Anthony Joshua defends his status as undisputed heavyweight champion of the world against Andy Ruiz Jr, his first fight since September 2018. In preparing to defend his world heavyweight championship belts Under Armour‘s Human Performance Team in the US took champion boxer AJ to the next level.
“I’ve never had this much gas in the tank at this point in my training. I’m usually looking forward to a day off or more by now, but now I’m looking to go for a short run to relax. I’ve never felt this good going into a fight.”Anthony Joshua
For elite Under Armour athletes like Anthony Joshua, incremental gains and holistic training usually make the difference between winning and losing. They help fend off season-ending injuries and leaving more fuel in the tank. Under Armour have shared behind-the-scenes information about how they work with world-class athletes like Anthony Joshua to make them even better, focusing particularly on the vital elements of rest and recovery in preparation for fight night.
The images show the behind the scenes benefits that are open to the heavy weight champ for being apart of the UA family. UA’s Human Performance and Footwear Innovation teams for example, during a US tour in 2018, AJ visited UA’s Portland office for introductory meetings setting his team in motion on two separate tracks with the same mission: to make the champion, with his 22-0 record, even better. In December, he returned to Portland for an immersive week of education with UA’s Performance Team, focusing on rest and recovery.
The high point of AJ’s week in Portland was an overnight trip to Mt. Hood for a pre-dawn snowshoe at over 12,000 feet. Winsper envisioned the trip as less about altitude training, and more about taking AJ out of his element and breaking up his training, shocking his system both mentally and physically. Winsper says, “Routine can breed complacency. In AJ’s case, there’s nothing routine about enduring single-digit temperatures with ice and snow blowing across his face while snowshoeing down the side of a mountain. It served as a great example for him that he needs to break up what he’s doing from time to time. We all do.”
Before he returned to London, the Footwear Innovation team presented AJ with an innovative reimagining of a boxing boot, engineered to meet his performance needs and incorporating a new material upper that was not scheduled to be introduced to consumers for another 18 months. The fact that AJ smuggled a prototype pair out of Portland office speaks volumes about his reaction to the boots.
In preparation for his June 1st fight AJ dug deep and assessed his past fights with Wladimir Klitschko and back in September, experienced Russian, Alexander Povetkin in which he entered the ring at 18.1 Stone. His regime for this fight has been well documented. From advice from Navy-Seals to assessing how the pinnacle of sports performance himself, Cristiano Ronaldo, reaches the peak human performance. His gym routines haven’t changed dramatically, just tiny alterations here and there to avoid stagnation and Joshua’s sessions are planned out by his strength and conditioning coach Jamie Reynolds, who has work closely with UA on all things training and recovery.
Anthony Joshua fights Andy Ruiz Jr June 1st, you can watch the fight live on SkySports.