Boxing Classes: What to Expect

Good for mind, body and soul – the principles of my boxing programme

Boxing classes offer a great way to get in shape, an unrivalled level of engagement and a rewarding sense of achievement. Whether you opt to train in a group class or with me entirely on a 1-2-1 basis, my commitment to your enjoyment and development is underpinned by the same guiding principles.

1. Physical

Boxing requires high levels of fitness, making it a popular choice of workout even for non-contact participants. While the act of boxing itself – striking, moving and defending – will make you incredibly fit, my programme supplements this with additional exercises, much like any traditional boxing club.

My programme will make you a better athlete by utilising:

Plyometric sets

Core strength exercises

“Ton-Up” circuits

“Burnout” (high volume) drills

In a boxing class lasting 1hr, you can expect to spend 10 minutes engaged in this kind of activity… sometimes when you’re least expecting it – it’s all about keeping you on your toes!

2. Mental

Boxing provides a high level of mental stimulation. Learning new skills and striving to improve them opens a pathway of discovery. Many beginners I coach are amazed at how dedicated they become within a short space of time. Modern life is hectic and boxing can offer a well needed respite.

My programme promotes mental wellbeing by offering:

The stimulation of taking on new challenges

Complete focus

Escape from distractions, anxieties and technology

A total stress detox!

My classes are built on respect, determination, fun, mutual support and encouragement. These are the qualities that people who come to my classes exude – it’s a positive attitude zone!

3. Technical

Like any sport, boxing requires technical skills. Even if you are training purely for fitness, proper execution of skills ensures maximum benefits. If you’re going to learn to box, then why not do it properly?

This is the basic toolbox of technical skills that form the foundation of my programme. Partner drills and pad work use practical combinations of parts 2 to 5:

1. The Basics


Weight distribution and balance

The guard

Awareness of range

2. Attack

The Jab (“Lead”) and its variations

The Backhand (“Cross”) and its variations



Combination Punching


Counter Punching

Flow and Contra-flow

3. Defence

Dips (“Ducks”)

Physical Blocks

Close Guard



Lay Backs (“Pulls”)


Getting “off the line”

4. Footwork

Moving laterally and forward and backwards

Side steps

Angled side steps


Pendulum Step and Rhythm

5. Range

Long range work

Medium range work

Close range work

Getting inside

Exiting safely

If you’re a total beginner, you should expect to start with the basics. Building fundamentals before layering on complexity creates good skills which become habitual, laying the foundations of success. 

4. Tactical

Imagine that you have been boxing for a while. You’ve worked hard: you’re pretty fit and have some decent basic skills. Now what? 

You may want to test your skills against a fellow boxer via some supervised rounds of sparring. Sparring is simply a way of practising in a ‘live’ but controlled situation as safely as possible. Sparring is not obligatory – many people want the benefits of boxing classes without the bumps and that is fine – it’s your programme!

There are three types of sparring:

1. Technical Spars

e.g. Boxer A attack: Jab (1), Backhand (2), Left Hook (3) / Boxer B defend: (1, 2, 3) > Switch

This controls the level of risk significantly in that both boxers know which punches they have to throw and defend against. The aim of technical spars is to improve timing and technique using rehearsed, preset conditions.

2. Controlled Spars

e.g. “jab only”, “lead hand (jab and left hook) only”, “Body only”, “straight punches only”, Boxer A/B: Attack/Defence – Split rounds

Adding a control reduces risk but keeps it ‘live’ enough to require full focus and utilise a range of feinting, attacking and defensive skills. When the boxer’s toolbox is limited with a control, it reduces the available options and enforces the practice of continuous evaluation, reaction and concentration. 

3. Open Spars

Full range of attack and defence employed for one or more rounds

As it says on the tin, a round (or more) of boxing where anything within the rules of boxing is permitted, but in a constructive fashion – e.g. allowing opponent space and time to recover if in difficulty, focusing on technique and skills, trying out ideas, punching with below maximal force, etc.

Boxers wishing to spar will be well-matched in ability, have similar weight and athletic attributes and be experienced enough to control their actions in a mature and respectful way within the code of boxing. I supervise all sparring activity carefully – your safety is my duty.



“As the newest member of a group I was a bit nervous going in as a complete novice. I shouldn’t have been – Dean and the other members of the group have been great. It’s been so much fun – I’ve learned a lot and my fitness has really improved. Highly recommended.”


“I’ve been training with Dean for 12 months now and I love his sessions. When I started I was very unfit and had no boxing experience. He varies the sessions enough to keep them challenging but incredibly fun with a great mix of technical and fitness. I would highly recommend to anyone of any ability and fitness especially if you want something to help you de-stress!”


“I absolutely love my group sessions… motivation levels are high, the training is focused, and I’ve seen big changes in my fitness levels, agility and mental well-being. A brilliant and positive experience.”


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