The first year of expansion was extremely tough on Leung. “I had to do everything, from cleaning the toilet to coaching,” she recalls. But what bothered her the most was that some coaches left and opened their own boxing club after earning a good reputation at Swish Club.
Despite all the challenges, Leung never gives up but faces up to the problems instead. Her belief that the business would pull through never wavered and over time, Swish Club has recovered from its setbacks. She even views the betrayal of her former colleagues as a life lesson to not take things to heart.
Looking back, Leung cannot imagine life without coaching, such is the fulfillment she gets from Thai boxing. She is delighted when she sees her students enjoying the sport and she is pleased when they achieve their goals. She cannot hide her excitement when recounting a student who lost weight, “One of them was 160 pounds. She’s now 120.”
Relationships with students are what she cherishes the most. Her students are her friends. One of her very first students from seven years ago became her best friend and a bridesmaid at her wedding.
Leung is grateful that she was able to build a career out of her interest. She considers her greatest achievement is pioneering a trend for ladies’ Thai boxing in Hong Kong. She sees it as her mission to tell people that Thai boxing is a good way to keep fit and the sport is suitable for women as well as men.
“There weren’t any girls doing it in the old days. But the sport is now so common that you might hear a girl sitting next to you saying ‘I’m going to box tonight.’”
At the moment, Leung is content with life. “I don’t have any more dreams. I simply want to go on with my career and do my best,” she says calmly. Having fulfilled her own dream, Leung is ready for another important stage in life – motherhood.
“I’m planning to have children,” she says with a mysterious smile. Leung began planning to start a family two years ago. Now the club is back on track and has grown in reputation, Leung has more time for her own life.
She has it all mapped out – she will gradually reduce her classes and coaching to only four training sessions a week and spend more time on management in order to avoid any problems caused by her sooner-or-later maternity leave.
However, she is keen to emphasize that motherhood will not be the end of her Thai boxing coaching career. From the very beginning, Leung’s interest in Thai boxing has been inextricably linked to her personal life. When she and Au married four years ago, the line between career and family was more blurred than ever. To her, health, career, and family are equally important. Nothing, not even a baby will dampen her enthusiasm for Thai boxing.