Kid Gloves was founded in the mid-1950s by Frankie Goodman, a Harvard professor who taught children from as early as four years old to street-wise punks in the worst neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Frank also had a gym in Van Nuys, California, where he discovered and trained many professionals. Frankie worked with many great boxers, including Cassius Clay, better known as Muhammed Ali.
Frankie has since passed away, but he gave Robert Ortiz the Kid Gloves trademark and exclusive rights to the Kid Gloves philosophy: "Teach youth the importance of a healthy mind and body and respect for yourself and each other."
Robert started Kid Gloves Boxing in his backyard in Simi Valley, California, in the 1990s. In November of 1997, he began the process of initiating the Kid Gloves Foundation to obtain support for training low-income, disadvantaged youth. Today, the Kid Gloves Boxing Foundation, located in Center Court at the Simi Town Center, provides troubled youth an opportunity to experience personal success, and gives them choices when they are most vulnerable to the pressures of the street.
Timothy Ortiz was six years old when he faced an opponent in the ring during his first amateur fight. But long before his first match as a child, boxing was in his blood.
“It wasn’t like I was taken to a gym – I was born into a gym,” said Timothy, of Simi Valley, who goes by the ring name, Kid Hollywood. “Boxing is a lot more for me than it is for another fighter. That’s what I feel like I have over a lot of other fighters. They were taken to a gym when I was pretty much in here from the start.”
As one of five generations of boxers, Timothy is among a rare breed of fighters, including his great-great grandfather, Alfonso Ortiz, his great-grandfather, Mike “Top Dog” Ortiz, his grandfather, Robert Ortiz Sr., and his dad, Robert “Scrappy” Ortiz Jr. In the United States, the Ortiz family joins few with five generations of boxers, including the Ali family, the Frazier family, and the Mayweather family.
With Post Traumatic Stress Disorder on the rise, Veterans can benefit emotionally as well as physically from a no-contact, boxing-style fitness regimen that helps release stress, according to Robert Ortiz, a Marine Veteran and founder of the Kid Gloves Boxing Foundation, which is the umbrella nonprofit organization for the Vet2Vet Veteran Education & Training Fitness Center in Simi Valley.
“My main objective is to get Veterans into the gym, release stress, frustration and anger, which helps diminish PTSD,” said Ortiz, who added that Veterans with PTSD are more likely than typical Americans to die of causes including suicide. Additionally, PTSD has previously been linked to increased risk for chronic health problems like heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and immune disorders, as well as a greater risk of premature death.
“Exercise in the form of a boxing workout can play an important role in helping Veterans with PTSD to recover and regain confidence,” Ortiz said.