Though boxing has been around for hundreds of years (in some form or another ever since I slugged Sniff for trying to steal my fire), the activity has evolved from a way to forcefully settle debates, to a sport, and now it serves as a fantastic way to work out. So the question becomes: what exactly are the plus-sides of pugilism?
Boxing sessions are great for your body and provide an intense, effective workout. For one, boxing sessions will stimulate all of your muscle groups. No more shuffling from workout machine to workout machine at the gym. Boxing is like your one-stop-shop-and-go for all your muscle stimulation needs. So what can you expect from your first round of boxing training? Training sessions are designed to prepare you to survive three 3-minute rounds of sparring. Does nine minutes sound easy? It’s not. Boxers require strength, coordination, aerobic and anaerobic fitness, and endurance. Without these five elements, your time in the ring is going to stop being an intense workout and start being nine minutes of you getting punched in the face. Sounds a little less easy now, huh? To prepare you, boxing training includes heavy bag, speed-ball, spring-ball, and medicine-ball training, not to mention skipping, weight-training, wind-sprints, and running.
Aside from looking and feeling great, boxing as exercise has other benefits unique to the sport. There’s something about knowing you can take care of yourself and break some deserving teeth if they say… try to steal your fire (just for example) that gives people more confidence in their daily lives. While many may mistakenly believe that boxers are more likely to lash out on others, studies show that people who practice boxing are actually more composed and inwardly confident because they believe they have nothing to prove.
But let’s say that you do need to lash out. Your boss is being a jerk and that little stress-ball on your desk just isn’t getting the job done like it used to. Boxing also provides a great and healthy outlet for stress-relief. The combination of aerobic work and strength training provides people with the best of both worlds in terms of muscular pump and cardiovascular stimulation – both of which aid in enhancing psychological well-being.
Before you get started with your new favorite sport, you’re going to need to invest in some equipment:
- Gloves (bag and sparring): obviously if you’re going to start picking up boxing, you’re going to need to pick up a pair of gloves first. Bag gloves are smaller and designed for speed and precision to build up your skills. Sparring gloves are much larger with more padding to protect both your hands and your opponent’s face.
- Wraps: the oft-overlooked wraps are absolutely essential when it comes to boxing. They protect the bones of your hand and lessen excessive impact to your wrists.
- Medicine ball: Medicine balls are used to build muscle and improve balance and coordination. Sound useful? It is.
- Speed-bag: a must-have for anyone serious about the sport. The speed-bag helps develop hand/eye coordination (which is essential when it comes to blocking blows with your hand that are aimed at your eye).
- Heavy bag: probably the most used piece of boxing equipment, the heavy bag lets you practice your punches and enhance power while you do so.
- Jump rope: And you thought your days of jumping rope were long behind you. Jump rope actually improves your footwork, builds shoulder strength, and enhances your stamina (all of which are incredibly important for boxers).
Now that you’ve got the equipment you need, it’s time to strap on those gloves and get to it. Your fire pit’s not gonna defend itself after all.