Boxing is one of the most well-known sports in the world, and some of the most famous athletes were boxers, including the legendary Muhammad Ali. Even people who have never watched the spot have been exposed to it through pop culture, as it has been shown in countless films that chronicle the lives of both fictional and real fighters.
As a result of how well-known boxing is, it comes as no surprise that the sport and that boxing-style training have become increasingly popular over the years as many people want to emulate their favourite film character and real-life sporting heroes. However, being a boxer takes more than punching with reckless abandon; boxing involves power, strategy, good conditioning, and spot-on-technique to help fighters take on their opponents, especially during professional matches where a fight can last for twelve three-minute rounds. In this guide, we’ll help you understand everything your need to know about boxing which is one of the top sports used not only for fitness but also for self-defence.
What Is Boxing?
Boxing is a combat sport where two opponents use skill, speed, and accuracy to throw and avoid punches within a 16ft by 16ft ring. The objective of the sport is to control the ring by hitting your opponent and not being hit, as the more punches you connect, the greater the chance of securing a win by points or a knockout.
In a professional boxing match, the fight lasts for approximately 47 minutes, split across twelve three-minute rounds of boxing. At the end of each round, there is a one-minute rest for the fighters before the next round begins, and during the match, a referee will be in attendance to enforce the laws of boxing.
Boxing is often considered one of the most physically and mentally demanding sports that have ever been invented, and this is because the sport demands high levels of patience, endurance, agility, precision, and reflexes in order to become a successful boxer.
The Rules Of Boxing
Marquess of Queensbury is the man who first introduced the rules of amateur boxing, and while there are many rules to boxing which your trainer can help you better understand, there are some essential rules a beginner should know before they get started.
- No punching below the belt.
- No holding, kicking, tripping, wrestling, spitting, biting, or shoving your opponent.
- No hitting with your head, forearm, or elbow.
- No punching your opponent’s back.
- No hitting with your wrist, backhand, side of your hand, or the inside of your glove.
- No throwing a punch while gripping the ropes of the ring.
- No holding and hitting your opponent at the same time.
- No ducking lower than your opponent’s waist.
- No spitting out your mouthguard mid-round to breath better.
- No hitting your opponent while they are down.
The Benefits Of Boxing
Boxing is excellent for building up your cardiovascular system and Vo2 max as the sport requires a lot of cardio. When you take up boxing, you will be moving constantly; whether you’re lugging your boxing bag around or sparing with your opponent, there’s plenty to get your heart pumping.
Whether you’re looking to compete in boxing or train for fitness, you will become more disciplined. When it comes to training for fitness, the simple act of turning up to the gym or putting on your gloves to train at home requires willpower to stick to it. Many people struggle to stick to fitness regimes, and as you go on your boxing journey, you will find that it is less difficult for you to have the motivation to get up and go in the mornings or after work. When you’re looking to get into boxing to compete, you have a whole other level of discipline. From amateur to professional, you will need to go on a decent boxing diet, train consistently, take punches, and set yourself up to deal with the possibility of injuries.
As well as improving your overall health and discipline, you will also enjoy making new friends when you take up boxing, as the community is close-knit and welcoming. With these friendships, you will also find an invaluable well of knowledge to help you improve your skills over time, which will help build your confidence in the ring. Furthermore, as your skill and confidence improves, you will be in a better position to defend yourself both during sparring matches and if you happen to be attacked outside of the gym.
Basic Boxing Gear
Whether you decide to join a gym or train from home, you’ll need to make you have the proper gear, especially if you’re hitting a heavy bag, but it also can’t hurt to get used to suiting when shadowboxing. Start by visiting a specialist site such as Fight Co who stock some of the best boxing gear for both beginners and advanced fighters. You’ll need to start with wraps for your wrists and gloves before you try punching a bag; the wraps will protect the bones in your wrists while the gloves protect your hands from the impact. Whether you go for a budget option or something higher-end, you need to buy a weight that suits your needs. Your coach can help you choose the right weight for the training you are doing, but typically beginners choose heavier gloves to start with to protect their hands while they learn the ropes.
What To Expect When You Start
When people watch boxers fight on TV or in films, they often think it looks easy, but the reality is much more complicated than that. There is a complexity in the combinations as you have to consider the footwork, head movement, speed, and agility which requires plenty of practice to develop a high level of skill.
As boxing is a high-intensity sport, you will be putting a lot of strain on your muscles and joints, which is why it is vital that you have a good foundation of flexibility and mobility as boxing requires fast and sharp movements with both your upper and lower body.
As a result, you should also make sure you spend time following dynamic and static stretching routines to improve your flexibility and mobility in order to avoid injuries in the beginning.