We all have two sides
There is the side that we show to the world, the side that comes through when those around us create their first impressions of us.
Then there are the things that we hide beneath.
The things that spark surprise in those you allow into your circle.
A little known talent, or maybe a quirky personality trait.
“You just can’t explain it,” Usmon says about defeating an opponent. “You feel like all of your hard work has paid off.”
As the number three ranked boxer in his weight class in his native Tajikistan, he instills fear into his opponents and is a force to be reckoned with..
A lot of work goes into boxing, more than a fan watching from the sidelines can see. To train for his fights Usmon swims, runs and plays soccer. Along with that he is always in the gym with his brothers, where he has basically grown up.
Since he was a child, boxing has been in his life.Both of his older brothers box as did his father.
When he was 12, Usmon started boxing competitively, when his father and brothers put him into the boxing gym. His family has been a huge part of his success supporting him every step of the way.
His brothers would stand outside the ring, and encourage him to become the best he could be. He credits the help of his brothers and father as the reason he discovered this passion as well as helping him move up the ranks.
Although his competitors might fear him, his friends, family and classmates love him.
Sophomore Peter Weckerle, one of his best friends, said he changed his view on boxing after meeting Usmon.
“Before I met him, I didn’t understand boxing,” he said. “I just thought boxers and boxing was just about violence, but he showed me that there was another layer. His whole character is just really special.”
For Usmon’s part, he misses boxing,
He had to stop once he moved to OVS from Tajikistan, because he couldn’t find a gym for his workouts. But this spring season he has found a gym in Oxnard so he can start up his passion again.
This sport that some view as barbaric has become a crucial part of his life. He might not miss the constant strain on his muscles or the bruises that show the struggle that he went through to win a fight, but Usmon has found a solution to this problem.
“That’s why you got to win,” he said.
And that’s exactly what he does.