Updated: Aug 26, 2020
Wheelchair Boxing in the form of Air Boxing is a highly effective cardio exercise for wheelchair users that requires no equipment or assistance from another person. It is a form of exercise that all wheelchair users can do independently. Being a form of cardio exercise, it is a remarkably effective form of exercise to lose weight even at the comfort of your own home. Wheelchair boxing also elevates your heart rate and is particularly good for cardiovascular health. In this post we discuss different forms of punches that can be incorporated in your wheelchair boxing routine for an effective workout.
To perfect the art of wheelchair boxing takes time. It can be highly frustrating as well because the exercise itself is very strenuous and, in the beginning, we do end up punching our wheelchairs or our faces once we get in rhythm. So my advice to all of you who start with this exercise is to go slow and controlled with your punches in the beginning and gradually increase the speed and force with which you punch as and when you get control over where your punches land.
Dominant Hand: Before we even being boxing, we need to understand which hand is Dominant or in other words stronger. If you are left-handed, most probably your left hand will be dominant. If you are right-handed, most probably your right hand will be dominant. Then also there would be few like me who are naturally left-handed but forcefully converted into right-handed, for those of you like me, your left hand will be the dominant one.
Starting Stance: Starting Stance or in other words the starting position is the placement of the hand when you begin your boxing routine. If your Dominant Hand is left, then your left punch should be behind your right punch and vice versa if your Dominant Hand is right. Also ensure that your both punches are positioned at about an inch away from your nose and slightly below it in front of the face.
Types of Punches
Now that we have the basics clear, let us understand the different punches that one can incorporate in our routine.
Straight Punch: One of the easiest form of punches is the straight punch. Take the starting stance and begin with your Dominant Hand driving it straight in front and then retracting into its original position. Once the Dominant Hand is in its original position drive the other hand straight in front and then retract. Alternate the punches 10 times on each hand to get a hang of it. Try not to punch your face when retracting back.
Upper Cut: The next punch that we are going to discuss is called the upper cut. This punch is particularly heavy on shoulders, hence if you have a shoulder injury or pain in your shoulders either avoid this punch or go slow on this punch. Take the starting stance and once again begin with your Dominant hand driving it straight up above your head until your hand is straight at elbow and then retract. Once the Dominant Hand is in its original position drive the other hand straight up and then retract. For this form of punch, alternate the punches 5 times on each hand to get a hang of it. Once again, try not to punch your chin when driving your punch upwards.
Side Punch: This is a remarkably effective punch that works on your side abs as well while increasing your heart rate for effective cardio. Take the starting stance and drive your Dominant hand towards your other side at the level of your middle abs and outside your body and then retract. Repeat the same on the other side. You should feel your body twist and move sideways when delivering this punch. To get the best of these exercise, do at least 20-25 punches on each side. Try not to punch your wheelchair and hurt your knuckles.
Cardio Punch: One of the most intensive form of punches, this form gets your heart rate going up and can leave you sweating by the end of it. Take the starting stance and then bend forward while tucking your tummy as much in as you can. Deliver small upper cuts not going for the full range of motion but ensuring that you punch as fast as you can. Continue to punch for at least 50 punches or at least 1 minute of continuous punching as fast as you can.
If you are having hard time following these instructions or if you want me to create an effective routine for you, please contact me.