Updated: Jul 12
Today we are going to discuss the benefits of boxing and why it is such an effective way to improve your health and well being. Now although boxing is one of the best ways to learn self defense, it is also one of the best ways to stay in shape and improve your physical and mental condition. Many people think of boxing as simply throwing punches. And sure enough, with poor punching technique, it is quite an effective pure arm workout. However, in order to produce effective technique, boxing includes many other physical elements such as core strength to improve trunk stability to utilize hip and trunk rotation whilst punching, and footwork to appropriately position the body when performing these maneuverers. These elements combine to produce an extremely effective high intensity whole body workout. Boxing is suitable for all age groups and skill levels, and with the help of our professionals, we can tailor each and every program to your individual needs!
With this in mind, we can start to think about the benefits we can achieve through boxing training. These include:
- Increased muscular strength and power
- Increased cardiovascular endurance
- Increased bone mineral density
- Improved hand eye coordination
- Improved Body Composition (fat reduction and muscle mass increase)
- Decreased stress levels and improved mental wellness
These benefits can be achieved by any age group and fitness level, and each and every program can be tailored to meet individual needs and goals.
What are some examples of how boxing can help in everyday life?
Neck and Shoulder Pain
An extremely common musculoskeletal condition, neck and shoulder pain can be effectively treated and managed through boxing training.
What could be responsible for my Neck and Shoulder Pain?
For people who work office jobs or spend a prolonged time in sitting, you would have most likely experienced neck and shoulder discomfort at some stage. Most people attribute this discomfort to their posture; why is this? Slouched posture results in shortening of the pectoralis minor and major muscles, scalenes, trapezius (neck muscles) and hip flexors such as iliopsoas. Additionally, people who tend to sit with a slouched posture will place increased strain on the postural muscles of the neck and back (cervical extensors and erector spinae) as well as the scapular muscles [as seen in the diagram]. This results tight, stiff and sore muscles.
Through participating in boxing training, we will begin to strengthen our neck and back muscles and lengthen our pectoral and scalene muscles. We increase our thoracic mobility, and take the shoulder joint though ranges of motion with applied resistance.
The overall result is a stronger back which can tolerate extended postures, as well as reduce the stiffness often associated with prolonged positions. Furthermore, through increasing the strength of our neck and back muscles, we will be able to sit with a 'better' posture, which places less load on the spine.
Increased Bone Strength
Through boxing training, we can incorporate the physiological process of mechanotransduction. Put simply, forces generated through the hand, wrist and arm when contacting a boxing bag stimulates osteoblasts (bone building cells) to lay down new bone. This is extremely effective in reducing the risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis, and a great way to maintain healthy bones! Furthermore, patients presenting with osteopenia can use boxing as a form of treatment to stimulate bone strength whilst still achieving the other benefits of boxing - particularly increased cardiovascular fitness. For our elderly patients who may be a bit tentative towards boxing, we can now begin to understand that boxing is actually quite beneficial for our health!
Improve Your Fitness
Boxing targets every major muscle group in your body. As a result, when we increase the metabolic demand of our muscles through boxing, the heart must work to pump oxygenated blood throughout the entire body. The physiological effectiveness of a cardiovascular workout is heavily reliant on the stress placed on the heart and lungs. As we can begin to see, if we are working out the entire body, than the heart and lung's ability to pump oxygenated blood out into the entire circulation will need to adapt and become more efficient - increasing our cardiovascular fitness. The heart will achieve this through increasing in size and contractile strength, therefore increasing the volume of blood it can pump out (cardiac output). Likewise, the lungs will increase in capacity and increase their efficiency in the exchange between oxygen and carbon dioxide.
From a physiological perspective, boxing training also improves our fitness by increasing the body's ability to oxidize lactic acid, increased capillarization, mitochondrial adaptations and increased muscle strength - to name a few.
These big physiological terms ultimately lead to an improved cardiovascular state. With an improved cardiovascular state, we will start to see a reduction in resting and submaximal heart rates and a reduction in blood pressure. Overall, we get an improved cardiovascular fitness!
Our patient experience:
Here are some examples of our patients in boxing training:
Breathe's Very Own Boxing Instructor - Morgan
Morgan is very passionate in what he does. He loves exercise. Morgan understands the that the value of exercise can change from person to person and is always thinking of ways to engage his clients in a fun and innovative manner. Morgan ensures he creates a very inclusive environment. Morgan works very closely with our Physios here at Breathe, and ensures his training programs are tailored to each and every patient's skill and fitness levels. Morgan would love to be able to help guide you in your boxing journey.
To learn more about our boxing instructor Morgan, please follow this link:
How Do I Know If Boxing Is Right For Me?
There's only one way to find out, and that's by giving it a go! We encourage any age group or fitness level to try out boxing. Here at Breathe Physio and Pilates, we have our own qualified boxing instructor! We provide classes which are tailored to your specific goals as an individual, and work on improving your technique and confidence as a boxer. As you progress through your boxing journey with us at Breathe, you will begin to see the benefits we have discussed here today!
To find out more, please follow the link:
Book Now https://www.breathephysio.com/boxing
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