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    LABYRINTH   35,251
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boxing, anger, aggression and venting

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Last winter, I knew I wanted to plan a bit of boxing into my spring schedule. Wasn't quite sure though how I would go about it as I didn't feel like I had the experience to draw upon. However, I've been doing some more research and feel I've gotten something pulled together that will be fun, as well as strengthening, for me.

emoticonI bought a heavy bag unit via Craigslist last fall for about $100. It looks like this:

The $129 price at Academy doesn't include the bags so I think I did get a great deal.

emoticonI'd already learned some punches from Billy Blanks Tae Bo dvds and from my kickboxing class. I studied up some more using this website to make sure I was doing my punches right

and this website

whichs shows some nice combinations.

emoticonI figured I would add in my jumping rope (the challenge I've been doing now for about four weeks) and my pushup challenge (another challenge I'm in week four) emoticon and later plan on adding ab crunches and squats - basically designing a body weight exercise plan that meshes with my boxing, that I'll be doing 3x a week (cardio is 4x a week)

However, I don't plan on sparring. That would be taking this to a level of danger I don't want to do - not so much as dangerous to me but to the other person.

Yes, I'm serious.

While boxing (as well as racquetball) vents a lot of my internal frustrations (which is often expressed with anger)

and in that way it is great for me, boxing a person would put me in a psychological frame of mind that I was being attacked or in immenient danger of physical harm.

This would not be good as both with Nature and Nurture, I was raised to believe that anger and violence was an appropriate response:

Interestingly enough one of the boxing sites talks about how it is known that some fighters dramatically lose it when their face is struck - eliciting probably a primal need to protect your most important asset - your brain! I am not sure what I would do if I was struck in the face - and most likely it would be a replay of Mrs. White from the movie Clue with "flames, flames on either side of my head...."

The only time I was physically attacked was by my much stronger brother D, when we were in our twenties. After my dad died, he went through some very stressful life events (preceded by other stressful life events). One day he and I had it out. He had me down, straddled and gloated that I could do nothing. I told him he better get off of me and that was my only warning. Let me tell you that I got him off of me and it was nasty and down dirty fighting.

The only time I was threatened with a rumble (by my brother D's girlfriends older sister) she never showed. Even though I went to some tough schools, people generally don't threaten me. I think this is because we all have an instinct for survival and there is some subliminal sense that if I was pushed they wouldn't like the outcome.

Like I've written before, I say what I mean and I mean what I say. I don't go for hair pulling girlie fights... threaten me - my hubby or my children - and you are going down under a wild tornado of fists and kicks. Being in a battle frenzy would not be good for me or the other person.

Bad things would happen and though I want to vent my emotions, I don't want to do it in that manner. You might want to talk about control - yeah, I control myself. I control a raging torrent of emotions all the time and that dam has to hold or the people I love won't be safe. I won't compromise that control for a bit of "fun" sparring with someone.

Why I thought I'd write about this today is because I do believe women have a need (probably not as much as our male counterparts who have more testosterone or even as much as me LOL) to express and vent our aggression but society and "nurture" (our environment) has not found that acceptable. Instead we are supposed to play nice, work well with others and color within the lines.

What women, who have not had the experience of just going crazy with their anger and FULLY venting it out, don't understand is that anger will seep out in some form or another. Maybe it will be with resentment, jealousy, envy, manipulation, or passive-aggressive behavior. Irregardless, some times you will get angry - and sometimes you won't express it.

Sometimes we cover it up with food.

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
SKINNYINMYHEAD 1/30/2010 11:31PM

    ohhhhh AMEN SISTER... I grew up much the same way.. my parents never raised a voice to one another or us kids.. discipline was calmly and cooly dished out but no shouting or anger.. as a result, I have never been comfortable with it.. until I got divorced.. and now?? my fuse is SHORT... I mean really really short.. maybe I need to get a punching bag... mmmmmmm

great blog!

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LABYRINTH 1/30/2010 11:14PM

    Hi Surly - just wanted to let you know that I wrap and wear gloves during the bag work emoticon

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SURLYGIRL 1/30/2010 9:06PM

    I use my kickboxing as a stress and aggression reliever too. Today in class we did a move that simulates smashing someone's head on the ground then punching him in the face! I freaking loved it! It felt so good to let loose and just let punches fly. It makes me feel strong and powerful and in control. When you really think about it those are some pretty amazing feelings to attribute to an exercise program. Loving what you're doing is the key to sticking with it.

I'm glad you were able to get your heavy bag. Do you have hand wraps and boxing gloves? You'll need gloves for the heavy bag.

Thanks for another great blog - See you around the teams and boards :)

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RWETHAIRYET 1/30/2010 2:11PM

    Becky, that looks like a great plan!!
I personnally have trouble with turning the anger inward=depression kind of thing. And generally what happens is I'll finally be pushed past my limits and "blow" which is rarely pretty.
I know they say you can't run from your problems, lol, but when I was doing the C25k I really was finding that a great way to release some of that bad energy.

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ATHENA130 1/30/2010 11:56AM

    Another great blog! It sounds like you have a great training plan and one that will be healthy in many areas. I can completely relate to the sparring issue. I've always liked the idea of boxing/kickboxing/karate but I always stayed away because I wasn't interested in the "fun" sparring part either. I found that the workout DVDs I use for these items are much better for me too and are great for releasing anger and aggression in a much healthier way. For me, I just didn't get the point of sparring. It's not a 'fun' thing from my perspective either. I guess they say it is to practice but if it is 'fun', then you are holding back so what is the point? And it can easily go from 'fun' to 'not fun' really quickly with some personalities. And if you are really going to go all out well then it isn't's now a fight and there should be distinct reasons for that instead of just practicing skills. But that's just my opinion. :)

But I completely agree on women being socialized that it is not OK to express anger or aggression...we do always have to play nice and put everyone else's needs first. And you are absolutely does seep out in every other way it possibly can and that's even worse than expressing it in a healthy way in the first place. I think it is all about allowing ourselves to express the emotions in a healthy and respectful manner.

Comment edited on: 1/30/2010 11:57:54 AM

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