When you think of boxing, your first thought is probably of Muhammad Ali or Mike Tyson taking part in a bloody punch-fest in the ring.
Boxing has long been a testosterone-filled sport. Those interested in trying it out for themselves would have to resort to a rough and grimy gym filled with intimidating men. You would also have to be willing to take a punch.
Nevertheless, the fitness benefits of the sport were impressive, and people began to take note. In recent years, there has been an explosion in gyms offering an accessible version of the sport.
Fitness boxing can burn more calories than CrossFit or a spinning class. As a result, it has attracted men and women looking for new and exciting ways to keep fit and get in shape.
There is no longer any need to feel intimidated about trying out fitness boxing. No matter your level, you can get some benefit from this sport.
Keep reading to learn more about fitness basics and why it is such an amazing tool for wellbeing.
What Is Fitness Boxing?
Boxing is one of the most ancient sports that exists. Evidence of people taking part in boxing is over 4000 years old, and the sport was included in the Olympics as far back as 633 BCE.
People would fight each other with bare knuckles or rudimentary hand wraps. Over the years, those involved developed more sophisticated rules and equipment.
Even so, boxing was illegal in the United States and the United Kingdom at various points in history. It was a sport associated with gambling, violence, and occasional riots.
Now, it is a professional spectator sport that officials included in the modern Olympics in 1904.
While those watching it would see two opponents slugging it out, getting boxers to the level of fitness required serious work. Being able to take a punch, deliver powerful blows and dodge around the ring requires agility and strength.
To achieve this, boxers have always engaged in special boxing drills, sparring, strength training, running, and other forms of cardio.
In the past two decades, the fitness industry has boomed, bringing a plethora of new and exciting ways to keep people moving and coming back to work out. Gyms were awash with Yoga, Pilates, kickboxing, combat-style fitness classes, and celebrity workouts.
And then came the brilliant idea of taking the best of the fitness elements from the sport of boxing and bringing it to the masses.
For those who do not plan on ever jumping into a ring and fighting, fitness boxing is the perfect way to hone your body and release tension without actually getting punched.
Fitness boxing borrows routines and movements from traditional boxing. It teaches you to coordinate movements while working up a sweat.
Instead of facing off against one opponent, fitness boxing often takes place in a class with other people.
What Are the Benefits of Fitness Boxing?
There is no doubt that exercise is one of the best ways to stay in shape, fight off common diseases, and grow old gracefully.
Our modern world makes it difficult to move enough, and this leads to:
- Weight gain and obesity
- Heart disease
We all know that we need to move more. However, one of the many challenges people face is finding a workout routine that works for them in the long term. You might get bored, find your gym routine repetitive, and lose interest.
The fun and varied nature of fitness boxing make it an excellent choice for those looking to shake up their exercise routine. Here are a few of the benefits it offers:
1) Powerful Calorie Burning and Weight Loss
Boxing is one of the best exercises out there for calorie burning. This is because fitness boxing is based on high-intensity interval training (HIIT).
HIIT involves short, intense spurts of exercise with a brief period of recovery. Pushing yourself to maximum effort for a time burns more fat and boosts your metabolism for hours after your workout.
As a result, your energy levels will be higher, and you will lose weight faster. Our sedentary lifestyles make it easy to put on weight, and shaving off a few kilograms is a top concern of most gym goers.
Depending on your weight and the intensity of the movements you perform, you can burn around 800 calories in a fitness boxing class.
This is equivalent to a delicious piece of cake. In comparison, running burns around 500 calories an hour.
2) Mood Booster and Stress Release
Depression affects 264 million people around the world. Even if you haven’t been diagnosed with depression, we all struggle with the stresses and anxiety of life and feel down sometimes.
Some research shows that exercise can be as powerful as taking an antidepressant. Keeping active boosts our feel-good hormones such as serotonin and endorphins. Psychologists are even encouraged to prescribe it to those who are battling mood disorders.
A good fitness boxing workout can also improve your sleep, which makes everything easier to deal with. Better sleep also prevents food cravings and helps you stick to a healthy diet.
While exercise on its own is a great stress reliever, taking your frustrations out on a punching bag or pad can only make you feel better.
5) Strength Training
Fitness boxing classes include a variety of drills and movements that improve your cardio fitness but also help you build strength and tone your body.
This can include bodyweight exercises like squats and pushups, practicing throwing punches, skipping, kicking, and core exercises. As a result, you will target your entire body in a fitness boxing class.
Not only do these kinds of exercises make you look good, but they have serious health benefits. Strength training can protect you from injury and make it easier to carry out everyday tasks like carrying groceries or lifting your children. As you get older, you want to prevent unnecessary back, knee, or hip injuries.
Strength training is an excellent way to keep your body well-oiled as you age. It will also keep your bones strong, and you will be less likely to develop osteoporosis or arthritis.
6) Agility and Stamina
Boxers need to be able to dodge around their opponents and put together complex combination punches. Agility refers to your ability to move your body and change your positions quickly.
This engages your brain as you have to think fast on your feet.
In fitness boxing, you will practice numerous skills that will improve your agility, stamina, and endurance. You will practice mindfulness, awareness, and learn to regulate your breathing.
Aside from improving your mind-body connection, boxing for fitness will also help you work on balance and coordination.
All of these skills will benefit you as you grow older, keeping your body in tip-top shape and your mind sharp.
What Do I Need for a Fitness Boxing Class?
Now that you have a better idea about what fitness boxing is and how it can change your life, you might be tempted to try your first class.
An essential thing to know is that anyone can try fitness boxing. Whether you are a gym aficionado who has been working out for years, or you are new to exercise, you can give it a try. However, it is always a good idea to go at a pace you can handle and inform your instructor of your fitness level.
You should also always ask your medical doctor about any concerns you may have about your health before jumping into a new fitness routine.
Once you have joined a gym with fitness boxing classes, you may have a few questions about how to prepare, what equipment you need, and what to wear.
Most boxing gyms will lend out gloves and wraps to newbies. However, if you get addicted, you might want to buy your own as these can be sweaty and smelly.
Learning how to wrap your hands is a key part of boxing as it can protect you from injury.
You don’t need to wear any protective headgear or mouth gear. You can just wear something you are comfortable in that will allow you to move around with ease.
While there are specialized shoes for boxers, your cross-trainers will work just fine.
What Are the Basics of Fitness Boxing?
Your class will consist of a variety of workouts as well as the fitness boxing basics that involve using a punching bag.
You will learn the different punches and how to use your knees and elbows to strike the bag. Here are a few basics you can expect to learn:
1) The Correct Stance
Before you start throwing punches, you will need to learn the correct way to stand. This will improve your stability and balance as you pivot and carry out fancy combinations.
Generally, you will stand with your front toe and back heel aligned. Your stance will depend on your dominant hand. As most people are right-handed, they will take the traditional stance with their left foot forward.
When your feet are in the right position, you will learn where to hold your arms in a guard position in front of your face.
The jab is one of the basic punches you will need to learn. To perform a jab, you will get into the correct stance and punch with the arm on the same side as your forward foot.
A jab is a straight punch forward against the bag.
A cross punch is thrown with your rear hand. Learning a powerful cross requires the correct amount of body rotation, pivoting your rear foot, and fully extending your arm. You also need to learn to rotate your fist at the last minute and correctly distribute your weight.
A hook is one of the most powerful punches out there. Throwing this punch is exactly what it sounds like. From your boxing stance, you will rotate your body and swing your arm horizontally at about a 90-degree angle.
You can throw hooks with both arms, although learning this punch with your non-dominant hand is always trickier.
An uppercut punch is a hooked blow that emanates from your stomach area in an upward movement.
What Can You Expect in a Fitness Boxing Class?
Now that you know some of the boxing basics, we can examine what to expect in a class.
Your class will start with a warm-up, which is essential to avoid injury. Then there will be a mix of circuits using weights to build strength and muscle.
This will alternate with circuits on the punching bags, using various combinations. This will boost your heart rate even more!
You can also expect drills to train your agility, such as:
- High knees
- Lateral jumping
- Box jumping
- Plyometric moves
- Jump rope
There will also be bodyweight exercises and core exercises such as:
The mood will be fun and intense, and you can expect high-octane music and a great social environment.
Boost Your Mind and Body With Fitness Boxing
Let’s face it. Life is stressful, and before you know it, you are stuck behind your desk, slowly putting on weight and gathering aches and pains as the years fly by.
Have you already tried multiple different sports, exercise classes, and gym programs? Maybe you lost interest or struggled to stay motivated. Perhaps you are already in good shape but want to try something new.
Regymen will help you break out of your routine with fun, intense fitness boxing classes. They will whip you into shape in no time.
Try one of our workouts today!