“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

Taking up a combat sport, be it boxing, savate, Thai boxing (Muay Thai), or kick-boxing, is always a good idea. The thing that martial arts and combat sports have in common is that they all work plenty of different muscle groups in the body. This is one of the many reasons that an increasing number of people are opting to do them. Furthermore, more women are starting the sport, too.

Would you like to let off some steam in a boxing club?

Here’s how different types of boxing can help you unwind.

How Does Boxing Help You Unwind?

Joining a boxing club is a way to improve your fitness a lot more than many different types of sport. Whether you choose traditional boxing, savate, Thai boxing, kick-boxing, Krav Maga, or MMA, training is so intense that you’ll soon start letting go of everyday stress.

How can boxing help you relax?
While you may have other ways to relax, boxing is probably better for your health. (Source: rawpixel)

Whether you’re punching or also kicking, boxing is a way to unwind completely. Warm-ups are an important part of boxing as they help you to prepare your muscles and joints for combat. Running, squats, skipping, burpees, punching bag, etc...

It’s a sport that’s particularly good for improving many physical qualities. Once you’ve warmed up, your coach or trainer may have you spar with a few different partners. They’ll be looking for precision, power, technique, and how you can find weaknesses in your opponent. Through tactics and speed, boxing can help you improve your agility.

Boxing also burns a lot of calories, strengthens muscles, improves your endurance, etc. You’ll hone your flexes while also letting off steam. After a stressful day at work, sedentary activities aren’t always the best way to stop stressing.

While mindfulness meditation can be good, looking straight into your opponent’s eyes will also help any trivial concerns melt away. You’ll only be thinking about the present. You can channel your energy into your boxing.

Find out more about boxing.

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Which is the Best Type of Boxing?

No particular type of boxing is inherently better than another. There’s a certain amount of subjectivity involved in choosing your favourite type of boxing.

Which are the best types of boxing to relax?
While actual matches are far from relaxing, boxing itself is a great way to unwind. (Source: Skitterphoto)

All types of boxing are intense and can help you learn discipline and stay in shape. Traditional boxing improves your endurance and helps you channel your excess energy. Savate combines punches and kicks and can also help you to blow off steam. Thai boxing allows elbowing and kneeing. This style can help you unwind as you’re too busy concerning yourself with all the possible attacks. Kick-boxing requires concentration and strength and is a great way for amateurs to unwind.

All these different types of boxing can be practised by women, too. Similarly, protection is offered at most clubs so you can safely practise. When you train, you won’t be fighting. Instead, you’ll be practising on punching bags or pads and within these clubs.

Relieving Stress through Cardio Boxing

What about boxing without hitting anyone?

Inspired by kickboxing and Muay Thai, cardio boxing takes the movements from combat sports and choreographs them in a way that’ll get your heart pumping. This is also known as fitness boxing.

What is cardio boxing?
Boxing without an opponent is a great way to raise your heart rate, burn calories, and unwind. (Source: harutmovsisyan)

Cardio boxing is like kick-boxing but without an opponent. The main goal is to enjoy the aerobic benefits of the movements without any physical contact. The lessons are often accompanied by music to make them more interesting and entertaining. Cardio training is rather intense and burns on average 600 calories per session. The warm-ups, exercises, and cool down at the end all work to tone your muscles and improve your cardiovascular system. It’s a lot of fun and a great way to unwind!

It's also a great way to channel excess energy and increase your self-confidence. Cardio boxing is available for all levels. You don’t need any prior boxing training to do them and you can get rid of stress without hurting yourself. After all, there’s no chance of you getting hit and you don’t need half the equipment you do for boxing.

In addition to helping you unwind, cardio boxing can also help you to:

  • Lose weight
  • Tone muscle
  • Reduce stress levels
  • Work on your reflexes, coordination, and flexibility
  • Gain composure
  • Build self-confidence
  • Improve your endurance

Even if you don’t have a sparring partner and you’re just punching the air, cardio boxing comes with a lot of benefits.

Find out more about losing weight through boxing.

Blowing Off Steam with a Punching Bag

Whether you’re at home, in a boxing club, or a gym, beginners and professionals alike can get a lot of benefits out of using a punching bag. Almost every type of boxer will have used one of these to train.

How can you get rid of stress?
Working on a punching bag is a great way to release stress. (Source: xusenru)

You’re going to have to imagine knocking this thing out... Punching bags have been considered an essential tool for working on your punching for years. They're a way to improve the strength and speed of your punches (and kicks in some cases). Punching bags are also useful for working on your footwork as you move around as if it was a real boxer you were facing.

Find out more about how boxing is useful for self-defence.

The Equipment

To train, you need the right footwear and certain protection. In Thai boxing and kick-boxing, for example, no footwear is worn. However, you will need shin guards for hitting the bag. You’ll also need tape and boxing gloves. You should never punch with bare knuckles. You need to hit the bag well. Finally, you might want to work to the clock.

Exercises

There are five or six types of training:

  • 10-round workout
  • Power training
  • Speed training
  • Endurance training
  • Footwork training
  • Precision training

The idea is to increase your speed and power over time and the efficiency of your attacks. Always breathe out as you strike and breathe in between attacks since our bodies function far better with oxygen. Your arms must move in conjunction with the rest of your body. If not, your punches won’t be as powerful.

In boxing, there are 3 axes: the neutral axis, the forward axis (with your weight on your front foot), and the backwards axis (with your weight on the back foot.

The axis always needs to correspond with your punching rotation.

There’s a great article on the ExpertBoxing blog all about it.

Want to work on a punching bag?

Have a look on YouTube for some workouts!

If you'd like to do boxing, mixed martial arts, or kickboxing classes, consider getting in touch with one of the many talented and experienced tutors on Superprof. There are three main types of tutorial available, face-to-face tutorials, online tutorials, and group tutorials, and each type comes with pros and cons.

Group tutorials tend to be the cheapest per student per hour since they're all paying for a share of the tutor's time. Of course, this means that you'll get less one-on-one time with your tutor or coach and they won't be able to tailor the sessions to just you as they'll have other clients that they need to keep happy.

Face-to-face tutorials are just between you and your private tutor. In this case, you'll be paying for a bespoke and tailored service and during your lessons, you'll enjoy the tutor or coach's undivided attention. This all comes at a price and while face-to-face private tutorials are the most cost-effective, they also tend to be the most costly per hour.

Finally, thanks to the advent of the internet, you can now enjoy online private tutorials. With video conferencing software, a webcam, a microphone, and a decent internet connection, you can enjoy private tutoring from tutors all over the world. Since the tutor won't be travelling to their students and they can schedule more tutorials each week, they can charge a more competitive rate and online tutorials are usually cheaper per hour than face-to-face tutorials.

Think carefully about your budget and your learning goals, look at several different tutors and the different types of tutorials before you make your final decision, and don't forget to make the most of the fact that many of the tutors on Superprof will offer the first hour of tuition for free. While this hour won't usually be a proper session, it's a good opportunity to get to know your potential private tutor, see if you get along with them, discover what their teaching approach is, and discuss the finer details of the type of coaching and tuition you'd like.

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Daniel