Is introducing boxing a good way for a child to manage anger?

Hi everyone. I’ve mentioned before that my son struggles with the transition between his two homes and has a lot of anger and emotion dysregulation when he first comes back after his weekend away. Sometimes this can come out in physical aggression. I bought him a pair of boxing gloves this weekend and introduced him to basic boxing on my own boxing pads that I already owned. He loved it and got quite into it but my question is - am I right in doing this? Does it cause more harm than good in that I’m giving him the chance to hit and punch, or is it ok as I’ve made it clear that it’s for boxing only and we only box against the pads?? I’m doubting my decision here so any advice is very welcome!

1 Like

I’m no expert but I also do this with my twin boys and I think it helps a lot. There definitely has to be a lot of boundary setting around what can and can’t be hit and when but it seems to be a good way to channel any anger that they have…

Definitely keen to understand if this is something we should or shouldn’t be doing though?!

1 Like

Hi singlemumof1. I’m glad that you’ve shared this with us here. People may have opposing views. Some may think that it’s a good stress reliver whereas others may say that it could reinforce the link between being angry and hitting.

I personally think in this instance this is a good thing because you are providing a safe controlled outlet for letting your son release his built-up tension. As LondonParent highlights, it’s important that you set clear boundaries of what can and can’t be hit. - You have done that by stating that he is only allowed to hit the pads, with his boxing gloves.

Remember singlemumof1 there are other benefits too, you are building your connection by spending the time together, plus he is learning how his body feels and looks when he is angry, anxious, energised, tired etc which is all very important when thinking about feelings and emotional regulation.

Perhaps you can also weave in some other form of exercise like running on the spot, star jumps or skipping to show him other ways that exercise will release endorphins and ‘make him feel good’, in addition to some breathing techniques that will help to calm him and keep him focused.

I am interested to hear what others think.

2 Likes

Thank you so much @Parent_Coach_Mel , that’s such a helpful response. I am definitely making it clear that he’s only to hit the pads when we play together and we did it again tonight and actually really had fun with it. He wasn’t angry but asked to “play boxing” when we came home tonight, so we did. Hopefully it’s another good strategy in my toolkit!!

Love the other ideas you’ve given me, thanks so much. We’ve been doing some yoga (well, I put my yoga app on the tv and he will eventually come and join me) and we often practice breathing but I like the idea of something more energetic. Thanks again :heart:

1 Like

Following as I’m interested in this post. Thank you!

By the way any Mums do boxing? @singlemumof1 do you if you had the boxing pads already? Wondering if it might help for my anger too. But don’t know where to go to find out more…

Yes, I do! I used to do it with a personal trainer before I had my son but can’t afford it now so have my own gloves and pads. That approach is reliant on having someone to hold the pads for you :joy: Boxing is great though - really good for releasing those endorphins as well as just a fab exercise for general stress relief. Maybe see if any local gyms do classes to start you off?

1 Like

Interesting. Thank you @singlemumof1. think I might look in to that and ask other Mums locally if they do it. Good luck with your son. Looks like you’ve got some helpful advice here. And sounds like you’re doing a brilliant job :star_struck:

1 Like