Why Boxercise is such a popular and highly beneficial form of fitness training and, while it’s based on boxing training, doesn’t involve actual fighting.
A popular and enjoyable training pursuit with many fitness benefits
As its name suggests, Boxercise (a registered trademark) is exercise based on boxing training conceived in the early 1990s by boxing coach Andy Wake, and is very popular with some 1.2 million participants worldwide. Using High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), Boxercise provides many fitness benefits such as building strength, fat burning and improving stamina but, unlike ‘real’ boxing, doesn’t involve actual fighting or sparring.
Suitable for all standards and fitness levels
One of the key benefits of Boxercise is the way it can be tailored to men and women of varying ages and fitness levels, and contains much of what a ‘real’ boxer would do to train and prepare for fights including the following: shadow boxing, press-ups, shuttle runs, sit-ups, skipping and the hitting of pads and punchbags.
Real boxing training
Even though you may not end up climbing into the ring to fight someone, it’s quite possible in training terms to start in the same way a boxer would and work your way up to similar levels of fitness. Boxercise will also help in terms of confidence and put you in control of your body in terms of realizing and managing aggression, improving balance along with hand and eye coordination, and could help you in physically protecting yourself if you ever had to.
Boxing training or Boxercise?
There may be subtle differences between the two; Boxercise is often offered by gyms and leisure centres via classes run by trained instructors while actual boxing clubs may offer boxing training which is a bit more ‘hard core’ than Boxercise itself. This still won’t be actual ‘boxing’ as in throwing and receiving punches, but provides a more ‘authentic’ experience probably run by professional boxers and coaches.
If you seek ‘just like a boxer’ levels of fitness, then out-and-out boxing training may be the course to follow.
How does Boxercise help with fitness?
The benefits are many and varied and include the following:
- Aerobic benefits – a good heart workout by raising the heart rate and building cardio vascular strength
- Release aggression – in a controlled and managed fashion
- Helps burn fat – particularly good for visceral fat around the stomach
- Improves hand-eye coordination
- Improves balance and timing
- Improves concentration, focus and clarity
- Improves overall strength
- Confidence boost – as is common with much exercise, ‘feel good’ endorphins are released, and overall confidence levels rise as you get fitter
Anytime and (almost) anywhere
Once you’re familiar with the exercises and techniques involved in Boxercise, you can do it at home or somewhere other than the gym or boxing club. While buying your own gloves such as good quality Twins boxing gloves and pads are worthwhile, just buying a skipping rope and using the stopwatch on your smartphone and completing some of the basic exercises will help enormously.
Any injury risks?
As mentioned above, Boxercise is ideal for both men and women of various ages but, as with any exercise, it’s sensible to check with your GP before embarking on it if you haven’t partaken in much exercise for some time.
While you won’t engage in physical contact in actually sparring with others, injuries to the hands are the most common type because of the punching of pads and punchbags. The key here is to prepare properly such as taping your hands properly before starting training and follow the advice on technique fully from the instructors.
So while you may not be hearing the round bell any time soon, you could certainly improve your fitness with Boxercise.