received during my fight last week. As Rocky would say:" It ain't about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done! #barlife #bartenderboxing #bboround4 #tequilacazadores #mexicanchardonnay #sweatisnothreat #punchedintheface #harderthanitlooks #boxe #boxersofinstagram #mtl 📷 @marktomaras 📷: @thedanboulianne
The first-ever Canadian version took place in Toronto, pitting Toronto against Montreal. The program took Canadian bartenders with no boxing experience and built them up, training them for over 12 weeks until they were ready to compete in the ring. The proceeds from the event were donated to The Dandelion Initiative, “a grassroots not for profit organization based in Toronto, led by survivors for survivors.”
“We work to prioritize the voices of LGBTQ2s+ community members, BIPOC folx, Indigenous survivors, Women, disabled folx, newcomers, Trans community members and Non-Binary people. The Dandelion Initiative uses an integrated anti-oppressive and trauma informed model for all the work we do.” – The Dandelion Initiative
The event set bartender-against-bartender until only the strongest were left – winning the belt and the glory for their city. To learn more about the organization, check out their social media pages below.