5 boxing exercises to add to your work outs to get fighting fit

We look at what boxing exercises you can incorporate into your workouts ahead of tonight's heavyweight clash.

Boxer getting ready to do some rope work.Athlete ready to jump rope.

We’re all geared up and ready to go for this weekend’s big fight. Anthony ‘AJ’ Joshua faces the travelling Kiwi Joseph Parker in Cardiff. After intense preparation for months on end, all that training will decide the ultimate champion. Cardiovascular dominance is just one crucial aspect of winning a boxing match and something both men would have been preparing for. Here are 5 must-haves for boxer’s training to get you fighting fit.


Yep, you guessed it. Running is one of the best ways to improve your … well running. Boxers refer it to roadwork and run to improve their stamina. Their conditioning is very important as the easier it is to keep up with a fight, the more they can focus on not getting punched in the face. If starting out on the road is your first step then take a look at how to start running.

Boxer’s training on the road aim to get their body used to bursts of energy. Jog 3 to 5 miles at a steady rate with sprints at the end to help increase your fitness. This will help boxers with bursts of energy at the end of rounds to perform at their peaks.

Interval training at the gym.
Powering through some tough interval training.
Interval training

Interval training helps recreate the unpredictability of boxing. Your effort levels drop and rise throughout a fight as they do in interval training. High-intensity exercises paired with low-intensity exercise helps your body quickly recover as it would need to in a fight.

Skipping rope

Skipping is a symbolic element of a boxer’s training. We drewl over the stunning footwork of Mayweather, Ali and Pacquiao and only wishing we could do the same. So the girly connotations should probably be forgotten, especially if you’ve got AJ in the opposing corner.

Skipping burns calories helps balance and increases coordination. A runner incorporating skipping into their workouts will help also increase the strength of their calves and make them lighter on their feet. This will help your runs because strong calves will help you exert more power into the ground and propel you forward, making your run easier on your legs.

Shadow boxing

Possibly the most awkward of all for a beginner, shadow boxing is a great way to increase your heart rate at a sustainable level. It’s intense enough to raise your heart rate but you can control your level of effort. This makes it a great fat burning exercise that’ll help runners with their tick overruns.

To make your shadow boxing the most enjoyable remember to think of these four pointers: form, strikes, movement and visualisation. Form; really focus on each punch you throw because that’ll help improve your muscle memory. Strikes: when you’ve got some good form chuck some power behind your punches and do whatever’s natural. Don’t get to carried away though because shadow boxing can be more tiring than you think. Movement: stay light on your feet, remember to pivot but don’t move excessively. Finally, visualisation: imagine an opponent and you won’t look quite as silly doing it in the gym.

Throwing punches on the bag is tougher than you think.
A boxer working on the punchbag.
Bag work

Bag work is tough and not to be understated. It’s a killer on your body and great for leaning down. It’s an all over body killer. Your arms are obviously shattered to pieces by hitting the bag and abs obliterated by your twisting torso. Throw punches at the bag but don’t throw yourself at the bag. Stand on your own two feet and don’t fall into the bag. Keeping your balance makes for better punching power and better footwork around the heavy bag.

Joe Tucker
the authorJoe Tucker
Joe is an aspiring fitness journalist looking to get his foot in the industry at A fair-weather runner and sparring sissy who occasionally enjoys rolling down hills ... on two wheels that is. Any story ideas? Feel free to DM him with any ideas.

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