How Boxing Became Luke Jackson’s Lifeline
by Stephanie Williams
After turning to boxing at 18 to escape a tough childhood, Luke Jackson has become one of Australia’s best boxers. He recently completed the 5-5-75 running challenge, raising funds for LIVIN, a charity that aims to break the stigma of mental health.
What’s the best thing for you about Hobart?
The people, my family and my close friends. I’ve had a lot of support from Hobart people in my boxing career. They always come out and support me in my fights. I’m in Sydney at the minute and I walk down the road and I always say hello to everyone. I think that’s probably a Tassie thing. They look at me like, “Who the f–k is this guy?” And I’m just like, “I’m just saying hello, mate. Relax.”
And the worst part about Hobart?
The weather. It’s way too cold.
Tell us a little bit about your work.
I’m a professional boxer. I went to the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, World Championships. So I’m a boxer by trade, if that’s what you’d like to call it. I’m also a personal trainer. I had a gym in Tasmania called Action Fitness Centre. A lot of people used to train there, especially a lot of women. There’s nothing wrong with cardio boxing but I teach real boxing. I love all exercise. If someone is moving, I’m happy, but I specialise in technical boxing. If you’re going to get in a fight, you have to know what you’re doing. And in Sydney, there is a big market. I’m training so many different people from the kids, to the bikies, to women, to businesspeople.
"If someone is moving, I’m happy, but I specialise in technical boxing. If you’re going to get in a fight, you have to know what you’re doing."
What’s your dream job…or fight?
I think I’m living my dream job. I’m very lucky that I get paid really good money to do something that I love. But my dream fight, a fight that I’d like now, probably against Gervonta Davis. You’d get paid a lot of money for that one! Let’s make it happen.
I’m inspired by…
That’s a big one, isn’t it? I used to be inspired by Kostya Tszyu. I’m just inspired to try and be a better person every day. I’ve had a few ups and downs in my life, as has everyone. And I’m just inspired to try and be better and keep moving forward. I’m a very positive person, even when things aren’t going well. I just try and be better every day.
When is your next big fight? Is there anything on the cards?
I was supposed to fight in April, but with everything going on, that got cancelled. So hopefully October or November. I’d love to come back to Tassie next year and run our big show there again. And do it one more time before I do hang them up and say thank you to the people again, for helping me out to get to where I am today.
What do you love doing outside work?
I love hanging out with my dogs, I’ve got two little dogs – a Jack Russell and a Miniature Pinscher. I love them so much. One’s 10 and one’s 11, so I’ve had them since they were babies. I hang out with some of my mates. I just like eating good food and I love training. I’m a pretty simple person, nothing too much! I like the summer, I like the beach and just relaxing.
Where’s your favorite place to eat out in Hobart?
I love Solo Pasta. And I’m upset Simon’s no longer there. I have something on the menu called Il Pugile, it’s the dish that I made up. It means ‘boxing’ in Italian. I told Simon I wanted it and it was that popular he put it on the menu!
Drink of choice and where do you head for it?
I love a lager. Back home, I go down to Salamanca somewhere, like The Den. It’s good in the summer, such a nice place to have a drink.
I’d like to travel to…
I’ve travelled to over 80 countries, all around the world. I’d love to see more of South America. I’d love to visit Brazil, Columbia, Peru and Argentina.
And your guilty pleasure?
I love sticky date pudding and ice-cream. I could eat that all day!
And favourite team?
My favourite team? Team Jackson, all day.
What do you never leave home without?
My phone. I was going to say my brain, but sometimes I leave that at home, don’t I?
Quote to live by?
“Tough times don’t last, tough people do.” And, “Find a way.” I’ve got that tattooed on me.
If you or anyone you know needs help call Lifeline on 13 11 14.