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Boxing Can Build Strength & Confidence


Boxing will help you lose weight and gain muscle; however, it can improve Confidence and Self-esteem. Boxing creates a mentality of feeling more powerful. Boxing can give the fighting spirit to an individual.

It is a skill that can aid in everything from balance to reflexes and is also a great stress relief that can help with anger management. It will definitely not be a fix for violent tendencies or deep-rooted issues and for that please seek the help of a professional but for day-to-day stress, it is definitely a fantastic outlet. The physical act of punching something will relieve tension in your body. Trust me.

Now I'm not talking about climbing into the ring and going round for round, toe to toe until somebody's bell gets rung. In another article, I will talk about the merits of sparring or boxing against an opponent but for now, we are going to cover the basics of boxing and give you the tools you will need to start building that muscle memory against the opponent ready anytime, the Heavy Bag.


For Boxing, there are a few things you need to know.

The Boxers Upright stance


In a fully upright stance, the boxer stands with the legs shoulder-width apart and the rear foot a half-step behind the lead foot. Right-handed or orthodox boxers lead with the left foot and fist (for most penetration power). Both feet are parallel, and the right heel is off the ground. Bring your weight onto the balls of your feet and soften your knees. The lead (left) fist is held vertically about six inches in front of the face at eye level. The rear (right) fist is held beside the chin and the elbow tucked against the ribcage to protect the body. The chin is tucked into the chest to avoid punches to the jaw which commonly cause knock-outs and is often kept slightly off-center. Wrists are slightly bent to avoid damage when punching and the elbows are kept tucked in to protect the ribcage.




How to Make a Fist

  • Start with your hand open and all four fingers fully extended

  • Roll your fingers so that your fingertips come to the top of your palm

  • Continue rolling your fingers until your nails dig into your palm

  • Place your thumb across your fingers between the first and second finger joints so it locks the fist tight

When punching you want the impact point of the knuckles to be in a straight line with your wrist and forearm. Do not bend your wrist up or down or side to side. A bend in your wrist creates a weak point during your strike that can result in injury.



Types of Punches

There are four basic punches in modern boxing, the jab, the cross, the hook, and the uppercut.

  • Jab Quick, straight punch thrown with the lead hand from the guard position. The jab extends from the side of the torso and typically does not pass in front of it. It is accompanied by a small, clockwise rotation of the torso and hips, while the fist rotates 90 degrees, becoming horizontal upon impact. As the punch reaches full extension, the lead shoulder is brought up to guard the chin. The rear hand remains next to the face to guard the jaw. After making contact with the target, the lead hand is retracted quickly to resume a guard position in front of the face. The jab is the most important punch in a boxer's arsenal because it provides a fair amount of its own cover and it leaves the least amount of space for a counter‐punch from the opponent. It has the longest reach of any punch and does not require commitment or large weight transfers. Due to its relatively weak power, the jab is often used as a tool to gauge distances, probe an opponent's defenses, and set up heavier, more powerful punches. A half‐step may be added, moving the entire body into the punch, for additional power. Despite its lack of power, the jab is the most important punch in boxing, usable not only for the attack but also defense, as a good quick, stiff jab can interrupt a much more powerful punch, such as a hook or uppercut.

  • Cross Powerful straight punch thrown with the rear hand. From the guard position, the rear hand is thrown from the chin, crossing the body and traveling towards the target in a straight line. The rear shoulder is thrust forward and finishes just touching the outside of the chin. At the same time, the lead hand is retracted and tucked against the face to protect the inside of the chin. For additional power, the torso and hips are rotated counter‐clockwise as the cross is thrown. Weight is also transferred from the rear foot to the lead foot, resulting in the rear heel turning outwards as it acts as a fulcrum for the transfer of weight. Like the jab, a half‐step forward may be added. After the cross is thrown, the hand is retracted quickly and the guard position resumed. It can be used to counterpunch a jab, aiming for the opponent's head (or a counter to a cross aimed at the body) or to set up a hook. The cross can also follow a jab, creating the classic "one‐two combo." The cross is also called a "straight" or "right."

  • Hook Semi‐circular punch thrown with the lead hand to the side of the opponent's head. From the guard position, the elbow is drawn back with a horizontal fist (knuckles pointing forward) and the elbow bent. The rear hand is tucked firmly against the jaw to protect the chin. The torso and hips are rotated clockwise, propelling the fist through a tight, clockwise arc across the front of the body and connecting with the target. At the same time, the lead foot pivots clockwise, turning the left heel outwards. Upon contact, the hook's circular path ends abruptly and the lead hand is pulled quickly back into the guard position. A hook may also target the lower body (the classic Mexican hook to the liver) and this technique is sometimes called the "rip" to distinguish it from the conventional hook to the head. The hook may also be thrown with the rear hand.

  • Uppercut Vertical, rising punch thrown with the rear hand. From the guard position, the torso shifts slightly to the right, the rear hand drops below the level of the opponent's chest and the knees are bent slightly. From this position, the rear hand is thrust upwards in a rising arc towards the opponent's chin or torso. At the same time, the knees push upwards quickly and the torso and hips rotate counter‐clockwise and the rear heel turns outward, mimicking the body movement of the cross. The strategic utility of the uppercut depends on its ability to "lift" the opponent's body, setting it off‐balance for successive attacks.



Defense

  • The Cover‐up – covering up is the last opportunity to avoid an incoming strike to an unprotected face or body. Generally speaking, the hands are held high to protect the head and chin and the forearms are tucked against the torso to impede body shots. Bob and Weave — bobbing moves the head laterally and beneath an incoming punch. As the opponent's punch arrives, the boxer bends the legs quickly and simultaneously shifts the body either slightly right or left. Once the punch has been evaded, the boxer "weaves" back to an upright position, emerging on either the outside or inside of the opponent's still-extended arm. To move outside the opponent's extended arm is called "bobbing to the outside". To move inside the opponent's extended arm is called "bobbing to the inside". Also known as "Ducking" for example "Ducking Right" or "Ducking Left"

  • Parry/Block — parrying or blocking uses the boxer's hands as defensive tools to deflect incoming attacks. As the opponent's punch arrives, the boxer delivers a sharp, lateral, open-handed blow to the opponent's wrist or forearm, redirecting the punch. Click for more information on Boxing styles and technique



The Workout

Ok now let's go over a boxing heavy bag High-intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Workout that is sure to get the blood pumping. Remember to stretch before and after any workout and always consult a physician before starting any workout or diet regimen.

If you’re new to intensity workouts, Start with three rounds and build up to all six rounds. Be sure to pace yourself, Do not give all you got in the first 20 seconds then stop. Keep punching even if you’re just touching the bag with your knuckles.

You want to push to the end of each round without stopping.


The Warmup:

  • 1 minute run in place

  • 20 pushups

  • 20 squats

  • 20 lunges

  • 50 jumping jacks

  • 50 jump lunges

Rest 2 minutes use this time to wrap your wrists and/or put on your boxing gloves.


Round 1:

  • 1-minute: Left Jab - Left Jab - Right Cross

  • 30 seconds: Left Jab - Cover- Right Cross - Cover

  • 1-minute: Left Jab - Left Jab - Right Cross

  • 30 seconds: Left Jab - Cover- Right Cross - Cover

Rest 1 minute


Round 2:

  • 1-minute: -Right Cross -Left Uppercut -Right Cross

  • 30 seconds: -Duck Right -Duck Left

  • 1-minute: -Right Cross -Left Uppercut -Right Cross

  • 30 seconds: -Duck Right -Duck Left

Rest 1 minute


Round 3:

  • 1-minute: -Left Uppercut -Right Cross -Left Hook

  • 30 seconds: -Left Jab -Left Jab -Cover

  • 1-minute: -Left Uppercut -Right Cross -Left Hook

  • 30 seconds: -Left Jab -Left Jab -Cover

Rest 1 minute


Round 4:

  • 1-minute: Fast -Uppercuts-Right-left-Right-left -Cover

  • 30 seconds: Fast -Left Jab -Right Cross -Left Uppercut -Cover

  • 1-minute: Fast -Uppercuts-Right-left-Right-left -Cover

  • 30 seconds: Fast -Left Jab -Right Cross -Left Uppercut -Cover

Rest 1 minute


Round 5:

  • 1-minute: -Right Hook -Right uppercut -Left Jab

  • 30 seconds: Fast -Left Jab -Right Cross

  • 1-minute: -Right Hook -Right uppercut -Left Jab

  • 30 seconds: Fast -Left Jab -Right Cross

Rest 1 minute


Round 6:

Finish Him!!

  • 1-minute: -Right Hook -Left Hook -Right uppercut

  • 30 seconds: -Duck Right -Duck Left

  • 1-minute: -Right Hook -Left Hook -Right uppercut

  • 30 seconds: -Duck Right -Duck Left

Workout Complete



Hit the showers and enjoy the "High"

Physical activity is a known stress reducer and runners experience the phenomenon of a "Runner’s High". Boxing is no different and when you are punching the bag, your brain increases the production of endorphins that can create a sense of euphoria and wellbeing.


“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion’.”

-Muhammad Ali


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