What is Boxing? The origin of this legendary sport

by Johnny Jacks

What is Boxing? Origin, history, basic movements, and all the things you need to know before joining will be introduced to you through this article by us.

What is Boxing?

Boxing is a combat sport that primarily involves punches. Traditionally, it is also referred to as “pugilism,” a term that literally means “fighting.”

Matches are conducted within a designated area called the “ring” and consist of timed rounds. The winner is determined either by scoring points or by knocking down the opponent. Inside the ring, a referee oversees the match, while judges outside the ring make the final decision on the winner.

Boxing History


Historical evidence indicates that humans have engaged in various forms of combat throughout history. Sumerian relief carvings depicting boxing have been discovered dating back to the third millennium BC. Combat as a sporting activity originated around 500 BC.

Boxing enjoyed significant popularity and attracted a large audience in ancient Rome. As time passed, the hand protection worn by combatants evolved from leather straps to metal gloves adorned with stones. Unfortunately, this advancement often resulted in the tragic demise of one of the gladiators.

There is a substantial amount of historical evidence indicating that boxing has its origins in 500 BC.

There is a substantial amount of historical evidence indicating that boxing has its origins in 500 BC.

17th century

In the 17th century, following the decline of the Roman Empire, competitive boxing virtually vanished for several centuries. The revival of this sport occurred in England during the 17th century, taking the form of hand-to-hand combat.

With the rising popularity of boxing, English aristocrats frequently placed bets on their favorite fighters. Consequently, rules were established, and the sport began to be organized more systematically.

Although the concept of weight classes was mentioned in the early 1820s, it wasn’t until the early 20th century that definitive weight classes were standardized in an effort to level the playing field among boxers in a match.

In 1867, the Queensbury Rules were established, marking a pivotal moment in the evolution of modern boxing by setting standardized ring sizes and regulating the number of rounds. The Queensbury Rules also mandated that boxers wear gloves during competition.

In America

In the United States, boxing made its entrance in the 1830s when British boxers sought new opponents. During the latter half of the 19th century, Theodore Roosevelt, who would later become President of the United States, ardently embraced and supported the development of the sport.

At the dawn of the 20th century, prizefighting gained immense popularity in America. However, due to its association with gambling and corruption, boxing was prohibited in many locations. To address this issue, numerous clubs were formed where spectators could pay to watch matches.

As boxing matches began to be broadcast on radio and subsequently on television, the prominence of boxing clubs waned. Nevertheless, the appeal of boxing continued to grow steadily.

The sport reached its zenith in the mid-1960s with legendary boxers like Muhammad Ali. The release of the film “Rocky” in the 1970s solidified its status as arguably the most famous boxing movie of all time.

Boxing maintained its momentum in the 1980s with icons such as Sugar Ray Leonard, Mike Tyson, and Julio César Chávez. By the 1990s, interest in boxing had surged to the point where it rivaled mainstream sports like basketball, football, and hockey.

Mastering Proper Boxing Technique


Currently, there are various stances in boxing, but the traditional stance remains the most widely practiced. To adopt this stance correctly, you should stand with a split position, placing your left foot in front and your right foot behind. Maintain an upright posture for your upper body, with your left hand positioned in front of your right hand, which is held behind to guard against your opponent.

For left-handed fighters, the stance is symmetrical, with the right foot in front and the right fist leading. The body can pivot slightly to the side when adopting a defensive position or can be positioned perpendicular to the opponent during an offensive maneuver.

While there are numerous variations of the fighting stance, the traditional stance remains highly popular.

While there are numerous variations of the fighting stance, the traditional stance remains highly popular.

Fundamental Punches

Boxing primarily employs four fundamental punches: the jab, cross, hook, and uppercut. The jab is a swift and direct punch aimed directly at the opponent. The cross, on the other hand, is a straight punch executed with the rear hand.

A hook involves delivering a semi-circular, horizontal punch with the left hand, targeting the opponent’s head. Meanwhile, the uppercut is a punch that travels upward from below, targeting the opponent’s torso or chin.

What Equipment is Necessary for Boxing?

Boxing necessitates several fundamental pieces of equipment for training:

  • Boxing Gloves: Boxers typically opt for various glove sizes based on their intended use. However, if you’re seeking the ideal glove size for both training and bag work, the 16 oz size is a solid choice. Smaller sizes may be preferable for individuals with smaller hands or those primarily engaging in speed training with punching bags.
Select boxing gloves that are appropriate for your intended use.

Select boxing gloves that are appropriate for your intended use.

  • Hand Wraps: To prevent injuries while practicing boxing, it’s essential to wrap cloth and elastic bands around your hands and wrists during training and competitions. These wraps secure your hands, provide wrist and knuckle support, and learning the proper wrapping technique can help prevent pain and injury.
  • Boxing Shoes: Boxing shoes are lightweight, high-top footwear with rubberized soles designed for swift movement, excellent grip, ankle support, and breathability. While not mandatory for beginners, once you acquire a pair, you’ll likely wonder why you didn’t invest in them sooner. Additionally, many gyms may require specialized boxing shoes for workouts.
  • Protective Gear: A mouthguard is indispensable during sparring or competition to safeguard your teeth and reduce the risk of concussions. After all, protecting your teeth is a top priority. Other protective gear for competitive boxing includes a groin protector and headgear to shield your lower body, face, and ears.

Benefits of Boxing

Boxing training offers a multitude of advantages for individuals:

  • Enhanced Physical Strength: According to experts, dedicating just 40 minutes to boxing training can lead to the burning of 600 to 700 calories, facilitating rapid weight loss. Moreover, the consistent movement involved in boxing promotes a more balanced and toned physique, helping individuals achieve a more muscular appearance for men and a more sculpted figure for women.
  • Transforming Body Shape: Engaging in boxing practice can transform one’s physical appearance from that of a reserved individual, perhaps even a bit frail, into someone strong and resolute. It has the power to turn a shy person with less confidence and an unassuming physique into a self-assured individual who exudes charisma and attracts attention.
  • Improved Flexibility and Endurance: Boxing demands moments of intense endurance, contributing to increased stamina and flexibility. This enhanced physical conditioning not only boosts one’s physical performance but also instills the confidence to tackle the daily challenges of life and work.
  • Overall Health Benefits: Regular boxing practice promotes greater flexibility, significantly boosts endurance, and results in improved overall health. It enhances physical well-being and contributes to a more resilient body.
  • Heightened Mental Sharpness: Martial arts, including boxing, necessitate agility to assess and evade opponents’ attacks. Engaging in boxing enhances both physical and mental agility, making individuals more responsive in their thinking and daily activities.
  • Stress Reduction: Boxing serves as an effective outlet for stress relief. It aligns with the principle that during periods of stress, individuals often desire an outlet for their pent-up emotions. Scientifically proven, boxing allows individuals to channel their frustration and exhaustion into powerful blows, effectively dispelling stress and fatigue.
  • Cardiovascular Health: Boxing training entails constant movement and sustained physical effort, leading to improvements in respiratory capacity and the cardiovascular system’s efficiency. Regular boxing practice contributes to a healthy heart, reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases such as high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, heart failure, and heart attacks.

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