Does boxing help you gain muscle?
When you think about gaining muscle, do you think of boxers or bodybuilders? We’re guessing it’s bodybuilders! But simply building muscle is not the best route for your health. In this article we will talk about how boxing can help you to gain muscle and why it’s a better choice than bodybuilding.
Without question, no matter which sport you sign up for, improving your core strength is vital. It is literally the “glue” that holds the body together. Running from the shoulders to the hips, spanning the abdomen and the back, this network of muscles allows you to channel strength from other parts of your body into force. A strong core is essential in boxing as it allows you to withstand blows to the abdomen. It will also set you up well for sparring where you need dexterity to avoid punches. Although it is your fist that hits a punchbag, it’s the core that is the driving force behind the blow. As well as giving you power, a strong core also gives you a finely sculpted silhouette – what’s not to like?
The legs are key to success in boxing, having to maintain balance and allow for swift movement. When a punch is thrown, the boxer steps forward lifting their heel, and the calf muscles are key to this movement. Power then comes from the quads and hamstrings to power through the punch, aided by the core. The hips are vital for pivoting and balance. This is an area that can become stiff as we age (particularly in the West). Boxing training works the hips to stay flexible, meaning you are in total control of your movements.
Shoulders and Arms
Of course, every boxer needs some power in the arms, but the key is speed rather than strength. The force is generated and channelled through the legs and the core, not through the arm itself. If a boxer cannot move the arms quickly, the opponent can easily penetrate their defences, resulting in a win. But the arms are nothing without the shoulders. The shoulders need to provide endurance during sparring, to enable the boxer to hold up his fists round after round. This is an area that weight training can help, to provide stamina to keep the shoulders strong.
How does body building compare?
Bodybuilding focuses on muscle development rather than cardiovascular health. Of course, bodybuilding will reduce fat, but there’s a tendency to completely eliminate carbs from the diet, and the repetitive cycling between bulking and leaning can affect hormone balance and may risk extreme dehydration. Bodybuilders may have excellent muscle strength, but they may lack the agility of boxers. In short, boxing offers much more all-round benefits for health and tends to be less extreme than bodybuilding.
Let’s get down to the Skinny
In short, the answer is a resounding yes – boxing in Perth will help you to build muscle. But it is so much more than that. Boxing provides a complete body workout and when it’s combined with a healthy diet, it brings optimal health. In addition, boxing works out the biggest organ of them all – the brain – developing strategic thinking, enhanced body-mind co-ordination, and giving you confidence in any situation.If you’re ready to start, sign up for our boxing and strength and conditioning classes in Perth today!