Do Boxers Lift Weights? if Yes, Should They?

Boxing is one of the famous combat games in which two players try to beat each other by throwing punches. It needs a lot of energy and courage to bear the ambitious attacks of another boxer. It started in ancient Egypt, but now nothing is the same as old boxing. The techniques, training, and rules have changed now. 

If we talk about the training of boxers, a question has become controversial that; Do Boxers Lift Weights? Most boxers don’t lift weights because it isn’t considered a good exercise for them.

Do Boxers Lift Weights? if not Why not?

The muscles are tempting for everyone, so boxers are no exception. They want to build triceps and biceps, but they know that strong muscles don’t mean strength. 

  • Boxing demands power and strength, not the weight or mass. Weightlifting only makes a boxer bulky and heavy and doesn’t add more advantage. Boxing is not a one powerful punch game. It requires continuous and fast punches and also saves yourself from the other boxer’s strike. A boxer has to carry his weight in the boxing ring that makes him slow. He can’t move fast to prevent himself from rival punches that are not beneficial for him.
  • Due to lifting weight, a boxer becomes muscular, and the muscles need more oxygen. They also use its storage, which becomes a reason for quick fatigue. You can understand that it is not favorable for a boxer in the ring.
  • The muscles affect the arm speed of the boxer, and he can’t throw fast punches to the opponent player.

Is it possible to build muscles without lifting weight?

If a boxer wants to build his muscles, he has to increase his weight, which is not suitable for him. There are a lot of exercises to get muscles that don’t require lifting weight or any other equipment.

The boxing training and activities are also helpful in making muscles to that extent, which is advantageous for a boxer in the ring. As a boxer, you should lift weight in multiple short repetitions. In this way, you can achieve muscles without increasing your body weight because you don’t require it.

The science behind building muscles is the size of weight and how you deal with it. It is possible that you don’t get success in muscle building even with weight lifting. The other option is to achieve muscles while doing various exercises.

The muscles can be achieved without going to the gym with the help of chin-ups, push-ups, and press-ups. These methods are rewarding for the boxers because these can give you strength and build muscles, but your weight doesn’t increase. One thing you must keep in mind that these exercises take more time than lifting the weight but are fruitful for the boxers.

Is building muscles right for boxers?

Do Boxers Lift Weights

Weightlifting is done for making muscles. We discussed whether lifting weight is better for boxers or not, but another obvious question arises in mind here that even muscle building is good for them. Boxers are not like heavyweights or wrestlers who do a lot with weights and overeat. They want to enhance their weight because it is essential for them.

The temptation for muscles is quite natural in boxers too, but it’s of no use for them. They don’t need muscles; they need arm strength, muscle toning, and activeness so their boxing training is enough for this. It’s a general perception that increased muscles define an increase in power, but it’s not like that. 

For knocking out the opponent, power is not necessary, but it is the force that does it. The speed is a pivotal factor in applying force and speed is achieved with low body mass. So, increased muscles don’t mean too much for the boxers. Their training emphasizes on power, and they do everything to become more dominant instead of muscle building. 

We can’t say that having good muscles is harmful to boxers. They can achieve it, but remember one thing that the more significant muscles decrease the speed and enhance the weight. If they want to get muscles, they can do it even by lifting weights but keep it to the limit where their speed and body mass doesn’t affect them.

Learning the techniques or building muscles, what is more important for a boxer?

Boxing is not a game dependent on big muscles. You will not win the world titles based on it. You are also not a heavyweight who lifts a lot of weight to gain. You are a boxer and boxing is all about skills and techniques. If you have big muscles but don’t know boxing techniques, you can’t knock out the rival in the match. There is no use of muscles if you are not capable of throwing a punch to another person at the right time. 

We will repeat that a boxer can build muscles, but it doesn’t have a significant impact on your boxing then why you should do it. You should only concentrate on your craft and skills, which are beneficial for you in the ring. We can divide your training time into two parts.

  • 20% for exercising like swimming, running, weightlifting, etc.
  • 80% on techniques

The frequency of weightlifting

It depends on many factors. If you are a newbie, then spend less time in the gym. At the start, you have not incredible stamina, so you will get exhausted after weightlifting and will not focus on boxing training and learning skills. So, you should do weightlifting two times a week.

On the other hand, if you are not a professional boxer and don’t want to take part in any fight, then you can increase the timing from more than two times. Moreover, if you are an old one, then you can also go for more than two times because of your increased stamina.

Now, we will move ahead and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of weightlifting for the boxers.

Pros of weightlifting

It’s not like weightlifting is just harmless for boxers. Everything in this world has both pros and cons, so it also has some. Let’s mention the advantages of weightlifting.

An effective way to get power for bearing the opponent’s punches

The very first pro I want to discuss is that hence it doesn’t affect your punching power, but it is helpful to resist against other boxer’s punches. Due to heavyweight, the blows don’t affect you much. The boxers do ab exercises such as crunches and sit-ups for strong core so that you can bear the punches. A strong core is constructive in this regard, so a boxer has to do ab exercises. If you take those exercises to a higher level and start weightlifting along with sit-ups and crunches, then it can do a miracle to improve core strength.

Many high-rated and popular boxers do weight lifting for this purpose. If you do pulldowns, weighted oblique twists, and cable woodchoppers, then it will create a considerable impact on your core to withstand the punches.

It is useful to increase your power

The strength to resist the punches in boxing, so on the other hand, the ability to throw powerful punches is also essential in the ring. Weightlifting is a wonderful method to improve your explosive power.

When you throw a punch, your body moves in a sequence that starts from leg movement, then core, and ends to the arms. So, weightlifting plays a vital role to increase your punching power.

Mostly, compound lifts such as snatches, bent-over rows, and pull-ups, etc. are done for enhancing power but adding some ab exercises does an excellent job for this purpose. As we have described earlier that core strength is very helpful for creating more power and compound fits, ab exercises, as well as weightlifting, show a vast difference to improve your punching power.

Cons of weightlifting

Now let’s see what the cons of weightlifting for the boxers are.

You become bulkier and slower

As weightlifting provides you strength, it makes you slower and heavier too. The reason behind it is that a huge person has to carry its weight. In the case of a boxer, it’s difficult to move around the ring fast. Moreover, he can’t show the activeness while hitting the combatant.

Another disadvantage of having more weight is that you feel fatigued very soon. After some rounds, you find yourself exhausted and it affects your game.

Due to more massive biceps, the body becomes stiff, so it is challenging to hit your rival easily. So, I will recommend again that if you want weightlifting, then do it to a specific limit because, in boxing, less is more.

You can become a victim of injuries and overtraining

If a boxer does appropriate weightlifting, it creates a positive impact on his game, but we can’t ignore the risk of over-training. The scenario becomes worse if he faces any severe injury. It mostly occurs when he starts directly from hard weightlifting.

You already do tough boxing training; that’s why heavy weightlifting will be harmful for your body and becomes a cause of any injury. So, a boxer must be careful when doing weightlifting, especially in the starting phase.

If you put so much burden of training and exercising on your body, then it’s tough for the body to recuperate, this situation is called over-training. So it is suggested to avoid hard weightlifting to prevent it.

If you are a newbie, you must start weightlifting under the guidance of an experienced and professional trainer. You should take pity on your body and do weightlifting according to your body’s capacity. Don’t become over-confident.

You can lose focus on boxing skills

We agree that weightlifting is useful for improving power and core strength, but you must admit one thing that boxing techniques are more crucial than any other thing. If you spend more time in weightlifting to build your muscles, then you have less time for boxing training and practice.

You should continue weightlifting, but as we said previously that you should consume 20% of your training time to your boxing routine. Don’t make muscles build your passion. It is more necessary to concentrate on learning new boxing techniques.

The suitable lifting exercises for a boxer


This exercise is considered as the best for the boxers because it focuses on strengthening your core and increasing your explosive power. This exercise is like chopping a tree with the ax. You can do this exercise either with a resistance band or a cable machine. Three sets of eight reps are enough for a boxer. It helps you to enhance your punching power if you do it in the right way. 


If you want to get more explosive power as a boxer, then go for snatches. It focuses on the core, shoulders, and legs. This exercise is so effective that only a few reps daily do wonders for you. It doesn’t make you muscular but improves your power and makes you active. The snatches are not easy to do so you need a trainer to teach you. If you learn it correctly, it will help you to become a competent boxer.

Bent-over rows

Another fruitful exercise for a boxer is bent-over rows, which is very useful for your back strength. It can be done with the help of machines, but if you want to get more benefits, then you must go for free weight bent-over rows. In free weight, you can increase the mobility of supporting muscles and provide elasticity. It becomes your back tighten if you do it correctly. 


The boxers lift weights and do weight training, and they must do it, but be careful regarding it. They are not bodybuilders or wrestlers who want a lot of weight lifting. The situation is different in the case of boxers. They don’t require big muscles at all. They need power and strength, which they can acquire by properly doing light weightlifting. 

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