Boxing Gym Etiquette


Just Joined a Gym?

Have you just signed up at a boxing club? If so, awesome! That’s the biggest, and often most difficult step. Now, you may be wondering about boxing etiquette. Generally speaking, there isn’t much to worry about. Most things you will catch on to as you become more familiar, and like anything else, if the rare situation occurs where you do annoy someone, they likely won’t care if you’re new. However, to subside any potential fears of not following the proper etiquette, we will outline a few tips below:

The Round System

Unlike a general fitness gym where you decide everything on your own, the standard at boxing gyms is to follow a round system (although you can talk to the trainer about doing your own thing if you want). Generally speaking, everyone who is present and working out at the gym will follow the same system regardless of where you are at in your workout.

For example, most gyms simulate the structure of a boxing match by having you perform a particular exercise for three minutes, followed by 30-60 seconds of rest, then another three minute round begins, followed by 30-60 seconds of rest again, and keep repeating. Someone who is just starting their workout and is shadowboxing will likely be on this same time system as someone who is on the heavy bag.

It’s not really a huge deal, but try to follow this system. It’s not only beneficial for your fitness, but it also allows trainers to keep track of who is doing what, who may need help, knowing when some equipment will become available, etc. Basically, it just standardizes things to make everything easier, while still getting in a killer workout.

You will know when to stop and start by hearing a buzzer go off. Usually it’s the same sound for stop and start with a different sound telling you when there is 10 or 30 seconds left in the round. The buzzer is usually a little box that sits somewhere in the gym, so if you blank out and are unsure if it’s the start or end of a round, it will have green (start), yellow (certain amount of time remaining), and red (round finished) light on top indicating that visually.

Competitive Fighters Have Priority

In most gyms there will be at least some overlap of workouts between competitive and recreational boxers. For example, you may be on the heavy bag while a boxer who is competing at the amateur or professional level is warming up. If you are still on the heavy bag and they want to use it, you should probably step aside and allow them to use the bag, as their workouts are often more structured and monitored than a recreational boxer.

Don’t worry though, most boxers are friendly enough to only ask if it is necessary, and they understand you are also trying to get your own workout in. If a competitive boxer asks you to step aside, do not take offense, as it’s just business. If you’re in the middle of a round they will likely wait until you are done to ask, and may simply just ask how much longer you intend to be using that particular piece of equipment.

Additionally, if you are training at the same time as some of the competitive fighters, they will usually have priority with one-on-one training with the trainers. If you are intending on asking a trainer for help, try and find one who isn’t busy, or simply wait until someone becomes free.

Resetting the Timer

If you are training at the same time as some competitive boxers and they are getting ready to spar, the trainer may adjust or reset the timer depending on the required sparring conditions. This may interrupt your workout, but just take the break and begin once the round starts again. This is rare, and shouldn’t cause an issue, but again, it’s just one of those cases where the competitive fighters get priority.


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