Boxing: why do you always have to wear a helmet?
You plan to practice boxing ? It’s really great and you’re in the right place to start your research on the basics of this beginner sport. Boxing is a discipline that can really add to your daily life. In this guide you will find everything you need to know about boxing with explanations of its benefits, basic movements, materials and exercises to start the practice.
Why boxing ?
Boxing is a sport that fascinates and is very rich in history. It is practiced in many regions all over the world. It is a discipline that everyone can practice. It is aimed at those, large and small, who want to try a new sport, improve their physical conditions or work on their cardio. It is also a sport that can have a very positive impact on the mind by helping to regain confidence or to externalize feelings.
Boxing is often a source of inspiration, it motivates and has a natural tendency to produce outsider stories. It is not without reason that Hollywood has produced so many films honoring boxers.
The practice of boxing is on the rise
In many countries such as the United States or France, the practice of boxing has been increasing since 2007. In France, the phenomenon increased after the Rio Olympic Games in 2016 where our country to shine in this discipline by winning 6 medals, including 2 in gold. Boxing is no longer seen as a violent sport, but as a complete sporting activity that makes all parts of the body work and good for the mind. Boxing is becoming more democratic and more women are practicing it.
The benefits of boxing
- Allow intense physical training – Studies have shown that a boxing session is one of the most calorie activities you can do. An average person can burn up to 400 calories with only 30 minutes of regular sparring in front of a partner or on a heavy strike bag.
- High intensity with low impact – Boxing exercises for fitness incorporate the principles of HIIT (interval-intensive training) that create full body training sessions that burn fat, improve your cardiovascular capacity, while being much less brutal for your joints than activities like running.
- Develop strength and endurance – Boxing teaches you a lot of techniques and punches that naturally develop upper body strength and endurance, without the constraints of bodybuilding. The series of rope jumping and footwork do the same for your lower body.
- Improve your mental concentration – Boxing improves your mental concentration by forcing you to think only of your movements and your technique. Having a boxing session is a great way to dispel the thoughts that clutter your mind.
- Build self-confidence – What could be more inspiring than learning to hit hard. You can start as a total novice, but after a few weeks and months of boxing lessons, you go forward in life knowing that you have new skills in your pocket.
- Reduce stress – When you make great physical efforts, your body releases endorphin (hormone of pleasure) which helps dispel the accumulated stress. Endorphins can create a healthy dependence on sport and are a completely natural way to feel better mentally and physically.
- Learn basic self-defense movements – Boxing is not really a practice of self-defense, but it teaches you some basic principles that can save your life when the time comes. Remember that the attackers have no limits. I therefore strongly recommend this article for more information on self-defense.
- Ideal for young people – With good coaches, boxing is a fantastic tool for developing self-confidence and an image of being even more positive among young people. It’s not about fighting, but about doing something physical that is difficult. In recent years, our company has encouraged sedentary activities such as video games and the excessive use of smartphones. Children and adolescents need physical activity for their physical and mental well-being, which can be brought about by boxing.
The essential boxing equipment and accessories
Before you even start punching your first time, you need to prepare with the right equipment. This does not necessarily mean that you have to go out and buy the best brands on the market, but you have to look for quality equipment that will last a long time. It may be a bit expensive, but remember that your equipment is an investment in your new hobby.
For many people, spending money on their sport makes them even more likely not to give up. Although this is not a complete list of everything a novice fighter needs, these are the things that are very often found in a boxing gym and that will need to be known.
Hand bands – Hand bandages are used to protect your fingers and hands inside the gloves. They are generally made from fabric and require a little practice to learn how to wrap them properly.
– Each boxer needs to have his own gloves. There are different sizes and weights for training (sparring), fights, specific to women and adapted to children. You should invest in a pair of gloves whose weight limit is appropriate to the type of combat and training you plan to do, whether it is traditional boxing or MMA
Boxing shoes – Boxing shoes are different from traditional sneakers, they are usually higher and have appropriate grip on the floor of the ring. They are designed to keep your ankles and feet very stable while moving. However, they should not be used for running or other sports.
A boxing helmet – The boxing helmet mostly avoids cuts and bruises. Amateur fighters are sometimes required to wear this type of helmet depending on the category in which they fight. So it’s a good idea to take the lead and find a well-adjusted helmet to be ready on the day of a fight.
A mouth guard – It is an essential accessory that every boxer must have. A tooth guard prevents your teeth from breaking when you are hit in the face and also helps you not to bite your tongue. Training while carrying it in your mouth will help you learn to breathe better.
A heavy or self-supporting strike bag – A good heavy strike bag will help you work on strike power, footwork and simply your endurance. There are tons of typing to strengthen your strength. Traditional hanging heavy bags are excellent, but if you want something more portable at home, opt for a self-supporting strike bag.
A pear of speed – The pear of speed is a small strike bag mounted on a special platform on a pivot which allows to strike it very quickly. A pear of speed helps you work on your speed, your eye-hand coordination, and even your legs and endurance. The higher position also strengthens the shoulder muscles.
The double elastic bag (speed ball) – It is a different form of bullet-shaped bag connected from floor to ceiling by 2 elastic bands. It’s a very good alternative to pear speed that allows you to practice many different hit combinations.
Bear paws – The adsparring pads are in the form of a padded target that stands by hand like gloves. They vary the training with the help of a partner by working on a moving target without risk of injury. This equipment will help you work on your movements, your strike accuracy and your overall power.
A jump rope – The jump rope is the best cardio accessory for any boxer. This will help you hold on longer in the rounds, accumulate a lot of endurance and low impact sweet enough to keep you from getting hurt.
How to start boxing ? basic movements
Boxing is a sport that everyone can learn, provided they have the will and enough will. Let’s review each of the main basic movements that are essential for beginners when they learn to box.
You come to inquire before your first lesson ? It’s a good idea to have some basic moves before your first training session to better prepare.
Basic concepts n ° 1 – Posture and custody
Before giving a single punch, you must master your posture. There are several different types of positions, but for the absolute beginner, you have to work with a good balance, both in attack and in defense.
Good posture begins by placing your two feet roughly at the width of the shoulders. With your dominant leg placed in the back and the other in the front. Imagine that there is a line passing in the middle of your body. Your feet should each be on one side of this line, your dominant foot touching it by the heel and pointing outwards, and your front foot touching it with the big toe.
Bend your knees slightly for more agility. This shifted position helps you to balance well and allows you to use your hips to give yourself power when you punch. In addition, during a fight, you become a less easy target for your opponent by giving them less space to touch you. For your guard, tuck in your chin and place gloves up to the cheekbones to protect your face.
Basic concepts # 2 – the footwork
Leg play is as important as punches, so make sure you know how to move your feet. You should try to always keep a good distribution of your body weight so that you can move back as quickly as possible. You should also never be too close to your opponent. Keep your feet slightly apart, avoiding moving them too far or bringing them too close to each other.
Basic concepts n ° 3 – the different punches in boxing
Boxing has 4 main punches that you need to learn to be effective in the ring. They are the jab, the cross, the hook and the uppercut.
Jab – Jab is the most basic punch. It’s your main weapon in most combinations. It is used to weaken your opponent, to attack, adorn, defend and gain points. Standing in your appropriate position, the jab is a quick direct punch from your hand that is not dominant (often the left for a right-hander). Remember that compared to your posture, it is your punch that requires the least energy and goes the furthest.
The live of the law – It’s your most powerful punch, because it’s given by your dominant arm. The right crusader is therefore slower, but stronger in power than the jab. Use it to finish combos or to unbalance your opponent.
The uppercut – With either hand, the uppercut consists in giving up and punching in ascending movement. It is used to hit your opponent on the chin and it is a great punch to finish a combo and give the final blow.
The hook – A hook uses either hand in a horizontal movement. It is an effective neck that surprises the opponent because it comes from a lateral angle out of its peripheral vision. It can be used both on the face and on the body and can be formidable for the opponent. Many professional fighters use the hook as a coup de grace.
Combinations – Combinations come in several forms. They often start with a JAB. You can start with a basic combination on the strike bag consisting of a jab, a direct and a hook (1,2,3). It is one of the most basic combos learned by all novice fighters.
Basic concepts n ° 4 – defensive techniques
Boxing is not only about hitting your opponent, but also about defending yourself effectively to avoid beatings. This is why it is essential to learn good defensive techniques. A good training program involves both attack and defense. When you defend yourself, you will use all parts of your body: arms, head, torso and feet.
The arms – Your arms give you range, so use them to repel your opponent’s punches. You can block the blows to the head by putting both arms in front of your face. You can also do this to protect your body. Finally, you can counterattack by dodging and making the blows . Think of it as if you were fighting with your sword. Your arms are like a sword and a shield, blocking and adorning their weapons. Beware of the most powerful blows of your opponent by spotting his dominant arm. Boxing is also a sport that involves observation and strategy.
Body and head – When you avoid a punch by lowering yourself on the side you use the slip. It is also possible to do the same by rolling your shoulders to allow you to counter more quickly. If you need time to catch your breath, or if you want to limit the power of your opponents, you can hold on to them by grabbing them and pulling them against you. When you find yourself facing a burst of punches, the simple fact of knowing how to cover your face with your arms and your body can save you.
The footwork – All your movements in the ring come down to your footwork. This is why your position is so important. A neutral position at all times allows a good balance of body weight and gain speed to move forward, back or sideways when dodging a blow. You can also move your opponent by turning around, or by creating distance by backing up
Basic concepts n ° 5 – sparring
Although you can learn a lot about fighting with only you and a mirror, it is essential that you put your new skills into practice with a training partner. The sparring provides a better understanding of what it feels like to fight against a real opponent.
There are several types of training techniques, each designed to work on different aspects of boxing.
For example, a training partner wearing bear paws will allow you to work on your strike power, your footwork and the speed of your shots. A training session with little contact will help you work on your position in the ring, your ability to move, your footwork and your body movements. A contact sparring session is a great way to simulate real combat. It allows you to put together everything you have learned in a full program.
When you train, don’t forget to always take it easy and be very careful. You don’t want to hurt your partner, and you don’t want to be hurt by him either. The sparring is designed to give you more real experience in a combat environment, so find someone who is more competent than you to give you advice when you are in the ring.