How to Strengthen Wrists for Boxing with 4 Exercises
Boxers need strong wrists. It’s an integral part of throwing punches, whether you’re striking a heavy bag or an opponent in a fight. But we often don’t realize the importance of maintaining strong wrists until we experience wrist pain.
Why is Wrist Strength Training Important?
Even seasoned fighters have sprained or strained their wrists over the course of their careers. While boxing undoubtedly makes your wrists stronger, you also run the risk of injuring the joints through improper technique or pushing yourself too hard. Building wrist strength can not only help you throw stronger punches but also help protect your wrists from future injuries.
Fortunately, there are exercises to strengthen your wrists. If you’re suffering from weak wrists or wrist pain, here’s how to get stronger wrists, prevent wrist injury, and stay in fighting shape.
Exercises to Build Wrist and Hand Strength
#1 Wrist Curl
Also known as wrist flexion, this isolation exercise strengthens both the wrist and forearm, including the wrist extensor and flexor muscles. You can start with simple resistance training (no weight) or a very lightweight dumbbell (1 or 2 lbs). The instructions are fairly simple:
- Place your arm flat on a table, with your palm upright just off the edge.
- Grasp your weight or make a fist.
- Curl your wrist upwards, then lower it again to starting position.
- Perform 10 repetitions.
There are also several variations of the wrist curl that you can perform, including the following:
- Reverse wrist curl — Instead of facing your palms upright, position them facing down the floor, then curl your wrists upwards. This version targets the wrist more than the forearm.
- Seated wrist curl — Sit down on a bench or chair and let the backs of your lower arms drape across your legs or the chair’s armrests. Then, perform the same instructions as above.
Aside from strengthening the wrist, this exercise can also build forearm strength. Your forearm muscles need to be in good condition if you plan to build upper body strength.
#2 Wrist Rotations
If you’re concerned about how to improve wrist strength, you’ll want to work wrist rotations into your fitness routine. The exercise keeps your wrists flexible, strong, and functional. To perform a wrist rotation:
- Whether you’re sitting or standing, keep your arms bent at the elbow, keeping your arms at a 90-degree angle in front of your body as the starting position.
- Make your palms face each other.
- Slowly rotate your wrists inward and outward 10 times.
You can hold light weights or use a resistance band to increase the challenge.
#3 Knuckle Push-ups
You can safely mimic the impact of hitting a punching bag with basic knuckle push-ups. The exercise can both strengthen your wrists and help to train proper alignment.
To execute knuckle push-ups:
- Lay down a mat or a rolled-up towel or blanket. You may need additional cushioning if you’re performing this exercise on a hard floor.
- Before you start, assume a push-up position, either a full push-up in plank or a modified push up on your knees.
- Instead of performing the push-up on flat palms, ball your hands into loose fists and perform them on your knuckles. To cushion your fists, perform the exercise on a mat.
- Perform 10 to 20 reps.
Chin-ups can be an excellent strengthening wrist exercise, but it’s easy to become carried away with this full-body exercise. Keep your mind on your wrists and maintain proper form throughout the chin-up. Here’s how to perform a chin-up properly:
- Start by grasping a chin-up bar with your palms facing towards you, about shoulder-width apart.
- Relying on mostly your forearm strength, pull yourself upwards (remembering to keep your wrists straight).
- Slowly release until your arms are fully extended.
- You can repeat this exercise as often as desired, but remember to do it sparingly. Try starting with sets of 5-10 reps, then slowly increase as you build strength and wrist mobility.
Protect Your Wrists With Hayabusa
Hayabusa’s T3 Boxing Gloves utilize a unique splinting technology, which keeps your wrists in proper alignment and prevents dangerous bends as you throw a punch. Combined with its interlocking Dual-X closure, your hands and wrist receive ample support to keep you protected while you train.
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