Will Boxing make me bulky? Thinking like a true woman
Let’s face it, every woman wants to feel badass without looking like a man - which is a misconception carried over since the beginning of time where boxing was all about fighting and aggressive behaviour. The stereotype that boxing will turn a delicate flower into a manly cactus is one that really should’ve been left in the last century. With celebrities like Gigi Hadid and Shay Mitchell incorporating martial arts in their workouts you would think that public perception would be beyond this by now yet we are still left questioning the effect boxing may have on our bodies.
So we’re here to note down 10 facts that will put your troubles to sleep and explain exactly why boxing will only make you feel stronger, look leaner and improve your overall health.
- Boxing does not require you to fight:
Yes, you read that right. No one is forcing you to head into the ring and get a black eye. You can improve your boxing skills on a bag or with a coach to improve your 1 on 1 pad-work.
When I started out I had just attended a HIIT Style boxing class for fun not knowing I would grow to love it and continue developing my skills with a one on one spadework session and then eventually levelled up my skills to Sparring and then MMA.
- Boxing improves your endurance:
One boxing session combines both aerobic and an aerobic respiration in one workout. This means you don’t have to spend an hour running on the treadmill after you’ve finished your lifting session at the gym because you’ve just had around 30% of aerobic training within your 1hr session.
We need both aerobic and anaerobic workouts in order to combine muscle building with fat burning as well as improv ing our cardiovascular endurance which in the long run gives us the ability to perform better in any type of training we do and improves our overall cardiovascular health.
- Boxing will tone your muscles, not bulk them up:
What people don’t understand is that just because you are training your arms significantly when throwing punches your not actually lifting heavy weights or injecting yourself with mass gainers.
Just like people use low weights and high reps when they’re cutting for the summer , boxing has a nature of low / no weights ( the only weights you’re holding are the oz at the end of your gloves ) with the repetitive motion of throwing punches.
- Its a full body workout:
Contrary to popular belief, boxing is not an upper body workout. Sure you can say that the first couple of sessions may include more jabs and crosses till you get in the swing of things but one you’ve found your groove you can start feeling the engagement in your core as you’re twisting those hooks, you can start adding those high kicks and squeezing your hips and glutes like it’s peach day every day.
- You learn self defence:
As a woman in this day and age, self defence is almost an essential; particularly in big cities where crime rates are rapidly rising and women remain one of the biggest targeted segments.
- Its fun:
Let’s face it, not everyone loves running or lifting weights. Some of us do, but others need a little spice to their workout to keep them going and boxing does just that. The pump of adrenaline rushing through your body when you're throwing combinations and punches is one that makes time fly and burns 100’s of calories before you know it. For the people that already love training as it is, here’s an even more enjoyable way to mix up your routine!
- You get dope 😉 :
That’s right DOPEamine! Your body releases all the happy hormones when throwing punches including endocannabinoids and endorphins making you feel refreshed and rejuvenated after every workout.
- Mental Health:
When happy hormones are released on a regular basis this minimises the chances of depression, increases the oxygen supply to our brain and generally results in making healthier decisions. Our body stops looking for endorphins in comfort food as they are satisfied from exercise and our sleep tends to be deeper therefore more restful.
- Functional Health and agility:
Boxing is a high impact sport which engages muscles in an entirely different ways from other workouts. It challenges your muscles as it is not only feeling a pull or push that it’s pumping in itself but its having a small impact back from the target it’s punching; whether that’s a bag, a focus pad or another individual. It also uses so many different muscles at once, making you sore in places you probably didn’t even realise your training.
Due to its fast pace and nature of drills, it requires you to increase your mind muscle connection and work on your overall agility. Lot’s of athletes in other sports (particularly footballers) tend to use boxing as their alternative form of training on order to improve their agility.
- Calorie Burning:
Boxing is one of the most efficient forms of exercise as it burns calories at a rate which is two times faster than a regular strength workout. You can burn between 800-1000 calories in an hours work which is significantly higher than any run, cycle or swimming session.