When I first started boxing training, I realized that you only get better by dedicating more time and commitment to the sport. However, I also realized that, aside from just punching, there are rules. I believe every beginner boxer should familiarize themselves with these rules before training. Below are five boxing rules that will transform you from beginner to winner.
1. CLEAR YOUR MIND
Clear your mind of anything that is going on in your life. Focus only on your opponent in front of you. You are here to train and focus. Anything unrelated to fighting, such as wondering if you locked your front door, will ultimately break your concentration. Listening to your favorite music while training will allow you to get into that “zone” you need to be in.
2. ACCEPT IMPERFECTIONS
Whether it’s your first time training or if you have been doing it for years, you will always pick up new methods and techniques. For beginners, understand that learning how to box is a process that takes time. You will always learn something new every day. Do not get discouraged by criticism by your instructor, always accept criticism and learn from it.
3. DETERMINE YOUR STANCE
Proper stances and foot movements are the key to effective striking. Your lower body goes hand in hand with your upper body. Always keep your fists to your face particularly at cheek level. Pick a stance you feel comfortable with. Are you a righty or a lefty?
There are two stances: Orthodox and Southpaw (Unorthodox). Orthodox is a stance that consists of you having your left foot and left hand in front. Southpaw is a stance with your right foot and right hand in front. Keep your body loose while your feet are just within shoulder width apart. Keep your back leg at a 45 degree angle and both of your knees slightly bent.
4. LEARN PROPER FEET MOVEMENTS
Once you have determined your stance, practice your footwork. If you want to move forward, you would lead with your front foot. If you want to move back you would lead with your back foot. For example, if you are Orthodox stance, you will move forward with your left foot and vice versa if you are with a Southpaw stance.
Now if you want to move side to side, pay very close attention! If you are Orthodox and want to move left, then you will lead with your left foot and step left while sliding your right foot over to the left until you are back in proper stance If you want to move right while in an Orthodox stance, you lead with your back foot and step with your right foot to the right while sliding your left foot over to the right until you are back in proper stance. You do all of these movements while keeping your left foot in front.
If your in a Southpaw stance and you want to move right, then your front right foot would step right, and if you want to move left, then your back left foot will step left. Never cross your feet! No matter what stance you are in; remember this: left always moves left, and right always moves right. Think of your foot movements as gracefully sliding through the mat/ring. Never drag your feet while moving. You simply would step with your front foot and slide with your back foot.
5. CONQUER THE ART OF PUNCHING
The first rule of effective punching is keeping your thumbs in; in other words, tucked under your knuckles. Leaving them out can make them prone to injury. The second rule is to punch with your hips. The power of the punch comes from your lower body. Move your hips and guide your arms in the designated direction. The third rule is: after executing a punch, always bring your hand back to your face in order to avoid somebody countering and catching you off guard.
Determine your lead hand by deciding what your lead foot is. If your stance is Orthodox, then your lead is your left foot and left hand. This hand will be your “jab” hand while your right hand will be the hand you throw your “cross punch” with.
These are a few simple rules you should follow while going to train for boxing. Boxing is more than a sport, it can be considered as an art. With applying these rules to your training sessions, you will surely discover your art blossoming and unfolding into a specimen worthy of attention.