A boxer’s training depends largely on the point in their career at which he or she is situated. If the boxer is just a beginner, a minimal training routine might consist of learning how to hit the heavy bag, the speed bag, and the double end bag (a small bag with a cord on top and bottom connecting it to the floor and ceiling) as well as doing shadow-boxing in front of a mirror, skipping rope, callisthenics and jogging every day, as well as an occasional practice bout inside the ring (sparring). Most beginning boxers will spend most of their early careers conditioning and establishing the fundamentals. For the amateur or professional boxer preparing for a competition or bout, however, boxing training is much more stringent. Boxing training is widely considered one of the most physically demanding sports in the world.
Boxing, like several other fighting sports, categorizes its competitors into weight classes. Some fighters try to take advantage of this by dieting before weigh-in so that they can be bumped down a weight class. In extreme cases, a fighter may forego solid food before the official weigh-in ceremony, and eat a lot afterwards to compensate. In some very extreme cases, boxers have been forced to stop eating solid food up to three days before the weigh-in ceremony, in order to make weight for the fight. Sometimes, if a boxer doesn’t make the weight agreed for on the first weight-in, he or she might go to a sauna or to jog with a jacket to sweat and lose the extra pounds, however this is mainly water that the body holds. After weigh ins, competitors will general add on weight before the fight, resulting in them weighing anywhere from 5 to 25 lbs above the weight class.
A boxer will generally try to have the maximum weight possible within the Boxing weight classes (s)he is fighting in, as a good boxer will be able to use his weight to his advantage. Boxers will try and obtain top boxing trainers to help achieve their goals.
Sparring is “practice fighting” with the aim of boxing training skills and fitness, not to determine a winner. Sparring should always involve use of a gum shield, head-guard and groin-guard. Sparring gloves are often more padded than gloves used in actual bouts. Sparring partners sometimes agree to practice particular types of punches or defence moves to focus their training.