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Martial Arts Training BOXING TRAINING

by Jenny Anderson

A boxing training program must focus on reactive power, power endurance, muscular endurance, anaerobic endurance and aerobic endurance.

Boxing is unique in that, unlike most team and individual sports, competition events are limited during the year. The majority of the annual plan is spent on preparatory training phases planned so that the boxer is at a physical peak for the fight. Amateur boxing consists of a greater number of competitive bouts in the year, so periodization of the training program may look quite different.

Boxers use both aerobic and anaerobic energy pathways during a single bout and must be able to tolerate high levels of blood lactate and a high heart rate (1). Both VO2max and anaerobic threshold have been related to performance in the ring (2) with aerobic endurance playing a greater role in the professional sport.

Training should develop both the aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. Boxers must also be able to react quickly and powerfully to an opponent’s attack. A boxing training program that consists entirely of strength endurance training (such a classic circuit training routine), fails to adequately develop the reactive power important in the sport.

Finally, agility and reaction time are vital components of a boxers armoury. Foot and hand speed, reactive power and hand-eye co-ordination can all be significantly improved with proper conditioning.

Boxing Training Articles

The Sport-Specific Approach to Strength Training Programs
Most boxers and their coaches understand the necessity for strength training. However, if the focus is only on increasing absolute strength and muscular size it’s benefits are severely restricted. Boxers must react with power to opponent’s attack and maintain that power over numerous rounds. Simply lifting weights is not the best approach…

How To Design Resistance Training Programs For Athletes
Here is the step-by-step process of developing a sport-specific strength training plan – one that meets the demanding nature of the sport…

Power Training for Athletes
Boxers at any weight are immensely powerful for their size. But how is explosive power best developed?

Plyometric Training for Sport-Specific Power
Plyometrics is a proven form of power training. Drills can be adapted for both upper and lower body power helping a boxer to move with greater speed and force and land more decisive blows…

Muscular Endurance Training
Boxers require strength endurance in order to maintain a high level of work throughout a bout. Even in amateur (ABA or Olympic) boxing 2 minute rounds require a sustained effort…

Core Strength Conditioning For Athletes
The core musculature bridges the upper and lower body. The stronger and more able they are, the greater the synergy of movement can be. Core strength is essential for boxers…

Medicine Ball Exercises
Medicine balls are a classic boxing training tool. They can be used to develop strength and power and allow the boxer to incorporate very specific movements into his or her routine…

Kettlebell Training
Kettlebell training is becoming more popular with combat athletes. Provided they are used correctly they can be very effective training aids for developing explosive power and core strength…

Interval Training for Sport-Specific Endurance
Boxing requires both anaerobic and aerobic endurance (professional boxers rely heavily on the aerobic system). While long, slow distance runs may be a suitable introduction at the start of a boxing training program, interval training should be used to develop boxing-specific stamina…

Flexibility Exercises
Increased flexibility may reduce the risk of certain injuries. It may also allow a boxer to move with greater dexterity and finesse as well as landing (and avoiding) a few more punches…

Self Myofascial Release Exercises
Boxing training is notoriously strenuous. While a bout may not come along too often, boxers spend hours every day on a gruelling fitness regimen. Key to the success of any training program is adequate recovery and the avoidance of injury. Myofascial release may help to do just that…

Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)
Muscle soreness the day after training is something every serious athlete has experienced. While boxers must contend with bumps and bruising from sparring, the aches and pains brought on by a tough training session is the result of something different…

The Best (and Worst) Techniques for Calculating Body Fat Percentage
Boxers invariably have to “make the weight”. Ideally, fighting weight should be attained by maintaining or increasing lean muscle mass and reducing or maintaining body fat levels. But accurately measuring body fat percentage is not always straightforward…


1) Ghosh AK, Goswami A, Ahuja A. Heart rate & blood lactate response in amateur competitive boxing. Indian J Med Res. 1995 Oct;102:179-83.

2) Guidetti L, Musulin A, Baldari C. Physiological factors in middleweight boxing performance. J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2002 Sep;42(3):309-14.

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