For someone just starting out in Boxing, it can be intimidating to walk into the gym for the first time, and you may be asking yourself is Boxing for me? I was the same as you, here’s what I found.
In general, if you want to get fit, learn some self-defense, or just take part in a fun hobby, then Boxing could be for you. Boxing appeals to lots of people because of its many benefits, but Boxing isn’t for everyone. If Boxing is for you or not depends on your goals and what you want to achieve.
With that being said, let’s take a look at some goals you will be able to achieve with boxing, and some other things to consider when deciding if Boxing is for you. By the end of this article, you should have a better idea if boxing might be for you and your goals or not.
Is Boxing For You?
The first thing to ask yourself is what are your goals and what do you want to get out of Boxing? There are three main benefits of Boxing, just think of the three Fs, they are:
- Fight (either for self-defense or competition)
If one of these three things sounds like one of your goals, then Boxing may be a good choice for you to try out. But let’s take a look at each of the three sections in a little more detail, plus some other common questions when starting out in boxing.
Boxing for Fitness
I personally lost a lot of weight with Boxing and have written a complete guide to Boxing fitness and what to expect. So be sure to check that article out if fitness is your main goal and you too want to lose weight and get fit with Boxing.
Boxing’s popularity goes far beyond fight fans or people who want to learn to defend themselves, and this is because of its many fitness benefits.
It’s very common to see Boxing used in mainstream gyms because of this. Okay, you won’t see fitness fanatics punching each other and doing heavy rounds of sparring, but you will see them going all out on the pads and working up a good sweat.
Whether your goal is to lose weight, get in good shape, or improve your overall health and fitness, boxing can be a great sport for all of those.
But this topic deserves its own article completely dedicated to it. So that’s what I did in my complete guide to Boxing fitness.
Boxing To Fight
Maybe the most obvious reason most people think of doing Boxing is to learn how to fight, whether that be for competition or for self-defense. If this is one of your goals, then Boxing could definitely be for you.
This is because Boxing will teach you good practical fighting skills including, head movement, footwork, and of course, how to throw and defend against a variety of punches.
If you join a Boxing gym and take your training seriously and want to fight, then you could find yourself doing live sparring within just a few weeks or months (depending on your gym and instructor).
If you don’t want to do heavy sparring but still want to learn some self-defense, then you’d have to mix up your training with pad work and playful light touch sparring, but Boxing could still be for you.
Is Boxing Good for Self-Defense?
If you’re anything like me, then you want to learn Boxing for self-defense and are not planning to have a professional career, or even to compete. So, is Boxing good for self-defense?
In general, Boxing is good for self-defense because it teaches you important skills like proper head movement, distance management, footwork, and how to punch to the head and body of your attacker. All of these skills are essential in a self-defense situation.
There is a lot of discussion in the combat sport and martial art community about which fighting form is the best for self-defense.
It’s true that some are more effective than others, while some are good at certain aspects of fighting, but neglect other aspects and don’t offer a complete, all-round system.
Learning just boxing for example, means you will only learn how to strike with punches, with no other forms of striking, and no form of grappling. But you will still be extremely well prepared to defend yourself if you learn how to box effectively.
For more on self-defense, check out my other article: 5 best martial arts for self-defense & why.
Boxing for Fun: Is Boxing Fun?
For a lot of people getting into Boxing, it is also common to ask is Boxing fun? Here’s what I found:
In general, Boxing can be a fun sport to get into as a hobby. In most Boxing gyms you will make good friends and have a fun time training. However if you’re preparing to fight, the more serious your training will be and likely the less fun it may be too. But for most hobbyists though, Boxing is fun.
Does Boxing Hurt? (Getting Punched)
A very common concern of people asking if Boxing is going to be for you or not, is does Boxing hurt?
In general, Boxing can hurt and be a painful sport if you’re training hard and sparring. The most painful things in Boxing are receiving punches to the head and body, which can give you bruises, headaches or leave you winded. Plus, general workout fatigue and muscle soreness are also common.
This may seem like a silly thing to mention, obviously in Boxing you are going to get punched. But it is a serious thing to think about.
I personally had to stop my boxing training and focus on grappling instead because I was getting persistent headaches after training and during the rest of the week. I wasn’t even doing regular sparring, my training mainly consisted of touch sparring at 50-60%.
If this is something you’re worried about too, you can check out my article about grappling vs striking for an alternative to boxing.
So why did I stop Boxing? Well, the training I was doing didn’t match my goals, as mentioned, if Boxing is going to help you achieve your goal, then it’s for you. But for me, my goal was to stay fit and maintain some level of self-defense ability.
But with consistent head movement, footwork, and distance management training, plus grappling, I was comfortable stepping away from full-contact boxing training… Just something for you to think about too if you have the same issues.
Is Boxing Expensive?
Now, let’s talk money. For anyone choosing which sport or martial art to learn, the cost of training and equipment is a massive deciding factor. Fortunately though, if you are interested in boxing, it can be a very cheap sport to get started in.
I have written another article on the costs and benefits of boxing, and also what is the cheapest martial art to learn, so be sure to check those out to find out more about training and equipment costs.