If you’re thinking of sports that would be beneficial to learn, boxing may never cross your mind. I mean, how good can it be to get punched in the face?

However, boxing isn’t just a civilized way for meatheads to exchange fists. There are enormous benefits to be gained from learning the respected skill of pugilism.

What are these benefits, you ask? Let’s take a look.

1.Intense Full-body Workout
Unlike lifting weights, there are no isolation exercises in boxing as you utilize your entire body during the workout.

Even the act of punching - which looks like a single movement to the untrained eye - is a whole-body movement requiring rotation of the shoulders and hips, core engagement, and feet movement.

2. Shred Calories
Did you know that celebrities such as Christina Aguilera and Gwen Stefani regularly train in boxing because it’s so effective for weight loss?

Sparring is the most physically demanding part of the sport and can burn an average of 750 calories an hour! Hitting the focus mitts or heavy bag for an hour can easily guzzle up 400 calories. And even skipping, which is a common boxing warm-up, can burn 10 calories a minute.

3. Improve Coordination
When it comes to self-improvement, coordination is not exactly going to be topping the list.

All the same, having excellent coordination can be a huge boon for you in a variety of ways. Improving your coordination can lead to you excelling in another sport, make you a better dancer, or just make your movements more graceful.

Having a “way” about you when you walk can be a huge confidence booster, not to mention, seriously attractive to the opposite sex.

4. Cardio Health Benefits
Boxing improves many aspects of your health. One of the biggest changes you’ll notice after a couple of months of classes is that your overall cardiovascular health and stamina will have drastically increased.

Being a form of High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), boxing training will raise your heart rate 75% to 85% - otherwise known as the sweet spot for improving heart health.

5. Self-discipline
Mastering the art of boxing is no easy task. In fact, it can take years of hard work to become a proficient boxer, and a decade or more of training and competitive fighting to reach the skill level of a professional fighter.

Not everyone that steps on the pugilism path is going to stay on it, but those that do (even for a short time) will develop enormous discipline. Being patient, having faith in the process, and being willing to do the work day after day, will lead to the self-discipline of a Shaolin Monk.

It’s a worthwhile journey, as the discipline learned transfers to your career, relationships, and any endeavor that requires you to stay the course to reach success.

6. Personal Development
The intense training in boxing requires you to consistently push yourself to your limits. Through this constant struggle, you achieve many small wins which lead to phenomenal personal growth in time .

Besides discipline, you’ll instill a belief in yourself, learn how to work hard, and learn that persistence and effort will eventually lead to success.

The lessons learned from boxing build character, and will continue to have a positive impact throughout your life even if you eventually decide to hang up your gloves.

7. Fun Workout
Let’s be honest; how many workouts are actually fun? Without the health benefits of lifting weights or running on a treadmill, most people would never set foot in a gym.

Boxing, on the other hand, keeps your mind and body invigorated at all times, and is a truly enjoyable hobby. And while other pastimes are fun, none can rival the health and fitness benefits and the sense of achievement that boxing provides.

8. Release Stress
Stress is a natural part of our lives, and for the most part, it’s unavoidable. Instead of turning to prescription drugs, alcohol, or chocolate next time you’re feeling stressed, try releasing your frustrations on the punching bag.

Boxing training is a great stress reliever that can help you cope with the demands of a busy life. You’ll release the tension in a healthy way, and the high will be natural and long-lasting.

9. Build Confidence
We all have moments of self-doubt and uncertainty. Even world leaders, top-ranked sportsman, and A-list celebrities have times when their confidence wanes, and they question their talents and abilities. It can be debilitating and stop you from doing something you know you’re capable of.

Overcoming self-doubt requires confidence, and confidence is built and sustained by overcoming difficult challenges. Practicing and eventually mastering a martial art is one of the greatest challenges you can undertake, and one which will keep building self-confidence for as long as you commit to it.

10. Be Able to Defend Yourself
Self-defense is probably the single biggest reason so many people take up martial arts. Boxing can teach you practical combat skills you can call upon should you ever need them.

Sadly, the world that we live in can be a dangerous one, and having the ability to block, dodge, and come back with a solid counter-punch, could just save your life.