The Boxing Coach’s Equipment Checklist

As a coach, it’s your responsibility to properly lead your athlete into competition. He should be both physically and mentally fit, posses the necessary boxing skill, and have the tools necessary to perform his best.

There are many supplies a coach must have to make this possible. As a result, we have developed a checklist of coaching essentials.

Ringside Coaching Equipment

No-Swell – a must have when your boxer sustains bumps and bruises. It’s important to keep it immersed in ice so that it is as cold as possible.

Spare Mouthpiece – it’s always good to have an extra mouthpiece on hand for any unforeseen occurrences. It should be form fitted to your mouth so that it will be more comfortable and won’t come out as easily.

Vaseline – used to rub on a boxer’s face to keep the skin moist.

Ice Bag – helps keep any swelling down and cool the boxer off.

Cornerman’s Towel – to wipe the boxer clean of any sweat or blood.

Gauze – Should securely support the hand. Length, width, and material should conform to event regulations.

Trainer’s Tape – used to secure shoe and glove laces, as well as add further security to the handwrap.

Scissors – to cut wraps, tape, etc.

Punch Mitts – used to help warm-up the boxer prior to competition.

Water Bottle – used to easily administer water in the corner.

Ring Bucket – used when a boxer rinses his mouth and to catch the water used in the corner.

With this list, you can be sure that you and your boxer are both prepared to fight!

Boxing Equipment 101: What To Know Before You Buy

Whether you’re a first time buyer or a seasoned vet there are a couple things you may need to know before you make your purchase.

Handwraps

Ringside Handwraps

One of the most vital tools in a boxer’s arsenal are his hands. They must be protected at all costs. Handwraps are the most efficient method to holding all of the small bones of the hand in place and protecting them properly.

Traditional Handwraps consist of a cotton-weave fabric that breathes, yet provides a snug fit. Longer wraps, approximately 170″ – 180″ are best because they provide enough wrap to cover the hands, knuckles, and wrists without feeling cumbersome.

A Mexican-Style Handwrap is also available. It has a slight elasticity to it and usually runs in the 180″ range. Almost all wraps are made with a convenient Hook & Loop closure system to make self-wrapping easier. There are also smaller wraps available for junior boxers or women. Take a look here for instructions on wrapping your hands.

Gloves

Ringside Boxing GlovesThere are basically four types of gloves to choose from when you’re considering your purchase, and they are Fitness Gloves, Bag Gloves, Sparring Gloves and Competition Gloves.  Each has a distinct purpose and is designed for specialized performance.

Fitness Gloves are used by fitness enthusiasts and competitive boxers alike.  They are designed for use on the heavy bag, punch mitts, double-end bag, and they are perfect for shadowboxing.  They usually have a synthetic leather shell that makes them very easy to clean.  Molded foam padding provides comprehensive protection for the entire hand.  They can range in weight from 8 to 10 ounces.

Bag Gloves are used when training on a heavy bag, punch mitts, double-end bag and even when shadowboxing. They are generally constructed for advanced and competitive level users and built to withstand continual day-to-day use. A good bag glove provides a high degree of protection for a boxer’s hands and shields them from the constant pounding received during training. They can range in weight from 8 to 16 ounces.

Many boxers default to the heavier side of the weight spectrum so that cardiovascular endurance is increased and strength is gained in the arms. This, in turn, makes the gloves worn in competition seem lighter, enabling the boxer to throw quick, effective punches. Specially formulated molded foam padding provides better protection for the hands and more impact resistance for the joints, while maintaining a consistent feel throughout the life of the glove. Most bag gloves feature a hook & loop closure system for convenience and easy on/off capabilities.

Sparring Gloves include molded foam padding that is specifically formulated to absorb and disperse shock, so that the boxer can experience safe, productive sparring. Standard sparring gloves weigh 14, 16 or 18 ounces. The bigger the boxers, the heavier the gloves. Sparring gloves are available with hook & loop or lace-up closure.

The hook & loop design is popular for its convenience, but some of the more seasoned boxers like the snug, secure, custom fit of a lace-up closure. Preference and comfort are the determining factors. Although a sparring glove can be used for bag work, it is recommended that a boxer doesn’t use the same gloves to hit the bags and spar. A sparring glove has its own, unique purpose and using it for other facets of training undermines the integrity of the glove and it’s safety capabilities.

Competition Gloves are gloves used for sanctioned amateur and professional bouts. Amateur competition gloves have mandatory construction and material requirements. They consist of specially-formulated molded foam padding that provides optimum safety standards, and they are regulated by weight. Most professional boxing matches utilize 8 or 10 ounce gloves. Ringside’s variety of pro fight gloves protect the hand while allowing the boxer to deliver the most powerful punches possible.

Heavy Bags/Punching Bags

Ringside Heavy Punching Bag

There are several factors to consider when choosing a heavy bag. Is it going to be used for fitness purposes or competitive boxing? Where will the bag be used? How many people will be hitting it and how often? These are just a few of the questions that must be answered.
A Powerhide Heavy Bag is more than suitable for the general boxing practitioner. It’s very durable and will stand-up to consistent use. However, there is no substitute for the all leather heavy bag. The resilient leather shell is up to virtually any challenge and will withstand round after round of intensive punching.

In addition to the shell material, internal foam liners must also be taken into consideration. Regular filled bags consist of a 1” closed-cell foam liner. These bags are solid to the punch and hold their shape well. Soft filled heavy bags feature a thicker, 2” foam liner that is easier on the hands and joints, providing more give than a regular filled heavy bag.

Free-Standing Heavy Bags are another option and an ideal alternative to mounting a bag from rafters or ceiling joints. They provide the mass of a traditional, hanging bag but react differently when hit, which can add variety to a routine. They are also mobile, which provides the opportunity for a completely customizable workout area.

The size/weight of the heavy bag should be chosen that is closest to the boxer or group of boxers that will be using it. Although some boxers like their heavy bag to move while being hit, others don’t, so personal preference plays a significant role in the type of heavy bag preferred.

Speed Bags

Ringside Speed Punching Bag PlatformThe smaller the Speed Bag the faster the boxers hands and the more skilled he or she must be. Typically it’s good to start out with a larger bag and practice, practice, practice working down to the smallest size. The Speed Bag can be intimidating but is lots of fun and looks impressive when it’s finally mastered.

Double End Bags are similar to Speed Bags and follow the same rules (as far as sizes). The Double End Bag is a great, all-around bag for developing quick reflexes and elusive defensive skills. Speed Bags and Double End Bags are great for developing hand/eye coordination.

Punch Mitts

Ringside Punch MittsA coach’s best tool in teaching his protégé the art of self-defense can be the Punch Mitts. They’re the closest that a coach can get to providing his student with an opponent, without having to put on a headgear and gloves.

With Punch Mitts a coach can teach his boxer specific combinations, play out virtual ring scenarios, concentrate on his boxer’s strengths and work on his weaknesses.

The Punch Mitts are to a coach, what gloves are to a boxer so they have to be perfect. There are many distinctions between Punch Mitts. Choosing the right pair depends on a coach’s style and the boxer he’s working with. Lighter, more compact mitts are best to use with lighter weight boxers who have fast hands and throw multi punch combinations. Larger, thicker, more impact resistant mitts are easier on a coach who works with heavyweights. A lot of mitt work can be damaging to a coach’s joints if he doesn’t choose mitts that fit well and feel good to use.

The most important aspect to look for in a mitt is that it’s not only designed to be punched but is made with the coach in mind. Make sure that it’s been designed to reduce impact, provide a natural fit and protect the coach. Those are the main ingredients to a good punch mitt.

Last Word On Boxing Equipment

Choosing good boxing equipment is not based on any scientific equations or great insight into the sport. It’s not unlike purchasing running shoes, for instance. Looks, price, manufacturer, materials, durability are all factors, but ultimately what matters most is how it fits, feels and performs. Which is why we, at Ringside offer a 120-day return policy.

If you have any questions about specific items or would just like some feedback about what equipment you’re considering, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Ringside’s Boxing Equipment Checklist

Leading up to competition, it’s important to have a calm, focused mindset. Being sure that you have all your equipment before you leave for the event will give you one less thing to worry about.

As a result, we have developed a checklist of competition essentials:

Ringside Boxing

Headgear (amateurs only) – Your Headgear should be competition approved and properly fitted before you arrive at the event location.

Mouth Guard – It should be form fitted to your mouth so that it will be more comfortable and won’t come out as easily.

Hand Wraps – Should securely support the hand. Length, width, and material should conform to event regulations.

Bag Gloves – A necessity for pre-event workouts.

No-Foul Protector – It should be fitted properly and not hinder movement.

Boxing Jersey (amateurs only) - Should fit properly and adhere to event regulations.

Boxing Trunks – Should fit properly and adhere to event regulations.

Boxing Shoes – Should be broken in and comfortable.

Gym Bag – Should be large enough to fit all your equipment and allow easy access.

Using this checklist, you can double check that you have everything you need before you leave for your big match.

Boxing Tips: How To Wrap Your Hands The Right Way

Hand injuries side line more boxers than any other injury. Because there are so many small bones in your hand, it is absolutely imperative that you take every precaution available to protect them. Proper hand wrapping is the best method of preventing an injury that could keep you out of this great sport. We recognize the importance of protecting your hands and have provided the following instructions to teach you the proper method.

Please keep in mind that this is a general guide and other methods do exist. We feel that the method below is a good starting point and covers all the basic points of proper hand protection.

 Step 1

Your hand should be held open in a relaxed position, with your fingers spread apart. Begin by placing the hand wrap thumb loop around your thumb and be sure that the ‘This Side Down’ text on the hand wrap is against your skin. Bring the wrap across the back of your hand and wrap around your wrist 2 or 3 times.Be sure to wrap high enough (2″ to 3″ up from your wrist joint) on the wrist to maximize support. You want to keep the hand wrap snug throughout this process, but not so tight that it will cut off your circulation.

Step 2

From the wrist, bring the wrap across the back of your hand and around your palm, then across the top of your knuckles.

Step 3

Wrap around the knuckle area 2 to 3 times. From the top of your knuckles, wrap across the back of your hand toward your wrist and around. This will create an ‘x’ pattern across the back of the hand.Repeat the ‘x’ pattern 2 or 3 times.

Step 4

Continue around the palm of your hand to the base of your thumb. Wrap completely around your thumb and back toward your wrist on the palm side of your hand.It is important to keep the wrap from twisting while wrapping the thumb.

Step 5

Continue wrapping around the back of your hand to the thumb and once again wrap around your thumb, this time from the opposite direction.

Step 6

Wrap from the thumb over the back of your hand and around your wrist.

Step 7

Continue around your wrist, over the back of your hand and through the space between your pinky and ring fingers. Wrap around your palm back toward your wrist and repeat the steps for each finger.Be sure to keep the wrap as flat as possible and twist free.

Step 8

With the last finger completed, bring the wrap across the palm back toward your wrist.

Step 9

Continue wrapping across the back of your hand toward your knuckles.

Step 10

Wrap once more around the top of the knuckles and across the back of your hand toward your wrist.

Step 11

Secure your wrist with the remaining hand wrap. Be sure to wrap it snugly to provide support for your wrist.

Step 12

Fasten the Hook & Loop closure and you’re done.

Step 13

The finished product should be a secure and protected tightly wrapped hand.

INFOGRAPHIC: The Anatomy of a Glove

That’s right – the Ringside Blog is back!  Starting right now, we’re going to be bringing you some great resources and posts about everything in boxing.  We’re even looking to work with other big boxing bloggers from across the internet, so keep your eye on this space!

Among the many things we take very seriously here at Ringside is educating the public on the variety of choices they face when purchasing boxing equipment.  No matter what your boxing goal is, the right gear is waiting for you.  We start with boxing gloves.  Just take a look at this handy infographic and get to shopping!

The Anatomy of a Glove

Embed This Image On Your Site (copy code below):

Boxing is Beautiful

I think boxing is beautiful.  For the general population, however, this may be the polar opposite of what they envision the sport to be.  As a matter of fact, there are most certainly people who feel boxing is too brutal, too barbaric, too violent even to be considered a sport, much less beautiful.   Honestly, I can understand their point of view.  On the surface, and from a casual spectator’s perspective, they simply see two guys unnecessarily putting themselves in harm’s way, fighting in an attempt to incapacitate one another.  If you’re one of these people, I hope that by the time you’re finished reading this, you’re able to look at boxing differently and appreciate it for what it truly is – simply beautiful.

Let’s start with the basics, the mental and emotional fortitude necessary to train and

Roadwork

compete.  We can all relate with the concept of general physical fitness and what that, even at its most basic level, requires of us.  It requires dedication.  It requires focus.  It requires discipline. It requires sacrifice.  Now multiply that by one-thousand, and you will begin to get a sense of the level of commitment necessary to become successful in boxing.  Many of us can only imagine the mental and emotional strength needed to first of all generate these attributes, and then maintain them for what amounts to years upon years.

So far we’ve discussed only a few of the mental and emotional elements required of the

De La Hoya/Trinidad

sport, but there’s more.  The ability to step into the ring and face your opponent one-on-one requires an element of courage and self-control unique in the world of sport.  There is an element of danger and risk involved that can’t be duplicated.  Mind, body and soul must be more focused and in-the-moment than at any other time.  Being able to harness and control the title wave of emotions, including anxiety, excitement, anger and fear, is a task most are not up to but which a boxer does every time he steps into the ring.

Let’s move on to the physical demands of the sport.  No other activity taxes the body more comprehensibly.  Jogging, weight lifting, sparring, jumping rope and countless rounds on the bags and mitts are a part of what boxers must fight through.  A significant portion of this preparation is repetitive, where the same movement is made (the delivery of a jab, for example) for weeks and even months until the movement is second nature, until it can be made without having to think about it, until it becomes instinct.

Boxing routinely pushes the body to its limits during training, thereby continuously raising the bar and providing the athlete with an ever-raising benchmark.  When every fiber of the boxer’s being wants to quit, it’s then that he pushes through and battles to the finish.

The apex of all the mental and physical training is competition.  It’s a celebration of the work already accomplished, a fight in-and-of-itself.  Although most never actually witness the preparation first-hand, it’s clearly evident as soon as the first punch is thrown and the dance begins.

There’s subtle, almost unnoticeable movements used to gain the advantage.  There’s the

Amateur Competition

instinctual reactions so deep ingrained in the boxer that they require no thought.  There’s an intrinsic understanding of the science that provides glimpses into the future, allowing boxers to react to maneuvers that have yet to be made.  There are adjustments to technique that make it as much about strategy as strength.  There is masking of injury, as to not show weakness.  It’s a war of will, strength and heart, unique to the sport of boxing.

To me, boxing is art, like an elegant ballet or finely-tuned orchestra.  It encompasses countless positive attributes, many of which can’t be seen, only felt and experienced.  It discriminates against no one, equally applicable from the 12-year old amateur to the hall-of-fame world champion.  That’s what makes boxing great.  That’s what makes boxing beautiful.

———————————————-   Holiday 2012   ———————————————-

Experience the beauty of boxing for yourself and save big this holiday season.  Ringside’s holiday store is now open, and with gifts for everyone on your list, there is only one place to go – ringside.com, “The Best in Boxing”.

News Release – Combat Sports and Ringside Join to Become Combat Brands

Fight Brands Align Under New Corporate Structure

Lenexa, Kan. – Aug. 27, 2012 –The fight brands Combat Sports and Ringside have

Ringside

merged to become Combat Brands, LLC, a one-stop shop for equipment, clothing and gear for amateur and professional boxers, and MMA fighters.

Ringside and Combat Sports were previously owned by founder John Brown, who is stepping down to pursue other interests.

“This new corporate structure lets us leverage company resources as we introduce our

Combat Sports International

products to new fight audiences around the world,” said Orin Borgelt, Combat Brands president and CEO.

Combat Brands recently introduced its Heritage line of premium boxing gear. Skilled craftsmen use the finest leather and latest technology to create the individually handcrafted fight gear. Combat Brands is the only company in the industry offering equipment of this quality.

Combat Brands is headquartered in Lenexa, Kansas.

###

2012 Ringside World Championships Training Camp- Week 9

There’s less than two weeks before the first bell rings at the 2012 Ringside World Championships.  On August 1st, competition in the largest amateur boxing tournament in the world will get underway and with it, the celebration of all your hard work, determination and sacrifice.

You’ve been in camp for two months, and the prize is within sight.  The key now, in the

2012 Ringside World Championships

days leading-up to the big show, is fine-tuning and rest.  The objective of this part of camp is to maintain your conditioning and recover from the taxing workouts that constituted previous weeks of training.

Although a specific training regimen should be tailored to the individual athlete, there are several general items that should be incorporated into Week 9 of your training camp.

Diet

Eat smart.  Eat Healthy.  You’re going to need all the energy you can muster for the upcoming competition, so don’t get off track now.  Continue to fuel your body properly.  At this point, you should be on or very near your competition weight.  This will give your body plenty of time to acclimate, and you won’t have to worry about making weight at the event.  This will allow you to concentrate on your opponent, not the scale.

Roadwork 

Continue your routine by jogging four miles, five to six days per week, at a nice, steady pace.  Feel free to throw in a few sprints here and there, but not as hard or consistently as you were in previous weeks.  Remember, the goal of this part of camp is to maintain and recover.

Gym Workout

Just like you did at the beginning of camp, insure that your fundamentals are solid in these weeks leading-up to the tournament.  Continue to work your obligatory four rounds at each station (heavy bag, shadow boxing, jump rope, mitts, etc.) at a consistent pace.  Incorporate your final two to three sessions of sparring into these remaining weeks to insure that your timing, distance and reflexes all primed for competition.

The difficult part of camp is over.  You’ve done it, but training isn’t over just yet.  Take this time to insure your fundamentals are solid, your technique is on point and your mindset is positive.  Maintain and recover.

If you missed Week 1, Week 3, Week 5 or Week 7 of training camp, click here.

 

-Never.Stop.Training.-

2012 Ringside World Championships Training Camp – Week 7

T minus three weeks and counting until the first punch is thrown at the 2012 Ringside

2012 Ringside World Championships

World Championships in Kansas City.  Your victory is earned in the weeks and months leading up to the event.  It’s what you do NOW that insures a great performance then.

The tournament itself is the culmination of all the effort you’ve invested, all the hours in the gym, all the punches thrown, all the miles logged on the track.  It is where you showcase the skill you’ve developed and the conditioning you’ve built.  It’s a time for celebration.

To get there, it’s important that you stay focused and dedicated during the final weeks of camp.  During these next two weeks, specifically, we will make an all-out, final push in our preparations.

Although a specific training regimen should be tailored to the individual athlete, there are several general items that should be incorporated into Week 7 of your training camp.

Diet

Continue to fuel your body with a healthy diet, the benefits of which are numerous.  It will give you the power to fight through these remaining weeks of camp, which means you’ll be in better shape for competition and more energized during the bouts.  It will also help you reach and/or maintain your competition weight more efficiently.  This can’t be stressed enough – don’t wait until the last minute to cut weight!  Preferably, you should be at your competition weight a week before the tournament.

Roadwork

At this point, you should be consistently running at least four miles, five to six days per week.  Your pace should be brisk and challenging.  Continue incorporating sprints or intervals into your routine.  During your bout there will be times of high and low output, relatively speaking, so your roadwork should mimic this pattern.

As an option, you can try alternating between distance and interval runs.  One day, run for your obligatory four miles, and the next day, perform an interval routine where you focus on giving spurts of 100% output.

Gym Workout

Your gym workouts should be intense and taxing.  Give it all you got, and leave it all in the

Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero

gym.  Work at least four, three-minute rounds at each station (shadow boxing, mitts, speed bag, heavy bag, etc.).  While you’re training, picture yourself in the ring, at the tournament, with your opponent in front of you.  Imagine various situations and your reactions to them.  Having rehearsed the scenarios in your head, during training, you will be better prepared when the time comes to perform.

You should be consistently sparring two times per week for three to four, three minute rounds.  You can even incorporate a mock-bout by staging an actual competition match in your gym.  Have your coach wrap your hands with gauze and tape, just like he will at the tournament.  Wear your uniform, have your coach be the referee and sit between rounds.  The objective of this exercise is to get better accustomed to the atmosphere of an actual competitive match.

If you missed the tips from Week 1, Week 3 or Week 5, click here.

-Never.Stop.Training-

2012 Ringside World Championships Training Camp – Week 5

You’ve committed an entire month of training to the 2012 Ringside World

2012 Ringside World Championships

Championships,and there’s no turning back now.  With the big dance only five weeks away, you’re about half way through camp, and it’s time to raise the bar even further.

By now, you should be in a set routine that incorporates a healthy diet, training and rest.  Establishing the regimen was the hard part.  With momentum now on your side, you’re on a path that leads directly to Kansas City and an outstanding performance.

You’ve put in the work and laid a strong foundation.  It’s now time to build on that and push your body even further.  Stepping into the boxing ring to compete can be one of the most strenuous, nerve-racking and physically taxing experiences anyone can go through (and consequently, one of the most rewarding).  It’s essential that you’re as prepared as possible when the time comes, so push your mind and body now to insure you’re ready.

Although a specific training regimen should be tailored to the individual athlete, there are several general items that should be incorporated into Week 5 of your training camp:

Diet

Continue your healthy diet.  Avoid the temptations of junk food and fuel your body with nothing but the best.  It will show in your workouts and ultimately, in your performance.  We’re about half way through training camp, so if you’re trimming down for the tournament, you should be half way to your competition weight.  Don’t wait until the last minute to lose weight!  It will damper the experience and negatively affect your performance.

Roadwork

You should be consistently logging 3 – 4 miles, at least five days per week and at a healthy pace.  It’s now time to incorporate sprints.

Boxing matches aren’t static.  There is an ebb and flow to them, times of heated activity, as in the middle of an exchange, and times of lesser action, as you search for an opening.  The roadwork you perform should mirror the output required in the ring.  There is a wide variety of sprint routine options, so you should integrate the one that works best for you.  However, a good place to start would be to incorporate 20 – 30 second sprints, every couple of minutes, as you take your daily jog.  With time, you’ll find that you will be able to invest a greater amount of energy during the bursts and recover faster.

Gym Workout

Your gym workouts should be all about intensity.  Perform four, three-minute rounds at each station (shadow boxing, heavy bag, double-end bag, mitts, etc.), and concentrate on the intensity of each round.  Push yourself.  Remember that your eventual opponent is training too, maybe at the exact same time you are.  It’s up to you to train harder, sacrifice greater and focus more intently than him.  It will be worth it in the end.

Sparring should also commence now.  One to two times per week for three, three-minute

Sparring should be a learning experience.

rounds will be sufficient.  Keep in mind that you shouldn’t be fighting for your life when you spar.  It should be a learning experience.  Enter the session knowing what you want to practice and heed your coach’s instructions.  Eventually, your skill, timing, reaction speed and distance will improve.  For more information on sparring, check out John Brown’s Principles of Proper Sparring DVD.

If you missed the tips from Week 1 or Week 3, click here.

-Never. Stop. Training-