Thursday, April 19, 2018

Emma's Exercise Experiments - Boxing

I've always been a fan of boxing. I used to watch boxing with my Dad when I was a kid. I've loved boxing films like Rocky, Raging Bull, Million Dollar Baby etc.

So I was really excited to move onto Boxing for my next exercise.

The H Hour Boxing Gym is just a 10 minute walk from our house, we've passed it dozens of times and thought about giving it a go. Finally, we did.

After a short email exchange with Rob, the owner, we were all set for our first session on a Thursday night. The first session is free to everyone and then just £5 pay as you go. Bargain!

As we walked to the gym I was nervous about what it'd be like. As usual not knowing what to expect had me worrying I wouldn't be able to keep up. When we opened the door that first night I was hit by the atmosphere in there. It was sweaty, hot and packed full of people. It was a bit intimidating! The juniors session was in progress so the entry area was full of mums ready to pick up kids and also people getting ready for the seniors session. Putting on boxing boots and wrapping their hands ready to box. We felt like such newbs!

We battled our way through to the office. It was a cheerful bedlam in there with Rob holding court. He cleared everyone out and gave us the lowdown on his gym. He has boxing credentials as long as your arm (if you have really long arms) and obviously knows his stuff.

It's really impressive that the gym is non-profit. Rob's clearly passionate about the place and all dues go back to improving the gym.

As the senior session started, JD and I were shown 'hands and feet'. Adam, one of the coaches, showed us how to stand and move forward and backwards, then how to hold our hands up in defense. There's a lot more to it than you'd think. After about 40 minutes we joined in with the group who were racing from one side of the gym to the other, doing squats, situps and pairing up to punch each other in the stomach. It was great.

I came out of the session absolutely soaked in sweat, the cold night air never felt so good.

The next week we got to spar with each other in the boxing ring. It was the best thing ever!!! I've always wanted to have a go in one. Just climbing in between the ropes was great, haha. When no-one was looking we tried rebounding off the ropes too. We hit each other so much that second week that our arms and shoulders were sore for days.

The gym has a round timer going as you box so you feel aware of how long a boxing round is. Rob uses the break between rounds to explain what we're doing next then shouts 'BOX' as the next round starts. A round feels like a long time when you're working hard.

Look how pleased I look.

There was lots to love about the boxing but here's my top 3:

1 - Awesome rock music playing while you box.

2 - Rob's banter with everyone, he's pretty funny.

3 - Getting to punch JD. (Except, he also punches me!)

There was a lot of variation in each session so we felt like we were learning a lot. The only drawback was that in working in a group some of the time we didn't know if we were doing it right. I think we'd have benefited from more coaching. But we left each session exhausted and feeling like we'd been worked hard.

I'd love to learn more about boxing so I'll be adding it to my (already long) shortlist of things to do more of.

JD and I with Rob.
I didn't know what to expect being a fat woman walking into a boxing gym but it couldn't be more inclusive. Turns out boxing is for anyone and I'd recommend it if you want to learn a new sport, get fit and feel like a badass. :D

H Hour Boxing Gym, Harrogate

Previously on Emma's Exercise Experiments:




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