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  1. #1
    pachanga's Avatar
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    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    No sparring boxing

    Question for you guys:

    I recently joined a boxing-themed gym. Not a real boxing gym, your average office worker's gym (all the usual machines etc) but also with a boxing ring, a bunch of different bags, and a bunch of classes based to varying degrees around boxing and kickboxing.

    One of the free classes is marketed as a "learn how to box class;" however they were very clear that there's no actual sparring, just practicing techniques and cardio stuff. I assumed it would therefore be just some kind of boxing themed fitness class, which a lot of the other classes are. (In fact, the instructors will spar with you if you train privately with them, but it's absurdly expensive). I went along last night anyway to check it out, as our Krav class really doesn't go into anything like enough technique and critique regarding punches (we're taught when to use them, which ones to use, some combos and so on, etc, but not really how to throw them in any detail), and it seemed a bit more than just a fitness gimmick; we were taught some stuff about footwork and stances, and then practiced some combos with ducking mixed in etc. Most of it was training in partners while he went around critiquing technique and giving each person a few minutes practicing with him. About half of it was boxing and half of it cardio stuff (skipping and some other stuff, and some unsupervised "hit the bags as hard and long as possible"). It was only an hour long.

    The guy teaching it seemed legit (I checked him out, he used to be fighter and had a decent record of about 30 wins and ten losses over a seven year or so career), and made it pretty clear how badly I sucked along with giving me some advice on how to punch better, what was wrong with my stance (I thought boxing stances were quite side on, as our Krav stance is, but he made me face close to straight), that seemed useful in terms of fighting. He also knocked out one of my lenses by smacking me with a focus mitt when I was too slow dipping, so while no real contact there is at least some stuff to encourage you to move properly etc.

    Obviously it's hard to say without seeing how the class works, but does anyone think there's any value in this? Or without sparring/fighting, is it largely a waste of time - the McDojo of boxing? We do some sparring in Krav and I'm looking into some other (kickboxing) classes at the gym that have sparring, so I would be able to integrate some of the stuff elsewhere, but not in a pure boxing context.

    Aside from this, the only other boxing options available to me seem to be white collar boxing (I'd have to give up membership of the gym to pay for this, and I really like having access to a full gym), or some other boxing/fitness variant. I've had several people suggest to me that I simply join your standard amateur boxing gym, but the ones I've checked out will only take people on if they're willing to box conmpetitively, which I'm not, and anyway won't take someone my age (26); they've all directed me to either fitness or white collar boxing programmes run at their gyms instead.

    To sum up, I enjoyed it a lot, it's a much better work out than my average Krav class, and I'll l probably keep going for a while to see how it goes; but I'm also interested in what value you guys think it has in terms of helping my fighting skills. Any thoughts?

    Cheers.

  2. #2
    Judah Maccabee's Avatar
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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I first learned boxing technique and form in a cardio kickboxing class. The instructors were amateur kickboxing competitors who also taught an instructional class in fighting technique.

    I told them that I was interested in learning how to box, and showed up 3x a week. Sometimes, when there'd only be like, 4 people in the class, it was like getting a private lesson.

    I knew right off the bat I wasn't learning how to fight, I was learning boxing technique. Once I had a good handle on that, I started looking for schools to spar at and learn to actually fight, hence, where I am now. You won't learn how to fight, but spending time learning the basics is in my opinion never a waste. Later, when you DO have a chance to train harder, you have a base to build upon.

  3. #3
    Gezere's Avatar
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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Sounds like a BOXEROBICS class they had here. The guy running it was a legit boxer but it was geared to pple to get a workout. As long as the pple don't think they will become prizefighters then its ok.
    ______
    Xiao Ao Jiang Hu Zhi Dong Fang Bu Bai (Laughing Proud Warrior Invincible Asia) Dark Emperor of Baji!!!

    RIP SOLDIER

    Didn't anyone ever tell him a fat man could never be a ninja
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  4. #4

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Couldnīt you apply the technique you learn there when you spar in your Krav classes?

  5. #5
    Ender's Avatar
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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    If you can get proper instruction on footwork, stance mechanics, and the rudiments of punching and body movement, you've gotten something out of the class. That being said, without some moderate-contact sparring, it's going to be pretty abstract. Talk to your instructor and see if he can start a sparring class for those who are interested.
    "Even if one's head were to be suddenly cut off, he should be able to perform one more action with certainty."
    -Yamamoto Tsunetomo

  6. #6

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Ender
    If you can get proper instruction on footwork, stance mechanics, and the rudiments of punching and body movement, you've gotten something out of the class. That being said, without some moderate-contact sparring, it's going to be pretty abstract. Talk to your instructor and see if he can start a sparring class for those who are interested.
    Good comment.
    I'm of the school of thought that martial arts learning has two phases:

    1. Learning the technique and performing them perfectly against padding

    2. Re-learning how to do everything after you start sparring.

    No matter how perfectly you execute the technique, until you've started sparring you have no idea how they're supposed to work. Once you start sparring, even if your form and technique is perfect during training, you start right back at zero and start re-learning everything, with the new emphasis in mind on actually hitting someone in the face.

    When you first learn a technique you're thinking about getting the mechanics right, and doing everything properly, maintaining balance etc. After you start sparring, you go back to that technique and you start all over again, this time training the technique with the emphasis on thinking how you're going to hit someone with it.

    For that reason I think learning something for too long without sparring is plain meaningless. It serves as a learning set when you DO start fighting; but it's just wasted effort because you're going to have to learn to do it all again properly anyway.

  7. #7

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    no sparring boxing is like taebo ...

    great excercise ... nice form ...

    but thats it ...
    totoro-san ... world sushi munching champion ...


  8. #8
    JohnnyCache's Avatar
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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    If the teacher's legit, he might be able to steer you toward something more what you're looking for...


  9. #9

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Actually if there's a boxing ring in the gym, they have to do SOME sparring. Right?

  10. #10

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by nasty_totoro
    no sparring boxing is like taebo ...

    great excercise ... nice form ...

    but thats it ...
    Still better than his current, admittedly-bad form.

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