Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.
No, we are not talking the great Muhammad Ali. We are talking magic, as in Orlando Magic. Strength and Conditioning coach Joe Rogowski has introduced boxing into the Magic’s off-season conditioning regimen. Several players, including Dwight Howard, Tony Battie, Keyon Dooling, Trevor Ariza and Jameer Nelson, have taken up pugilism to get ready for the coming season.
From foot work to hand-eye coordination to hand speed to pure conditioning, boxing is the ultimate workout. “It’s a way to push yourself to the extreme physically, while also developing mental toughness,” says Rogowski.
The Magic box twice a week. The first 15 minutes of each session are devoted to footwork. The next 45 minutes come in the ring, gloved up. Players basically shadow box, hitting the hand pads of the instructor. Between rounds they work on a heavy bag. The last 10 minutes are reserved for abdominal and core work.
General Manager Otis Smith has gone through some sessions and doesn’t look like he wants too much more of the pain which comes with the conditioning gain.
After all, this is no rope a dope