To understand my philosophy of boxing training, let us first examine the art of fencing.
Traditionally, the role of fencing among the aristocracy was not to prepare for war or a possible duel. They practiced fencing and hired fencing masters for their children because they developed skills through fencing that they could apply to other important areas of life.
So, as well as becoming more skillful, stronger and more flexible, their reflexes became much better, they learned to think differently, to perceive differently. They realized the importance of strategy.
They learned to read each other’s movements. They became aware of what they themselves could do. What is possible in a given situation, which moves are possible, what the risks are. What the other person might think. What signals the other is giving, what signals they themselves are giving. Which signals are false, a trap? All in a fraction of a second. Making these calculations under pressure, while remaining light and playful.
My goal with boxing education is the same. I don’t deal with competitors, I don’t approach boxing from a sporting point of view, I see it as an art. It is a tool to help us learn about ourselves. The opponent is ultimately as much our friend, in the same way as Buddhist philosophy sees Mara as a friend who traps illusions for us. The traps only work if one is not yet perfect enough. And the traps point out that man is not perfect. In this way they help us to progress. It is the same with the opponent in boxing. So for me, it’s a game that’s not about beating the other guy, it’s about beating your old self.
Accordingly, we work on developing movement and how to think, perceive, “ask” and “answer” while boxing.
It is not necessary to use brutality to teach people this. It is not my goal to instill fear in anyone. But we certainly work with feelings. People generally don’t understand the psychological side of boxing, even though it’s huge and very exciting.
So to sum up, in this program we are dealing with a complex movement, which is very good to learn, great for complex body development, and we are dealing with what is going on inside you, trying to know yourself and make more conscious choices. We can then use this knowledge in all aspects of our lives.