“Rhythm is everything in boxing. Every move you make starts with your heart, and that’s in rhythm or you’re in trouble.” – Sugar Ray Robinson
Your ideas have finally come to fruition, and you now want to put yourself to the test and seriously take on boxing, right?
To exercise via sport, to let off steam or to know how to defend oneself in case of aggression, the reasons to learn boxing are as numerous as they are personal.
The ring is a particularly physical environment, difficult and demanding, where it is necessary to be enduring and powerful, but where brute force would be nothing without a high technicality.
In this respect, it is necessary to start with a good base understanding of the sport, otherwise you may soon have regrets: the slightest little bad habit taken during your first boxing class will be extremely difficult to uproot … Your first attempt at the sport will indeed become the foundation of all of your sporting technique.
Nothing better, then, than an experienced boxer to show you the way: there just for you, he can give you demonstrations and watch you to monitor any error that may occur!
To avoid the KO, you must find a great coach!
It will be easy to fully understand the benefits represented by individual private courses by looking at the pros and cons of the opposite, that is to say, by comparing them to collective classes.
In these, you will usually fight and train as part of a club, where students are divided into level groups.
Depending on the place, and the number of learners per group, the atmosphere can be either good or bad.
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For beginners, the disadvantage of the group class is that the teacher must show interested in all of his students at once: he obviously cannot observe them all at the same time, which means a newborn boxer can repeat a bad gesture a dozen times before being acknowledged and corrected. This delay can prove very damaging because a bad shot is not always obvious or easy to catch. Private instruction offers attention to detail.
One hour of private lessons will be two, three or even ten times more intense – difficult, moreover, the more you train: pay attention to fatigue, prelude to almost all injuries!
Learning the basics of boxing will generally follow a cycle: explanation-demonstration-reproduction-correction-simulation.
From the right hook to the uppercut through footwork, everything will come, session after session.
In addition, the Y generation will readily admit that it is hardly possible to learn to box alone, using a computer screen or an iPhone, although the Wikipedia page devoted to boxing is particularly well stocked!
There are good videos on YouTube, but these act to complement or reinforce, not train!
It will be possible to find boxing classes for beginners in different ways.
The first step is to determine the type of specific sport you want to practice: French boxing, English boxing, US boxing, Thai boxing, Burmese boxing, kickboxing, free-fight, etc.
Some boxers are content with using their hands, while others prefer to fight with feet or in variation depending on style.
The first two disciplines mentioned are also the most common, English boxing, especially, which is usually what we speak of 99% of the time when we talk about “boxing”. It is also nicknamed “the noble art”!
Boxing is all at once an intensely competitive sport and a “noble” art form.
Assuming you are interested in English boxing or a similar variant, you should know that the sport requires you to provide boxing gloves, of course, but also a kit full of protective athletic equipment tailored to the sport, which you can usually find at your local boxing gym.
Although sports clubs generally offer group classes, more and more of them are offering private lessons on demand, and of course there is an additional cost.
Otherwise, it is possible to directly find a private boxing teacher, without going through an intermediary institution: this approach is largely facilitated by the Internet and new technologies.
From Superprof to social networks via a search engine, the possibilities are not lacking!
In the face of an abundant offering of private coaching options (particularly in London or major cities), do not hesitate to ask for references as well as discounts and membership deals! Find out what is available to you before signing on the dotted line.
For an individual boxing class, it is not necessary for the teacher to be a world champion – first of all, it would be difficult to find, and horribly expensive!
Above all, he must be a pedagogue and know how to explain clearly by dissecting the attitudes and gestures that seem innate to most practicing boxers, to the point where they often do not know how to describe this or that technique that has for them, become reflex.
The first courses will be used to present the boxing theatre, namely the ring, and the main rules of the sport. If you’re already an avid fan of boxing, either televised or in real life, you will advance faster in regards to these points.
Similarly for the terms specific to the discipline and what they refer to: KO, KD, right, uppercut, fist, footwork, light weight, strings, corner, out of range, rotating dodge …
Then comes the practice, each gesture being presented and sketched by the teacher. It is by repeating as slowly as possible a given gesture that one assimilates it most surely.
Through your coach and constant practice, your talent will grow and your achievements will solidify. The speed of progression will largely depend on the motivation of the candidate, your innate physical abilities, but also the regularity of the sessions and the pedagogical quality of the chosen boxing coach.
Be demanding as your training and skill intensify, but do not forget to rest from time to time, especially since we advise you to balance your boxing practice with that of a complimentary sport such as bodybuilding, running, or general fitness. You should do this unless additional sports activities are already planned and assumed by your private boxing coach. Varied workouts are the most effective workouts.
Indeed, it is important to have a strong and agile body, both musclebound and free in movement before facing an opponent in the ring.
After about 20 hours of class, most will have reached a competent practioner’s degree that will allow them to let off steam and engage their bodies in a determined fight against a worthy opponent: during the experience of the first fight, even at the amateur level, you will unlock an unforgettable memory, and you will understand that morale is about as much – if not more – than the gestures or reflexes stored by your mind.
Discover here the physical benefits of women’s boxing classes!
As we have just seen, there is no more effective or tailor-made way to learn boxing than through private instruction with an expert coach: it’s a custom introduction and education, at your own pace, where you will easily overcome any inhibition (a kind of misplaced shyness is a common disadvantage of many learners).
Then, once the bases are in place, we can more easily branch-out to courses in several clubs, the advantage is to be able to confront sparring partners regularly and in good spirits, and not just spar with your coach.
You’ll see fast improvement after your first day of training in the boxing ring or gym!
The boxing club is also the ideal springboard to find opponents to face in a legal and secure environment, with the benefit of sound advice and the experience of others.
Of course, this should not prevent you from continuing to look for instruction by your private coach, if you have the means and if boxing has become like a drug for you, in order to progress faster.
The state of mind, with enthusiasm and motivation, is the most important thing to make quick progress! In a very short time, you will be able to say: Beware the one who will seek me out, for I will send him to the ground!
Finally, find out if you should to choose competitive boxing or fitness classes …
Discover how much boxing classes really cost here.
Find out more about boxing for women here.