Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about boxing at Oxford University.
If you have a question that is not addressed below, then talk to someone in the committee at either a training session or via email. Check here for more information about who to get in contact with.
Q1. Is amateur boxing for me? What should I expect?
You won't know till you try it - come down to Iffley Sports Complex to have a taster session to find out. OUABC consists of all sorts of people - boxers wishing to represent the University at Varsity, fitness enthusiasts looking to improve stamina and students who are just looking for something a little bit different.
Also, don’t worry! You are not going to be thrown into a competitive fighting environment from the start. Sparring will only take place when the captain and coaches feel you are ready.
Q2. What should I bring to a session?
Bring a skipping rope, hand wraps and water. Gloves can be borrowed, but if you start coming frequently you may also wish to invest in a pair of bag gloves. We recommend 14oz for men, 12oz for women.
For sparring, please bring a gum shield. Sparring gear is provided. Wear attire that would be suitable for the gym i.e. loose fitting, comfortable.
You can buy a skipping rope , hand wraps and a gum shield from Elmer Cotton Sports Shop on Turl Street. If you want to buy your own boxing equipment, check out online stores like Sugar Ray's and Geezers.
Q3. What's a typical session like?
A typical session will consist of:
- a warm up of skipping and bodyweight exercises
- shadow boxing
- technique work (in pairs)
- bag work
- bodyweight circuits e.g. squats, press ups, burpees
For the more experienced boxers, sparring and pad work will be included in training. Further sessions – sprints, weights, sparring and circuits – are for squad members and thus by invitation and merit only.
Q4. When are the training sessions, and where are they held?
The club has coached training sessions during Oxford terms, held at Iffley Road Gym at the following times:
Tuesday 17:30 - 19:30
Thursday 16:30 - 18:30
Friday 18:30 - 20:30 (invite only)
Saturday 09:00-10:30 Men, 10:30-12:00 Women (invite only)
Sunday 08:30 - 10:30
There are also additional training sessions run by the captains to improve fitness for the competitive squad and anyone else who wishes to attend. Please speak to your captain at training if you are interested.
Q5. How do I get invited to squad training?
The short answer is: a lot of hard work. Despite there being large numbers of boxers in the gym, the coaches and committee are extremely vigilant and can spot those who are turning up to sessions and those who are committed in training. No matter your boxing ability, dedication to sessions is important. A good way to impress is to turn up to morning fitness sessions. Please get in contact with the captain if you'd like more information on morning sessions.
Q6. How much does it cost to train with OUABC?
To cover the cost of training, all members pay a fee (otherwise known as subs) on either a termly or yearly basis. The costs are outlined here.
Q7. Do I need to see a doctor or get a medical done before I start training?
No. Boxing is a hard sport and if you have any serious medical problems we recommend you use your own judgment as to whether this sport is for you before you attend training. However, we do not require any of our members to prove they are fit to TRAIN.
But once you reach a level at which you feel you want to be put in for a bout, you will need to get a medical done to produce at any show you box on. Whether you are ready to compete is a decision which will be reached by the coaches, at which time they will ask you to have a medical done and give you the appropriate forms, so there is no need to get one done in advance of attending training.