Is It Better to Lift Weights Before Boxing Training?

Boxers commonly do their weight training on days they don't spar.

Boxers commonly do their weight training on days they don't spar.

If you're interested in boxing as a way to take out your frustrations from the day, strap on a pair of bag gloves, think about the annoying guy in the cubicle next to you and hit the bag. But if you want to train to compete, boxing is more than just an outlet for your aggression. By combining fundamentals with weight training, you'll be able to develop your skill and body to step into the ring.

Schedule

Serious boxers work with their trainers to develop a workout regimen for the entire week. If you want to adopt a strict training schedule, take one or two days of rest and fill the other five or six days with drills. Boxers often spend one or two days a week doing serious weight training, while also including other drills such as working the heavy bag, hitting the focus pads and sparring.

Weight Training

Weight training is integral to developing your upper-body strength, and boxers use a combination of bench presses, biceps curls, squats, shrugs and lunges to develop their muscles. Body-weight exercises are also common; a boxer's typical workout week will include pushups, crunches, planks and scissor kicks. Because weight training tears your muscles, requiring a period of healing, boxers keep their weight training days separate from their sparring days.

Focus on Fundamentals

When you're not weight training, your goal should be to focus on developing your boxing fundamentals through repetition. Fill your daily workouts with several rounds on the heavy bag, speed bag and double-end bag, cardio training and shadowboxing. Many boxers include these workouts daily, as they are not overly taxing once you're used to them, and then schedule weight training and sparring spaced throughout the week.

Sparring

On days that you intend to spar, avoid weight training entirely. Because you don't want to jump into the ring cold, get warmed up with some light cardio, hit the heavy bag for a few rounds and work with a trainer or partner wearing focus pads. Sparring is an effective way to apply the drills you've spent hours developing, but if your arms and body are tired from weight training, sparring will be difficult and frustrating. After sparring, continue developing your fundamentals through exercises such as hitting the heavy bag.

 

About the Author

Toronto-based journalist William McCoy has been writing since 1997, specializing in topics such as sports, nutrition and health. He serves as the Studio's sports and recreation section expert. McCoy is a journalism graduate of Ryerson University.

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