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Working the heavy bag on a regular basis is substantial part of a boxer's training. When scheduling these workouts, the four primary categories of boxing bag workouts involve technical or skill-based training, round training, punch-out drills and power boxing. These four styles each stress different traits, all of which — when practiced regularly — combine to form a well-rounded boxer. Variations of these workouts also can be used as fitness routines by those who have no intention of ever stepping into the boxing ring for a fight.
Technical or skill-based training during boxing bag workouts involves rounds of traditional bag work. Improving and maintaining technical skills is the goal of the exercise, along with working out any errors in technique that could potentially prove disastrous in the ring. Skill-based training is broken up into rounds, during which time the boxer will practice individual punching techniques such as jabs, crosses, hooks and uppercuts; technique in combination, such as jab-jab-hook; and proper body movement, such as moving laterally with head fakes, feints and dodges. This differs from other forms of bag training in that the goal is to ingrain proper technique in muscle memory instead of trying to move and strike with full force. Therefore, it is better for the boxer to move slightly slower to execute the techniques properly than to rush through with sloppy movements.
Round training while performing boxing bag workouts consists of timed rounds, during which the boxer strikes the bag and moves as though he or she is in a real fight, using all of the different combinations and techniques. The goal here is to transition the boxer's technical skills to a combat-like scenario. During this time, the boxer can pretend that the bag is an opposing boxer and attempt to use all of his or her skills to defeat the opponent, moving as well and as quickly as possible. The typical length for round training is two minutes for amateurs and three minutes for professionals. A typical rest period between rounds is one minute.
Punch-out drills during boxing bag workouts are designed to improve maximal strength while throwing an individual specific combination. These drills last for less time than a normal round. A typical length of time for a punch-out round is about 30 seconds, with one minute of rest between rounds. During that time, the boxer's goal is to throw a single, preselected combination at maximum force, repeating it over and over without stopping or resting until the round ends.
Power boxing involves full-power and full-speed rounds of 60-90 seconds. During this time, the boxer's goal is to develop power by throwing his or her strongest punches and combinations with maximum effort. The boxer can focus on developing strength in uppercuts, crosses and hooks in order to increase his or her ability to throw knockout punches.