Boxing: an invigorating yet strenuous sport that is typically synonymous with muscular, hard-core athletes. When I started to show signs of interest in this exercise, initially friends and family seemed a little, well, perplexed. Being a young woman with Cerebral Palsy, I suppose it was only natural for these people to think boxing probably wasn’t an obvious choice for somebody like me to pursue.
Being physically disabled has always provided me with extra determination and ambition to succeed in various aspects of life, never being one to believe such an obstacle like my own should prevent me from achieving personal goals. There are many people who assume contact sports and disability do not coincide but having always obtained an interest in sports and fitness, I loved the idea of taking things further and embracing a bold, new challenge.
Earlier this year, I began boxing with the assistance of Matt, my personal trainer. Ultimately, it has been the best decision I have made. The physicality and performance required whilst boxing enables me to feel not only an infectious sense of joy and satisfaction but additionally, it eliminates signs of difficulty and I embrace every moment, putting my all into every move. Having always acquired a natural sense of stability on my knees for balance and general movement, I execute boxing through this stance, which allows me to perform all the transitional moves freely and effectively.
Each week I accomplish a variety of typical boxing practices, which I love to do and repeat over and over until it is nailed. Training includes; a number of transitional move combinations that progressively become more advanced each week, along with performing a series of two-minute rounds that encompass jabs, crosses, hooks, uppercuts and ducks, with numerous thirty-second hit-training sessions of straight, uppercut and above-the-head punches. I also do thirty sit-ups to strengthen my core.
It is believed that boxing releases positive endorphins in the body but for me, it is more than just this. It allows me to feel like an able-bodied trainee who can put up a good fight and take on anything! The contact of boxing, along with the fitness, agility and excitement is infectious and I finish feeling fantastic like I’ve had the ultimate workout. Personally, boxing translates as a brilliant sport because it strengthens my whole body, encourages my weaker arm to fully extend whilst becoming stronger, directly impacts my coordination and precision, challenges my balance and reaction speeds and overall enriches my happiness and makes me look and feel the best I can.
My training sessions are the thing I look forward to the most each week. I am very thankful to have found such a great trainer who has kindly taken me on and adapted the sport around my needs, whilst equally putting me through my paces! I would very much encourage anyone; disabled or not, to pursue boxing. It is something I’ve acquired a real passion for and am definitely going to follow through into the future.