BY RENEE HENDRIX –
Defenders Boxing & Family Sports Center is a dream come true for Richard & Pearl Hexamer and their family. This family owned and operated business brings an alternative for Mena residents. With his military background, Hexamer felt he could bring a facility that could empower women with self defense and self-awareness classes, explaining he feels there is a greater need for this in today’s society. For women to be aware at all times and be able to defend themselves if the need arose, he said, is a new essential. Hexamer and his family also realize there was another need in Polk County, more options for the youth. “The kids need something to do, someplace they can be safe and be involved in an activity that will keep them out of trouble.” Hexamer said.
Walking into this establishment on the corner of Highway 71 and 9th street, the first thing you notice is the boxing ring and the boxing gloves lining the walls. This sight alone draws you in. Defenders Boxing & Family Sports Center offers boxing classes, self-defense and self-awareness classes as well as endurance, strength and core training. Hexamer has his two children, Jeremiah Hexamer and Keena-Marie Relaford, as trainers. Both of them bring a history of boxing and MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) to the table. Both are extremely motivated and want to encourage and support the local kids. “We want to give the community kids something to do and be proud of,” Keena said.
One of the many things the Hexamer family offers is an all ladies night. This night will be exclusively for women. Hexamer wanted to offer the ladies of Polk County a chance to come and feel comfortable during their workout. A safe place for them to learn any of the variety of the services offered. A place they can have a time out from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Ladies night will be on Tuesday nights from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Hexamer is a veteran and wanted to reach out to his fellow veterans and have a night just for them as well. He explained they can meet and work out, have a go at some boxing or just sit around drinking coffee talking about the good old days, comparing war stories. Saturdays have been divided up for kids 12 and under from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. and family time from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Defenders provides a self-paced environment. They will push you to your limit and encourage you to go further. They can cater to any physical issues you may have. Hexamer will concentrate on a unique and exclusive work out that is just for you. If you have any questions about rates or classes feel free to contact them at 479-234-0820.