Great article from Pop Sugar by Dominique Astorino on her experience learning to box. The article is very interesting, but this stood out to me, because it’s a critical indicator of good coaching and teaching: injury prevention. So many personal trainers and coaches seem to revel in how hard they can push people, but what does that really tell us about how well they teach people? Not much, I’m afraid. A great coach always puts injury prevention at the top of his or her list, because injured athletes can’t train or compete and are a really bad advertisement for what a great coach you are supposed to be. Physical training should be about achieving and maintaining a level of fitness that meets your life needs. I am pretty sure that doesn’t include getting hurt because your trainer or coach has no idea what he or she is doing.

For the bulk of the class, we learned, focused on, and refined our form. Due to the intense nature of the sport and exercise, learning proper form is so incredibly important for preventing injury. How often have you gone to a new, dynamic class, without knowing proper form, and hurt yourself? And when was the last time a workout required you to take a beginner class and learn the right form before you jumped into group fitness?

This was probably my favorite part of boxing so far, and what I appreciated the most: the attention to form, to ensure that each participant in the class was safe, protected from injury, and getting the best workout possible.

POPSUGAR: Boxing Is the Therapy I’ve Been Waiting For.