How Important Is Weight Training For Boxing?

How Important Is Weight Training For Boxing?

More often than not weight training is a vital part of a boxer's training schedule. It is a regime that professional boxers and world champions have used for decades. Boxers will have multiple weight training sessions a week to maintain and help increase their physical strength, hoping to aid performance inside the ring. 

But, is weight training actually essential for boxers and if so, what benefits do fighters get from consistent weight training? 

In this article, we will detail why weight training is so important for boxers and will give you a few tips on how to weight train like a professional boxer. 


What Is Weight Training? 

Weight training is a form of physical training that incorporates dumbbells, barbells, weight machines or any other weighted equipment to help build muscle and improve muscular endurance. Weight training is not just about building muscle and getting stronger, it is also a phenomenal way of strengthening bones and joints and which can pay dividends down the line in preventing serious injury from occurring. 

Weight training, also known as resistance training also has a huge amount of health benefits that can help to increase the overall health and wellness of a fighter. A good amount of these benefits are hard to achieve through other forms of training, making weight training an integral part of a balanced and effective training regime. 


How Boxers Use Weight Training 

A boxer's weight training regime will look very different to the weight training regime of any other athlete or individual. This is because their weight training will be tailored more to functional movements and to muscular endurance as these are the most necessary for the discipline. 

Improving both strength and muscular endurance is vital for boxers. Having a strong frame and impressive strength will allow fighters to not be bullied and out-muscled within the ring while also helping a fighter improve their punch power. 

Muscular endurance is vital in boxing training as fighters need to keep their muscles working for an extended period of time, whether it's 3 rounds, 6 rounds, 8 rounds, 10 rounds or the full 12. Throwing punches, defensive movements and keeping your hands up are all vital in a fight and all of them take a toll on your muscles as the rounds go on. 

9 times out of 10, poor muscular endurance will be a major disadvantage in the ring and could result in losing the fight. Boxing is all about hitting and not being hit, but if you do not have the ability to do either after only a couple of rounds then you will struggle to see any success. 

Weight training is particularly important for fighters in the heavyweight division. Due to the huge range of weight discrepancy in the heavyweight division, lifting weights and becoming stronger allows fighters to be far more competitive and successful within this boxing weight class. 


Benefits Of Weight Training For Boxers 

Weight training is not just another training session for boxers, there are real benefits that can have a huge impact on your performance come fight night. These benefits are, but not limited to: 


Increased Strength 

While strength will never outdo skill in the ring, it can be a hugely beneficial tool that can help to aid your performance within the fight. The stronger a fighter is, the more of a physical presence that a fighter has in the ring. Boxing is a hugely physical sport, therefore physical presence can help you to outmuscle your opponent. 

Strength training is hugely important to improving your overall power. The more power training that you have in your legs and your core, the more power you will be able to generate in your punches. This will result in your shots causing a lot more damage to your opponent and giving you a much better chance of stopping them. 

In addition to this, the stronger your body is, the more damage it will be able to take. Having strong arms, strong legs and a strong core will allow you to able to withstand more damage and shots. The more resistant your body is to damage, the more confident and fluid you will be in the ring and whilst throwing shots. 


Improve Muscular Endurance 

Endurance is hugely important in boxing training and bouts. However, one thing that too many beginner fighters overlook is muscular endurance. This differs from your cardiovascular endurance as it I about how long you can keep your muscles working and performing at a high intensity. 

During a fight or even sparring, you will consistently throw punches, move around the ring, be hit and keep your hands up. Without a good level of muscular endurance, you will struggle to keep this up for a prolonged period. You will also get the dreaded feel of lactic acid build up in your shoulders, arm and legs. 

Improved muscular endurance will give you the peace of mind that you have trained your body to be able to last the full amount of rounds. This will therefore allow you to focus far more on what you want to do within the ring as opposed to worrying about saving energy and making sure that you can last the rounds. 


Injury Prevention 

Boxing is undoubtedly one of the most gruelling sports in the world and injuries are unfortunately very common. However, weight training can help to strengthen your muscles, bones and joints. This, therefore, means that your body is far less susceptible to injuries that could halt your progression. 

Strength training helps to improve the strength of your muscles, tendons, ligaments and bones. Stronger muscles and tendons help to properly align the body and ensure that the body is working as effectively as possible and lowering the risk of injury. 

In the event of an injury, weight training can also become a hugely beneficial method of rehabbing. This is again because of its ability to help strengthen and realign the body to help the proper function of muscles and joints.  


Weight Management 

In boxing, it is hugely important to keep in control of your weight to ensure that you do not have to cut too much weight come weigh-in day. Boxing weight training can be a brilliant way of aiding weight loss to ensure that you stay on your target boxing weight. 

Having and maintaining a good amount of muscle mass on your frame via weight training will help to both increase energy expenditure and resting metabolic rates. This will therefore help you to burn more calories and keep more fat off your body and keep your weight down. 

In addition to this, the more lean muscle mass that you hold on your body the easier your weight cut will be. It is hugely important to make your weight cut as easy and as smooth as possible as a bad weight cut can be very dangerous to a fighter.