You might think of boxing as a great competitive sport, but have you ever considered the health benefits? Scratch below the surface and there’s a lot more to the noble art than men and women donning gloves and trying to knock one another out.
Let’s take a look at the main positive physical and mental effects that can transpire through taking up boxing.
Part of a daily fitness routine
Whether you’re sparring in the ring with a partner or just getting some practice shots in on a punching bag, boxing requires extensive physical focus and a commitment to a healthy lifestyle. You need to be able to keep up with your opponent and your sparring partner, as well as the personal goals you set for yourself. There’s nothing worse than feeling defeated when your body hits that wall, and boxing pushes you to constantly improve your skill and your fitness level.
The sport is also a great cardiovascular workout and, although not as constantly intensive as running or biking, there is still an important need to pace yourself. Pro boxers can go for up to 12 3-minute rounds, so that level of skill requires intense physical conditioning. That means you have to learn to pick your spots and not punch yourself out. Because of this, there’s an element of personal discipline to the sport as well.
Stress relief and focus
Like any form of physical exercise, boxing is great for relieving stress and tension that builds up in our bodies. It brings clarity of mind with it. The more you punch, the more you hit that target with greater focussed intent, the more you habitually concentrate. That greater sense of focus boxing brings about is not only necessary for sparring and matches but helps you to improve your daily mentality outside of the ring.
Ever hear gym users talk about a post-workout buzz or a runner’s high? It’s the same with boxing. The process of the human brain releasing endorphins has proven to be accelerated by physical activity.
Build self-confidence and manage anger
If you take up boxing, then you’re doing more than just increasing physical strength and mental capacity. The sport can also be extremely empowering and, in turn, aid in helping you deal with the everyday stresses of modern life.
For evidence of this, look no further than pro boxer Tyson Fury. He reached the top of his profession, but his depression and drug addiction that spiralled out of control after dethroning Wladimir Klitschko, almost cost him his career.
Fury eventually returned to training, and the sport he loved helped him conquer his demons. In his fifth fight since his comeback, the former world heavyweight champion is a 1/25 favourite to beat Otto Wallin in the boxing betting in their bout at bet365.
Competing in the ring and retaining his title helped Fury rediscover his mojo and restore self-confidence. At the same time, boxing can also help you manage anger. It seems obvious to point out that, while taking your aggression out on an inanimate object, you’re releasing pent-up feelings without hurting anyone or yourself. Prince Harry revealed he used boxing to diffuse his anger and if it’s working for royalty, then it may just work for you.
Sporting a social life
Boxing is an individual’s sport; you get into your own head, focussed, determined, a stand-alone warrior. But that’s not the case entirely – every boxer has a dedicated team around them that helps them with training and tactics. Head to any boxing gym and you’re sure to find a network of other boxers and coaches supporting each other.
With a sport that has a reputation for being aggressive and intense, the practice of the sport itself is actually a very self-disciplined and cathartic exercise. You can go down to your local boxing gym and step up to the ring, not necessarily to fight, but to hone your personal, physical, and mental capabilities.