Ah, boxing! One of the most controversial sports in the world today. Many people are under the impression that boxing is only meant for the beasts of men in the world, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, this beloved sport has had quite the “glow-up” over the years and is now one of the best ways for both men and women to improve their health - and it’s easy to see why: boxing is fun, builds lean muscle, and strengthens your heart and lungs.
Gyms like Legends Boxing have become increasingly popular all over the US as the ultimate way to get in fighting shape. It doesn’t matter if you are totally new to the world of fitness or the strongest bodybuilder on the block, boxing caters to all fitness levels and will challenge you to push your limits to reach your goals. With that in mind, you might be wondering if boxing is suitable for kids - and we don’t blame you. With benefits like self-discipline, respect, and confidence, boxing seems like an incredible sport to help the little ones learn important skills and life values.
However, there is still the aura of danger around boxing that certainly contributes to a certain stigma around this popular sport, and it can be especially judgemental to parents and guardians who encourage boxing as a sport for kids. Of course, we must note that the aura of danger isn’t entirely undeserved, since, as we all know, boxing can, in fact, be dangerous. But for the sake of objectivity, we must also take a look at what boxing is - an extremely controlled contact sport.
In boxing, the fighters rest every three minutes. The competitors wear a wealth of protective boxing gear, and they are constantly surrounded by their coach and the referees, all while the medical personnel is always on hand. When you really think about it, boxing is indeed one of the most regulated and responsibly conducted contact sports out there.
So, parents - if your little one asks you to take up this increasingly popular sport, relax and take a breather. Yes, your kid can do boxing! Keep reading for our beginners guide to boxing for kids.
Boxing provides kids with essential skills that benefit so many aspects of their development, inside and outside of the ring. As boxing is an individual competitor sport, there is a higher focus on improving an individual rather than focusing on a large team. In summary, below are just a few of the benefits that come from enrolling your little one in boxing.
Boxing is physically healthy for your kid. And perhaps, more importantly, it combats obesity. Sure, it may be a bit shameful to admit, but seeing as child obesity is on the rise and becoming a huge health concern in developed countries, it’s pretty important! Today, many youngsters grow up with a steady diet of high-calorie and often unhealthy fast foods, with a slew of sweets and bubbly soda drinks to boot. Hardly a fitting diet for their lifestyle or any lifestyle that is, however - the supremacy of the Internet and the simplification of modern life nearly eliminates most needs for physical activity. Think about it - everything is seemingly at the tough of the finger and voila - an obesity epidemic happens.
Well, believe it or not, boxing can get rid of the extra fat and fast. The boxing training regimen includes many intense and healthy exercises such as rope jumping, running, skipping, promotes the mastery of mobility and footwork, all the while including excellent practice for eye-to-hand coordination.
Boxing is psychologically healthy for your kid. Okay, so it might be just a little cliche to say that boxing builds character, but it does. From the movies about Rocky and Muhammad Ali and the culture of boxing just in general, it is clear that boxing can help a person find their inner strength, overcome obstacles, and become a winner. With that being said, it’s easy to see how boxing can improve one’s physical health dramatically, which comes with a bundle of happy, feel-good hormones that can greatly boost a child’s self-confidence. This, in turn, can actually help to make a child less aggressive. Yes, it may be counter-intuitive, but a child that is confident and sure in themselves is less prone to outbursts, temper-tantrums, or the need to validate themselves through confrontation of any kind. This is further enhanced because young fighters soon learn that not keeping your anger in check during a match is a sure way to lose the bout. Intense emotions, like anger, tend to lessen concentration, and a good boxer will always develop self-awareness and good emotional control.
Boxing for kids is a safe sport. Don’t worry - when your child begins on their boxing journey, they won’t be thrown into the ring for an hour to get beat up by another boxer. In fact, the truth is that most boxing workouts and training takes place outside of the ring and don’t include kids punching other kids, or punching at all, for that matter. Most of the time, little boxers are busy stretching, conditioning, or practicing their punches on heavy bags. You’ll often see kids jumping rope, running, or shadowboxing.
The only time when kids actually face another kid as their opponent is during supervised sparring. However, it should be noted that sparring is not fighting. The coaches always make sure to inform the kids that the primary goal of sparring is not to hurt your opponent or launch a slew of crazy hard punches, but instead to learn new techniques and boxing styles.
Additionally, most youth sparring sessions take around two or three minutes, and sometimes even as short as one minute. The couches are familiar with every young boxer’s ability, strength, and stamina, so they always make sure to pair the youngsters with a sparring partner who’s at their level. No sparring can ever be done without the green light from the coach, so kids are never in any danger of staging fights on their own or engaging sparring partners who are way too strong for them and out of their league.
Finally, it goes without saying that during a sparring match, young boxers always wear protective gear. This includes padded boxing gloves, protective headgear, a protective mouthguard, and sometimes even body protectors. Kids boxing gloves are designed with extra padding to make sure that punching hurts less and minimize injuries. The headgear adds another buffer from feeling a punch, and most kids end up with just the occasional scratch on their nose as the most dangerous injury that comes from youth boxing. The mouthguard is there to make sure no teeth get knocked out of place, while the body protectors guard against the occasional misplaced body punch. Other popular sports, especially team-based sports like football and rugby, come with a lot more injuries to more places on the body and much more often.
The social benefits of youth boxing. One of the best benefits of boxing that is often overlooked, especially regarding the younger generations, is that for large numbers of youngsters, boxing is socially beneficial. Over the years, this popular sport has been closely observed as an effective way to get kids off the streets, providing them with something healthy, safe, and productive to do. And it does so while allowing the little ones to decompress and channel their energy, aggression, and restlessness.
Sure, this can be said for many sports out there, but boxing comes with the added bonus of teaching self-protection and self-defense. Furthermore, through boxing, kids can learn the arts of discipline and self-improvement, and they are almost always around authority figures such as coaches, trainers, or professional boxers, most of which are very good leaders and role models. All of this contributes to channeling a lot of that adolescent aggression away from the streets and into a supervised, controlled, and inspiring environment. Youth boxing is an incredible sport for kids and inspires self-confidence, respect, trust in others, and promotes determination and self-mastery at a very young age, which comes in handy when facing day to day problems in real life. Additionally, it provides a safe space where youngsters can be the awesome person that they truly are and familiarize themselves with healthy ideals to which they can strive.
To put it shortly, boxing makes “tough neighborhoods” less tough. It is a much healthier outlet for youngsters than joining street gangs or giving in to peer pressure and bad habits. Boxing is an amazing place for kids of all ages to thrive, meet new friends, and pick up healthy habits and skills that they will take with them forever.
At first glance, boxing for kids may sound dangerous, and even maybe a bit silly. But when you really dive into the incredible benefits that come from youth boxing, signing your kid up is a no brainer. If you want to help your child grow to be strong, confident, and disciplined while making a few close friends along the way, a great gym like Legends Boxing can help!
Check out our “first class free offer” from a gym near you!