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Ask a Rockboxer: Will Boxing Make Me Bulk Up?

By: RockBox Fitness
Category: Fitness

Man in a boxing gym preparing to punch a punching bag

The myth goes that weight training will bulk you up while cardio will lean you out, but what do people say about boxing and how do you know what is true and what is not? 

The best way to get answers on how boxing influences your physique is to talk to someone who knows through experience. RockBoxers are resilient and committed fitness trailblazers that can speak first hand on how the combination of kickboxing and strength training influences your muscle mass. 

So to those who are asking the big question “Will boxing make me bulk up?”,  the answer is simple– no. Coming straight from a true RockBoxer, here are the reasons why:


Boxing is an intense aerobic exercise, meaning your heart rate is up throughout the entirety of your workout, subsequently improving your cardiovascular health. This is the foundation of any regimen that leverages boxing for weight loss. 


A frequent question when it comes to boxing is “does punching a bag build muscle?” Oh yes it does. Power punches, just as they sound, are more focused on the form and power behind a strike, than speed, and are the ultimate way to build lean muscle. Note that building lean muscle and bulking up are far from the same and are outcomes of very different types of workouts. 


The fear that you will bulk up in response to the type of workout you do doesn’t address the role that nutrition plays in one’s bulking journey. Remember the 80/20 rule and know that how much you eat, how often you eat, and how much protein you consume will naturally influence your body’s bulking reaction. Unless you are consciously consuming more and eating more frequently, your workouts will be far less likely to result in building bulky muscle. 


Boxing is an incredible workout when it comes to building lean, full-body muscles. You may be asking yourself, how?? How is something that is reduced to throwing punches a full-body exercise? Well, it is simple. Punches are powered from more than your arms and shoulders. When you throw a cross, you are using your rear leg muscles to give it power. When you throw an uppercut, you are engaging those same leg muscles and engaging your abdominals. This distribution of power and muscle engagement make for lean muscle growth, without the bulk. 
Looking to test out boxing’s ability to build lean muscle? Check out the RockBox Fitness nearest you and see what all of the hype is about, and of course, your first class is free.

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