A Beginner’s Guide to Boxing for Kids
Boxing is an incredibly popular sport–but at what age is it best to start learning?
Is boxing safe for kids?
Like most sports, boxing comes with its own risks. Scuffs and injuries are often part and course of childhood, but with safe and responsible training, boxing can be a great sport for your child to practice.
It can be important for children to incorporate proper rest, use appropriate safety equipment at all times, avoid any hard sparring, and most importantly, train with a professional trainer who is equipped with the skills to help them train safely.
Benefits of boxing for kids
Boxing can offer kids a whole range of benefits to their mental, physical, and social development. Under the supervision of a qualified and patient trainer, your kids can benefit with better self esteem, physical strength, and social skills.
Here are some of the top benefits that boxing training can have for your kids.
Boxing boasts overarching social benefits, from improving self-confidence to helping with making friends and interacting socially.
Boxing can provide an appropriate outlet from the restlessness and frustration that children can experience in their day-to-day life.
Knowledge of self-defense can also serve to increase feelings of self confidence and assurance–both inside and outside of the gym.
Increases hand-eye coordination
Boxing, as a contact sport that includes both attack and defensive components, can be a great way to improve your child’s hand-eye coordination, in addition to an overall awareness of their body. This can be particularly important as children grow, as they are often unaware of the space they occupy and their own strength!
Providing a safe space in which to allow children to learn their limits and explore their capabilities can be a great way to increase their overall awareness of their bodies.
Teaches discipline and respect
Boxing can be a great way to learn discipline and respect, develop mental focus, build character, and provide a healthy outlet for strong emotions. These can be helpful lessons to learn at any age, but especially at a young age!
Improves physical fitness and agility
Boxing can provide an excellent physical workout that incorporates strength, cardio, and agility-based components.
Boxing can also help to combat obesity, improve balance, and strengthen cardiovascular capabilities.
Creative boxing drills for kids
Shadow sparring can be an incredibly helpful component of boxing training because it can teach self-control and balance. With fast movement and footwork being crucial to the skill of boxing, learning how much energy to exert per move and how to stay steady on your feet can be invaluable. Shadow sparring for kids can also be a great way to keep them safe from injury while they learn the basics of the move!
Not only a fun activity all round, but also a great way to develop balance, one-legged boxing can be a great drill to try with kids.
The goal is to fight a practice boxing match but both opponents are only allowed to stand on one leg. The first person to place their other leg on the floor and stand on both loses.
Not only is this a great way to practice the balance that can be crucial to boxing, but it’s also a great way to break the ice with a group of kids who don’t know each other.
The heavy bag
The heavy bag is a very intense training segment for adults, but for youngsters, it can be a great way to build endurance while managing aggression and expression.
In a fairly simple set up, the heavy bag activity only needs the trainer to hold up the heavy bag at a safe height and ask the students to hit it as hard as possible, for as long as possible. They may use this as a space to let go of all their day’s worked up frustration, but in reality they’re strength training and working to build a strong core.
The paper mouth game can be a great way to improve childrens’ agility, while having fun doing so.
Simply take a folded piece of paper, and have your students place it partially in their mouths so it sticks out. The goal is for the child’s opponent to snatch the sheet of paper from the other’s mouth using their hands as cleanly as possible.
The child without the paper is allowed to use moves that defend and attack in order to get the paper, while the child defending the paper must do so by moving their head as swiftly as possible and using appropriate footwork to avoid the opponent's impact.
The sock drill
The sock drill game can be a great way to learn defence footwork.
In this game, have each child have a sock hang out from the top of their t-shirts. The goal of the game is for each opponent to steal the sock of the other by defending their own.
Using a scoreboard system that works for the group size and duration you want, the sock drill helps learn upper body and facial defence as well as sharp and precise attack on specific zones of the body.
Need a hand getting younger members to join your gym?
Boxing for youngsters can be an incredible addition to your gym –providing value and virtue to your work in the community and helping children grow confident and secure.