When I was 16 years old, I got my first set of boxing gloves, accompanying my first ever punching bag. I had been talking about building my own out of an old carpet and duct tape for weeks before my parents were generous enough to buy me one for Christmas my junior year of high school. Since then, my physical and mental health totally changed.
After seeing that brand-shiny-new bag, I started to teach myself everything I could about boxing. There was a lot of YouTube tutorials involved and WikiHow pages and mistakes and missed punches. An easy answer to all of my obstacles and struggles would be just to take lessons with a professional. It’s not that I was ever against the idea--I definitely love the thought of taking classes in a fully-equipped gym rather than focusing on my footwork in my unfinished basement. But once I started teaching myself the basics, something clicked inside of me that felt right.
If that wasn’t the corniest line I ever wrote, then I don’t know what is. But, really, there’s no better way to put it. There was such a satisfaction I got about finally being able to wrap my own hands (without referring to the WikiHow page I had bookmarked on my phone) not to mention being able to integrate boxing workouts into my regular exercise routine.
I’m positive that if I had exhibited the time and money into taking a professional boxing class, I would definitely be more skilled than I am right now. Boxing and self-defense are already great (and, frankly, kind of badass) skills to have but so is perseverance; being able to teach myself something that I have always wanted to be able to do made the skill even more rewarding. The bubble I create for myself in my concrete-ridden, makeshift-gym of a basement allows adrenaline to pump even more so than I think it could at a gym.Disclaimer: I’m definitely not anywhere near professional level kickboxing. I can throw a couple of decent punches but trip up on my own feet more than I’d like to admit. The point, while I’ve grown so much in this area of my life over the past few years, there are still a pretty decent amount of skills, tactics, and terms I’ve yet to learn. But I’m eager to keep this self-taught dream a major part of my life.