Boxing has been around for as long as we can remember. However, with female celebrities like Adriana Lima, Hilary Swank, Denise Richards and Sarah Michelle Gellar endorsing the activity as a workout, this sport has transcended the gender divide.

Now, we’ve already explained the multiple reasons why boxing proves to be a great cardiovascular activity, what with its weight loss, body toning and muscle building benefits (recap here), but what’s interesting to note is that a variant of the exercise is taking over NYC as the next big thing in workouts for women. Make way for shadowboxing; a tempered version of the intense sport.

How Is It Different?
Boxing. The word evokes many images, but the most basic one is a sparring ring with two boxers going up against each other, as if their life depended on it.

Well, in the case of shadowboxing, you’re pretty much flying solo. Consider this an initiation into combat training, where you train your muscles, body and mind to think on their feet, as you envision the moves, punches and jabs you would execute if you were in a fight; but, there’s no real opponent here.

This one’s all about heightening your sense of self, quickening your reflexes, and making you more alert by helping you develop a rhythm as you pretend to spar or be in combat.

For those who think it’s lame, make note that Bruce Lee, Muhammad Ali and many other greats practiced shadowboxing before getting in the ring.

The Workout
A typical session lasts for 45 minutes, and it is designed to have you execute a combination of punches, jabs, and sparring moves set to an interval training format.

The class is set to high energy music, and you can alternately sign up for sessions that include heavy punching bag work, body weight exercises, or light weights, too. The workout grants you an 800-1000 calorie-burn, over the course of an hour.

Classes are priced upward of $34 (inclusive of equipment). Care to sign up for this model workout?

Image via ShadowBoxNYC/Instagram

PS: Here’s the low-down on Exercise Programs For Weight Loss.
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