There is a huge range of variety if you are looking for boxing gloves to use for sparring. The most important thing to remember for training is that you want to reduce risk of injury for you and the person you are sparring with, the last thing anyone wants to do is pick up injuries during training.
Gloves protect your hands and your opponents’ body and face. Using the correct gloves for sparring is essential to minimise injury and therefore enable you to continue training.
When boxing in a bout professionals and amateurs will typically use 8oz to 12oz gloves, white collar boxers typically use 16oz boxing gloves. It’s important to understand that when professional boxers spar they use big 16oz boxing gloves to avoid injuries, so when you are sparring it’s logical to do as they do and use 16oz gloves; there is absolutely no logic in using small gloves to spar and getting injured regularly.
So, we have established that for sparring you should use 16oz gloves for maximum safety. It’s now a good idea to look at the various gloves available. There are 2 main fillings for gloves:
Horse hair – Well, not actually just horse hair anymore. Old gloves used to be purely filled with horse hair, but this offered little protection so now ‘horse hair’ gloves have a combination of horse hair and polyurethane foam, like this.
Foam – Most gloves are filled with foam, that said there is a huge range of foams available, they are typically either injection moulded or layered. There is also a huge range of density in foams available. If you look at cheap gloves sold in some high street stores, you will feel that the foam is incredibly soft, when your knuckles impact someone’s face the foam simply compresses and offers little protection to either of you. For sparring, you want to buy gloves that use a ‘high-density safe spar’ type of foam. This type of foam will give you maximum protection and help reduce the risk of injury.
UWCB has been running events since 2009 and tried using all the major brands of boxing gloves over the years, we quickly came to realise many years ago that not all 16oz gloves offer the same protection. We spent a lot of time developing the perfect glove for our events to make them as safe as possible. The gloves weigh 16oz, uses a high density ‘safe spar’ foam, and has the foam over the knuckles where you need it for protection. Our priority at all events is to make it safe for participants, and the gloves we specifically developed drastically reduced injury.
We then realised that getting the safest gloves for training would also reduce the risk of injury during training and started to sell these gloves with the following key features to make them as safe as possible for sparring:
Safe spar foam.
Padding over knuckles.
We sell over 5,000 pairs of these gloves every year for people taking part in our events and they always have rave reviews, successfully reducing injury risk during boxing training and sparring.
I get off the subway train and walk down the hill into D.U.M.B.O (Down under the Manhattan bridge overpass), a picturesque, cobbled street area of Brooklyn, New York. The spectacular Manhattan bridge in the distance framing this coffee shop and bakery filled part of the city. I am trying to take it all in and enjoy the scenery but, I’m moving at a pace that reflects my excitement for what is just around the corner at 130 Water Street…
Gleason’s Gym. Yes. Gleason’s Gym: a boxing institution since 1937 and I am, a lifelong fan of the art of pugilism, about to walk through its famous doors. These doors, this gym, synonymous with world champion boxers for decades. It has seen a procession of great fighters from era after era after era; Jake LaMotta, Roberto Duran and Mike Tyson have trained here. Muhammad Ali, at that time Cassius Clay, trained here in preparation for shaking up the World against Sonny Liston in 1964 to claim his first world title. A true Mecca of boxing.
Today I have two appointments at Gleason’s, my first with David Lawrence PhD, the King of White Collar Boxing and following that, a training session with former world champion, Iran Barkley. A man who shared the ring with Nigel Benn, Roberto Duran and Thomas Hearns. WOW. What a day ahead.
I am greeted at the door by Jieun Lee (June) who is aware I’m coming and makes me feel especially welcome, she puts my nerves at ease immediately. She gives me the gym tour. Gleason’s has a plethora of boxing equipment amongst maybe 10-15 rings. Surrounding the training area are the trainer/manager’s offices. June takes me to the deep back left corner of the building to David’s office. I am not sure what to expect but I am met by a small, straggly older guy with a huge smile… This is David Lawrence, self-proclaimed King of White Collar Boxing. The epitome of the phrase never judge a book by its cover, as I am about to find out.
We go into a small office, his desk full of books, shelves full of trophies and walls covered in newspaper articles all about him.
His story begins.
At the age of 43, in 1990, David wanted to box; mainly to annoy his wife who had insisted he gave up his love of riding motorbikes for a less dangerous hobby. He was too old to fight in US amateur bouts as the maximum age to compete was 35, so the man he is, he hatched a plan.
White Collar Boxing was his brainchild and together with Gleason’s Gym the first combatants were readied and the White Collar Boxing scene was created. David fought attorney Doc Novick at a hugely successful and glamorous New York City event in what was dubbed ‘The most educated bout in the history of pugilism’, doctor vs lawyer. WCB events have been a popular and regular occurrence in NYC and the US ever since.
I sat with David for an hour or so and he regaled me in his time as a millionaire CEO on Wall Street, his life as a rapper, writer and poet, fighting on a Julio Cesar Chavez undercard, oh, and a two-year prison sentence for tax evasion. A very colourful story of riches to rags and a very entertaining human. As the tale was at an end, he had a question for me.
“What brings you to talk to me?” he asked.
“Well David” I replied,
In 2009 your story reached Derby, UK, and Ultra White Collar Boxing was born. UWCB started as it meant to go on, offering the opportunity to people of all shapes, sizes, ages, fitness and ability levels to train for 8 weeks, free of charge, in preparation for a bout at a big event in front of their family and friends. Their obligation to us? Raise money for the event’s selected charity. So basically… get fit, learn how to box, make a difference to people in need and be a superstar on the event night.
“Tell me more Tom, it sounds amazing” David said. He was not taking credit but was fascinated with how his idea had been grown and developed.
I continued, in 2014 we made the decision for participants to raise money for Cancer Research UK (CRUK), a cause close to all our hearts. Events in more towns and cities followed, more and more money raised for CRUK. 6 years later it is 2020 and UWCB is in over 100+ UK towns and cities, as well as events in Poland and Australia have added to the calendar and over £20 MILLION raised for CRUK with over 15,000 participants per year competing at our events.
This, in real terms, equates to thousands of lives changed both in getting people fit, healthy and motivated, not to mention where the charity money is donated and the difference CRUK makes to the fight against cancer. We continue to expand and improve year upon year and offer all-comers the chance to take part in our ground-breaking events all over the country and the world.
The King is silent in his chair. Pondering how the loss of his beloved motorcycle sparked an idea that has touched the lives of many and will continue to do so for many more.
At UWCB we are proud of the experience we offer; a safety-first, charity-driven and socially improving product that we strive to continually enhance for our participants and spectators.
To take part is as easy as clicking a link and filling in your details; starting on your path to making a difference in your life and to the lives of those you care about in this battle against Cancer.
Chat over I give David the red UWCB cap. The King and his crown. He gives me a massive hug and thanks me for sharing the UWCB story with him and I thank him for sharing his. He is smiling yet emotional, happy and proud. So, he should be. Gamechanger.
I leave the office feeling as high as a kite. It is then I’m met by the former World Champion. Iran ‘The Blade’ Barkley.
“You Tom?” he mutters.
“Ready to go to work?”
“Always ready” I reply. I am not. I’m unfit, out of practice bloke with nowhere near the quality to be training in this esteemed company and setting but I’m certainly not going to pass up on this chance.
Treadmill, skipping rope, warm-up done. We climb into the ring, June, accommodating as she is, filming and taking photos of the session. We move around a little, I, tentatively throwing punches and combos Iran commands. Nervous. After the first round we laugh, joke and I relax.
Jab, double jab. Double jab, right hand, slip, right hand again.
“Boom! Tom you got something in that right!” Iran declares. I can’t hide my smile. As a boxing fan… historian, if you will. I feel absolutely overwhelmed at the praise. We complete 7/8 rounds in the ring before finishing with 3 rounds on the heavy bag. The gym walls covered with photographs of boxing legends of the past. One cannot help but be inspired here.
I thank Iran and leave via David’s office where he hugs me again and gives me a signed copy of his book, ‘The King of White Collar Boxing’, good title. Then I go into the main office where I hold a genuine WBC belt above my head in victory pose and finally the gift shop. Why not?.
I have felt this good on only a few occasions in my life. Today has been special. I feel like I’ve given David recognition that’s given him immense pride. UWCB would not be here if not for him. I am equally proud of the work we do at UWCB. We do inspire, we do help people change their lives for the better and we do put on phenomenal events and raise millions of pounds for CRUK.
I’d truly encourage anyone to get involved in UWCB. Have a go and make yourself and those around you proud and yes, you, reading this, that includes you.
Boxing training is a fantastic way to exercise and get fit. Whether you are training towards a boxing bout, training in a boxing gym with no intention of having a boxing match or training at home, the methods used by boxers are tried and tested and proven to get you in great shape.
So, what do boxers do for training? Most importantly they train consistently, and they train hard. Boxers train towards 2-3-minute rounds with 1-minute rests between rounds. Most bouts will be between 3-5 rounds, its only when a professional boxer progresses through the ranks that they have bouts with higher round numbers. Therefore, they will always follow interval training with the addition of some steady days as recovery sessions.
Almost all of the boxers you see on TV are in good shape, they have visible 6-pack or abs which encourages people to take up boxing training. We regularly hear people ask; Will boxing training give me a six pack? Or will boxing burn belly fat? The answer to that is yes if it is done consistently and combined with a healthy eating plan.
Most people will want to start boxing training at home so it is important to first gain a base level of fitness and learn some basic stance, however, do not do too much technique work at home as the last thing you want to do is drill in incorrect movements. We would recommend starting to work on your fitness at home and then when you are ready to start boxing to visit a boxing club, you can find the details of all the UWCB recommended training gyms here. For fitness sessions keep it simple, here are a few ideas on how to construct workouts which you can adapt to suit your current fitness levels, you can also find lots of workouts on the Ultra YouTube channel here.
If you are new to running, start by jogging. Once you can jog for 15 minutes you can start interval training such as running fast for 30 seconds and slow for 30 seconds. It is important to remember we are all different and different things will suit different people. Try adjusting your interval/rest ratios with different timings as they all have varied benefits. Always make sure it hard and that you are pushing yourself and you won’t go wrong in terms of increasing your fitness levels.
Mix up exercises between upper, lower, and mid body adjusting intervals and repetition ranges to suit your fitness levels. As with the running make sure you are trying hard and pushing yourself.
These are some movements that you will see at almost any boxing club:
Star jumps (or jumping jacks)
It is very important to always make sure you warm up before exercise to prepare yourself physically and mentally for the exercise you are about to do, you can find some warmups on our YouTube channel.
Cooling down after a session is just as important as warming up, following any session make sure you take a few minutes to cool down, reducing your heart rate and stretching your muscles. This will help you to recover faster.
How often should I exercise?
How often you work out is down to your fitness level and how well you recover. The more you can train the fitter you will get, however, to be able to train you must recover well.
To help assist your recovery, here are some tips:
Recovery is key to a successful training programme. How much rest you require will depend on how hard you are training and how well you rest and recover, if you drink every night, eat junk food and do not get enough sleep then its logical that your rest period will be longer as your body won’t recover efficiently. Some people may train for 6 days and rest one, some will train 3 days and rest 4 days, it’s totally individual, one thing you can say is that the better you rest the more you train, the more you train the better you get.
Warming up and coolingdown
Warming up will prepare and mobilise you for the session ahead, it will switch on your muscles and get you ready and set for the session. You can find some warmups on our YouTube channel. Cooling down is also a key element of training, when you exercise your muscles shorten, it’s important to stretch and use a foam roller after sessions to maintain and improve your mobility.
Both warming up and cooling down will both reduce your risk of injury.
Food is your fuel; it will fuel you through workouts and is responsible for your body repairing itself and improving itself. Visit the Ultra Nutrition website where you will find a macro calculator to help you to work out how many calories and how much protein you need. There are also lots of meal ideas and supplements to top up your nutrition and make being healthy easy.
Your body repairs itself when you sleep, you should aim for at least 8 hours every night. You are presented with choices every day; you can stay up and watch Netflix or get an extra 2 hours of sleep and perform and feel better. There is no shortcut here, sleep is important so make sure you get enough of it.
Ultra White Collar Boxing have been running boxing events since 2009 and in that time have seen over 60,000 people take part in 8 weeks of free boxing training. Here’s a list of frequently asked questions when starting out with boxing training.
Can you get ripped from boxing?
Getting ‘ripped’ means losing weight and getting toned. If you want to lost weight you need to use more calories than you consume to create a calorie deficit. Boxing is a great way to burn calories so if you start training and add it to the guidance above on nutrition and recovery you certainly can get ripped!
Will boxing 3 times a week get me in shape?
If you are starting from working out 0 times a week and going to 3 times a week you will get in better shape and be healthier – regardless of the type of training you do. When you start you may find it hard because you are out of shape, this won’t change overnight but you can make huge progress in a few short weeks with boxing training. If you stick to it and training regularly you can change your life.
Is boxing better than running?
This very much depends on your goals, if you want to run a marathon then you need to run long distances regularly. If you are looking to get stronger, fitter, healthier and to learn a new skill then boxing is much better then running. Boxing is a full body workout and is great to help improve your overall fitness and mental health. Running and boxing training can go hand in hand as running is a great way for you to build stamina and fitness.
How many miles does a boxer run?
If you are planning to enter a boxing match with 3 x 2 minute rounds you will be boxing in total for 6 minutes. This means you don’t need to train by running 10k every day, you should train in short intervals as that is what you will be doing. A sprinter doesn’t train by running marathons and this is the same as boxing. This means you maximum run should be around 20 minutes to prepare you for a boxing bout.
With any type of training, whether it is boxing or fitness training, it is important to remember consistency is key. It takes 21 days to form a habit so keep it up and it will get easier. If you would like to sign up to take part in a FREE 8 weeks of boxing training visit our sign up page.
During these unprecedented times a lot of us are finding ourselves at home, either working from home or self-isolating, so it’s important to keep active and healthy.
In times like these the mental and physical health benefits of exercise are so important so it is key to find new ways of keeping active whilst staying safe at home.
Everyone makes excuses not to exercise, being too busy is normally the most popular. Now everyone can make time to exercise.
It’s important to make sure you set a routine in your day to day life, wake up as you normally would at a sensible time and start your day. This will help you feel motivated instantly and ready for the day. If you are working from home you have choices, you can:
Treat the day as you normally would when you are going to work and work your set 9am-5pm.
Wake up > exercise > get dressed > have breakfast > work
Wake up > work > exercise as a break > work
Wake up > work > exercise in the evening
The world is your oyster now, no meetings to make, no time constraints so do something for you, GET FIT & HEALTHY.
Use this extra time at home to get more inventive in the kitchen, you have more time so why not use it to cook (or learn to cook) something new and healthy for you and the other members of your household.
Dedicate time every day to exercise, this can be used for running or for a workout in your garden or your living room. Do this when it works for you, if you feel motivated do this first thing in the morning, if you don’t have time in the morning, do this in the evening. Try something new, there are lots of YouTube tutorials and workouts you can use so why not give Yoga a try or try HIIT training.
When exercising its important to make sure you warm up before and cool down and stretch afterwards. We’ve put together a few examples of workouts you can do at home
Every minute on the minute (EMOM)
15 x Press ups
15 x Sit ups
15 x Burpees
Repeat x 10 = 30 minutes in total
As many rounds as possible (AMRAP)
10 x Squats
10 x Sit ups
10 x Squat thrusts
10 x Burpees
20 minutes on the clock
3 minutes to complete the following exercises:
15 x Burpees
15 x Press ups
15 x Sit ups
15 x Squat thrusts
Repeat this 3-minute set 10 times
When taking part in UWCB we provide you with 8 weeks of FREE training and you get to take part in a huge event, raising money for Cancer Research UK. Sign up for our next events at www.uwcb.co.uk
Boxing training is difficult, but it is incredibly effective at improving fitness. Boxing has stood the test of time and is classed as one of the toughest sports in the world.
The Ultra White Collar Boxing (UWCB) model of 8 weeks of FREE training WORKS, you can become incredibly fit & get in great shape in just 8 weeks. It’s just long enough to get really fit but not so long that life gets in the way of the training.
You can become incredibly fit & get in great shape in just 8 weeks
UWCB events give incredible focus. People will say they want to get fit, in shape or give up a vice, but fall off track and quit after a few weeks. With UWCB you are committed, 8 weeks from the start you ARE stepping in a ring in front of 100’s of people for a boxing match. If that’s not motivation to stick at training for 8 weeks and get super fit we don’t know what is.
We provide 2 free sessions per week at UWCB, but we do advise people to train as much as possible.
The 8 week training can be a great time to give up smoking, drinking, refined sugars or any other vices you may engage in. It is genuinely an opportunity to change your life for the better, make you fitter and healthier.
Why is boxing training so effective?
If you sign up with any PT or fitness class they will encourage you to do interval or HIIT training because it is super effective for fitness, fat loss and increasing strength and power. Whether this is using weights, body weight, a treadmill or any other method it is all interval training.
When boxing at the big event you will do 3 x 2 minute’s rounds. From the first to the last bell it will be 8 minutes so the training should prepare you for that. You don’t need to be using up hours of every day doing 15 mile runs to get fit.
You don’t need to be using up hours of every day doing 15 mile runs to get fit
Different interval lengths have varied beneficial effects and during your boxing training you will experience a variety of different types of interval training. Boxing training puts you through different length intervals for a reason; whilst it may seem obvious to do 2 minute intervals with one minute rests, in reality, you don’t do that during a bout, you may do 20 seconds flat out then move around at a slower pace for 10 seconds then work hard again for 30, it could literally be any intervals within that 8 minutes.
The training works because your body adapts to challenge and literally improves itself; imagine if every time you drove your car fast then parked it up it got a bit faster? Well, your body does that, push it hard and it will improve. Your body is absolutely amazing!!
Your body is incredible and is constantly working to improve itself.
To adapt it must be pushed, if you stay within what you think are your limits your body doesn’t need to improve, so you must work hard. There are lots of sayings like ‘Your body can do anything your mind tells it to’ or ‘Don’t stop when your mind tells you to, stop when your legs tell you to’. If you are new to exercise your mind will tell you its hard and the response to that is to stop. When doing burpees, for example, you may feel its hard and want to stop, but in reality, you don’t have to stop until your legs don’t work anymore, so keep going until you fall over; you will find this is a long time, certainly a long time past your legs hurting.
Over the 8 weeks you will get super fit
UWCB is all about pushing people beyond their comfort zone and helping them to do the amazing things they are capable of; the trainers will be on hand throughout the 8 weeks free training and push and motivate you.
One of the big benefits of boxing training is that the trainers will push you to your absolute limits, whatever they are because they want you to do well at your event, you will also be surrounded by others on the same journey as you who all want to do well.
Probably the single most important thing to remember in sessions is to work hard, if you want to get fitter you absolutely must work hard and push yourself.
Over the 8 weeks you will get super fit and hopefully keep training after the event, making a genuine positive change to your life.
Weight loss is actually simple, you need to create a calorie deficit (use more calories than you consume) and you will lose weight. The target is to lose fat rather than muscle. Fat loss is a controversial subject with everyone having their view. So, here’s what we think:
Being fit makes you more efficient at burning fat.
The fitter you are the longer and more regularly you can maintain higher work rates and thus burn more calories.
Following high intensity exercise you will continue to burn more calories than usual for a long period after the session has finished.
Body weight or any weight-bearing exercises will help you to retain muscle whilst losing fat.
Food is also key to weight loss and fat loss, we will talk about that in our next post.
Psychological effects of training
If you regularly exercise you will feel better, you will sleep better and wake up better. Doing thing’s you didn’t think you could do in the gym will also carry over to other areas of your life and all of a sudden things you thought were impossible you have a go at and can do.
If you regularly exercise you will feel better, you will sleep better and wake up better
Being fit and healthy will make you proud and respect your own body which will obviously increase confidence and hopefully make you more content.