How To Prepare For Your First Fight
Your coach has given you the green light and you are booked in for your first fight.
It's important that this is a decision that you and your trainer are happy with, and remember if you're new to boxing it usually takes between 4 to 12 months before people sign up for their first bout. If you don't feel like you're 100% ready - go through these signs we prepared for new fighters.
Take your time and be patient. The longer and harder you train, the more chance you'll have of a successful debut. Once you have committed to your first fight, you have a certain timeframe to be at your peak both mentally and physically in order to win in the ring.
From last-minute preparations to the weeks running up, read on and make some notes.
Find The Right Boxing Coach
The right boxing coach influences how you begin boxing. One of the most crucial choices you'll have to make is picking the right coach. Your career could be made or broken by it.
You will start out on the right foot with a terrific coach. Choose someone who has experience working with amateurs and who won't be overly strict with you, making you lose your temper easily.
Learn more about boxing and pay close attention to how your favorite fighters perform in the ring. There are numerous autobiographies written by the world's top boxers available. They are a fountain of information. Keep in mind that you must also emotionally and physically prepare yourself. Your coach will prepare you for your first match if you listen to them and follow their instructions.
For a full breakdown of how to find the right boxing coach, check out this article.
Be prepared to push your body to it's limits if you decide to sign up for your first fight.
Your entire life will alter, including your training routine. Professional training differs greatly from fitness training in many ways. Even while your unique talent helped you get the job, it won't get you very far. To succeed as a top boxer in the business, you need to undergo demanding training.
A good workout focuses on your stamina as much as your strength. You must be able to complete the entire game without getting easily distracted or worn out. You must therefore be in excellent physical and mental condition. Your coach/trainer will put together a training regimen for you that will challenge you all the way to the edge. To be prepared for your first time in the ring, you must adhere to it.
If you need to cut weight before your fight or if you're looking for drills to build your gas tank and get into peak physical condition, we built a simple jump rope program to add to your program here.
Along with training hard, you must train smart.
Regular training is vital but it is suggested that 2 weeks before the fight you keep training to one hour sessions. Keep up your cardio basics and focus on agility with the jump rope, speedball and punching ball. Your training routine before the fight should also maximize physical conditioning and guess what? Your technique can only be perfected with repetition.
Research Your Opponent.
Training is also about doing your homework. Find out about your opponent. Are there any videos of them fighting? How tall are they? Are they known for anything? Any advantage you find, exploit it.
Don't rely on someone else to do the research. Learn about your opponent first hand. Make sure you are training to win and have a game plan for both defence and attack. Watching your competition closely and learning is a fundamental aspect of winning.
Due to the lack of experience, little information will be available on your opponent. If you can find out the essentials, then that would be excellent intel for your preparation. These include height, hand dominance, and the kind of shape they're in.
Knowing your opponent allows you to be ready for anything. You'll likely match up against someone of the same experience level on your first fight. This is key information on how to win a boxing match.
To ensure you're ready for whatever come your way, assume that your opponent is going to be better than you. This will motivate you to push yourself harder during training and will get every drop of effort out of you.
Rest & Recovery.
Overtraining on the build-up to your boxing match is your first enemy and a common foe that every boxer faces. That is not to say that you slack off in training but if you are feeling fatigued on fight day and your opponent is a fresh ball of energy, the odds won't be in your favour.
The week leading up to the boxing fight is generally the worst on your nerves. The night before tends to be when nerves peak, and you may spend hours thinking about everything that is going to happen.
Ensure that you get a good night's rest. It won't be easy, but every minute of sleep that you get will make a difference in the fight. Although you fight with your hands, boxing is a sport of the mind.
You give your body and mind fuel with a good recovery routine and a good diet. This allows you to function better when the time comes to throw down in the ring. Do your best to eliminate potential distractions and interferences during your fight camp, especially fight week.
While this may not sound fun, it's essential if you want to show up in the best shape possible. Leave the partying, drinking, late nights and other similar behaviour until after the fight. Trust us, the after party will be so much sweeter with the W in your column.
Mindset.You first boxing match will be on your mind day and night, and the pressure will stress you out.
It's completely normal to worry about your fight but getting into a confident mental state in the weeks, days, hours and minutes before your fight is vital. You will hear 'get some rest' time and time again.
What this means is sleep. Your body needs to heal and repair but you need to be mentally present and alert in both training and on the day of your first boxing match. The night before your fight, it will be hard to sleep with the pressure of your looming in the morning.
To ease up and relax:
- Get yourself comfortable early.
- Check all your gear, make sure it's in working order and put it in the car ready.
- Turn the T.V or some music on and shadow box for a bit, practice some technique.
- Do what you need to do to clear your head - meditate, take a walk or a bath/shower.
- It should be coming up to bedtime now so take 30 mins to stretch everything out.
- Hit the hay. Not at 1 am, but at a time which allows you to get 7-8 hours sleep.
Before your bout mentally prepare yourself.
The boxing greats all had their own way of mentally preparing themselves, and only you will know what gets you in the zone. Find that piece of music, that video clip, the earbuds or person that will cut out all distractions and give you the edge over your opponent.
How To Manage Your Pre-Fight NervesYou've trained for months. You sparred countless times, many of which have been for the same duration as the boxing fight. Yet, when it comes down to fight time, your gas tank is at risk of being empty after the first round. This happens to a lot of fighters during their first fights, why?
It's something we call the adrenaline dump. It's a sudden drop in adrenaline after being built up.
Simply put, the excitement and nerves of the situation take a toll on your body and can affect how to win a boxing match. The pressure you feel on fight night is much greater than the pressure you feel during training. This pressure can drain your gas tank, and you will have to take precautions to limit the effect as much as possible. We suggest the following:
- Visit the venue and accustom yourself to the environment.
- Spar harder opponents than the fighter you'll face in your fight
- Spar for longer than the length of your fight
A big reason people get so nervous in a fight is that there are people watching. There tends to be a lot of pressure around fighting in front of a crowd, especially when you've got family and friends sitting in attendance. To resolve this, get some people to watch you in the gym to get a feel for this.
Nothing can prepare you 100% for a fight, but these tips should put you in a better position. Everybody gets emotional before a fight. Fear, anxiety, stress, excitement... It's all part of the reason we love to fight as boxers - to stare at our fears straight in the face and conquer them.
The risk of losing, the glory of winning - this is why we love our sport. When you train hard, the fight becomes your reward. You get to show everyone how hard you trained and how amazing you are.
Everyone remembers their first fight, and it will be a special experience for you.
Prepare yourself for battle as best you can by following the points mentioned above, and don't forget to put your heart and soul into your training cap! That's how you will win your first fight.
At the end of the day, win or lose, you're a full-on warrior the moment you step into that ring.
Good luck, train hard, and one last thing: remember to breathe and have fun!
Want more boxing tips? Check out our full list of articles here.
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