It is very common to look at the sport of boxing and assume it’s all about your upper body. Well, we are about to shake your world up and tell you different. Boxing is actually more legs and core! Ok, now you’re confused, right? Good! Let us explain …
Now it’s obvious that you use a good amount of your upper body in every punch, fact! However, that’s where the confusion comes in. We look at boxing and instantly see your arms and shoulders doing a majority of the work, but this is the deceiving part. All of the power that your shoulders and arms put out there actually starts with the real power coming from your legs and core. This power starts in your legs, pushed through your core, and finishes in the punches. So basically, without a strong core and legs, your punches will not have a powerful effect. You can do much better. Below are some ways to engage your legs and core to get more out of your boxing workout.
Here are some pointers to train like a boxing pro and realize how much of a leg workout you get when boxing at your highest potential, from your legs:
1. Throwing Punches: This is probably the biggest misconception of boxing as I stated above. Let’s break it down. Power from the legs, torch from the core, and then translate that power into your punch. Start with a wide base where you can plant your legs for some great power. Every power punch you throw should require using your hips to get the torch and core activating as you punch the target (mitt, pad, heavy bag, etc.). Your arms carry less power than the rest and should be relaxed until it’s time to hit. This will help increase your endurance because you are now using a majority of the muscles in your body to do the movement, not just a few.
a. Takeaway: Focus on your Legs and stomach producing all of the power for your punches.
2. Ducking and Defense: The defensive aspect is not emphasized enough when it comes to boxing and working out. Two words: Duck more! You will be surprised how many times a boxer will duck in a single round, never mind a fight. Ducking is a form a defense in boxing to avoid punches coming at you, which happens too often in boxing. We use this as a great part of the workout. Your duck is very similar to a squat! Basically, we need to do more squats in between combinations.
a. Tip for defense: In between your three- to six-punch combination, add in 2 ducks back to back, and then back to another (or the same) three- to six-punch combination.
3. MOVE: Moving around is the most underestimated piece of the workout when it comes to boxing-style training. If you want to make your boxing real-life and use your legs more, you must move around more. Boxing is based on movement. It is not practical to just stand in one place and throw punches. It’s still a great workout, but you want to move to get the big “fitness” benefit of boxing. This helps with your leg power, agility, and your timing. One way to implement this is to bounce back and forth before and after your combinations. Keep your feet wide for a solid base every time you land. Try moving to different angles on your target. This will help your agility but will also boost your heart rate like crazy if you move for a full round.
a. Tip for moving: Move around your target, and bounce back and forth before and after your combos for intervals of full three-minute rounds. You will notice a difference immediately.
If you try these new leg and core tips in your boxing routine you will instantly notice a difference in your leg workout, gain more power in your punches, and increase your endurance in the mix.
—Ben Hart for ReXist360