I was recently at the world's biggest fitness trade show, IHRSA, in San Diego, California. This is where all the latest inventions and trends in the fitness industry are showcased.
We had a booth there promoting our Box'N'Burn Academy certification course and I was very happy when I saw this boxing booth advertising a "BotBoxer". I went to see what it was all about and I saw a ton of people lining up to have a go at trying to hit this automated punch bag. The bag had sensors on it so when you go to hit it, it moves away.
I was laughing at everyone who had zero experience and tried to hit it. They looked pretty silly when they were throwing their punches and missing. I thought to myself: "I need to have a go at this. There's no way a machine can dodge my punches". If you don't know me, I had 106 fights in my boxing career, winning an Olympic medal in 2008, seven national titles, as well as a European gold medal as an amateur, and retiring as an undefeated pro boxer.
So, I was excited to get the 4oz MMA gloves on that everyone was wearing and to stand in front of a couple hundred people to show them how it was suppose to be done. I went for it and, as you can see by the video below, I wasn't very successful!
This bag was unbelievable, Even though I've been retired from competing for a good few years, I know I can still punch fast, but this thing was even faster! Before I gave the machine a go, I thought that this can't be good for the elbows because of hyperextending, and to be honest my elbows were hurting after doing this, but I think it was because I was so determined to hit the bloody thing.
After I missed and kept missing, it made me think of the possibilities of the future, I would never have thought that something like this would have been possible; that a bag that could be faster than a high-level boxer, and this is just a defending bag.
The possibilities with technology are endless. What if they made it so it could hit back? What if it had feet where it was faster than you? Can they turn this into a sparring partner? Pro boxers pay for high-level sparring, but what if they could make a machine like this that was your high-level sparring partner?
Imagine if you could pick the size and stance and they could build it to different levels where it can hit you back; you could make it a southpaw counter puncher, or a come-forward puncher or a box fighter.
You could pick the same style as your next opponent and just spar with that. You could even make it as good as Floyd Mayweather; imagine how good you would become if you were sparring Floyd every other session.
All of this sounds crazy, right? So does talking to someone on the other side of the world in real time using a handheld device where you can see their face, but I do this every day on FaceTime. Ten years ago the only time we saw that was in the cartoon series The Jetsons. This machine is the first of its kind and priced at a whopping $20k!