Healthista’s new How to Box video series is onto lesson number seven – learning how to block. Former champion boxer and head coach at BXR London, Gary Logan shows us how to defend ourselves like a pro
Female boxing has never been so popular
‘Hot’ celebs, including superstars Gigi Hadid, the Kardashians, Dua Lipa and Adriana Lima, are all big fans of boxing with many of them saying it’s their favourite way to keep fit.
Female boxing champions such as Nicola Adams, Ronda Rousey and Katie Taylor have also made headlines in the sport and inspired women everywhere to fight fierce in what used to be seen as a male-dominated sport.
‘Women’ and ‘boxing’ are no longer two words that sound odd if used in the same sentence, with women’s participation in boxing and other fight styled sports rising dramatically in recent years. Even boxing classes are now predominantly made up of women.
Boutique boxing gyms are pretty popular too
Due to such a surge in boxing popularity, trendy boxing gyms are popping up all over London. Boutique boxing gyms help you to train like a boxer, without actually finding yourself in any real physical fights, because let’s be honest after a long day at work that really isn’t what you want to be doing.
This is particularly perfect for those who are slightly nervous about starting the whole boxing thing – hitting a bag is far less nerve-racking or intimidating than hitting an actual person.
Boutique boxing gyms help you to train like a boxer, without actually finding yourself in any real physical fights.
Boxing gyms are set up to take people from a beginner level to a more advanced stage, so if you are worried you’ll be the only one there who has never boxed before, think again.
Don’t worry about what other people in your boxing class are thinking – they’ll be just as busy as you, worrying about what they’re doing to judge anyone else.
Boxing is an intense full-body workout and the techniques can be quite intricate. This can be slightly intimidating for those who are new to boxing.
That’s why Healthista have teamed up with BXR London (a luxury boxing gym that launched in January 2017) to give you thirteen videos of Boxing School lessons with BXR’s head boxing coach Gary Logan.
BXR is also known as ‘the Anthony Joshua gym’, as the Olympic boxing champion is an investing partner.
Former boxing champion Gary Logan has trained top clients, including a number of celebrities, since he retired from professional boxing. He knows his stuff, and although he can be strict on technique he also makes sure you have a great time – so naturally he was the perfect choice.
Gary’s mantra is ‘it’s all in the details’, which is what our new ‘Boxing School’ series focuses on – how to execute the details correctly.
From footwork to stance, keeping your guard up to balance, Gary will teach you how. If head boxing coach Gary Logan can’t teach you how to deliver a punch fit for a professional fight then no one can.
Here’s your seventh lesson…
Boxing School Lesson #7: How to Block
Now we’re going to learn how to block, and yes we do mean a punch.
First things first, ‘If someone throws a jab at you for example you’re just going to jab block with your right hand,’ says Gary.
‘You aren’t going to bring your shoulder round to block it, you just want to prod your right hand out, imagining that the jab is coming right at you’.
The rest of the punches you need to block, involve shoulder movements. ‘How I teach and encourage my clients to block, is by using shoulder movement,’ says Gary. ‘Start with that set up that I gave you (that’s the natural boxing stance), that’s your balance.
‘If they throw a back hand (cross), you are going to turn your front shoulder six inches round to the back. But make sure you keep your eyes on the punch that is being thrown at you,’ explains Gary.
So you’ve turned your shoulder back six inches and your keeping your eyes on the punch, you also need to keep the front arm up so that it is high enough to protect you.
‘If they throw a hook, you’re just going to slip inside, and catch that hook on the side of your glove.
‘So basically if it were all three shots that were being thrown at you, you would block, turn and drop inside (see video) all while keeping your guard up’.
New to boxing? Here’s what you’ll need…
If you’ve signed up for your own boxing class and are unsure what to expect here are some things you will need, other than sheer determination and the motivation to hit as hard as you can:
- A pair of trainers
- A good sports bra
- Comfortable training clothes
- Boxing gloves (most clubs will lend you a pair on your first visit but bare in mind these will have been worn many times before)
- Wraps (available online or from most sports shops).