In the boxing training section of ScotBoxer, apart from just giving you advice on training, you will learn about all the various pieces of training equipment and how to use all that gear properly. There are also examples of typical boxing workouts that will help get you started, then you will find information about how to develop ways to shape those workouts to suit you personally and allow you to get the most from your training routines. I will also explain the things that seems to cause most confusion in boxing training classes - How to properly use your skipping rope and how to shadow box.
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Why should you warm up and cool down before and after a boxing training workout?
I can't overemphasise enough the importance of a proper warm up before boxing training (or any other type of workout session for that matter) and a good cool down routine afterwards. Obvious benefits include improved performance during your training, and a reduced likelihood of injuring yourself.
The two frequently used methods by most people to warm up before workouts, include light aerobic work and/or stretching before beginning their session. Unfortunately, these methods do not really benefit anyone involved in training for dynamic sports such as boxing.
Warm ups can either be directly related to the training session (use of sporting movements) or indirectly related (general movements). The primary purpose of a warm up before boxing training is to increase your body temperature and heart rate. The increase in body temperature resulting from a good warm up leads to improved performance during the training session, as higher temperatures accelerate the rate of bodily processes.
Another factor which increases the rate of the metabolic processes, is the increase in heart rate that accompanies a well designed warm up. This increase helps prepare the cardiovascular system for the hard workout ahead. The combination of increased body and muscle temperature, and an increased heart rate, leads to an increase of blood flow to tissues. This improves the efficiency of oxygen uptake and carbon dioxide removal during your boxing training session.
Proper warm ups are also extremely important for the parts of boxing workout routines requiring short duration, high intensity work bursts, such as sprinting and jumping.
How To Warm Up For A Training Session
Warm-ups mostly fall into three categories -
General Warm-Up - Joint rotations and aerobic activity
Stretching - Static stretches and dynamic stretches
Aerobic activity will help to reduce the risk of injury from stretching.
Performing a general warm up before stretching helps minimise structural weakening, as warmer muscles and tendons are more elastic and less prone to injury during training.
The use of static muscle stretching increases the range of movement of the major joints and muscles involved during the training session. Static stretching (stretching to farthest point and holding) is the safest method of stretching, and uses little expenditure of energy.
Dynamic muscle stretching is then used to reach the maximum range of movement.
Dynamic stretches involve controlled movements, such as walking lunges, trunk rotations and arm swings.
The use of a sport specific activity during the warm up is done for two main reasons, as stretches do almost nothing to increase temperature or blood flow.
Using Sports Specific Activity Training increases the temperature and heart rate that have been lost as a result of the stretching.
This activity incorporates specific muscle groups and patterns, so it is a much more functional type of training for the boxer.
A proper cool down after a boxing training workout is also important.
The cooling down session is used to gradually return the heart rate and blood pressure to normal levels after the training session. The rhythmic contraction of the big muscles help return blood to the heart, as large amounts of blood get pumped to the extremities during exercise. Also, a proper cool down minimises the chances of muscle ache afterwords.
So cooling down is especially important after high intensity exercise with an anaerobic content, such as boxing training. Anaerobic exercises also results in lactic acid building up in the bloodstream and muscles. A good cool down routine after exercising helps to remove these products again.
When it comes to boxing training, most boxers and their weight lifting has to be altered to suit a boxing specific training workout.
Here is a step-by-step process of developing a boxing training specific plan, including weights - One that especially meets the demanding nature of boxing.....
Firstly, boxers at any class are immensely powerful for their size, but how is that explosive power best developed?
Plyometrics is a proven form of . Boxing training drills can be adapted for both upper and lower body power, helping a fighter to move with greater speed and land more decisive punches. So incorporate plyometric exercises into your training routines.
Boxers require strength endurance in order to maintain a high level of work throughout a fight. Even in amateur boxing, a two minute round requires a lot of sustained effort. If you have never boxed before, a two minute amateur round is a lot more difficult and physically demanding than you think it is. Unless you are very fit, you will struggle to last more than a round or two in the ring.
The core musculature bridges the upper and lower body. The stronger and more able they are, the greater the synergy of movement can be. So working on your core strength is essential for boxers.
Medicine balls are a classic piece of a boxers training equipment. They can be used to develop strength and power, and allow the fighter to incorporate very specific movements into his or her workout routine.
Boxing requires both anaerobic and aerobic endurance (professional boxers rely heavily on the aerobic system) so learn to build those types of exercises into your conditioning session.
While long slow distance runs may be a suitable introduction at the start of a boxing training programme, interval training running should be used to develop more boxing specific stamina.
Increased flexibility may reduce the risk of certain injuries. It also allows a boxer to move with greater dexterity and finesse in the ring, as well as landing (and avoiding) a few more punches.
Boxing training is notoriously strenuous. While a bout may not come along too often, boxers spend many hours every day on a gruelling fitness regime to keep them in tip top physical condition.
Another major key to the success of any boxing training programme is also adequate recovery time and the avoidance of injury.
Muscle ache the day after training is something everyone has experienced. While boxers must contend with bumps and bruising from sparring, the aches and pains brought on by a tough training session is the result of something completely different.
A Basic Boxing Training Routine
What use is shadow boxing to a boxer?
in gyms is a common part of a boxers training session, allowing the fighter to prepare their muscles at the beginning of a workout session before they engage in the more intensive forms of exercise that comes afterwards.
In, the fighter does not require a partner but works on their own, often visualising a specific partner as a way of mentally preparing for a future fight. Instead of practicing in the ring, the shadow boxer works in front of a mirror, throwing in front of them as a way of getting into a fighting rhythm and identifying fighting techniques to be worked on during the rest of the training session.
There are two different styles of shadow boxing - The long method and the short method. Using the Long Method of shadow boxing, the boxer practicesand straight punches, shuffling their feet to rock their body backwards and forwards. Alternatively, the short method of shadow boxing is a way of practicing close body punches, with the fighter using a side-to-side motion to move the body from left to right in order to practice the technique of and short boxing.
Do NOT continually practice your shadow boxing in front of a mirror though - When boxing, you must learn to constantly keep your eyes on the other fighter at all times. If you are used to glancing to the side to look into a mirror constantly when shadow boxing, that can break your concentration in the ring and become a bad habit. You must always concentrate 100% on your opponent in the ring, or you will suffer the consequences. Those consequences can be devastating if you momentarily lose your concentration in the ring.
Why do boxers train with punch bags?
Boxers use punch bag training to practice throwing
The largest of all the punching bags, mostly weighing between 40 and 100 pounds, the heavy punch bag is suspended by chains or thick ropes from a fixed point and is used by boxers for working on
Filled with maize to help recreate a human body feel, a boxer uses the maize punching bag for light
The smallest type of punch bag, the speed bag is full of air and fixed at the top to a rebound platform. The aim of using the speed punch bag is to allow the boxer to practice
Unlike the other types of punching bags, the pedestal punch bag is not suspended from the ceiling but stands on a weighted pedestal instead. Like the, it is used in boxing training to practice and specifically , which aim at the opponent’s head and upper part of the body.
Shaped like a human, the body opponent punch bag is made of synthetic materials such as foam and is usually fixed to a pedestal, allowing the boxer to practiceto on a simulated human opponent.
During sparring routines we use special sparring which have more padding than the boxing gloves used in competition, along with a in order to reduce the risk of injury. So always use the proper protective boxing equipment when sparring.
An alternative form of sparring is known as "body sparring" .........As the name suggests, it is sparring which does not allow the boxer to hit their opponent on the head.
For, boxers use a rope of approximately 8-10 feet long, holding one end in each hand and jumping over the rope for several 3-minute ‘rounds’, in order to get used to the endurance required in each round of a fight. Again, begin slowly and the increased speed will gradually develop through practice.
There are three main ways of using the skipping rope for boxing training:
Running In Place - The easiest way to use the skipping rope, this requires the boxer to run on the spot, moving the jumping rope over their head and lifting their feet over the rope as it comes down in front of the body.
Double Unders - A more advanced and strenuous way of using the skipping rope, this requires the boxer to keep their feet together and jump with both feet at a time, jumping once for every two turns of the rope.
Criss Cross - The criss cross can be applied to either of the above styles of using the skipping rope, adding a more challenging dimension to the basic skipping steps. To perform the criss cross, the boxer is required to cross their arms (and the rope) as the rope passes down in front of the body, jumping through the loop that is formed and uncrossing the arms during the next rotation.
Boxing is an aerobic sport requiring high levels of fitness and endurance, which means that a large part of boxing workout drills consists of aerobic and cardiovascular routines. Exercises such as sit ups, press ups, crunches, pull ups, squat thrusts and star jumps, are a crucial part of boxing training, helping the boxer build up the muscle and endurance required for the ring.
Boxers usually complete several circuits of specified activity at the end of a training session in order to improve mobility, strength and stamina. Jogging and track races are also a good way of building up the aerobic energy required for the sport.
As well as requiring high levels of aerobic energy and endurance, the power and strength needed in the boxing ring requires the boxer to also have high anaerobic energy levels. A good way to build up anaerobic energy is by adding plyometric exercises to your training sessions. Plyometric exercises utilise explosive bursts of energy and are used to improve the boxer’s muscle contractions and reaction times, in order to allow them to respond quickly and powerfully to an opponent’s punch.
Good forms of plyometric exercises to add to your training workout routines include depth jumps, throws, short sprinting exercises and abdominal exercises using a medicine ball. Punch bag work can also be classified as a form of plyometric exercise because it uses the boxers muscles powerfully for a short amount of time.
Begin your boxing training session by firstly "" - It’s best to do this at the beginning of the training session so that you don’t have to pause your workout once you have begun. Also, be sure to get your round timer started and set with 3 minute rounds and a 1 minute break between rounds.
Without a proper round timer, a stop watch will do just fine to guide your time.
Once you are all set, you should grab your skipping rope and warm up for two rounds at the start of your training session. It’s a great way to break into a sweat and get your body loosened up. Without a skipping rope, you can perform jumping jacks and/or jog in place instead.
After you have completed that part of the training session, your next goal is to complete 100 Push Ups and 200 Sit Ups. Probably the best way to tackle this for a boxing beginner is to break them up into sets of 20 and 50 respectively, and alternate in between the two. Take as many sets as necessary to complete the task. If 100 push ups and 200 it ups is way more than you can handle, do as much as possible and gradually work up to that level in future training sessions. You want to build up your strength, but you don’t want to be physical exhausted before the proper training session even begins.
After finishing up with those, it’s now time to do some shadow boxing.
Spend two rounds shadow boxing in front of a mirror, if you have one accessible. You can rest in between rounds for one minute if you choose.
Now you are completely done with your warm up, you have got some strength training in and your technique should be honed, so it’s time to move on to the heavy punch bag.
You should spend a total of maybe 5 rounds on the , add in defensive moves and generally keep working for the full three minutes of each round. When you are done with the 5 rounds on the , you should perform three rounds on the . After all of this hard work, your shoulders and arms should really be feeling the burn.
Do not rest between rounds on theeither. If you don’t have a yet, spend another 3 rounds shadow boxing instead.
You are now done with the boxing element of the training session, all you need to do now is cool down your body and finish off your workout session with some more cardio work. You can do this with another 2 rounds on theDo not take a break in between the rounds and learn to really try to finish your skipping strongly and powerfully. Now take some deep breaths, stretch those muscles and drink some . You should be absolutely exhausted if you just completed this beginner boxing training workout for the first time and followed every step.
If you have moved fairly quickly, the full beginners training session should have taken you just over an hour to complete.
With practice, you will be able to add variations and develop your own individual boxing training routine.
First of all i should maybe make clear there is no such thing a "typical" boxer training routine
They vary greatly from person to person, but this is a rough guide!
Work-Out 5 days per week - Rest on the other 2 days.
Get up and after a stretching routine, go for a 4 mile run (include some sprint bursts)6:30am
Come home, shower and go back to bed9:00am
Wake up and eat Porridge (oatmeal)
Start a routine of exercise with weights
Some skipping, shadow boxing, speedball and bag work. Then 5 rounds of sparring
Have another meal (Plenty chicken and pasta with fruit juice drink)
More ring work, then 30 mins on the exercise bike
Home to chill out.
Sometime in the evening
Fit in 1000 sit-ups (10 sets x 100) - 200 dips (10 sets x 20) - 200 press-ups(4 sets of 50)
Plenty steak and pasta with fruit juice
2 Days A Week
Pretty much do nothing and eat whatever you want (Within reason - Visit this page for more information about a boxers diet) Remember too that having rest days are very important as it gives you the opportunity to recharge your batteries.
Why do boxers do road runs?
Firstly, most people do not have the slightest clue about how to train or condition themselves for a fight, and don't fully understand the value of a proper road running programme as part of a boxing training routine. Interval training was an unknown concept 10 years ago, but fortunately many advancements have been made regarding road running for boxers over the years
Before discussing the specifics about road running, let's clarify one important point - The best way to prepare for boxing is to step inside the ring and actually box. No matter what you do for conditioning, if you fail to spar, you will never be in the proper shape to fight.
Road runs alone will not prepare the boxer for the rigours associated with a grueling fight. What a good road running programme will do however, is enhance your ability to sustain more intense sparring sessions. If you take a boxer who goes to the gym every day but never runs, and match him against an evenly skilled fighter who performs his road runs religiously, i'm willing to bet that at least 9 out of 10 times, the winner will be the boxer who has been doing his road running.
I see many people road running and most sure do like to make things difficult for themselves by running in an upright way, or even leaning slightly backwards...........Learn to lean forward slightly when you run, that lets your own momentum, gravity, and body weight help you, rather than hinder you.
Many people think that boxing roadwork means waking up early in the morning and just jogging along quiet roads for 3 or 4 miles before breakfast. While that kind of running routine sure beats hitting the snooze button on your alarm clock, or bouncing it off the wall and going back to sleep again, it is not the most effective use of your training time on the road.
Boxing is largely a fast paced, anaerobic event. Basically you win fights by moving quickly and throwing punches while avoiding the other fighters punches. So, considering the anaerobic nature of boxing, why limit your road work to aerobic jogging? .......It simply does not make sense.
You should ideally use more intense forms of road running. Interval Training is one good solution.
A common phrase today is "Sport Specific Training" - But what exactly is sport specific training, or interval training?
Well boxers can make their running programme more sport specific (anaerobic) by training around the work-to-rest ratios of an actual bout. This style of road running is usually called interval training.
Essentially, interval training consists of running hard for the duration of a boxing round, for example 2 or 3 minutes, depending whether you are an amateur or professional boxer. Your rest period will be 1 minute, the same rest period you have between rounds.
If you are fighting 4 rounds, a good programme will consist of 5 intervals. Professional boxers training for longer bouts will obviously increase the number of intervals. It is a good idea however to keep the maximum number of intervals to somewhere around 8 to 10 to avoid over-training.
This interval road running programme should only be performed 2 or 3 times per week as part of your regular boxing training routine.
On non-interval running days, you can return to the more traditional form of road work, such as a basic 2 to 4 mile run. These types of road runs are still important too, as they help build up the stamina to enable your body to endure the harder interval work.
These road running sessions should also be run at a good pace. When you train, you must train hard or do not train at all. Most boxers should be able to at least maintain an average 6 or 7-minute per mile pace, depending on the distance of the run.
A decent measure of a boxers fitness is the ability to run 2 miles in under 12 minues!
Running "intervals" should be done on non sparring days as there is nothing worse than sparring with weak legs to try and support you in the boxing ring. Constant movement in the ring is vital, tired legs when sparring means that you move around less and get hit more often. Getting smacked around because you are heavy legged isn't a lot of fun.
Interval training is very intense. Your body will need time to recover between interval sessions, so do not overlook the importance of that rest and recovery time.
After a few weeks of interval training, you should notice a big improvement in your work capacity and anaerobic endurance.
It's best to incorporate variety into the interval sessions too. Mix things up with sprints, hill running, and by varying the distance of your interval workouts (ex. 200 meters, 400 meters, and/or 800 meters). By adjusting your road running routine, you will foster continuous improvements and avoid getting yourself into a rut.
When planning on doing any aerobic training, alway bear in mind this piece of important information - While a short burst of aerobic training is better than nothing at all, it won't do you a great deal of good.
Your aerobic system takes about 15 minutes to kick in - So if you exercise aerobically for less than 15mins, you won't actually gain any benefit from it. Therefore, any aerobic sessions included in your boxing training workouts must be at least 20 mins long before you begin to gain even the slightest of improvemnt from it.
Firstly, what are plyometric exercises?
Plyometric training uses a type of exercise designed to produce fast powerful movements, generally for the purpose of improving performance in a sport. A Plyometric exercise is one in which a muscle is quickly extended and rapidly contracted again. The purpose of this is to jump higher, run faster, throw further, hit harder, etc
Before adding plyometric exercises to your boxing training routines, there are some things you should bear in mind. The rule of thumb is those who are unable to lift 75% of their body weight in the three major lifts (bench, squat and dead lift) should consider training further to improve their strength and fitness levels before attempting plyometric exercises. Also make sure you are in good physical shape and healthy before attempting these types of exercise.
An example of a plyometric exercises would be "Plyo Push Ups" - Here you will focus on pushing yourself as high into the air possible from the down push up position. A good example of this is the "clapping push up" where you are forced to push your body at least 6-8 inches further off the ground than normal to perform the "hand clap".
Example of a quick Plyometric boxing workout routine:
Plyo Push Ups 10-15 reps
Squat Thrust 10-15 reps
Squat Jumps 10-15 reps
Lateral Box Jumps 10-15 reps
Medicine Ball Slams 10-15 reps
Tuck Jumps 10-15 reps
Plyometric exercises are a VERY effective workout for developing both speed and strength for the boxer. Many professional athletes use plyometric's as their only source of training. In no time at all, you too will experience speed and strength gains by adding plyometric routines to your boxing training session.
How do you spar properly?
Aways remember thatis just a practice session, that's all it is. I have witnessed many injuries occur during unsafe sparring sessions in boxing gyms.
are not a full blooded competition, they are nothing more than a training and learning process for the two boxers taking part.
Of course you get hit, sometimes you get hurt when sparring and aye black eyes and burst noses are a distinct possibility, but some poorallow something similar to "Gym Wars" to break out during sparring, which get fighters hurt, both mentally and physically. That's not what sparring is all about. Sparring should ideally be done in a friendly and non-competitive atmosphere, wearing large well padded , gum shields, low blow protector and full .
If your trainer allows sparring sessions to become full bloodied fights with lighter gloves, you want to head off to another gym and find yourself a better trainer. No good boxing trainer would allow that to happen.
There are some workout routines listed here that you can include in your boxing training schedule to help give you much more explosive punches.
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