Is it true that a pro boxer punches harder than an MMA fighter, what’s the major difference in their (punch) training?
It really depends on how you define the phrase “punch harder”…
- In terms of more FORCE OUTPUT CAPACITY, I would say boxers are about equal or 10% better than MMA fighters. Since all our bodies are similar with more or less equal athletic ability. With the difference being from having more specialized-training and because people who are more naturally-built for boxing will tend to go towards boxing.
- In terms of ACTUAL FORCE OUTPUT, boxers are 10–35% better (due to better technique and muscle memory due to increased experience). If you’re comparing punches on a heavy bag, boxers and MMA will be about the same with a small but clear edge for boxers. Boxers are also far more efficient which would increase the disparity over a bout’s duration.
- In terms of ACTUAL DAMAGE CAUSED, boxers are anywhere from 25–200% better.
So why do boxers cause more damage? Because of TIMING and ANGLES. What makes a punch deadly is not only because of the force output but because you throw it at the exact time when your opponent is committing momentum into his own attack. Boxers have incredibly-refined timing that allows them to catch you at the very right moment. It’s not just about landing a clean shot on an open target (like the chin), but to land it right as your opponent’s chin is turning into his own punch…which furthers maximizes the impact and damage caused.
Secondly, boxers are deadly from more angles since that’s all they do. MMA fighters will tend to avoid punching or evading punches from certain angles because they don’t want to get grabbed or kicked. They also don’t have time to learn all the possible angles (as well as their nuances) because they also have to focus on all the other skill-sets in MMA.
For the basic 2–3 punching angles in fighting, boxers are 10–25% more powerful than MMA fighters. But for all the other 15–20 punching angles in fighting, boxers are infinitely more powerful because MMA fighters don’t even train at those angles.
Nice analysis. Boxers who move into MMA and who learn all the necessary defences against takedowns, kicks, elbows, etc. I find are some of the most lethal. Having a background in the world’s most comprehensive and specialised hand striking martial art is such an advantage.
Boxing is lethal. No other martial art does so much with so little. You really only have six different punches you can use and the rest of the art is all footwork. You’d think you’d be at a disadvantage compared to other striking arts but not so at all. I’ve found it extremely complementary to my Muay Thai, FMA (Filipino martial arts), and Judo. It teaches you to move and to put out more volume. Every instructor I’ve worked with from other martial arts has flat out admitted that those who have boxing training and experience have a severe advantage over those who don’t.
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I don’t know, the internet is full of stuff where mma guys are outhitting boxers on this or that machine. They really crank it in when they punch. I would guess boxers use punches more effectively but that actually hitting harder maybe isn’t part of it.
I would love to see that video. Do find it for me if you can, Evan!
Boxers have FAR more devastation in their punches. They know exactly where and when to hit.
I have to disagree with much of this. Boxers may have a slight edge in force output of their punches but it’s not due to better training/lack of training in mma. Its because punching is the ONLY thing they’re allowed to do. There are many mma fighters who were very accomplished boxers FIRST. Their punch power would be the same. Also in mma there are many more angles to choose from, and even more punches due to the less restricted rules. The biggest thing I would have to argue with is that mma fighters avoid punches because they don’t want to be grabbed or kicked- on the contrary, they will avoid many kicks and grabs because they don’t want to get punched. Getting hit with an mma glove is nothing like a boxing glove. If you went into a ufc fight with a boxing mentally you will head into the pocket and bob your head until one punch slices through and you will be simply unconscious. In boxing you can bob and weave and catch a few and give a few back but this is not the case for mixed martial arts. One punch can knock anyone out at any time.
I don’t know where you’re getting your opinions but it’s just not true. I’ve seen how MMA fighters box against boxers and it’s not even close. Boxers have more punching angles and are exponentially more effective from all those angles. And the glove thing ain’t that big of a deal. You can watch Dat Nguyen destroying younger/bigger MMA fighters on bare knuckle fighting cards. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=dat+nguyen+bare+knuckle
Thomas N Conley
When I boxed, they were 8 oz gloves, which are basically useless at cushioning a blow.