Are You a Hermit Boxer?
Make Boxing a Social Event
It's hard to make a committment and do something by yourself for any length of time. You have no one to be accountable to except yourself and the result, unless you are extremely strong willed and disciplined, is to convince yourself not to train any harder.
Why Do You Need to Find a Friend to Learn Boxing With?
A partner is absolutely essential if you really want to learn boxing and here are the reasons why:
- Accountability - Not even from a boxing viewpoint, just a fitness one. If you are learning boxing with a partner, you will naturally compete with each other and push yourselves harder. That is, of course, if you both have the same goals. A partner could also sabotage your training if they aren't interested in working as hard as you are. Lesson Identified: Pick a partner with the same goals that you know is going to push you in your training.
- Introduces Chaos - There is a randomness and chaos to boxing that cannot be replicated in front of a heavy bag or by yourself in a front of a mirror shadowboxing. You can pretend to slip punches all you want, but the reality is that you know when you are going to throw them at yourself. A sparring or training partner introduces that bit of randomness into the training session. You don't know what he or she is thinking and thus have to react. This builds your reflexes and fine tunes your ability to pick out the subtle cues that precede an onslaught. You'll have a much better idea of how good your defensive and offensive techniques are when it really matters.
- Opens up new ways to train - Your partner does not even need to know how to box or want to learn if they are simply willing to go through the motions to help you train. A partner allows you to do focus mitt drills, technical sparring, and work out techniques and combinations in real time so you truly understand the mechanics involved in a situation. All of these things only require a willing participant. Teach them the absolute basics - jab, straight right, hook, uppercuts and they will know everything they need to to help you train. More to follow on that in part 2 of this small article series.
- One partner is good, many are better - That way you pit yourself against different styles and introduce more variables of randomness into your training. Plus, inherent to any group is a sense of belonging and competition. The social aspect of the group is going to help you stick to your training and push you to excel. Boxing naturally attracts people who are competitive, so a group of boxers intent on learning and improving will naturally push each other harder than you ever could alone. Plus it makes training a lot more fun - can only talk to a heavy bag for so long no matter what kind of relationship you develop with it.
So, with all of these benefits - what are you waiting for - go find yourself a friend to learn this sport with.