If you’re not familiar with shadow boxing, it’s basically a combat exercise that involves throwing punches in the air as though you’re boxing someone. It was originally performed by professional wrestlers, boxers, and mixed martial arts professionals to warm up and condition their muscles just before a fight.
Over the recent years, as the benefits of this routine went mainstream, the activity has become highly popular and is widely practiced as part of a workout regimen. Whether you’re a fighter, a white-collar professional, or even a blue-collar professional, shadow boxing can help you stay on top of your game in your field. Here are 5 ways shadowboxing can help keep your skills sharp.
1. Improves Hand-Eye Coordination
As you age, hand-eye coordination is a key indicator of your quality of life. It basically involves using your eyes to focus on a specific thing and then using your hands to accomplish a desired task.
By regularly engaging in shadow boxing, you condition your eyes to be able to pick up the slightest of cues. In addition, shadow boxing also improves your reflexes. This enables you to react quickly, which can prove to be lifesaving or simply helpful in a wide variety of circumstances.
2. Gets Rid of Stress
Stress, whether it’s from family, or work-related, can negatively affect your body and emotions. If not properly addressed, it can also have an adverse effect on your job performance.
By embracing shadow boxing, you can eliminate stress and become more productive. That’s because shadow boxing acts as a form of meditation that can help you regain your peace of mind and also make you feel good.
When you’re working out, the brain produces endorphins, a.k.a. “feel-good hormones,” which elevate your overall mood and spirit.
3. Optimizes Your Posture
If your job involves a lot of sitting, it’s highly likely you may be experiencing some issues with your back and posture. Poor posture contributes to back and neck pain and limits your ability to move your shoulders and spine.
The good news, however, is that shadow boxing exercises can strengthen your back, as well as your glutes and hamstrings to help you counteract the negative effects of a sedentary job. This can give you renewed energy and zeal which you can channel into your work for greater success.
4. Makes You More Alert
Shadowboxing involves a combination of quick punches and footwork, as well as positional switches which challenge your balance and thus necessitate alertness. The exercises also stimulate the brain to produce oxytocin and dopamine which create a positive feeling in the body that enhances focus.
5. Improves Confidence
Regular structured shadow boxing can boost your self-esteem by instilling a sense of achievement, especially when you hit certain milestones. The skills you learn can also be effectively used outside, in the real world. For instance, learning how to master your defense, understanding your opponents, and finding your fighting style, can prove to be helpful in both work and social circles.