This class will kick your butt! We started with the most comprehensive warmup ever.

By Health.com
Updated: April 22, 2019

I’ve taken a couple of boxing classes in my day, both traditional and hybrid. So when California-based Gloveworx set up shop in New York City where I live, I was super excited to get into the ring. I think I was also looking for a sweat sesh that could shake up my current routine, which as of late has been heavy on running and indoor cycling. Plus, the owner, Leyon Azubuike, is a former boxer who trained a host of celebrities, including Jennifer Aniston and Jennifer Love Hewitt. Interested in pulling on a pair of gloves? Here’s what you need to know:

Boxing basics: Jab, cross, hook, uppercut, roll, slip—these are the basic moves you’ll typically learn no matter what type of boxing class you sign up for. You’ll also be regularly reminded to keep your gloves up (because no one wants to take a punch to the face). Just don’t make the mistake of thinking boxing is only an upper body workout. If you’re doing it right, it’s going to be full body, and you’re going to be sore afterward. Count on sparring in the ring, heavy bag work, possibly hitting the speed bag, and general exercises (think squats and planks).

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What Gloveworx says you’ll get: While this boxing studio offers a variety of classes—Boom X,  Boom, Lightning, Blitz, and One-On-One—I took the hour-long GWX 101. This class is touted as a “slower-paced session delivered in a small group of 2-6 people who are learning the ropes… with a coach who is focused on getting your technique just right.” The class description also notes that you’ll perfect the basics of throwing punches and boxing footwork.

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What I got: First of all, don’t be fooled by that 101 moniker. This class will kick your butt! We started with the most comprehensive warmup ever—it took 15 minutes—ensuring that every single muscle in the body was primed and ready to go. Next we learned the proper mechanics of each punch, first practicing via shadow boxing, and then moving on to one-on-one glove work. Just when my heart was really pumping and fatigue was starting to set in, we headed to the Versa Climber for some sprint work. (FYI: The Versa Climber is hard AF, and I despise it.) To round out the workout, we finished with some core work, holding planks for several rounds of varying times.

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Yes, it’s for you: Actual workout aside, if you are stressed or have any pent-up aggression you need or want to work through, this class may be a good start. Throwing those punches gets all the angst out and makes you truly feel powerful. Also, if you’re looking for a fun yet intense way to work your body that is form-centric and super technical, this is for you.

You should pass: If you like to zone out during your workout, I’d say pass. Boxing is as much about the mind as it is about the muscle, so bringing your brain to the ring is essential.

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