On the verge of creating history in Washington, D.C., Dominique Graham, creator of Champtime Fitness, prepares to open the city’s first sports facility designed to increase athletic ability in inner city youth.
The new building, geared toward providing inner city adolescents with high-quality sports training, will also serve as a method to increase college admittance by way of athletic scholarship, Graham said.
“If I can increase the athletic ability of a child, hopefully that can also increase the ability of that child to be able to go to school for free,” Graham said. “My ultimate goal is to create partnerships with D.C. public schools and local universities such as Howard University, to offer accountability scholarships for students that possess high athletic and classroom performance skills and give them an opportunity to receive scholarships for their services.”
Currently operating out of local boxing gym Lime Lite Boxing and Fitness in Northwest, Champtime Fitness is prepared to embark on an independent venture, expanding clientele and solidifying their goals, Graham said.
“This is a chance for Champtime to brand and to be more exposed,” he said. “We plan to open in January of 2017, preferably in Northwest, since most of my clients come from Ward 4 and 5, but but I am open to anywhere that is Metro-accessible for the youth.”
Though the company has only been active for one year, ChampTime Fitness already has over 77 active clients and the approval of notable urban lifestyle blog I Don’t Do Clubs as one of the best black companies in D.C.
Specializing in proper progressive training for sports, the previous middle and high school boxer and collegiate track and field athlete, Graham explained the significance of proper athletic training for adolescents.
“I had a dream to go professional in boxing, but when I was in the 11th grade I had the ultimate decision to decide between a career in boxing or going to college for free, and I chose to obtain a full track and field scholarship to Alabama A&M University, but I had the option,” he said.
In a move toward branding and national exposure, Champtime Fitness held an exclusive movie premiere, detailing the start of Graham’s experiences in sports and fitness, his experiences as a division one athlete, his brief setback during incarceration and his rise as a successful fitness business owner.
The event was held at the Sandovan Restaurant and Lounge in Northwest, hosted by D.C.’s Orville the Poet on Sep. 3. An encore presentation will be made Sep. 10.
“I think a lot of people were beautifully surprised by the movie — showing where he is and where he has come from, because you wouldn’t know it unless he told you,” Orville said. “He is just that kind of guy, he is my brother and I had no problem helping to host this event.”