Good boxing coaches are few and far between. The sport is filled to the brim with glorified personal trainers, strength and conditioning coaches and “badged” amateur coaches that have never boxed a day in their life. Therefore it’s important to recognise which characteristics will be important when you select the right coach for you. Boxing is a challenging sport with multiple different aspects including the fitness training, skill coaching, psychology and mentality as well as functional motor skills and applied strategy. A good coach will also understand how to get the most out of their trainee with a healthy mix of empathy and apathy applied at the correct times.

How To Find A Good Boxing Coach – Experience

Experience of boxing is essential in a good boxing coach. You have to be able to understand the physical and mental trials that your fighter is going through in the ring. A good coach will have spent a long time in boxing, whether fighting themselves, learning from other experienced coaches or just being in and around gyms. If you find a “boxing coach” who has never boxed, didn’t learn boxing from an experienced coach and has spent zero time in a boxing gym then the chances are that they won’t be the right coach for you.

How To Find A Good Boxing Coach – Technical Knowledge

An analytical, practical and biomechanical understanding of boxing technique and the ability to apply that knowledge to combat scenarios is a key factor of any good boxing coach. Being capable of explaining the reasons why a specific technique is functional, a technical change may be required or a particular strategy implemented can separate a good boxing coach from a poor one. It is also helpful as an aspiring boxer to increase your understanding of the sport to improve your “boxing brain” – something which any good boxing coach will always strive to nurture.

How To Find A Good Boxing Coach – Fitness

Any boxing coach worth his salt will know how to get a fighter in peak boxing shape. That means you, as the fighter, will be ready to comfortably cover the fight distance at a high pace and performing at your peak capabilities. It’s important to find a coach that understands how to make the most of traditional and modern training methods and combine them to build you into the most complete fighter you can be. A good boxing coach will have knowledge of cardiovascular fitness as well as strength and conditioning training – without forgetting the fact that being fighting fit is the final goal. Understanding how to ensure their fighter peaks at exactly the right time in a training camp is a trait worth its weight in gold.

How To Find A Good Boxing Coach – Adaptability

A good boxing coach should have the ability to work with fighters that vary in style, size, age and experience – they will be able to analyse your strengths and weaknesses, then plan a training strategy to augment your strengths and develop, improve upon and eventually eradicate your weaknesses. If you have a natural aptitude for a certain style of boxing and your training constantly insists on changing your style without giving any strategic or technical reason for doing so then chances are, that trainer doesn’t know why they’re asking you to change and is simply incapable of training any different styles.

How To Find A Good Boxing Coach – Psychology

Boxing isn’t just a physical sport. It requires huge amounts of mental fortitude, resilience and composure in order to achieve peak performance and apply the skills that the fighter has spent weeks, months and years training in the gym. A good boxing coach will aid their fighter in developing their mental strength, giving them confidence and encouragement when appropriate, improving their “boxing brain” in order to increase composure and adaptability, and will teach their fighter to battle through adversity, overcoming any obstacles in their path.

How To Find A Good Boxing Coach – Boxing Knowledge

Good trainers know boxing. They know the greatest fighters in history, their opponents, great fights, the styles of fighters and they have studied boxing from an analytical point of view as opposed to that of simply a fan. Knowledge of boxing means that your coach can tell you a historical or present fighter that you should study and learn from that matches your style, that performs a skill you need to work on or that demonstrates traits similar to a potential opponent of yours. They will know how fighters trained, their methods, their coaches, their background and history – no necessarily in great detail but with enough enthusiasm that you can be sure they care about the sport.

Hopefully the tips written above will help you to find the right coach for you – somebody to nurture, develop and progress your boxing ability, fitness and mind. One final tip when selecting your boxing coach is that it is incredibly important to remember that although loyalty is required between boxer and coach, if you feel like you aren’t being taught the skills you should, aren’t improving or have lost faith in your coach then don’t be afraid to move on and find somebody better for you. Boxing is a lonely sport when you’re in the ring and nobody but you can step between the ropes and fight the fight so your own happiness, attitude, sense of wellbeing, confidence and positivity are what matters most.

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