Welcome To The Square Jungle...a boxer's and kickboxer's workout

The square jungle...a name that fighters affectionately call the boxing or kickboxing ring. Once within the ropes, there is no escape from your opponent or your fears. Two fighters face each other and sometimes, only one will remain standing at the end of the fight. Some call the encounter between the two gladiators poetry in motion, as a ballet of pounding fists and feet find their mark on the other person's body and face. Others call it a brutal, unforgiving sport. No matter what your opinion is, there is no denying that many of these fighters possess some of the finest physiques in sports.


Ever wonder how these boxers and kickboxers get and stay in

such fantastic shape? The boxer's and kickboxer's workout is completely cardiovascular. This workout burns both calories and fat and tones your muscles while you learn how to defend yourself with techniques that have been battle-proven in the ring. Whether a beginner or a seasoned athlete, young or old, anyone can benefit from this workout. Not only will you see an increase in strength and improved muscle-tone, you will also notice a significant improvement in endurance, flexibility, agility and coordination. Athletes who participate in other sports will find that this workout will help their performances tremendously.


The boxing or kickboxing workout is equally suitable for men, women and children of all ages. Some of the benefits are:


  • Great as a cardiovascular work-out
  • Effective in assisting weight loss or weight control
  • Increases speed, strength, agility, flexibility, endurance and balance
  • Learning something new and fun while getting in shape
  • Kickboxing is arguably the easiest form of self-defense to learn
  • Tones and strengthens the entire body
  • Works muscles that regular weight training can not fully utilize
  • Great for cross-training
  • Reduces stress

The combative arts can be many things to many people. For some, they are the perfect vehicle for achieving physical fitness while others regard them as an ideal means of self-protection. It is important to learn proper technique and form to reduce the risk of injury and to optimize the effectiveness of the technique. By employing proper technique, the practitioner also goes through a full range of motion and utilizes many more muscles, thus getting a better workout.


One of the great things about this workout is that you need a minimal amount of equipment and it doesn't have to be expensive at all. All you need is a little bit of space, a jump rope, some hand wraps, a pair of boxing gloves, a punching/ kicking bag and if possible, a mirror. I always advise a beginner to seek some professional instruction just to get the basics down and then, it is practice, practice, practice. If you really want to simulate what a fighter goes through in the ring, you can design your workouts so that it follows the 3-minute on, 1-minute off program for any number of rounds. It is not as easy as it appears...


To finish off your workout, you can end it with some calisthenics or plyometric exercises just to ensure that your body is thoroughly taxed. Basic exercises like push-ups, dips, squats, lunges and crunches are excellent exercises to round up your workout.





Shawn Hao-ming Ooi is a Los Angeles-based freelance personal trainer specializing in fitness, boxing and kickboxing instruction. He

has over 16 years of experience and has trained some of L.A.'s influential professionals as well as Hollywood's elite. Shawn has trained in various styles including American kickboxing, traditional Japanese karate, Muay Thai (Thai boxing), tae kwon do as well as with traditional oriental weapons. He was also an instructor at the world famous Benny's Jet Center. Shawn is available for one-on-one or group training sessions and may be reached at (323) 960 7631 or at [email protected] .

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