Boxercise

Box clever in 2016 with Ignite Active's Boxercise Workout

Boxercise is an exercise class based on the training concepts boxers use to keep fit. Classes can take a variety of formats but a typical one may involve shadow-boxing, skipping, hitting pads, kicking punchbags, press-ups, shuttle-runs and sit-ups. Most boxercise classes are aimed at men and women of all ages and fitness standards. As no class involves the physical hitting of an opponent, it is a fun, challenging and safe workout.

What the experts say...

Boxing training is for everyone: Whatever your size, shape or sex. Remember, every boxer will have started from ground level, so anyone and everyone can work their way up to a good level of fitness: attend classes three times a week and you'll be fit in three months; twice a week and it will take six months. Most people don't know what to expect, so going to a real boxing gym is essential.

Release your aggression: Boxing training is a great way to do that, making you feel calm because all the aggression is very channelled and controlled. Even though there is no physical contact, it enables you to feel in control of your body and more confident about protecting yourself if you are required to.

Increase your discipline: Many people don't appreciate that boxing training is about discipline, and it's a great way to increase that in other areas of your life, too, such as drinking and eating. If everyone took up boxing training, we'd live in a fitter world and a better world, mentally and emotionally.

Focus energy and concentration: Training stimulates your mind and boosts your self-belief. It's a great sport for overweight children, and it also helps build self-esteem and respect in young people who may be bullied or lack physical confidence - I work with children from the age of 10 and have seen first-hand how it can stop bullying.

Never gulp your water: Professional boxers sit down and sip their water after each round. If you apply this skill as you train, you won't get a stitch.

Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee? Not everyone can do that, and with boxing training you don't have to - it's about expressing yourself and being the best you can be.

Increases mental agility: Sports behavioural studies have shown that the training techniques adopted by boxers using punchbags and sparring lead to superior decision-making skills

Improves hand- eye coordination:... on both the left and right side of the body. Unlike asymmetrical sports such as tennis and golf, your body improves evenly on both sides, reducing postural misalignment

Increases stamina: Research from the Indian Journal of Medicine has estimated that boxing is 70%-80% anaerobic (high-intensity) and 20%-30% aerobic; training increases stamina in heart and lungs

Raises core strength: To take a punch and hold your balance, your abdominals need to be strong and toned - this strong core stability can reduce the risk of back pain and improve posture

Strengthens muscles: Boxing improves muscle strength used in everyday activities, as well as the 'fast twitch' muscle fibres required for shorter, more explosive movements

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