Following Tommy Fury’s split-decision victory against Jake Paul, it seems the sport of boxing is the real winner, as the bout appears to have attracted more people to get involved with the sport.
Despite criticism from boxing purists, research from PureGym reveals that the hype surrounding the fight has led to more people becoming interested in learning how to box themselves. Google searches for the likes of ‘learn how to box’ have risen by 25% in February versus January.
On average, boxing training-related searches (including ‘boxing classes’ and ‘learn boxing’) have also increased by 13% vs. the start of the year.
With Creed III having premiered on Friday 3rd March, this heightened interest in boxing should only increase, with the Michael B. Jordan-fronted film touted for box office success.
To help any budding boxers realise what it takes, London-based PureGym PT and professional boxing coach Miles Mitchell has detailed how people can start training like a heavyweight champ (or YouTube sensation):
- Aerobic ‘Roadwork’: It’s not just speed and strength that play a part in who wins a boxing fight. Boxers need a huge amount of stamina and endurance to avoid ‘gassing out’. This is why ‘roadwork’, a term generally used by boxers, is key to any training regime. This simply means a lot of steady-state cardio, often long-distance running, to ensure that you can keep going for a long time, at a consistent and tiring pace.
- Bodyweight Training: From Mike Tyson to the big names of boxing in 2023, high-rep bodyweight training has long been favoured over weights when it comes to strength training. Bodyweight training allows boxers to build strength while also working on speed, helping to maintain speed and ‘snap’ in punches.
- Improve Spatial Awareness: Having good balance, spatial awareness and coordination translates to better in-ring performance. Another benefit of bodyweight training is that, by moving your body throughout different spatial planes and against its own weight, you will be improving the coordination of different muscle groups, as well as your balance and spatial awareness.
- Endurance-Focused Strength Training: Endurance shouldn’t only come from your ‘roadwork’. Being able to go the distance is key to any boxer, so incorporating endurance into all forms of your training will go a long way. Be it bodyweight or actual weight training, when it comes to boxing it’s better to focus on higher reps at a lower weight, as this will help further endurance and boost how often you can repeat the same movement before becoming fatigued. Training heavy with low reps conditions your muscles to work at an intense level for short bursts, which doesn’t cut it for a long fight.
- Practice Bag Work: All the fitness training in the world can only take you so far without heavy bag work. This is where you begin to put your training together and focus on throwing punches and working on your footwork, since the bag sways. This will again also help your body to learn to throw clean punches, even while tired.
- Pad Work: Like heavy bag work, pad work is crucial if you want to train like a boxer. It helps to increase hand-eye coordination, improve and develop punch combinations and variations of punch outs, and can help to come up with different fight strategies.
- Open Sparring: Sparring against other boxers is a great way to transfer all the technical skills and strength you’ve built into full play.
Miles added: “Boxing is a great way to keep fit, but it can be quite an intimidating sport to start. While there are plenty of opinions on what it means for sport when celebrities from other walks of life, like YouTube, get involved, we’re a fan of any crossover that results in more people finding an active hobby they would have never considered.
Not everyone who’s interested in boxing will want to pursue it as a career, but there are plenty of ways people can take inspiration from this sport when it comes to training –adding in some ‘roadwork’, swapping some weights for bodyweight exercises or joining a Box Fit class at your local gym. There’s always a way to get started, and people that will help you to get there – if you find something you’re passionate about!”.
For more information about joining PureGym, visit: https://www.puregym.com/