If you’re an aspiring boxer, the sport does more than just a punch. All professional boxers spend a lot of time training and working to improve their performance. However, it can be tricky if you don’t know what areas to work for.
In boxing, there are elements that every boxer should be aware of. These elements are essential in improving an athlete’s performance. To help you, here are the five boxing elements you should focus on.
The most important of all boxing elements is punching. If you’re training for boxing, you will need to train the basics of punching, which include jab, straight, hook, and uppercut.
- Jab. A short, less powerful punch that’s often used to set up power punches. Although the jab doesn’t have enough power to damage an opponent, getting constantly hit by a jab can build up damage. Perfectly placed jabs can also interrupt and frustrate a boxer.
- Straight. A straight or a cross is a powerful direct punch that a boxer throws using their dominant hand. This type of punch is usually used as a knockout blow.
- Hook. A hook is a short, yet powerful punch. A hook is delivered from the side, often forming a “hook” with the boxer’s punching arm. Boxers can throw hooks on their opponent’s head or body.
- Uppercut. The uppercut is an upward punch that often hits the opponent’s chin or body. Powerful uppercuts can end a bout in an instant.
After you get to familiarize all these basic steps, you can then work your way to formulate your combination and create a technique that will work for you.
One of the factors that improve punches is cardio. This is the ability of a boxer to land powerful blows consecutively without getting tired immediately. This is an essential element of boxing, especially if you plan to enter the professional field. A match can last for multiple rounds, and you will exchange punches with your opponent until it ends. If you can’t do so, you might as well stop now.
To develop excellent cardio, you’ll need to perform aerobic workouts. The most common way to do so is by jogging or riding a bike. However, you can work with the best stationary bikes to improve your cardio while staying at home or the gym. This equipment can be a great tool in helping you work your lung capacity and improve your stamina and strength.
Many beginners often believe that boxing is fought more with fists and disregard how important footwork is. Footwork is crucial for a boxer’s offense and defense. Canelo Alvarez is virtually a ghost in the ring as opponents can’t hit him because of his head movement and excellent footwork. Manny Pacquiao is quick on his feet and allows him to bob in and out to avoid damage or deliver weird-angled power shots.
To practice footwork, your jump rope, agility ladder, and boxes are your best friend. Shadow boxing will let you practice your foot movements. Afterward, watching a tape of yourself enables you to develop your movements in and around the ring.
When you talk about coordination in boxing, it usually refers to the hand-eye-foot coordination of the boxer. This is one of the elements of boxing that one should be critical of. Since you’ll need to attack while defending yourself, you must work out the coordination of the different body parts.
One of the best ways people try to work out these elements is by shadow boxing. It helps in warming up your body. Invisible sparring allows you to imagine and consider the possible movement of your opponent. Then, you can visualize how you’ll respond to their moves. Once you’ve done enough shadow boxing, you will realize how repetition and focus on technique and strategy help your natural movements flow as boxers.
In boxing, your health is of utmost importance. More importantly, boxers should watch their weight. Weight is important in boxing as it allows a boxer to give their 100% when they’re comfortable with how they weigh.
If you’re planning to box competitively, you’ll be matched with other people in your weight class. Weight classes in boxing ensure the safety of the boxer while allowing them to perform at their best. Lighter weight classes often feature fighters that are quick. Heavier divisions feature slower, more powerful boxers.
However, don’t let weight restrictions fool you. Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson were heavyweights who punched heavy and moved like lightweights. Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr., despite being smaller and faster, also threw bombs like they were heavyweights.
Undoubtedly, boxing is a rough and challenging sport. Thus, you should prepare proper preparation and thorough training for yourself. As an aspiring boxer, you’ll need to ensure you’re 100% ready before entering the ring. It would help if you consider the elements listed above and form your routine as you continue this path toward boxing.