Don´t compromise. Stay active and stylish!
Costas Nanga is a fighter from Stockholm and the face of Björn Axén Sport. Almost 9 years ago, he began training and competing in Thai boxing which since then has developed into a professional career in boxing. He shares his story and thoughts on personal style whilst living an active lifestyle.
How did you get into boxing and what are you most proud of linked to your career?
I´ve always had a great interest in fighting and started training Thai boxing almost 9 years ago. Two months later I competed in my first match, it was then I decided that I would be the world champion in 3 years. Three years later the year was 2016 and I competed in the World Championship for the first time. It was an amazing experience but unfortunately, I came in third place. The following two years I competed again and won silver both times. I was so close to the gold medal but lost by one point.
Within five years I´d already met the best amateur and professional boxers, I was 21 years old and knew that I was pretty done with Thai boxing. I wanted more and felt like I had reached the top, it simply wouldn´t get any cooler than this. That´s when I decided to take my passion for boxing more seriously and to focus on boxing instead. Things went fast and I was recruited to the Swedish national team after my second boxing match. This meant that I had the opportunity to compete in the Olympics but unfortunately, I had some injuries which led me to invest in a professional boxing career instead.
Do you experience any differences in your body and overall well-being when you´ve taken a break from boxing?
Boxing is my way of expressing myself. In the same ways as artists express themselves through art and musicians through their music, boxing is my way of expressing myself. It´s my profession and what makes me feel good. I´ve noticed that I´m affected in many ways when I´m not allowed to train or compete, not only physically but also mentally.
"When I was younger, I experienced difficulties expressing myself and could sometimes feel misunderstood. Boxing became my way of expressing myself and has helped me become better understood. It has shaped me to become the person I´m today and helped me get to where I am."
You live a very active lifestyle, which leads to many showers. Do you find that your hair and skin are affected by this?
Yes, I definitely do! My hair and skin are both very sensitive as I’m easily dry. Since I work out twice a day, this is something I must think about a lot and adapt to by using moisturizing products.
Do you wash your hair after every workout?
As I previously mentioned I work out twice a day and usually wash my hair after the last workout. Although I´ve experienced that my hair gets dry, when washing it that regularly using the wrong type of products.
Do you have any hair tips that you would like to share?
Yes, my tip is that you should dare to try different hairstyles! I´ve had dreadlocks, mohawk, fade, short hair, been completely shaved and today I have an afro. If you have an afro like I do, a tip is to comb it while your hair is still wet and then shape it as you want, it makes taking care of your hair much easier.
I´m a firm believer that you should dare to express yourself in different ways and especially avoid hiding under a cap. Like how sports are ways of expressing oneself, a person’s individual look and hairstyle are as well. Don´t adapt your hair to fit your lifestyle, allow your hair to enhance who you are instead!
"I have chosen a hairstyle that I like and that makes me feel good. I´m a firm believer that no one should have to compromise and be forced to choose between an active lifestyle and personal style. You should of course be able to master both!"