So what’s the “secret” behind two-legged punching? Well, the idea is to punch on 2 legs. Some of you are already thinking, “What? That’s it?! That’s your big secret? I already punch on 2 legs!”
I would even estimate that at least 90% of the people reading this are punching on one leg. You might THINK you’re punching on two legs but you’re really not. Most fighters right now don’t even know how to use their non-pivoting leg!
If you’re shifting your weight while punching, this guide is for you!
THE PROBLEM: One-legged Punching
Most beginners are taught to throw punches by shifting their weight from one foot to the other. See how my body weight tranfers entirely to the front foot during the right cross? And then shifted back to the back foot during the left hook? Trust me, it’s bad technique.
So what’s the problem with one-legged punching?
- POOR BALANCE – the body’s center is passed around from one leg to the other instead of staying in the middle
- SLOW SPEED – the body has to move back and forth with every punch forcing you to throw either hard OR fast, but unable to do both at the same time
- DECREASED POWER – your punches have less power because you’re basically trying to transfer power while staying on one leg
Bad things happen when you shift your weight back and forth. You might THINK you’re on two legs but you’re really not. One leg is probably taking 75% of your weight while the other takes only 25%. The real problem is that neither leg will be able to apply 100% force because you’d be off balance. Moreso, one side of your body is unable to generate force because it isn’t fully grounded.
Punching while off-balanced,
results in LESS THAN 50% of your maximum power.
Think about this for a second. You can’t explode with the pushing leg because your body would fall in the other direction. Which means the only way to explode your legs AND stay balanced is to explode both legs at the same time, but this is only possible if your weight is evenly distributed between both legs. With that in mind, a 1-legged punch has LESS THAN 50% power of a 2-legged punch!
Why are beginners taught this “mistake”?
Many trainers teach beginners to punch like this because it forces them to move their entire body with the punch. After all, punching power is increased when you put more body weight into it. Most beginners lack the coordination to consciously move every part of their body. So it’s easier to teach a beginner the concept of punching with body weight by shifting the body back and forth.
What beginners don’t realize is that shifting the weight back and forth is really FALLING back and forth. Think about it, if you’re pushing with only one leg but not the other, what you’re really doing is pushing yourself off balance (to one side). Beginners are taught to “fall” back and forth because that’s the easiest way for them to get their whole body weight into a punch. The technique is helpful at first but fundamentally flawed on so many levels.
As soon as you have the coordination to do so, you should move to 2-legged punching ASAP.
Power Punching Secret #1 – Punch on 2 Legs
The number one (predominant/dominant) force in our environment is gravity. The force of gravity will act more powerfully upon you than any other force in your environment. If you look at the way the human body is built, the legs were designed to give you movement against gravity. Not just movement against gravity but the muscle ability to transfer power in relation to gravity.
To be a more powerful athlete in regards to gravity,
put yourself on two legs!
With that said, standing on two legs makes you a more functional athlete. Standing on two legs will give you better balance, more power, and more speed. Anything you do on two legs will almost always be better than on one leg.
So Johnny, are you saying we should NEVER shift weight?
- EXACTLY 😉
Well, I can’t say “NEVER” because there are strategic reasons for being on one leg at certain times. The rule of keeping the head and body in the center is for anytime that you want maximum rotational power using both legs.
Being on two legs will mean less work for you and more balance and power for your punch! Stay perfectly centered, anchor your body with both legs, and rotate hard! It’s not just dividing your weight 50/50. The ultimate goal is to apply maximum force with both legs, and again, it’s only possible if your weight is perfectly balanced. There are 2 critical reasons for punching on two legs.
Reason #1 – punching on 2 legs maximizes rotational power
True punching power is a rotational force,
not a linear force.
With every punch but the jab, the true power comes from rotation. Mainly, it is the rotation of the spine that generates all the punch’s power. Your core which is connected to the base of the spine is what rotates the spine (with the help of BOTH your legs spinning your body along the ground). Once the spine is powerfully rotated, you only have to reach out with a limb to transfer this power.
Now with the common (one-legged) way of punching, fighters would generate power by pushing their spine back and forth between two legs. It’s like one leg pushes the body to the other leg, like a pingpong ball, passing it back and forth. The one-legged pushing isn’t even, it’s usually tilting the spine back and forth. Unfortunately this slight falling effect only drops the upper body weight into the punch (leaving the heavier lower body unloaded). It’s not possible to load your lower body into a punch by “falling”, you can only do so by rotating.
Sure there’s SOME body rotation when you push, but most of the work done by each leg is to pass the body to the other leg. Again…”pushing” works and it’s powerful but it’s not as fast and nowhere near as powerful as a proper rotation.
Try this right now. Stand on one leg and try to twist your upper body while keeping your lower body still.
Now try doing this on two legs.
Which one felt more powerful?
The answer is a no-brainer. It’s so much easier to generate rotational force on two legs than it is on one leg. Stand on two legs to generate the maximum rotational power. This rule goes for anything really. Place a cellphone on the table and see if you can rotate it (without moving it from the center) using only one finger. It’s very hard to do, right? You need 2 points of force to rotate an object without moving off the center.
Reason #2 – punching on 2 legs maximizes power delivery
After you’ve generated all that beautiful rotational power, I’m sure you don’t want it to go to waste by having that power projected back at you. But this is exactly what happens if you punch on one leg.
Standing on two legs allows you to push INTO your opponent,
instead of you being pushed OFF your opponent.
Try pushing a wall while standing on one leg, and then on two legs.
*** Don’t be like me and push a chair full of laundry. Try this on a wall. 😉
Did you see the difference when I was on one leg? All my power was wasted because I couldn’t project it into my opponent. I can have all the energy in the world but without being properly grounded, I will simply bounce off my opponent instead of vice versa. When I pushed with 2 legs, my body stayed still while the object was pushed away from me.
1-legged punching vs 2-legged punching
- poor balance because body is moving off the center
- combination punches are slower because the body has to move more while punching
- decreased power because the body is not fully grounded; one leg is “lifted” and unable to aid the punch
It’s obvious you’re one-legged if one foot is lifting off the ground during a punch. Even if both feet are down, you should feel like the foot on the punching side is able to push down into the ground. This is one of the big secrets to punching: pivot your foot INTO the ground and not off the ground.
One-legged punching fails on so many levels. For now, forget about what happens if you land a punch. Try imagining what happens when you miss. If you miss, you will REALLY fall off balance! I would say the number reason for beginners becoming 1-legged is too much punching on the heavy bag. The heavy bag prevents them from falling when they have bad balance. Most boxers should be shadowboxing more. Learn to stand on your own 2 feet!
- maximum balance and control because the body is perfectly grounded
- maximum speed and less energy required because the body doesn’t have to move much
- maximum punching power because body is using 2 legs to generate power
Your body was built with two legs so the only way to be most balanced and powerful is to use both legs. Two legged punching is not the “secret” way but the NATURAL way. If you feel more powerful using one-legged punching, it’s because you’re still “pushing & falling” instead of “grounding and rotating”. Two-legged punching doesn’t let you “fall”, it only lets you rotate which is harder at first because it requires more coordination.
*** Watch my video demonstration on the concept of two-legged punching.
The Secret Behind 2-Legged Punching
A 2-point rotation equals BALANCED rotation.
The real problem is not one-legged punching but one-sided punching.
2-legged punching is more than just standing on 2 legs while you punch. Many fighters will think only about the right side of their body when they throw a right hand, and then think only about the left side of their body when they throw a left hand. It’s like they have an “active side” and a “dead side”. Usually one leg will stand still while the other leg pivots for the power.
Activate BOTH sides of your body
Here’s a challenge question: WHAT IS THE #1 biggest muscle left unused in a punch?
- ANSWER: It’s the standing leg hamstring!
The standing leg hamstring is a HUGE muscle that can help your rotational power yet hardly anyone ever thinks about it because they’re too busy trying to PUSH with the quadriceps from the pivoting leg. Again, think back to the rule of rotation: you need 2 POINTS OF FORCE for a well-balanced maximum-power rotation.
HUGE punching secret: one leg will “push”, while the other leg “pulls”.
Now that you learned to plant both legs, make sure you use both legs to help the rotation. Don’t just leave the other leg there like a dead leg. Generate punching power from BOTH sides of your body by keeping your body between both legs. Instead of the legs pushing your body back and forth, have both legs apply immediate rotational force.
Have one leg pushing, while the other leg pulling. Use the leg (quads) of the punching side to “PUSH” your hips into yourself. And then use the leg (hamstring) of the non-punching side to “PULL” your hips into yourself. If you don’t understand what this means, don’t worry. It will make sense maybe a year from now. If you can explain this concept more concise than I did, feel free to post it below! (Thank you in advance.)
Quick recap of punching on two legs:
- true power comes from a rotation, not a push
- standing on two legs gives better balance, more rotational power, and faster POWER combinations
- use legs to rotate the body, not push the body from one foot to the other
- one leg pushes while the other leg pulls
*** Here’s a video of Ike Quartey throwing fast powerful punches on the mitts. One-legged or two-legged? Is he shifting weight? You tell me.
If you guys enjoy these power punching secrets. Let me know and I’ll write some more. If you don’t enjoy them, say nothing and I’ll move on to other boxing tips.
Read the other parts of this series:
- Power Punching Secrets, PART 2: Implosive Punching
- Power Punching Secrets, PART 3 (not yet written…)
OK will give it a try
so, wait, i want to twist and throw, correct?
Some great tips here which will really help people. I especially like the bit about going from onevfoot to the other, not the best way to get power as you say
However, you can generate power & plenty of it of one leg. Prince Naseem Hamed managed it fairly often.
The secret is in ‘posting’ on one leg & whipping either arm through. It’s a kung fu concept, I believe, although I learned it in a very non-kung fu setting……
Being one-legged is not the best way to generate MAXIMUM ROTATIONAL POWER. But you are correct, it is possible to generate power off one leg. The main idea is not to use 1 leg when you’re in position to use 2. But if you’re deciding to generate power off only 1 leg for strategic purposes, then that is a whole other can of worms.
Diomedes aka JKD
Hey Johnny,Been Waiting awhile for this one ever since you fixed this technique in me months ago, great stuff. If you have any more tips on this it would be greatly appreciated.
stick n move boxing
Think of a battery can’t work correctly if it’s n the wrong way. Battery has a + and – which gives a balance
great site here thank u
Johnny, your a freaking genius! That was nothing but, pure wisdom and I want more! Johnny you are great! Keep it coming!
I’m very much a novice and I punch on ‘1 leg’, much the same I learned to punch from my father when I was in grade school. What you are saying regarding 2 legged rotational power makes a great deal of sense. However, Im having some trouble putting this into practice. It’s hard to tell if I am in fact engaging both legs or just reverting to the 75/25 switch. Can you recommend any practice drills that I can do on my own at home? Ideally how much I rotate my spine? I understand, in principle, the significance of the hamstrings but how do I know if I am correctly using both legs and not just doing the same 1-legged punch but with a different hip/spine alignment. Advice from any boxer will be much appreciated!
You’ll know you’re doing it right if feels more powerful. That’s the whole point of this. So if you don’t feel more powerful, something might be off. Keep in mind that it takes time to learn new things. Everything might appear right but internally, it might still missing the synchronization there to really get that power to snap. Take your time and try adjusting little details until you find what works best.
Is my left foot supposed to move at all? Or it is just my hips that pulls
Generally, neither feet should slide from it’s position…it only pivots and/or lifts the heel.
Great Article ! Thanks . Golovkin punch strangely but effectively.
Hi Johnny what is the “best way to generate MAXIMUM ROTATIONAL POWER” if this is not it?
Also do you rotate the spine for 2 legged punching only or do you rotate the spine for the normal punch mechanics?
Its very odd some people seem to think its dead centre the axis of rotation, some seem to think its the spine, the spine isnt dead centre its back from the centre of the hips and the body as im sure you are aware.
So which is it which provides the most power the centre point or the spine? It seems you could make a good argument for both but whats the reality of the situation?
For me it’s easily the spine. But for you, it might be something else. Try it and see. Sometimes, just the idea of visualizing something in a different way can make a big improvement. It takes time to develop an awareness of how to move your own body. This is something you develop after years of training and trying different things.
The better your posture the more it is the spine. When I am really focusing on posture for a week or two I definitely feel everything rotate around spine. When I am lazy and let the accumulation of a desk job affect my posture, the rotation happens with a lot of compensations everywhere.
More “secrets” please!!!
It’s like profesional bike riders, you use your quads on your power stroke to push the pedal down,and your hamy on the upward stroke to pull the pedal up,alternating quads/hamys as you push/pull , it,s hard to master, but gives you twice as much power for half the energy.
So you’re just saying your hips should be always under your torso?
If you want to be more balanced and grounded and powerful, then yes.
I think to vizualize and understand the concept, one could picture it from above. Imagine your hips as a circle: the rear leg push hips so you see an arrow going counterclowkwise on the right side of the circle, the front leg pull the hips, so you picture an arrow also going counterclockwise but on the left side of the circle. It is similar to the kung fu concept of “rooting” yourself (not sure about the english on this one): plant yourself in the ground when you punch to generate more power.
Awesome. I was really hitting a wall trying to figure out why I couldn’t recover my right as quickly as I wanted to, and this explains it perfectly. Great advice on the shadow boxing, as I could immediately “get” what was baffling me on the bag and mitts.
Here’s a little tip to recover straight right hands faster. Let the hand loop a little bit. Even a tiny TINY SLIGHT loop. That way the momentum of the right hand can loop it back to you. To the naked eye, it looks like the right hand is coming straight out and straight back but in reality, you have a really tiny loop in there to pull it back in easier.
By loop do you mean to dip it, similar to the natural tendency of the hands to work circularly during the speed bag? or are you referring to a torquing twisting like Tyson’s? I’m sure other boxers do it too, I just have a fascination with Tyson fights.
and kind of in regards to this, in the video you are saying to pop the other arm back (which makes me think of concept behind snapping the second hand back in Karate) to add more power, but I once got called on telegraphing my punches because I was moving my second hand when throwing my first hand. Is this similar? or… can you offer some insight on this?
Yes, you can see it as similar to a speed bag loop, but not to make it that pronounced. The fist movement should still look pretty straight to the naked eye. Telegraphing is a tough concept to explain to beginners. It’s only telegraphing your opponent can feel what you’re doing. It has very little to do with unnecessary movement, although that sometimes contributes to it. There are many pros that do all sorts of things and move their bodies in funky ways as they box but when they do it, it confuses you rather than lets you know what they’re about to do.
Thanks that really makes a lot of sense! Is there any specific drills one can do to practice? 🙂
Do all the same punching drills you normally do but with this new 2-legged attitude in mind. Or do slow-motion punching.
I remember i commented about “muscles used to punch” and you said “if your clever you will figure out all the muscles to use” i was practicing this theory but wasnt too comfortable with doing it since i rarely see people using this technique. i like to consider my whole body as a screw screwing into the ground, i could of hear it before but that makes it seem simpler to my i like to think im a human screw screwing into the ground, great article im really looking forward to part 2!
Great guide, Johnny. I trained in the past with a great karate coach (I practiced martial arts at competitive level, when I was a kid) and I learned how to stay always in balance while moving and the importance of hips rotation during a punch. That’s why when I started boxing I did not find so many technical difficulties when throwing power punches and never shifted weight from foot to foot. This guide – like my heavybag – shows I did well. At least, the more I discover the world of boxing, the more I find things in common with martial arts.
Boxing really is a martial art. It takes discipline and strength and courage and intelligence, etc. Everything that a martial artist would require to be good, boxing requires the same if not more. 😉
I recently got Kenny Weldon tape boxing tapes and he advocates majority of the weight on the back foot (maybe like 70-30 or 80-20) i noticed my power increased but more so that my footwork improved dramatically (speed and agility wise) and i actually feel more balanced that way. So is there anyway to do what ur talking about with a stance that has unequal distribition of weight
Also doesn’t switching from one leg to the other add momentum to the punch along with the power of rotation?
Switching weight to the front leg surely adds momentum, but it also leaves you off balance.
If an opponent slips a big cross that you shifted weight on, you are in trouble. But if an opponent slips a big cross that you simply used torque/rotation for (simple a different mechanism to add the power), you are still in defendable position.
I didn’t want to go here but you asked for it. YOU ASKED IT FOR IT, MALIK! LOL. Ok here goes.
– FIRST ISSUE – having more weight on the back foot.
There’s a reason why it FEELS this way. Get into your boxing stance right now and look at yourself in the mirror. First, you have to know that your body should be centered between your feet. BUT WHICH PART OF YOUR FEET? The balls or the heels? The common misconception is to think that the body should be between the BALLS of the feet since you stand on the balls of the feet. The reality is that the body is attached to the heels, so your body should be centered between your heels. Which would cause the calf of your back leg to work harder.
IF you stand with your body centered between the balls of your feet (instead of the heels), you will feel that it is too easy for the body to fall forward PAST the front heel which then means you would become off balance.
You can stand WITH the strength of the balls of your feet, but do not stand OVER the balls of your feet…. or else you will fall off balance. So the reality is, your body is still centered evenly 50/50 over both legs but it MAY feel like the back calf is working harder because your feet are turned to point more forwards. (Front foot away from you, but back foot towards you.) What’s important is that you feel more balanced and that’s because you actually are more balanced 50/50, (but yes it may FEEL like 70/30).
– SECOND ISSUE – switching from leg aka “falling” VS rotational power
If you’re falling, you can’t rotate as powerfully. (because falling requires you to “release” one leg, so the other leg can push into it)
If you’re rotating powerfully, you can’t fall. (because a full-powered rotation requires equally anchored force from both legs)
Falling AND rotating at the same time doesn’t exist–it only means that your body is turning while you’re falling (it doesn’t mean you’re generating real rotational power).
But of course “falling” is much easier to do than rotating (which requires some coordination) so more beginners will find falling to be easier to generate power.
So what are you saying? keep the kenny stance (which he tells you to bend a little over your right knee to put majority weight on the back leg)? or not?
The only thing that matters [to me] is that you keep your weight at the center. If you want to put more weight towards the back leg to follow Kenny Weldon, that’s up to you.
That makes sense. Thanks for clearing that up. Would be good if you add this point to your main article. Just a suggestion.
For years I could never figure out why my footwork was only equally efficient in all directions if I “felt” slightly heavier on the back foot. Because when moving back in any direction I could never feel my weight transfer to my front foot at all – yet I can glide effortlessly moving back. I guess a lot of boxers and trainers out there have it naturally, and have never had to give it that much attention – well at least enough to articulate the “why” of the “what’s and how’s”.
I’ve got a great trainer. He’s very old school but a good not so stubborn type that actually cares about each fighter’s uniqueness. Communicating what he wants me to do though is also old school. I usually end up disassembling and reassembling most things I initially get taught in my own time until I can see and feel exactly what he intended me to know or do.
The weight centering part always confused the crap out of me. That and why certain shots and combos worked well against righties (I’m southpaw. So Thanks for the articles for southpaw fighters. )
So sincere thanks, Johnny and please, keep up the good work!
this powerful cross situation happened to me some weeks ago.
I enjoy more power punching secrets hehe…and thanks for all your work btw your a great teacher =]
Ok, I will be a 100% honest, I some what get the article but man johnny this theory is technical, it went right over my head! I am a big pivot person so I prob punch on 1 leg all the time, it just makes me feel like i really swing thru my target, but in simple terms how can I start hitting with 2 legs ASAP?
If you don’t get it, don’t worry about it. The idea is simply to keep throwing punches the way you do now but keep your body and weight in the center instead of shifting your weight back and forth. Keep pivoting like you normally do but don’t push your weight back and forth. The reason why it’s so technical is because I explained all the reasons why it’s better but the instruction is simple: keep your weight in the center.
OK you have amazing knowledge and know your stuff WELL !! But what about Mike Tyson ?
When I look at his Videos, it seem like he is a 1 leg puncher … am I wrong ?
He’s definitely a 2-legged puncher. You might see him lunge at times and get out of position to land a big shot but by default, he’s a totally balanced 2-legged puncher.
Thank you .
Definitely a two leg puncher. When you watch video of him shadow boxing when he was younger it doesn’t make sense how fast he can rotate his shoulders forward than back again. As I tried to replicate that, I have found the only way is to put A LOT of scissoring effort with the legs. What Llaurenzo was probably referring to is there is weight shifting in the peek a boo because as the head goes from side to side the side with the head will have more weight on that leg. However he is also squating and exploding up. Both legs have to work a lot for that. It’s just not exactly 50 50 on each leg.
Ohhhh ok I see where your going with this yeah that’s a good tip for power punching, its like hitting homeruns in baseball everything gotta be centered for that good power, thanks johnny
Hey Johnny I like what Malik pointed out and I didnt fully understand your answer. I have also read some stuff on Kenny Weldon and his foundational training material and feel it can work but it does seem different to what you are saying in this article. Have you seen any of his videos? What do you think about what he teaches for the foundation of a boxer?
I’ve seen Kenny Weldon’s stuff. It’s logical and it makes sense. It’s common knowledge and I agree with a lot of it but not all of it. It’s definitely something EVERY beginner boxer should know. The stuff I’m explaining now is a bit more advanced and more for fighters who want to grow beyond the basics and really understand the full mechanics of power punching.
Ultimately, Kenny Weldon teaches his way and I teach my way. And your job is to find YOUR WAY. We all do our best to help. 😉
Kenny Weldons stance is predicated upon having a balance between a defensive stance and one that applies maximum leverage. The weight being on the back foot allows you to push off for a powerful jab as well as be able to put more weight into motion with your rear hand. You do not lose your balance as you are to dip your weight at the end of any shot you throw. This grounds you so that you can come back with any shot.
Also your head should never go past the lead or rear knee, that is what generally gets people off balance. It’s because they have a problem with their range and cannot accurately measure their distance so they end up falling forward instead keeping their head behind their knee and dropping their knees slightly.
The defensive nuances of a rear weighted stance are illustrated by Charles Burley, Benny Leonard, Joe Gans and a whole host of other near perfect boxers. Does this mean you can’t be successful with another stance? No. Mike Tyson used a stance that I would never advocate but the guy was very successful due to other attributes. But what is the better idea for most people? A stance that has built in defense along with the ability to maximize leverage, distance and body weight.
Furthermore, if you want more power lower your center of gravity and really dig into the ground when you transfer your weight. If you’re top heavy when you punch you tend to over throw and become off balance. Get lower and dip into your shots, that will give you the aid of gravity into your shots which will prevent you from over throwing and also add power into your punch. It’s much like how Jack Dempsey describes how one should apply bodyweight with his infamous “baby falling” analogy.
Good stuff!!!!! I would like more. Thanks for all your hard work.
When I punch, I pinch my knees in slightly and I feel like I get a more powerful rotation and I can ground my feet more solidly. Is this okay? And by the way, great article, would appreciate more.
Yes, you can pinch the knees. You know who else does that a lot? Bernard Hopkins.
hey johnny doesnt that force ourselves to be more close to our oppenent ? Because eventhough indeed I win in power balance and speed, i feel like my reach shrunck? or is it juste an impression?
Proper punching position requires you to be in range. Obviously, you would have to be closer to reach your opponent with a powerful punch than you would with a forward-falling punch. What’s more important to you? Reaching your opponent with a weak punch? Or getting into perfect range for a deadly punch? It’s also possible that you feel like you have horrible reach because your stance is wrong.
So many fighters stand with a wide stance or too sideways causing their back hand to be so far that the only way it reaches is to lean and fall forward. Anyway, please read my guides on boxing stance to correct this.
You gave me piece of though lol.I am not exactly a boxer, but a muay thai and mma fighter, and i think about BJ Penn.He doesnt have the ”modern” physic of today mma fighters, but he has incredible balance and flexibility, and this allows him to knock out other fighters.Thank you!Great arcticle!
And BJ actually has very good boxing skills.
Great Great Article!! You are a superb trainer!!
This stuff works!! Now, I will change my mind… less “pushing & falling”, more “grounding and rotating”… but two questions:
– When I throw a rear hand I like leaning my head to the side (to empty line of attack) and it is inevitable that weight shifted towards front leg. Is it correct?
-When I want to increase power in my rear hand I always use a small or big (accordint to distance) step&slide and use the sliding momentum of my rear foot to rotation my body full. Is it correct?
1) The reason why you are forced to lean your head to clear the line of attack might be because you stand too much sideways. Please correct your stance according to my guides on boxing stance. Another rule to follow is to make sure your right foot has a straight line-of-sight to your opponent. IF your front foot is blocking the line-of-sight, then obviously you would have to rotate over yourself and end up fall or leaning off balance.
2) A sliding right is a whole other kind of technique. For now, I am teaching a grounded rotation and not a sliding rotation.
Very thanks for your clear answers!!!!
Just for interests sake, the sport of cricket advocates that the person throwing the ball starts with the front foot forward and pointing directly towards the target. This allows the rest of the body to follow through to deliver the ball accurately with power. Whilst very much a momentum technique, head position and therefore body “follow through” very much relies on original intention with the feet stance.
I always wondered why you never had that slight forward lean when you throw the right hand that most everyone else has. Now I know!
😉 Proper technique = maximum power!
NG chi lung
I love your article on this topic. Pls carry on. I need more. Thx
good article johnny but a punch still needs weight no matter how good boxers rotational speed.completly agree with both legs involvement in rotation something weve drilled for years with reverse punch exercises.you are right that weight shouldnt fall across center of gravity but drop into target distance doesnt matter quarter of an inch is enough to add your whole bodyweight in split second of impact.it is possible without slowing rotational speed .this article contradicts quite alot of your previuos articles but it would be hard not to with the amount of knowledge and insights you have posted.kiss
“good article johnny but a punch still needs weight no matter how good boxers rotational speed.”
– this is the difference between a beginner and experienced puncher. 🙂
Like I said above in the post, beginners don’t know how to add body weight into a punch without falling. This article is not meant to contradict previous articles. It is meant to take you above and BEYOND the previous articles. For everyone who is not a beginner and can use this knowledge to punch harder, great! For everyone who still needs to fall, no problem–their time will come.
also arm punching/ back foot technique /right hand more distance to travel/more time to build power/more weight into motion.comments on here amateur ramblings show me 1 world champion doing any of it . no thought so
You say that with a balanced rotation arm has to travel more distance? This is a poor observation because in reality, the falling punch is actually and weaker because the BODY has to travel more distance (instead of no distance using a fully grounded rotation).
The balanced rotation method is a standard for all experienced fighters. Go to a gym and watch them. EVERYBODY DOES IT. But it’s ok, if you don’t want to, then don’t.
also if you cant relax while producing maximum rotation then surely sprinters wouldnt relax in races whats true for sprinters must be true for boxers right.the truth is sprinters fall thruogh out an entire race they use explosive speed and gravity
I was a former sprinter. I ran the 100m, 200m, high hurdles, low hurdles, relay, long jump, triple jump. I competed at the city level and got eliminated before qualifying for state competition.
DO NOT go around saying that sprinters are falling throughout an entire race because we DO NOT! We use a low position at the start in order to push our bodies forward off the blocks. Then we use a very strong forward lean during the dig phase in order to gain pushing momentum. Then to reach max speed, we STAND UPRIGHT in a balanced position and PULL ourselves forward.
You have to know that running motion cannot be compared to punching motion! When running, we apply power to the ground to MOVE our body forward. With punching, we apply power to the ground to PROJECT our power forward, BUT we are keeping our body grounded in one position. It’s a totally different body mechanic and should not be compared. Sprinting is FIGHTING gravity. Punching is going WITH gravity (*but not by falling*).
i was sprinter myself only 100m though. youre right johny, hell no we dont fall through the movement.
walking is like falling, which is the same as going down a bunch of stairs. we’re just breaking our fall with each step. and just balancing our continuous fall by moving our feet forward.
sprinting is about gaining the largest distance horizontally with every stride. its like a bunch of small long jumps. as 100m runners we are POUNDING the ground on every step. its obvious if anyone’s unlucky enough to sprint on soft mud he/she knows the kind of force we apply on the ground. sprinting is like climbing up stairs pushing ourselves into the air by forcing our bodies off the floor.
gravity only has large impact on y axis movement, movement up and down. i agree with your point, sprinting is a bunch of 70% horizontal and 30% vertical jumps (y axis movement) against gravity. it’s getting that 30% of ourselves in the air that makes sprinting against gravity.
in boxing done using proper mechanics the action occuring is x axis and z axis movements. gravity doesnt play a big part.
I wonder what is the second secret, aka PART 2 :)..
I wonder what it is too. I feel like I have to hold back my secrets because most of the readers just aren’t ready for higher level boxing techniques. I’d rather keep secrets from you guys than say something that you guys would argue with and refuse to do anyway, ANNND I come off sounding like a crazy guy in the process. :/
Come on, Johnny. There will always be people who don’t agree with you, but that’s not a good reason to give up. I apologize for being maybe too direct, but your site has been really helpful for me – and I guess for a lot of people who often forget to thank you. Sharing your knowledge with people you don’t know, with always plain explanations, videos, etc. and showing an uncommon patience in every reply (ex. the “weightlifting question”…) is definitely not for all. And I guess sometimes you would like to spend your time doing something different, maybe not trying to explain your point of view to people who just don’t understand (and sometimes don’t want to understand, anyway). But your passion helps a lot of boxers to become better, without asking anything, and I’m among them. So keep going on, Johnny, and thank you for all.
And sorry if there are mistakes in my post, perhaps I have to find an “ExpertEnglish.com” site…
As much fun as it is for me to share all my REAL knowledge…I have to take it slow and give everyone a fair chance to catch up. Not everyone is ready to connect the dots.
I often forget most people did not have the same amazing trainers as I did. So it’s important that I move slowly and explain every little step of the way. There are many times when I made guides that I thought were common sense but they turned out to be very helpful.
The most important thing is that everybody improves; which means I must teach at THE READER’S pace and not my own. Thank you for your comment, Fabrizio! (ps: your english is amazing btw)
All my support for you, Johnny. You are changing my boxing with your articles and your extraordinary ebook. Where I live gyms and trainers aren´t good enough, but thank your work I improve a lot. I couldn´t pay for your job!! Thanks for all and I hope you continue this legacy.
Ok im going to try my best theory and experiences to clear this up, first off when you see a fighter like roy jones jr throwing his lead left hook or mayweather throw his lead right, it looks like he is on one leg and he is but the misconception that may be seen is the fact that their timing those punches precisely boxing isnt all about speed and power nor is it about who can beat up who, there are plenty fighters to where they flat out mothered their opponent and still lost due to the calls of the judges! boxing is about timing and accuracy i used to think if i wasnt hitting the heavy bag and making it fly all over the place i wasnt punching hard enough was i wrong, this technique is demonstrating the art of martial arts right here, THATS WHY IT SAYS PART ONE! there is way more to punching than just the stance, cool you can punch your way through a brick wall but what good does it do a fighter to punch a target but that isnt fully there? they may teach beginners to penetrate on their left leg with a right punch and vice versa a pyramid isnt made from one brick it takes multiple bricks, i love this technique thats explained in the article due to the fact after you punch you will be able to bounce back after every punch which penetrating doesnt, i feel that beginners are taught to penetrate legs and i also notice beginners dont usually move their bodies neither, which is ok, with my experience i noticed punching is that it the less effort i put into the punch the harder i hit, the harder i try to hit hard the lighter i hit, by penetrating your weight you are extremely vulnerable to parrying as well as pivoting even slipping and many other defensive maneuvers “an angry mind is a narrow mind” im not saying people get angry but by focusing too much on hitting your opponent you dont pay attention what can happen to you, in boxing you can be defensive and offensive at the same time, Joe Clazaghe didnt have knock out power and he beat many opponents, i seen fighters get knocked down from a jab due to fatigue, i understand the concept of shifting your weight to one leg to other but whats going to happen if your opponent moves? or parrys? or slips? etc, your going to fall forward, its simple physics, i have no intentions of any offense to anyone this is just my theory on how i can help clear things up and explain this article from another view, now closing with the utmost honor respect and discipline….
CONGRATULATIONS MATERIALS BY JOHNNY, LIKE THAT SOME DOUBT me out: NOT TO TURN OUT THE HEEL WHILE SOCA IS IT? Big hug OF BRAZIL.
We are going advanced stuff little by little, this article makes me hungry for more advanced stuff and secrets. Thanks for great effort. Go Johnny Go Go Go 🙂
I really enjoy this article and will practice tomorrow at the gym!
but i would like to know, Jonny, what do you think about muhammad ali dancing style? and if have you something to say about it:?
A lot of guys do it, not just Ali. Have fun and try it 😉
Now i understand what are you talking about
look at 5:10, the position of his body, and the especially the legs.
The best example of this stuff that I remind is… Guillermo Rigondeaux. He has a incredible “balanced rotation punching” (view in youtube his highlights). I believe he is the perfect example of Johnny´s article, isn´t?
That guy is a GREAT fighter! And yes very good balance. A lot fighters have good balance though, not just pros. It’s hard to become even a high level amateur without balanced punching.
beautiful example daniel, can anyone explain the slight forward lean to me please?
He’s balanced! His head is between his feet at impact. His body might be of the slightest lean forwards because his right shoulder is rotated in.
Some fighters will INTENTIONALLY fall forward with an off-balanced punch at times (especially with an opponent on the ropes) so that they can fall in and pin down his arms with their chest. But you have to realize it’s done for strategic reasons.
johnny previos comment refers to comments posted not byYOU BUT TSEGO.can you please read actual comment i posted and not just guess what it says.rotational speed is everything no ones doubting that .why is it ok to freestyle every other rule in boxing but you are not allowed micro seconed to put weight into punch.oh also your allow losing balance leaning to far over backfoot ref.TSEGO REPLY .calling people amateur beginner etc when they dont agree with absolutly every tiny detail you post is absurd STICKS AND STONES JOHNNY.weight over back foot flawed technique and right hand dsitance to target irrelevant to power.go back over your previuos posts johnny you are blowing in the wind and losing the plot my man
The site is a progression of boxing technique. The technique you learn one day will change as you grow to become a more advanced boxer. Some of my articles ARE INTENDED to conflict each other because they are written for different level boxers.
What you said earlier was like if somebody came up to me and said, “Muhammad Ali had bad defense because his hands are always down by his waist.” Obviously, I would think that person doesn’t understand that high level defense doesn’t rely on hands.
Based on what you said, I felt you were still thinking like a beginner puncher. I’m sorry it offended you, it’s not my intention (maybe you’re a fantastic boxer that uses different punching technique). If you know some secret technique about balanced rotational punching, please teach it to me.
Otherwise, I will stand by my words that “falling while punching is beginner mentality”. Being a beginner doesn’t mean you’re aren’t a good fighter, there are still VERY TALENTED BEGINNERS. But you must know that advanced fighters understand something beginners don’t. If you’re an advanced fighter, then disregard my words and move on. Just know that I am trying to teach a NEW CONCEPT which requires readers to forget all old concepts (at least for the moment). If you don’t agree, no hard feelings. Sorry about my comment Andrew; I could have been worded it more carefully.
In regards to other comments and OTHER TECHNIQUE. If you do something different from what is explained in this guide, you get a different effect. It’s not necessarily “wrong” or “bad”, it simply gives you a different effect. In this case, we are going for the maximum rotational power effect. And the best way to get maximum rotational power is to stay balanced. Try to spin yourself on one foot, the moment you lean to any side you will fall off balance. I don’t reply to what Tsego said because he’s talking about something different from what I addressed here in this post.
It’s ok if you want to use another punching technique, but just know that it is a DIFFERENT technique.
If your going to be negative (andrew) please take that else where there are many trainers out there and just like every boxer has their own style so do trainers, your not always going to agree with everything what might work for you might not work for me, DOING A GREAT JOB JOHNNY I APPRECIATE YOU!
Great article. Looking forward to Part II of Power Punching Secrets.
I just want to mention that i`ve just read ”Box like a pros”’ – Joe Frazier`s book.And he said the exact same thing, when you punch : ”Your weight stays
evenly distributed between
front and back legs”‘
Thanks, Daniel! Well…there you have it, more common sense straight from a champion’s mouth. Lol.
Johnny you’re a stud. Great advice, please continue correcting my bad technique, keep fighting the good fight brotha!!
I do my best, Sammy. Thank you.
wonderful article, im glad the more subtle stuff is coming out. youre really having to explain yourself a lot to everyone. i need something explained myself.
im confused about not shifting weight… i think every boxer has to shift their weight. thats how power is put into the punch.
i think everyone shifts their weight. but beginners turn by shifting weight and having it pulled outside their center of gravity because they dont have a counterbalancing force. while more advanced fighters will have one side generate a force by turning and the other side of the body automatically counterbalancing the momentum and pull it back by generating a counterforce by turning the other way. like turning in a tight circle, one has to take a step forward with one leg and a step backward with the other. if one just steps forward with one leg they will drag the other forward a bit and they will end up creating a huge slow ellipse rather than a tight powerful circle. is that right ? maybe im arguing semantics but.. id want to be sure im not missing something here.
btw it is tough for people without good trainers to stop throwing themselves about, specially looking at guys like floyd and broner and manny and their lead hands. i love the way you explained it, in my head it was just called `planting both feet during the punch’.
“i think every boxer has to shift their weight. thats how power is put into the punch.”
– I can’t advance you any further until you’re willing to give up this belief.
I can however try another approach at explaining this concept. Think about it like this. Your body is in the center. And if your body moves BUT your feet stay in the same position, that means your body is either going AWAY from the center, or INTO the center. If you go AWAY from the center, you get the weight-shifting “falling” effect. If you’re going INTO the center, you get the balanced rotational power effect.
I wouldn’t say one is wrong, because everything has its place and purpose whether for technical or tactical reasons. I would challenge you to try each method for at least 20-100 hours and find out which one is ultimately more powerful, more balanced, more energy-efficient, etc. They are two entirely different techniques and require two entirely different mindsets when you attempt them.
so basically your saying the falling technique and the rotational technique are meant for certain times in the competition?
Yes, everything has its purpose. Different techniques should be used in different ways. I would put more emphasis on balanced rotation when I want more speed and/or power. I would use the falling technique if I wanted to smother and trap an opponent in the corner. I’m sure you can find other ways.
i get you johnny, we’re talking about the same thing in different ways. however i feel your use of `shift weight’ in the context of wild sloppy jumping leaning movements is pretty narrow, and old school trained boxer kung fu tai chi karate guy will go `what!?’ we understand shift as putting weight into the punch. good article, it reminded me how advanced topics used to bring up big fat debates in the gym
Hehehe, you’re a lot of fun Saber. Ok, time to explain…
FALLING is falling. Shifting weight is falling. Put it this way: if you were to stand on one foot and somebody came and pushed you over even just 10 degrees…JUST 10 DEGREES. You will fall, right? A perfectly straight spine will fall to one side if you tip it over even only a tiny bit. Of course, falling less is still better than falling more…but it’s still falling and it’s still taking away from your maximum power.
The reason why boxers get away with “falling” is because the other leg holds them up and so they don’t realize they’re actually falling back and forth during punches. The real problem with falling is not because the spine is tilted over (because you do need an angled spine for punches like the front uppercut, or hooks, etc)…the real problem with falling is that it decreases the amount of power that both legs can generate.
If you’re a beginner, then you’ll find it necessary to load weight into every punch. If you’re advanced, you’ll know that your weight is already loaded (as long as you’re connected to the ground).
The article is to show people a more advanced, more difficult, but more effective way to generate power AND speed. The falling technique still works (obviously since it’s still being taught) but I offer an alternative for individuals with superior body control.
im all for 2 footed punching johny. still its clear massive power can be generated off one foot. perhaps not as much power as punches thrown off 2 planted feet, but greats like post-88 tyson roy jones floyd patterson trinidad pacquiao frazier etc.. all had great speed and power on their first punch off one foot.
i think huge difference shows up when throwing combos or counterpunching. no one did a good job counterpunching or throwing sharp combos off one foot.
its also more tiring to punch off one foot, more effort expended. another benefit of balance is not suffering flash knockdowns during exchanges when offbalance.
its nice to look at different ways of doing things, remembering there are other methods and the pros and cons.
Saber, many of those greats threw off-angled punches (which means an angled spine). Which are not to be mistaken for one-footed punching. With that said, one-foot punching is definitely still quite powerful as you say and has many practical strategic applications. This article of course focuses on 2-footed punching because it is far easier and more practical to generate power that way. Sure, there are many ways to generate power but this one is the easiest 😉
i just tried “Your body is in the center. And if your body moves BUT your feet stay in the same position, that means your body is either going AWAY from the center, or INTO the center. If you go AWAY from the center, you get the weight-shifting “falling” effect. If you’re going INTO the center, you get the balanced rotational power effect.” theory and it appears by keeping your weight in the center johnny that you attract more momentum than you would by falling into it, and by just doing the theory or the example you just explained it appeared that i was able to get more of a shock in my punches, am i accurate or am i completely off sir?
excuse me i mean more of a shock with keeping my body in the center line
Yes, you will get far more power as I described in the article.
I was talking with an old-pro that goes by the name Cuda at my gym and he asked me to show him my stance and how I punch. He immediately stopped me and told me to stop using my hips and more of my torso/upper-body in a swinging motion. After reading this it makes complete sense to me now, especially how it all starts at the feet.
Guess that old time wasn’t crazy after all.
Keep up the fantastic work! I learn more on this site than I do my own gym!
LOL! I used to think the old guys were crazy because their techniques were so far off from what I figured out on my own. I should add that you still use your hips but the hips drill downwards instead of tilting from one foot to the other. Anyway, thanks for reading, Chris.
NG chi lung
Hi. Johnny. I have tried what u said today. but i found a little bit difficult for my style is old school style, how can i apply this balanced rotation theory. And will u write some articles about the tastics of different boxing styles.
This is different technique for different effect. It will feel a little harder at first because you actually have to pay more attention to keeping your weight in the middle.
I don’t understand what you’re saying about styles. Being “old school” or “new school” is no excuse to let yourself fall into your punches. I do want to write articles about different styles but I know enough to fill a book, so we’ll see about that. 🙂
Hi, so i have read over this article a couple times now and i love it. I understand the logic behind it and it all makes sense. I know you said that if you dont understand it now then you will in a couple years and i think i saw a good amount of people asking in the comments just more generalized. So being used to falling into the punches and using stricktely my push muscles i am having troubles with the pull aspect. I can get the torso to pull on the other side but not so much the hamstring because im not really sure how the movement is supposed to work. I think i am able to get the movements for push and pull about down to my hips but not much lower, do you have any tips or suggestions that might help me out?
Hold a medicine ball in front and starting swinging the ball from side to side quickly. Instead of using your obliques and abs, try thinking more about using your back to swing it. Also think about your feet clamping the ground hard and you will feel the hamstrings activate from side to side.
You where born to teach and practice the Art of the Fist, and Phsycology. Whenever you need shark meat for any of your pugilist, you have a rooster right here at your service.
I am an educated 5 ft 8 inch 140 lbs orthodox fighter. Have spared with former WBC light middleweight champion Sergio “The Latin Snake” Mora and 1995 National Golden Gloves Champion Adam “Bomb” Reyes, and currently training with Rodrigo Mosqueda Jr at Eddie Heredia Boxing Club in East Los Angeles. I would be more than honored to come to your gym at your request.
Hector, we’d be honored to have you. We got a couple guys at that weight that are always looking for new sparring partners. I’ll be emailing you. Thanks man.
hi johnny humbly explain that any comment to your articles are usually almost totaly in agreement with you although its hard to portray that when putting small point in print .it comes across as argumentative to whole article when its not intended to.on this point i fully understand this concept having drilled it for years.where i think your slightly going wrong again only my oppinion.is your stance on (if your using both feet and hamstrings in rotation you cant fall).dont think im refering to falling 2 feet across center line i am certainly not.to understand this concept firstly you must consider our conscius brain works on super slow time scale it effects all our reasoning our subconcious brain has to work on nano scale doing hundreds of calculations to enable 1 consciuos thought.all of live, science ,and force of punch opperates in nano second timescale wether your conscius brain likes it or not johnny.this is the hard bit NO FALLING NEEDS TO ACTUALLY HAPPEN at least to your conscios brains perception.as long as you release some of resistansce holding you up whilst rotating on both sides in nanosecond of contact it will create OPTIMUM FORCE not releasing any weight from gravity will not.although rotational technique is excelent when done correctly alot of amaters strugle with transistion to professional ranks when power is more of a premium.ps johnny sprinters do use gravity the one that uses it best tends to be winner
Hi again, Andrewp,
If you “fall”, you’re using a falling technique. If you use a balanced rotation, you’re using a balanced rotational technique. One is not a different or incorrect version of the other. They are two entirely different techniques, even if there are only subtle differences. They both have their own effects and both are USEFUL in different situations.
This article is to explain the technique, theory, and benefits of a perfectly balanced rotation. If you choose not to use that balanced rotation, it’s ok…you’re simply doing something else. If you modify this technique, well then it’s not the same technique anymore and can’t really be compared or argued.
Btw, I want to add that I really appreciate your comments. Your comments are very useful even if you disagree because it gives me a chance to re-explain things from a different or more detailed angle. It’s helpful for everyone else who thinks like you but didn’t comment. I’m very passionate about what took me years and years to learn, so I hope you’ll understand why I’m so outspoken about certain details. THANK YOU FOR READING!
PS: sprinters do not use gravity at MAX SPEED (I’m dead certain of this, being that I was a former sprinter). The explanation is simple, once our bodies reach max speed we must exert force tangent to gravity so that all our momentum is directly straight forward instead of at a slight angle downwards into the ground. And again, I will say that punching and sprinting is not the same thing. Because our bodies are actually moving forward while sprinting, whereas our bodies stay still and only PROJECT energy forwards during a punch.
To come out of the blocks, yes, we have to fight against gravity and allow it to make us fall into a running stride.
Come on Johny, dont be shy.What is the other secret? :)))
HAHAHA! Daniel, I’m too scared.
You mentioned that to improve quickly pulling back and not dropping the rear hand, a trick is to throw a looping punch instead of a staright punch? Can you elaborate? Why is that?
Don’t loop the punch, throw a straight punch with a SLIGHT loop so it helps you circulate the forward movement of the punch into the backwards recovery movement. If you throw straight out, it will feel a bit tiring to try and pull your hand back. Everyone’s body is different and shorter-armed fighters or stocky-armed fighters will not find the slight looping technique necessary.
About the questions on how to “pull” the opposite side of the body to assist in rotation: I have tried to focus on straightening my bent front leg. You can feel the hamstring flex when the leg is straightened, similar to a deadlift. I also focus on “ripping” the opposite shoulder back. By doing this, this not only assists in rotation, but it keeps you from falling forward.
Hope this que might be useful to some.
I have no problem applying your advice with a few 1-2 jabs or 1-2 hooks. The only problem is whenever I start moving around the ring and throwing combos I find myself going back to using just the one leg again. How can I overcome this bad habit?
Do it slow and practice it with shadowboxing. Every technique will feel awkward if you’re not accustomed to using it. It will also feel difficult if you keep focusing on power. Instead, focus on staying balanced and the power will come naturally.
Here is some support to your theory johnny
Yeaup, excellent video. I wish there were more videos explaining this because it’s really common knowledge.
I read this quote from great Bernard Hopkins: “If I want speed, I stop sitting down on my punches. If I want power, I plant my feet.”
You have to wonder if Bernard Hopkins will retire, he very well could still box some big money matches, despite losing his last fight, but you have to wonder if it would be worth the risk. Hopkins has boxed in four different decades, only Duran and Jack Johnson boxed in five different decades.
I like the article a lot. I really like when you explained the difference between punching will a falling step technique and rotational technique. I initially learned to throw a jab and also a cross with the falling step (mainly because of the old dempsey article) and with that you take a step both with a jab and a cross.
Throwing hooks and uppercuts however it makes way more sense to punch with rotational technique. My question is it possible to throw a cross with a step and rotation? or is that combining things that shouldnt be combined?
Jack Dempsey’s “falling step” technique is about stepping, not falling. But many do interpret his technique incorrectly.
Regarding your question about the cross:
– yes, you can throw the cross with a fall
– yes, you can throw the cross with a rotation
– yes, you can throw the cross with a fall AND a rotation
They are all different options that give you different results. Try them all and see which one you like and see how each one can be used differently. This is your homework to learn for yourself. But if you don’t want to spend a million hours learning on your own, then I will simply answer that throwing the cross with only a rotation will give it the most power. (But this type of cross is not always the best option in all situations.)
Hmm but you said impulsive punching that goes downwards is the strongest with the most power ??
It’s when your center of gravity is projected DOWNWARDS, that you get the most power. The actual fist itself can go in any direction.
Hmm ok but why you Said the Cross with only Rotation is the Most powerful?
Because have a balanced rotation gives you more power than a falling punch or a falling rotation.
hi Johnny what’s in your opinion the best hamstring exercise for boxing?
Hmm…I would say jump rope. Or maybe standing trunk twists with a medicine ball.
Great article. The video helped a lot. I’m certainly going to try this but it may take a while to get used to.
The one question I have is, what about the jab? which is mainly used whilst moving around (ie both legs not always planted). Do the same rules apply or is this more common for use with the hooks and straight right as demonstrated?
This technique doesn’t apply to the jab because the jab is not a rotational punch. All other power punches would be considered rotational, though.
Johnny would you say you’re a power puncher?
Hello! I like to thank you for giving these advices.You are really putting a lot of effort.
When I started boxing I was maybe the poorest guy in the gym.
Now 3 years later I`m beging to be meanest motherf*cker in the gym.
I really studied your writings and I still do.Lots and lots of training and these tips have helped me a lot!
I like the video. The idea to push with your right foot and pull with your left hamstring is brilliant. Very simple to apply. However, there are some videos that seem to contradict this method. I would be hard pressed to believe Kenny Weldon is wrong in his philosophy on boxing and the proper fundamentals, but I guess it just depends.
Different techniques have different methods. It’s not about right vs wrong. If you do one thing, you get a certain effect. If you do another thing, you get a different effect. Figure out which one you like better, and if you can’t then maybe it doesn’t matter yet for you. I agree with Kenny Weldon’s stuff but I understand some of my techniques are different. Thanks Ben.
With all the content and different techniques, it’s hard to figure out which one work best for myself. I’m always looking to achieve perfect technique, which is near impossible when I use instructional videos, instead of hand-to-hand training. Your website helps the average person to easily apply boxing techniques to their training. But to hear Kenny Weldon criticize other trainers and state, “there are probably only 3 good boxing coaches in the country”, it makes it a bit discouraging. I don’t want to be taught “bad technique” by my local boxing gym, but my options are limited. After applying your method, it’s obviously effective, but there has to be a right and wrong in certain situations when it comes to a sport as technical as boxing. Anyways, I love the site and appreciate the wonderful array of content! Thanks!
Johnny is there gonna be a power punching secrets part 2? By the way thank you for all the helpful tips advice etc.
Part 2 will come out probably in a month or two since because I’m busy writing the premium diet guide for sale later in the near future.
Hi Johnny im a first time poster but been reading and practicing the articles for a while now. I understand the drop and shift helps the jab as in the Jack Dempsey instruction book. Im confused thinking of this advanced way to use the back hand though with rotation and the feet dug into floor. This seems to me a karate style which boxers do better with shift/drop as well , and if superior could have been taught in basic boxing as both will take similar time to master. Any help appreciated, and great articles.
As mentioned in the article, beginners are usually not taught this method of punching because their rotational body mechanics is not yet fine-tuned to use their entire body weight…thus, “falling” is more powerful for them. If you tell a beginner to use 2-legged punching, he will end up rotating only his upper body and not his hips because he doesn’t have the leg coordination for it yet.
Hi Johnny, thanks for these great tips. Only recently discovered your site but they are already making a huge difference. I have a question though about dropping my bodyweight into a punch, or rather the recovery between shots. I’m getting the two legged punching and dropping my bodyweight into my punches. However, if I’m throwing combinations, once I’ve sunk my bodyweight down into a a right cross (for instance) I find myself bouncing up again in order to then sink down for the left hook, rather than just rotating and trying to whip it in.
So it’s basically going punch bounce punch bounce punch, which obviously slows everything down. I’m not talking about huge movements and am possibly not explaining this very well but hopefully some of it will make sense.
It’s more like PROJECTING your body weight down instead of lowering your body. Naturally, your legs will resist the drop which means they’re probably loading into the punch. The slight upwards bounce is great because then you can keep concentrating on going DOWN, DOWN, DOWN with every punch–instead of having thinking “down-up” on every punch which slows you down.
hi frank ive been looking at the same part of my techniques and as johnny explained to me you dont sink your body weight into the right cross, you use rotation . im not an expert i just practice anything off here ive not covered in the gym
Thanks for that Jamie, I could probably also do with tips on my reading as I totally missed your last post. Makes much more sense now.
thanks johnny that last comment will help what im working on. And Frank it looks like we are working on the same things here. im not sure if im practising correctly by hip twisting with feet dug in on rotation is the same as what johnny is explaining . il report back so any help appreciated.
I’ve been struggling with exactly this question for a while – the one-legged punching I’ve been doing has been killing my balance, timing, stamina… Following this advice is an instant change – can’t thank you enough – please keep posting. And thanks for the headgear reviews as well, getting new headgear (moving from kickboxing into boxing) and glad to have your perspective on it.
You got it, man! I’m happy for you.
So all that thing about leaning into my punches was just watered down, dumbed down stuff my coach fed me coz he thought I didn’t have the coordination for proper two-legged punching?
Well, for some coaches, leaning into punches is the only way they know/recommend. Either way, it’s still your job to learn everything and use what works for you.
When does part 2 come out?
Maybe a couple more weeks. I just moved and now getting settled at my new place in San Francisco. 🙂
Hey Johny, what do you think of the part with snap-back-punch?…
I have a guide on how to throw snapping punches which I think goes more in-depth.
I just added this into my training today.. Didn’t really click straight away until I ‘felt’ the push/pull effect and the good tension through hammy.. Much appreciated tip mate!
I was thinking about this at work, and also try it later, when you mention about one leg push and one leg pull, it makes a lot of sense to me because in my academy (I study Japanese Jiujitsu), our Sensei show us how to push, and as an important fact, hips are the key for a strong push, so combining hips move and legs push/pull, allow me to push harder and effective, also i can recover faster to rise my guard up again if i miss the punch, great advice, tnx a lot
Hi there, i just recently discovered you site, i actually tried doing this technique during sparring and mitts session. It is very effective when you are trying to throw a very fast and powerful punch but don’t you think it might affect the way we slip punches and counter punching?
Yes, it should affect your defensive techniques in a positive way.
do these rules apply for every punch?
Of course not. The technique is used when you want more balance and power.
for some reason it reminds me of your abw ebook, which i absolutely admire by the way, but this article is explaining to be in the center of gravity thats the main focus of this article right?
This article is about staying on 2 legs. Maximizing your contact and leveraging your contact with the ground. Nothing less, nothing more…although you are bound to discover new relationships between 2-footed grounding and punching power.
Thanks again Johnny! People that do cycling should have a better understanding of this. When you pedal, if you are always pushing downwards, it uses up a lot more energy. You need to be pulling up with the other leg as the other one pushes down (straps on feet of course).
Actually, up to a certain point you get more power with the rear hand the more sideways you stand, to the detriment of the left hook, look at someone like Rocky Marciano or Dan Henderson, due to the hip rotation (think baseball). There was an excellent article on it by Jack Slack. Not that there aren’t drawbacks especially when kicks are involved.
Absolutely true! Standing more sideways can give you a little more power because it forces more rotation out of you. If you’re someone with less-than-perfect technique, standing sideways can be a good way to force you to rotate more. But once you have good technique, then you can stand any way you need and still deliver good power. Boxing has a lot of movement, so you’ll never be able to sit in one perfect position for too long.
I always wondered why I felt so off-balanced when I threw my right hand; this completely solves that. Now I feel perfectly balanced, but because I’ve lost the pushing motion, I do feel like I’ve lost power. I believe that’s because I haven’t synced up my arm to punch after my body has rotated, which is supposed to be the proper way to transfer energy. If people are having trouble with their power, I’d suggest they try to sync up their arm to extend at the end of their feet/legs/hips/spine rotation.
You’ve lost pushing power. But gained more rotational power. So stop trying to look for pushing power and start looking for rotational power.
It’s funny you said that, because I just read the second punching secrets guide, and I found that out. So really it’s like you answered me twice! It really does solve a lot of problems (I also wondered why my combinations seemed so slow). Thanks, Johnny!
I can’t see you having much of a objective prove of WHY is rotational power better (i.e. stronger) than falling.
If you’re familiar with the concept of Eastern Martial arts… they don’t count on muscle power directly, but more on proper bio-mechanics. Can’t see many MMA fighters break tons of ice nowadays, can you?
OTOH – it is good to mention that… “falling” would mean to sorta drop and fall all of your WEIGHT on opponent. Rotation would mean to use force to generate a powerful contraction that results in this… hmm… how did you define it? Power?
It is very interesting how the best concept of T-nation’s supercoach Christian Thibaudeau suggets that actually… “letting go and free-falling” on the way down with a barbell while squatting builds more explosive strength for SPORTS performance.
Plus you can never be exactly 50% and 50% on one and other leg. No matter how much you try – you WILL be having at least some 1-2% difference (common sense). So this is still some mini-form of falling.
Have you heard about NOT tightening during boxing?
Maybe the old boxers didn’t need that much equipement, supplements AND muscle growth/strength in order to fucking blast their heads. Why? Because old school boxing actually was more of an art… dance… than a boring anatomy and functional hypertrophy class.
My brother’s Wing Tsun trainer destroyed a 100$ punching bag in 15 minutes of boxing, using Wing Tsun principles. No legs. It was brand new, we had to repair it.
He was trained for national security. Empiriclly speaking – his punches HURT LIKE HELL!
Can you do the same? Oh, and he has a belly… but still rocks the K.O. power! 😉
So your suggesting ANOTHER form of “power” to rely on. The difference between hard and soft style of Wing Tsun is the same metaphor for “Falling vs. Rotating”.
Because true falling ISN’T about being tight… but just the opposite. Like Yin & Yang of course there’s always some of the opposite element present in every end.
Not saying some is better, because i still lack ENOUGH (by my own standarts) practice in many sparrings/matches. But i’ve had my share of martial arts experience.
But you fall into extreme and IMO – over-analyze and make-up stuff for your own convinience. I.e. rationalize and distort some of the info you provide (we all do it, heh 🙂 )
To be percise – your argument about puching on one leg is pretty flawled. Who… the F*CK fights on one leg? Even if you do the “falling” (assuming you do it CORRECTLY, which is very hard actually while not breaking your bio-mechanical-structure) – you end up… “catching” the wave with your opponent’s head… OR YOUR LEG. Why you can’t push on one leg? Actually you CAN. But you know you will fall because no one is there to absorb your impulse when/if the object moves.
Try this (all of you): Stand on BOTH legs one slightly in front (typical “newbie” stance). Now… from one hip and weight mostly on back leg… sorta wave into the forth leg but do aim to get “through” the wall. ANd see if it’s more solid and powerful than rotating with 50-50 legs!! 😉
HEy – Maybe ‘m full of shit right now. But hey – that’s MY shit! 😉
I pretty much answered all of your questions with this article. But yes, you’re entitled to have your own techniques and opinions.
In response to one of your very old messages from May, about the people arguing your techniques, I acutally like that, because when you “counter” their opposition to your teachings, with further explanation, it helps me understand your concept even more.
Anyways your site is awesome, so very helpful. I have been reading even MORE so in the last few days as I will be sparring for the first time tonight…. Thanks for all this free information.
That’s probably the reason why I do it, Rich! I explain more to convince those who want to learn more. At the end of the day, people are free to do whatever they want.
Johnny can you use the inlposive better and this together becuase everything you teach i show to other people
It’s a theory that can be applied to movement whenever you want. It’s not a rule.
Fuckin awesome technique Johnny, this n the other article about implosive punching. Lovin it. Cheers
Johnny dude, I am impressed… I don’t want to swear here, but truth b told u r freaking awesome bru…its Been about 5 days since dicovering this website… I love mma mostly, but u changing my life man, in this 5 days iv read more than 20 of ur articles and watched the accompanied videos, I feel like I’m getting an advantage from this over any future opponent I intend on having. I’m not yet amatuer or pro, truth is I’d love to compete but after reading most of the things I have, I have a lot of work ahead of me… I CN hardly put my phone down as I’m on ur site all d time… My gf is gona start complaining I know it… I need this dvds of your aswell… I’m no longer pushing weights, no longer eating wrong, no longer push punching I’m a snapper now, I love the way u put it across, its the easiest way to understand… I thank you man… Please keep up this awesome work… I love u man
Rotational punching is physics. Explainable by method. Similar example is the centrifugal water pump. Rotational motor force spins a disc with impellor blades. The water enters the pump at the centre and the shape of the blades directs the water under centrifugal force, towards the outer edge of the disc. This movement of water towardsthe outside creates a gap of negative pressure in the middle which sucks in more water and so the process continues. The increase in pressure developed from the centre of the disc to the outside is a form of leveraged work. In rotational punching you are leveraging your body to do more work using that same centrifugal force. Practice in this art will give you ability to minimise the risk of overbalance. To understand the importance of maintaining balance, just study the balance between the centrifugal force of the earths rotation opposed to its gravitational force, in order to keep the moon in its orbit all this time.:)
my boxing coach told me when doing a left hook, that I must put more weight on the back foot. so what I were doing was wrong. Mr. Johnny how can I throw a left hook properly by using both legs?
There is more than one way to throw a left hook. In regards to throwing it on both legs…keep your weight centered and anchor both feet to the ground as you pivot and throw the hook.
More secrets, please! I’ve been boxing for a while now but have learned more reading your articles than being in the gym. Thank you!
I’ve read all the article, and the only difference i see between the 2 punches is that while in the 1 legged punch you shift the weight from 1 leg to another, in the 2 legged punch you just ground your feet and bring the weight down into the ground, and this IMHO is wrong because you need to “throw” your bodyweight in the direction of the attack (possibly while rotating your hips), and not into the ground, if you want to create some damage.
Besides the centerline of the body should run inside the body, aligned with the center of mass (hips), and not coming off the floor.
Just my 2 cents.
Yeah, what you’re talking about is the technique they teach beginners to shift weight with every punch. It’s ok…do what you like. 🙂
Your written advice and video lessons are by far the best I’ve come across.
So thank you
Keep it up!
so is it a bad idea to switch axis while throwing a punch? this video made me realize that by switching axis while throwing a punch is the error your explaining at the beginning, how exactly does this technique work while in the process of displacement? (displacement coming from one of your previous articles)
Different articles will focus on different things. If you need power, then having your axis balanced and grounded in one place is most effective. If you need movement, then you’ll have to move your axis. So is it a bad idea to switch your axis position when you punch? It depends on what you want…power or movement?
Gracias desde argentina! excelente informacion
I used to do the one leg punching and always felt of balance. This is great I think this is was what I was missing in my boxing game you got a talent for coaching my freind keep up the good work
Here’s a good example of 2 leg punching in the ufc
Watch hughes at 4 minutes in.
i get the one leg two leg one with punch but the laundry basket one i dont maby it a kicking balance thing that helped me there
sorry forgot to explain in karate a good suport leg is need when you kick or u get a knocked off balance b have to hop and left open c ok balance but power loss
It makes sense but punching and kicking techniques are very different from each other. In one, you have two legs for balance, in the other you have only one leg.
Does being evenly distributed in weight hinder rotation? For example, on a right cross? Does that hinder rotation on the ball of the right foot because weight is on it? 🙁
As explained in the article, you spin better if you’re evenly distributed. As for the ball of the right foot…it spins with more power when you have weight on it. Don’t think of the weight as “hindering the rotation” but rather “put leverage to the rotation”.
This is very wrong. In order to push pull with your legs as you say, your legs must be bent. The problem is if you force your knees to stay bent while doing this, you won’t rotate. Your whole theory behind this being stronger is you have more powerful rotation. Wrong. To use your legs this way, the legs must stay bent, which will fight your rotation. Not only that, but vik made a good point. It’s like putting a weight on the top of your right foot. It’s like a break to your rotation also you could be getting. If you do it this way, lets say a straight right. Your left knee will bend, and the left leg will go from bent to fully straight. Once this happens, you are no longer using that leg. The only thing left is a slight rotation in the hip which will bring the right knee slightly towards the left knee. Now that the left leg can’t be used due to it being straight, the push pull method is now gone. The push pull method works with pushing. Once your hips rotate a certain amount, that push pull theory is gone because the lockout of the knee. If you don’t lock out the knee, you’ll have zero rotation, which is gonna ruin your power. Power does not come from this way of punching. When youre feet are properly positioned on the floor you’re able to use ground force reaction. There’s a point behind the big toe that when positioned correctly on the floor activates all your leg muscles. The instep must always point the direction your pushing off to get this effect of using your legs. Having a low stance, creates an angle in the leg that then projects that momentum forward. Proper foot position, and stance low enough to create an angled velocity is where power comes from. All power punchers shifted. Tyson for example would always dip his right shoulder over his left leg before throwing a left uppercut. He’s always push off his feet where throwing straight shots. The only time he two legged punched was when he’d gazelle punch which was first used by floyd patterson. Power comes from mass times velocity. Velocity coming from momentum from the ground up. That doesn’t happen from hip rotation. It comes from proper shifting and utilization of the legs. Hips just allow the arm to finish the transfer of energy. They don’t produce the energy. Very flawed information you’re giving.
Very many points to address here. You seem quite set in your opinions but for all others who want my reply, here it is:
1) “KNEES BENT” – this technique does not require any more knee-bending than with any other punching technique. Besides…I haven’t heard of any punching technique that DOESN’T use at least a minimal amount of knee-bending.
2) “WEIGHT ON THE RIGHT FOOT” – having more weight on the right foot is awesome. It might sound counter-intuitive because the weight appears to be impeding your movement but the thing is you’re not trying to MOVE, you’re trying to GENERATE FORCE. Let’s say I wanted to apply force to a barbell (like during a benchpress). It would be easiest for me to apply force if the barbell was working against me with the help of gravity. Sure it’s more work for me, but at least that work will directly affect the barbell. If the barbell was lifting up away from me as I lifted, less force would be applied no matter how hard I tried. Going back to my opinion, YES, you want that weight on your right foot to give you the resistance needed for you to generate more power off the ground.
3) “BENDING OF THE LEFT KNEE” – you are talking in absolute terms here. It is very possible to throw a punch without reaching the full extension of your leg. Your upper body (mainly just the arms and shoulders) is what extends. Everything else stays relatively compact and moves very little. Yes, there is a big twist in the hips and extension of the legs, but you’re not supposed to do the point that you are at your full range of movement and can’t go any further.
4) “ALL POWER PUNCHERS SHIFTED” – this is a gross generalization. I don’t know what else to tell you other than to go to a boxing gym and ask a pro. There are many kinds of punches, some you shift, and some you don’t. You will use many different ones depending on the situation. To say that you should ALWAYS SHIFT, or NEVER SHIFT is silly. But it all depends on the level of the fighter. If we’re talking about a beginner here (as I mentioned in the article), then the basic advice will always be to shift. It’s in the same way that we tell beginners to NEVER NEVER NEVER drop their hands.
5) “POWER COMES FROM POSITION” – again…it’s a limited way of thinking. In a real fight, you’re throwing all kinds of punches from all kinds of angles. What I offer is one way of punching.
6) “VERY FLAWED INFORMATION” – I wrote this article to shed light on a way of thinking that is different from what is conventionally taught in gyms. Obviously, I succeeded because you’re reading about something you might not have tried doing. What’s important is not that you understand why it doesn’t work…but instead understand how it COULD WORK. What’s important is that you’re aware of a new method and the more different it is from yours, the more you could gain to benefit from this weapon. Sometimes the biggest secrets to things are exactly the things you would have never done or things you have been taught not to do. My best advice is to do it anyway and see for yourself.
On a last note. You advocate flaring of the elbow with a horizontal fist. To have the hand in full pronation “palm down” or full supination “palm up” requires the use of some intrinsic muscles of the forearm known respectively as the pronators and supinators. A punch is best thrown when these two muscle groups are in a balanced condition, i.e. when neither is dominating the other. An unbalanced condition occurs whenever there is full supination ” a classic uppercut” or full pronation “a classic corkscrew punch ending with the palm facing down. The most “neutral” position of the hand is best as far as balancing these two sets of muscles, and when punching with maximum force. The forearm/hand group is in a fairly neutral position when someone initially extends their hand to “shake hands” with someone else. (To use a clock face, the thumb of the right hand would be at approximately 11 o’clock.) This neutral position is optimum for energy transmission through the arm/forearm. Energy in a punch is a function of both the mass of the moving limb, and the speed at which the limb moves. Not only that, but when you flare the elbow, its like making a table with flared table legs. Put enough weight an its gonna give. The straight structure of the elbow being in has now been in line with the shoulder which has the body backed behind it. Hence no loss of energy or power through weakness of the elbow or wrist. Theres alot of history of why the old time boxing techniques were thrown to the side due to rules, and hand wraps and such. Also, a good example is mike tyson when he faught mitch green in the street. What happened? He fractued his metacarpal on one punch, yet with gloves no problems. This is 95 percent of boxers. Take off their gloves and they break their hands. No its not because they hit so powerfully that their hands can’t take it. It’s because the weak structure of the wrist. If you relax your hands to your sides, look what position your wrist is. Is it horizontal? No its vertical, to slightly diagonal.
You’re arguing against the turnover of the hands? There are a TON OF BOXING CHAMPIONS who use that. At this point, I’m already thinking all the training you had definitely didn’t come from a boxing gym.
You have some logical points regarding the structure of the wrist but to be brief, I’ll share just one reason with you why the turnover is still critical:
– PUNCHING ANGLE: you need the turnover to get certain punches in like overhand rights or diving left hooks. Otherwise, you’d be missing out on a wide range of punching angles. And as I’ve already said, this is only ONE reason why. There are plenty more reasons why horizontal-fisted punches are commonly taught. Boxing is not the same as karate or other martial arts. We have different moves, different techniques.
Old time boxing wasn’t as much action because they still hurt their hands when it hits a skull. But a naked fist will knock someone out much quicker too. Real fights are more damaging in everyway. Not many could have careers without hand protection. Either they would be too boring or they would have injured hands. Some of the old school technique went away because you could get away with blocking more with gloves. And sneaking a weak punch through was more effective in old rules than hitting hard because of the damage caused with a naked hand. Gloves force you to find ways to generate more power to be successful.
I hit the reply on wrong comment
I’m always open for debate. If you found I’m disrespectful in any way please tell me. It’s hard to convey the way you’re saying something over writing. Aswell if you believe I’m wrong, you’re more than open to say it. If you believe I am wrong I take no offense. That’s your opinion. I’m sure you believe my theories are flawed and where weak points are, thats fine. I have tried many ways of punching , and tried everyones theories. Go to the gym, tell someone to hold pads for me and try it out. Whatever feedback they gave me, I riddled it down to what was most powerful. If you lunge forward in a fencing way, you add enormous power to the punch instead of just standing there rotating. I’ve studied many martial arts, from wing chun to kung fu to muay chaiya to ring muay thai , so I’ve realized what works , and what doesn’t. If I may, take a look at this video to demonstrate better what my opinion is.
Look at the difference in power . Rotation vs movement. You can see first hand the extreme difference.
As far as structure of the arm. Before sport boxing, nobody punched horizontally. It came about once protection of the hands came into play, and they could get away with it. Yes champion boxers punched this way, but, those champion boxers hand gloves, and wraps. Soon as those come off, and you punch, broken hand. Hence the tyson example.
Heres another video demonstrating why.
Old school boxers hit like mules. It wasn’t till sport boxing changed, and was based on points did things start to change. 50 punches a second became more important then hard hitting. George foreman is a perfect example of the old school shift step style. Pure power.
Your comment proves my point…that you didn’t train in a boxing gym. Whatever method you believe is the best method…just know that it’s only one method. In an actual fight, you will have to use many to be effective.
The techniques in videos that you shared, effective as they may be, are still only a small representative of the huge range of techniques used in a boxing match. It doesn’t matter what you believe to be the best punch, a real fight will require ALL KINDS OF PUNCHES….vertical fists, horizontal fists, shifting punches, non-shifting punches.
Your point about broken hands is so incredibly misunderstood. Plenty of old timers broke their hands. It doesn’t matter who you are, amateur, champion, boxer, kickboxer. Any kind of fighter can break his hands for any reason:
– weak bone structure
– weak protection
– poor technique
– hitting a hard target (top of opponent’s head, opponent’s elbow)
– excessive trauma (long fights or over-training)
– unfortunate angle of punch impact (opponent moved when the punch landed causing the wrist or hand to be slightly out of alignment, or opponent blocked with his hard elbow)
There are so many reasons why a boxer’s hand can break (outside of his control) and for you to base it all on punching technique is ill-informed. To even suggest that Mike Tyson, a guy who trained with an old-school trainer Cus D’amato (one that lived through the eras you advocated), did not know how to punch properly is ridiculous.
The hands are made of many small bones. It is not MADE for delivering so much force every day for so many years. It doesn’t matter who you are or how well you trained…if you stressed your body to that point, it will give. Even a rock will break if you pound on it enough. I think it’s laughable that somebody with your opinion could go up to Floyd Mayweather, who has broken hand problems, and tell him his punching technique is bad.
I also hope you’re not trying to base your ideas on the Shaolin monks or hardcore kung-fu guys beating their hands on concrete everyday. That isn’t the same with how boxers train their punches. The monks are not fighting for their lives, they’re not even fighting. They’re hitting an even surface AND they have all the time to meditate and prepare before they throw the shot. A real fight is different, boxers are hitting a MOVING AND UNEVEN surface with only a split-second preparation. It’s very possible for many things to go wrong.
BTW: power is very much the focus today. If anything, power is more popular today than it was in the old days. Promoters nowadays only want fighters that hit hard. (You don’t see the likes of Nicolino Locche or Willie Pep anymore. Haven’t you heard of Rigondeaux being blackballed for boxing too much?) The casual spectators only watch fighters that come up with 90% KO ratios. For amateur boxing, yes, it’s definitely on the point system—and much harder to get KO’s because of the better headgear and safer standards today. But pro boxing is still very much about power. I have no idea where you got the idea that it wasn’t.
I agree with the guy above, but I also agree with you. Why not combine the two?? What if on a straight right, step with the left foot diagonally to open the right hip, and with the instep of the right foot facing forward ( top view, the feet would be the shape of an L , lower part being the right foot instep pointing forward , and left foot instep pointing directly right ) . Why not not, push off the right foot, after you opened the hip, to get more drive, put still be grounded to use both legs? Combine the best of both worlds aye ? 😀 what do you think johnny ? 😛
There’s nothing wrong with combining different techniques. In some cases you can, and in other cases you can’t. In regards to what jru said, he didn’t exactly bring up any new techniques except only to tear down what I suggested.
All I’m sharing in this one article is simply one method. If you’re altering it or changing it in any way, then it’s possible that you’re doing another technique.
If regards to what you suggested:
– Planting the feet in an L is possible but the main point is that you need to rotate your body somewhere somehow for power. Some people leave the feet and hips still and turn only the upper body. Others may will rotate the hips as well as the feet. It really depends what situation, what angle, and what weight distribution you’re using….everything has a strategic purpose.
– One problem with the L-placement you mentioned is that it’s not possible for everyone. Some people have very weak hip muscles and do not hold that position well. Their FEET might be positioned in the L-shape, but the structural form of their hips and legs may be compromised somewhere because they lack the flexibility or muscle strength to deliver power from that position.
How did I not bring up any new techniques? You’re a bold faced liar dude. I posted a response, to your response, along with 2 videos showing the techniques first hand demonstrated on a person. But, of course you deleted it, and put moderation approval on my comment. Amazing isn’t it. I was respectful with my comment, said to tell me if I wasn’t, and also adding proof of the technique. If you weren’t afraid of something proving your theory wrong, you would have allowed the comment approval. You did to my first comment, and I made sure to be respectful on my second. I can prove you wrong all day dude, with evidence. But unfortunately, you moderate only what makes you look good. Youtube, and here.
Let’s try this again. From what I read of your comment…you used pretty much all of your points to pick flaws out of the technique I shared in this post.
This was pretty much what I got from you:
– don’t bend the knees
– don’t put the weight on the right foot
– don’t straighten the left knee
– all power punchers are shifters
– power comes from position
Everything you wrote was basically a teardown of the technique I’m explaining in the article. I’ve already addressed every single one of your points and left it at that. If you’re going to insist on introducing a NEW TECHNIQUE, then you should present as is, instead of expecting me to derive it out of your point-by-point teardown of the technique I present here.
In regards to your moderated comment…sorry about that. My wordpress spam blocker automatically holds comments with links in them (to prevent spambots). I didn’t do that and I had no idea what you were talking about until just now when I checked the spam comments. I have since published the comment.
And yes, I do moderate my comments….just like every video poster that’s serious about his channel. You name it, they do it. (Million Styles Boxing, TripleVVV3, Fight Tips and more). We all talk about it among ourselves on Skype/Facebook chat. We don’t have time for disrespect or anything that even smells like disrespect. And if somebody is going to try and make us look stupid, even if it’s in an intelligent factual way, we actually might still delete it simply because it distracts from the message we are trying to send out.
But how can you say that 2 legged punching is the most poweful if you yourself have not studied a broad range of techniques and theories? You can’t say 2 legged is most powerful if you have not tried other theories from someone who teaches them correctly. I myself have tried to legged, to everything in between. The problem is hip rotation isn’t natural. If you have bad knees, you’d know this. If it was natural, people with bad knees could punch only using hip rotation no problem. You should take your own advice, and try other things before you say they’re wrong. Saying two legged punching is the hardest way to punch is saying everything else is weaker. But, you haven’t tried the other things to see whats hardest. You’re comparing to weight shifting punchers. There’s alot more than just weight shifting. There’s power stealing, kinetic energy, energy conservation, directional momentum, proper using of bodyweight, it’s not just, leaning over one leg, while the other side rotates, and it’s def not standing there on two legs. That sure is a good way to throw your arm out, but not your whole body. Your body has to move in order to get your bodyweight behind a strike. If power only comes from rotation, why do people step into jabs? Wouldn’t they just rotate and knock people out? No, because rotation doesn’t do that. That’s why they step. They don’t step with the rear, because it’s so far back, you can get momentum on it. But, if you applied that same stepping theory to the rear, you now have rotation+ momentum of your whole mass which can double or even triple your power. Just because champion boxers use the way you think doesn’t mean anything. There’s plenty of people out there who use other theories who hit harder, but haven’t gained notoriety because they didn’t pursue fighting. Not only that, but boxing is derived from fencing. It changed as sport boxing came to be. And , boxing originated from other martial arts. A good example is mike donovans book on boxing. Most of the blocks came from karate. You used to have to knock someone out, or the fight when on forever, so they had to hit like mules. Sport boxing came to be, and points is all that mattered. Speedy combinations were more important. The last of this era was dempsey, and he broke jess willards cheekbone, jaw, nose, ribs, and knocked his teeth out. Any new age boxer def has not accomplished this. Why else do you think boxing is dying? The older school power is gone. Now it’s arm punchers. Watch esnews, even some of the best boxing trainers say this. You don’t have to publish this if you don’t want to. I just had to make my point.
Everything I share on my website is in regards to boxing. It does not cover non-boxing techniques because I never learned to punch from any other art. If you have your own ideas of the best way to punch and you got that from some place outside of boxing, good for you. My focus is for boxing only, not a street fight, not an mma fight, or any other kind of fight. This website is for BOXING PURPOSES!
You’ve mentioned a ton of techniques that I don’t cover here because it wasn’t my focus. This article is to focus on one detail…it’s not even a complete technique for an entire punch. You are correct, there are many other variables when it comes to punching…just know that I’m simply not addressing them here.
At the very least, I can definitely say that you don’t completely understand the technique between the 2-legged punch. Because I do it without any problems regarding hip rotation or knees, etc. it feels very comfortable and very natural…and I’ve also been able to teach it to other fighters who use it comfortably to win fights. I’m quite confident you’re not doing what we’re doing, that’s for sure.
In regards to the jab. This is basic boxing 101. The jab is not a rotation punch. If you rotate on the jab, it becomes a left cross. Since you’re an expert, I’m sure you already know why you shouldn’t rotate on the jab. And you’ll know why boxers use the step instead for generating power (there are technical as well as strategical reasons for this).
In regards to the effects of 2-legged punching on the knees, I’ve already addressed up above and if you don’t understand what I said I’ll be happy to explain it again differently (just ask). Or you can go read it again in points #1 & 3 in my first reply to you.
Boxing isn’t dying. MMA is more popular but boxing is still pretty much alive and well if you ask me. It hasn’t been the premiere sport in a while…same way baseball lost it’s popularity over the years but it isn’t dead. Why is it that way, I have no idea, but to blame that solely on the lack of power is misguided.
Last but not least. If you disagree with a technique I share, go ahead and offer your opinion and share YOUR TECHNIQUE. But don’t go around saying stuff like, “You are wrong. You are flawed. Etc.etc.” That’s offensive, do you understand? Instead, just say, “Actually, I’ve found this technique ____ to be much more powerful because of ___, ___, and ___. Here’s how I do my technique.” And that’s it. Make your point and move on.
Ps I just read your response from earlier. You are so wrong it’s unreal. Before sport boxing they had no wraps. They never broke their hands because of the vertical fist. Once GLOVES , and WRAPS came to be, they could get away with punching horizontally. To say ” Cusdamato ” taught horizontal is rediculous. He taught sport boxers. If you take sport boxing, to self defense, you will break your hand. I myself am a victim of this. Sport boxing isn’t real fighting. They have gloves, and wraps. They don’t know how to properly align the fist because they get away with it due to WRIST support of wraps. If pro boxers are so powerful, why do they wear wraps then? If their wrists are so strong in that position, and it won’t break why the wraps? Old school they wore no wraps, and their hands never broke, or knuckles. My friend Daniel is a teacher at Muay thai international up north, and has been in more street fights then you can imagine. He’s never broke anything due to the vertical fist. It’s amazing, as soon as tyson glove came off, bang broken metacarpal. I thought damato taught him correctly? And to even bring up mayweather is a joke. Dempsey was noted as giving the worst beating in boxing history, if you studied boxing. He used all the old school techniques. I HAVE, trained at a boxing gym. And talked with guys of all backgrounds. Something you haven’t done. Boxing is very one dimensional. Against a kickboxer, you’re done. So to act as though its superior to all other martial arts as you say, like those ” shaolin guys “, is rediculous. Have you met a shoalin monk? Or been punched by a kung fu practitioner? Or wing chun? Or old school boxer?
I never said, “Cus D’amato taught horizontal”, you did that. I said that he lived through the old school eras and implied that he knew all about the old school boxing technique you advocate so much and through his own expertise trained one of the most exciting and powerful punchers of all time.
At this point, I don’t know how any boxer could take you seriously. You’re going to come on here and say sport boxing isn’t real fighting? And that boxers don’t know how to punch properly? And to insist that Mayweather’s abilities are a joke? And then call boxing a one-dimensional? Whether you’re right or wrong, you obviously have no respect for boxers.
I’ve met and sparred with plenty of kung-fu, wing chun, and other traditional martial artists. They came into my gym, got beat incredibly easy (even when we allowed some of them to kick), were humbled, and stayed around to learn. They had more respect for boxers than you did…perhaps, because they actually trained with some. I might not have trained with all other kinds of arts but I did train boxing (yes, with old school boxers)…which doesn’t seem to be like something you actually did. And here in this discussion, I’m going to trust the guy with boxing experience to talk about boxing techniques.
I can tolerate you offending me because you’re emotionally attached to this subject or have too much ego to let it go…but I’m not going to let you post if you’re going to offend boxers, past or present.
I guess thats the difference. I train for real fighting, you train for sport fighting. Apples to oranges.
Boxing, IS NOT real fighting. In a real fight, I’d thai kick your sciatic nerve until your legs are like jello. If you punch, you block , and kick from a distance wherever you are open. If you dodge, I’ll set you up with a fake punch to get a clinch on you, and then throw knees. If you get to close, I’ll take you to the ground. If you hook, you can block and arm lock. Boxing isn’t real fighting. That’s why james toney tried real fighting in the UFC, and got whooped. There’s many boxers who have came out of retirement, tried full contact fighting, and got whooped. It’s not real fighting. And , who cares about mayweather? He stands there all day, shoulder rolling. If you do that in a real fight, your whole back is exposed to a thai kick. Ps. You don’t know me, so don’t say crap about me. I compete professionally out of southern california in muay thai. Just because someone got beat at your gym, says nothing. If all depends on the practioner. I’m sure there’s boxers getting beat in your gym by other boxers. Does that mean boxing doesn’t work? No. I’ll leave it at that. You’re very disrespectful. You aren’t all knowing, or else you would have your own gym, or compete professionally. Peace.
– “Boxing is not real fighting because boxers can’t beat kickboxers.”
– “Boxing is not real fighting because James Toney (a pure boxer) lost an MMA fight in the UFC.”
– “Boxing is not real fighting because Mayweather only does the shoulder roll, which leaves him exposed to a thai kick.”
– “Just because somebody from one art beats another person from another art means nothing.” (WAIT A SECOND…didn’t you just make the point that James Toney got beat by MMA fighter?! Hmmmm.)
– “You’re very disrespectful. You aren’t all knowing, or else you would have your own gym, or compete professionally.”
Oh man, I think you’ve won this discussion for sure. I can’t compete with your flawless logic. Congratulations. 🙂
”Tried real fighting in the UFC”
Sorry bud but i dont think 2 half naked guys rolling around on the floor is ‘real fighting’, i’m pretty sure that’s a subcategory on PornHub.
Hi johnny I have a question for you =) I read a cool analogy ( I think that’s what its called ) 😛 About punching, and do you think its true? The guy said, people think you have to move forward to get bodyweight in a punch, but you don’t. It’s a car getting hit by a train. It got hit by only the front car, but because it had all the other cars to back it up, the front car was the route of delivery of all that weight. This is true isn’t it? You don’t have to move to get bodyweight in a punch? 😛
Yes, I agree with the message behind analogy except only I would phrase it differently. But yes, you don’t need to actually move your body forward, the extend part of your body (the fist) can project the force while your body stays behind.
Cool, yea im sorry I accidentally wrote it wrong, i meant the cars of the train =) thanks for responding =P
I have a question for you please. When i throw the right straight, should the left foot only rotate so that the toes are pointing forward? It seems like when i over rotate ( right foot toes are almost pointing to my left foot, the power seems gone! Why is that? It seems you only need small hip rotation for power, i didn’t realize that. Also i did a test, and your theory is right. If you push a wall, and pretend its a stalled car, the strongest way to push force at the wall is when your on the ball of the feet with even distribution 😛 cool stuff :PP
Ooops sorry I meant the right foot rotate not left. When i throw a straight right, the right foot overotates, and the power seems to go when i do that. But if i rotate so my right foot points forward only , the punch has more power. Also i meant not both feet ball of foots i meant the foot of the puncing side is ball of foot :PP excuse my english please 😛
Hey johnny , whats up 🙂 . From what I’ve been taught , power comes from Newtons third law – every action has an equal and opposite reaction. If the surface pressed against is not solid at least some of the opposite force returned will be reduced due to the compressing action. This is why running on soft sand is harder work than running on solid ground. In punching when standing, the feet are usually in contact with the ground and so are able to take advantage of ground reaction force. Of course, the body has to be aligned to the target and connected efficiently for the force to be delivered to the target. If there is a weak spot in the body it is not connected correctly and power is lost at this point. If you imagine the ball of the foot in contact with the ground, but there is some give in the foot when you press into the floor to begin the drive from the foot some power is lost, similar to pressing against a surface that is not solid. When you use ground reaction force properly, the force applied by pushing off the ground is then applied back to you, and travels up through the body, and out of the fist. Being flat footed, and ” pushing ” off the ground is the best way of doing so. Combine this with what is called ” power stealing ” as jru said = Power Stealing is making use of energy in the universe that you are not supplying aka Gravity. The push off leg serves as the way of transmitting ground reaction force through the body, and the other legs purpose is of power stealing. As you lift it, gravity pulls you down, put the forward momentum you gained from ground reaction force turned it into punching power. The same theory applies to the arm. If there’s weakness in the wrist or natural alignment, majority of your potential power is lost, and you don’t even realize it. That’s why some people punch diagonally. It’s how your arms naturally lay by your sides, the turning over of the fist weakens the natural structure of the arm, and wrist hence the energy loss. This is what I’ve been taught anyway. Doesn’t make it right, but I thought I’d give my perspective on a different side of punching. Healthy discussion going on, so I thought I’d chime in. Just my opinion anyway 🙂 Keep up the good work 🙂
It’s a valid point you make, Mike and the turnover of the fist is supposed to HELP this natural structure of the arm during the punch. But I’ll back-track for 2 seconds so we can see the full picture.
There are 2 reasons why boxers commonly use the horizontal fist:
– 1) TACTICAL – a horizontal fist allows for different punching angles, especially the overhands
– 2) TECHNICAL – a horizontal fist allows for a more natural and more effective arm support during power transfer (under certain conditions)
The first one is irrefutable. Different fist positions allow for different angles. Notice how the palm facing down gives you overhand angles, palm facing up gives you uppercut angles. The way you position your fist greatly influences the angles at which you can deliver a punch.
Now the second reason, we can debate. Or at least I can share my thoughts. The turnover of the fist will give you more support in certain moments. For example….if your weight is more on your back foot, you will feel it’s more anatomically natural to have your palm facing more upwards (notice how an overhand punch thrown with the weight staying on the back foot feels really awkward). But if your weight is more on the front foot, you will feel it’s more anatomically natural to have your palm facing more downwards.
So my point is not that the horizontal fist is always better or should always be used but that there is a range of positioning in the body that makes the horizontal fist the more natural and more effective technique. Of course, you can always train out the natural and make a case for doing other things. But I explain this because well…..just about every trained boxer already does it, and quite effectively, too. Old schools guys, new school guys, they all did it.
Very interesting ! You make very valid points johnny 🙂 I have problems with my hips, so I”ve tended to go the ” old school ” route you could say. I haven’t got a chance to really try 2 legged to its full potential because of my hips. I had hyperparathyroidism so my bones and joints are weak atm so it hurts like hell for me, thats all! But to each his own ya know? Nobody’s wrong, all techniques have validity 🙂 Just thought I”d give my two cents! Doesn’t make it right, just my opinion is all ! Thanks for the response! Keep up the good work ! 🙂
Actually, Mike, if you’re having hip problems 2-legged punching will be much better for you. Having 2 grounded legs allows you to use ground with both sides of your hips and offer you more stability (whereas being one leg often floats the other side and doesn’t support it). Try this, ground both legs AND your hips when you punch. Don’t worry too much about the hip rotation or feet rotate. Set your feet, ground, and hit.
Wow never thought of that! I’ll give it a shot johnny, thanks for in the input! I appreciate it!! 🙂
Hey johnny! I gave it a shot, and I figured out what was wrong! Because I was punching with a vertical fist, it was screwing up my hip rotation! I’m not exactly yet why this is, but if your a 2 legged puncher, that fist has to rotate! Old school the vertical works, but not for hip rotation! Who woulda thought? Do you know why johnny? Thanks buddy! 😀
I’ve been able to rotate using a vertical fist. It really depends on the angle of the punch. Some angles will require different adjustments in your body and everyone’s body is different. What’s important is that you find what works for you.
With that being said, a vertical fist keeps the elbow down longer. And especially if you’re doing a full rotation, you might feel like your right shoulder is coming far out which shortens the range and that there isn’t enough time for the elbow to come up and support your punch. You’ll notice that some close-ranged punches will feel more powerful if you rotate your fist and bring up the elbow faster.
Hey johnny ! 🙂 I just wanted to comment on something. I find the easiest way to make sure you’re to legged punching is to step first, and then throw. If you think about it, the lower your stance, your legs start to angle instead of being straight up like your stance article on how to low will apply more force to your thighs which isn’t good ” , but I find that due to that angle of the legs from being low, in inhibits you from only being on one leg. Both legs are applying force to your center of gravity, so if you tried to one legged punching it wont work cus the angle of the leg will push you back to center again 😀 If your upright, you can shift because the angle of the leg doesn’t force you to stay centered, but when your low the angle of the legs doesn’t allow you to shift to either leg. Just my 2 cents 😛 maybe it can help somebody get a feel for this if they’re a beginner? 😛
It’s a good theory but in reality, you want both legs under you. And you shouldn’t have to worry about falling over because you’re still sending your force inwards and downwards. In your situation…what you described could still very much be a one-legged punching technique except only you cheated so that you couldn’t fall off balance. This is actually a common problem against beginners, too. They don’t know how to keep their force balanced and so they are forced to use a wide stance which comes its own limitations.
The bottom line, learn how to throw balanced punches. Simply because you use a wide stance doesn’t guarantee your punches are balanced and truly “two-legged”.
If you push something, you’re actually pushing with one leg, and the other one is there for balance. Push pulling with the legs isn’t possible. Stand in your regular stance against a wall, push with your right hand and pull with your left leg, and relax the right. You can’t pull with that leg, or else your knee will lock out. You’ll just feel pressure in your hip because it gets jammed. Now thats its jammed it acts a support base, and your right leg does all the work. Also if you’re on the ball of your foot you deactive your quads, and only use the calf. Flat footed activates the whole leg. Go up to a wall. Regular stance. Now your back foot, point your instep towards the wall. Your toes will be directly right instep pointly directly straight. Now , push the wall while pushing off the back foot. Now try it on the ball of the foot it doesn’t work. So not only are you not using Ground Force Reactions like the guy above said, but you aren’t using 2 legged punching. And no, putting weight on the foot isn’t ” adding leverage ” you’re slowing yourself down. If I had a weight mid arm, and threw a punch do I hit harder due to the added ” leverage “? No , it just slows you down.
This is a good point and one that’s easily addressed using a different visualization. We have to look at how one sees the motion of the punch. Some people visualize the steady movement of the hand starting from the chin extending all the way out until impact. Others visualize the relaxed release that lulls until the sudden impact of weighted impact.
If you’re visualization is more of the first example….then it’s very easy to see that the CRITICAL moment of the punch is during the MOVEMENT of the body. In this case you will think of the punching technique as a way of driving force through the opponent.
On the other hand, if your visualization is more of the second example…then it’s very easy to see that the CRITICAL moment of the punch is during the HARDENED TENSION of the body. In this case you will think of the punching technique as a way of maximizing explosive force at the moment of impact.
This distinction is critical because it changes the way you use the technique. Back to what you were saying…by suggesting that it’s impossible to “push AND pull” with the legs…I assumed you were thinking of using the push/pull movement to PUSH the force through. (It’s obvious how I know you’re visualizing it because you were actually trying to push your hand through a wall.) But instead, I want you to use the push/pull movement to make an explosive impact. You’re using these opposite forces to STOP. It’s a way of hardening your body the same way you harden your fist. This “STOP” is what creates a powerful explosive effect within your own body (mainly your core)….and then because you timed it to happen at the same moment the fist has impacted, it has a great effect.
Ps. That article is from a boxing power punching expert. He says he uses your way as an example of what NOT to do?
It doesn’t bother me at all what he says. He’s explaining a different technique…and well, obviously this technique here would be the “wrong” way to do HIS technique. I myself explain many ways to do many things. And even my own guides can contradict themselves. Any intelligent being could easily see that I’m sharing different ways of thinking.
Imagine if we talked about the best offense-to-defense ratio for an effective fighting strategy:
– should it be 50% offense and 50% defense?
– or how about 75% offense and 25% defense?
– or how about 75% defense and 25% defense?
It depends on who the fighter is. It depends on who the fighter is facing. At the end of the day does it really matter what he uses as long as he’s winning? Is there even such a thing as THE OFFICIAL BEST WAY EVER?
Whichever methods you believe in, if you only believe in doing things one way, you’ve pretty much screwed yourself. I’ve learned many and so I work to share many. And while sharing each method, I work hard to maintain the integrity and key differences of each one. Learning how they are different and how they can be used differently is what makes a great fighter.
PS: I don’t see any references in there to him ever having done any boxing for any extended period of time.
Actually he has probably about 30 books on power punching, fighting , offense , and defense, and trains elite real life and spoort fighters. I understand what you’re saying but its very basic in terms of hitting hard in which you do say 2 legged is the best when it isn’t if you’ve studied power punching, and not just have done what your past trainer said was best. massx V, if you dont move your mass its arm weight times V. You’ll never two legged punch. It’s not possible, simple body mechanics.
To me you can knock someone out your way , yes. But to me and the world of physics and anatomy \ structure it isn’t 🙁
Ohhhhhhhh i didnt see your reply up there!! okay now it makes more sense to me 🙂
I enjoy your article a lot. Very clearly and nicely explained.
Now, I understood why I like Ike Quartey, Ricard Lopez and dislike Ray Lenord.
I switch up between one and two legged punching. There is no question that when I move my body weight into the punch with the one leg approach that it hits harder. When I do the one legged punch, I focus on moving my hips in the direction of the impact. I still don’t let my head get past my knee, and I get a recovery on a miss that doesn’t throw me off. When I see people who get thrown off with one legged strikes, it’s usually because the don’t keep their hips in the direction of the strike and recovery. The arms are should just be there to guide the hands into the target and the hips have to be preconditioned to whip back. Emphasis on preconditioned.
I don’t know if it is because my two legged approach is bad or what, but the only use I’ve really had for it is quick shots when I’m trying to be fast in straight shots.
When I go for hard shots in a combo like ‘jab, cross, hard hook to the body’ I seem to be better off following through with the cross and shifting my body weight forward and then exploding out and into with the body shot.
I use the body weight shifting when I’m setting up a combo especially when I’m slipping. However if I’m out in the open I stay 50/50. My movement would be too hampered if I let the weight get too off center. When I use body weight shifting in a combo, I start and end at 50/50. Move, combo, move…rinse, repeat.
Is this going to be a problem? I don’t want to untrain bad boxing habits later. I’ve got enough trouble undoing kickboxing now.
I’m asking because I know that I don’t really know what I’m doing, but I also know what’s working now. My opinions are based off of the way things feel, and the way things feel are influenced by a decade of being able to kick, knee, and elbow for damage with punches just there for distraction.
Without being able to see what you’re doing, what I can recommend for you is to keep training and improving what you have. You will always find better ways to throw punches. Some punches are thrown from the “one-legged” position, others from a “two-legged” position, it depends on what you’re doing and the situation you’re in. Strategy and technique go hand in hand.
This is great, gave it a try and I realized I always punched with 2 legs on my right cross (my most powerful punch) and I’ve been punching with one leg on my hooks. With my right I’ve learned to maintain balance but my left hook has always been terrible because of this, my old trainer Dick Eklund always told me to dig but I never fully understood. Understanding the body really does wonders for technique and makes things so much easier, you just helped me fix one of my biggest problems, thank you
Sorry if you went over this but there’s a lot of comments on this article. After learning two foot punching it helps me understand that if I have to fall into a punch it means I’m out of range, aside from the jab which is pushing forward. This helps me understand why pros use the jab so much, and rarely lead with anything else. I have been taught the lunging uppercut so I know that punch uses two legs, but with the lunging hook is that a one legged punch or two? Basically what I want to know is if there is a way to avoid falling into punches all together, but still using every punching tool
The lunging hook can be throw from either a one-legged or two-legged position. It depends on what situation you’re in and what you want to do. Both can work and both can cause damage.
I’ve studied punching extensively, and without a doubt this is the only way to power punch. Unless you’re grounded you can’t deliver a punch end of story.
How are you doing coach, I just want to say first of all great videos man! You really help alot of people likeme who want to tweak little bits that make a big difference. I just have one question that’s been bothering me.
See, I’ve been training in Muay Thai for over a year now, and Thai boxers generally have thei stance short almost as if standing straight up which contrast to the boxing stance of having your stance slightly wider and knees bent to act as a spring.
I’ve chosen a stance that’s not too close lest you compromise balance and power, but not too wide wheress in a Thai boxing fight your legs would be kicked to hell, but somewhere generally in between, where my legs are directly under me.
Which brings me to my question sir. How far should you actually pivot your foot when throwing for example a lead hook? I’m a huge boxing fan and Floyd Mayweather is definetly in a class by himself. He seems different from other fighters, I watched him work the bag earlier on a youtube video, and too me it seems like his pivots are very subtle and hard to really see. He was however punching the bag rather light, is it just one of those technique over power things or does he not pivot much because of his reliance on his timing and accuracy as his power shots?
I just don’t want to be really turning over on my punches and compromising balance for power you know and prefer to actually find out the science behind it.
Appreciate you reading! Great article by the way, always so much great information.
Have you ever seen any Thai boxing matches before?
A lead hook can have a full 90-degree pivot or even none. It all depends on what you want. As for subtle pivots, pros are very well trained that they can generate tons of power with very little movement. As for punching the bag light, many pros will do that to save their hands. They don’t care for power because yes, they use timing and accuracy anyway. That isn’t to say that they don’t have power…it’s just that they already perfected that and want to work on higher-level things. Developing power is one of the easiest things to work on.
I have seen Thai boxing matches before, they’re a lot of fun.
Fantastic instructional video! You’re tremendously clear and persuasive regarding the benefits of two-legged punching. Thank you!
Going to stick with Jack Dempsey’s advice on this one.
If you try multiple things and picked one that you liked better because it worked better for you, that’s smart. If you straight up disregarded a new (and potentially better technique or approach/interpretation) because you’ve decided on your own without knowing for sure (from previous experience), you risk missing out on your own skill development.
Maybe this doesn’t apply to you…but I’m sure there are some who could benefit from this message.
This article really didn’t seem revolutionary to be so much as validating how I punch. Allow me to explain.
When I was a kid, I got into Isshin Ryu Karate. While I couldn’t stick around because I really didn’t fit into the idea “one strike, certain death” and point-break sparring, I did continue to practice all punching for the rest of my life with the rapid hip movements from karate. Youtube Naihanchi Kata if you want to see what this is all about. The okinawan’s call it, “gamaku” where you drive the twist up from the feet into the hips, then snap out the punch. You corkscrew your body around your centerline, your fist extending out like a whip at the apex of the movement. The good practitioners also clench everything hard for the split-second of impact along the strike’s structure. They call it “chinkuchi”.
In comes boxing and the classic falling step instruction, and I can’t help myself but stay balanced instead of lean into the punch. I take the step, initiate the weight shift, then violently twist my hips. Karate doesn’t use a shoulder roll, but adding it in just seems to stack one more ounce of speed, power and range. A few days of practise and I had that nasty karate habit of leaving the punch out ironed out forever.
The thing was I knew I didn’t look like a lot of other people around me when I was punching. I was actually trying to stop the hip snapping and lean harder in order to see the weight transfer like other people. The funny thing is, the way I did it, I was faster and my punches felt so “easy” smacking the heavy bag with a nice crispness that shook the bag instead of pushed it. I gave up on changing quite a while ago. Then I read this!
There have been a pile of comments on this one, and someone above (too lazy to scroll) pointed out Mayweather did a lot of subtle pivoting. I’ve noticed he isn’t alone in the subtle category among the pros. It seems to me, the real ‘secrets’ in punching are in the subtle things, not the gross things like shifting your weight back and forth in an obvious way.
@David. Jack Dempsey was a great fighter. It was also 60+ years ago. I’d really like to think we’ve advanced boxing at least a tiny bit since his time. His book is a great read anyway!
wow, the more I try this the more sense it allllll makes. Everything has gotten better from punches to defense. Even my step 1,2. Using the left hip to pull back while the right side is recovering from the step adds a lot more power. I noticed that when I stop trying to shift weight I found a ton of leverage. Please, keep the secrets coming.
I’m so happy for you, griff. Good on you for trying it out. 🙂
I read this article yesterday. I’ve always shifted my weight from one leg to the other. I thought I was smart for doing it that way. Worst part is I’ve actually demonstrated it to a few people and told them to shift their weight too. I practiced two legged punching last night, and yeah definitely so much better. I’m not good enough at it to gain that much additional power yet, but the balance is so much better. It usually takes me an extra moment to recover after throwing a hard right since all my weight and power shifts heavily to my front left leg. I’m gonna keep at this and really focus on pushing with the quad on the punching side and contracting the hammy on the other side. Thanks for breaking this down, Johnny. In my experience, no one else in boxing is breaking down these subtle details of the sport like you do here.
Hahaha…I’ve definitely taught incorrect techniques to friends before. Good on you for keeping an open mind and evolving out of it. 😉
The last set of photos shows how much more limited your reach is if you don’t shift your weight. I guess it depends on when you’re at arms length vs toe to toe trading ko punches.
What difference does it make if you’re leaning in to get 5 extra inches but hitting with 50% less force? Again…this article is about punching power. Not punching reach…not scoring punches…not punching strategy.
Johnny, i have a doubt.
I had some months of boxing training in the army, and now i’m a beginner in kung fu, and the punches are exactly the same. One difficulty i have, is for the hook. My trainer said you can’t pull your arm too far from your body to reach the side of the chin, because you’ll open your guard. So i was shifting weight to the left leg (for a left hook) and then shifting back to the right leg as i punched, so i could hit the cross easier.
But you said to never shift weight during the punch.
In this case of hooks, how should i punch without opening my guard and without shifting weight?
PS1: your site’s content is great, congratulations. I really like the technical aproach of boxing you have
PS2: i have exactly the same chair as you lol
Watching MANY fights from the BEST Fighters can help you analyse their movements, especially if you put some of their Movements on SLOW MOTION to study each details of how they Punch and everything else’s … I Learned a lot through watching variety of Boxing Matches from 1970’s to 2014 . Watch it to learn from the Best of the Best is beneficial . Fact . You will see similar techniques and different ones and that makes Boxing an Amazing Art .
Brilliant explanation! Just dusting off the cobwebs shadow boxing and I realized how “falling” onto one foot didn’t feel as good for defense/recovering after a right cross vs staying centered and twisting. I knew I needed some advice as my current beliefs on punching were flawed. Googled “right cross punch” and stumbled here. Your words on two legged punching, rotation, grounding, and lining up your target with your right foot suddenly made PERFECT sense. And revealed how beginner my mindset was on power punching technique. Can’t thank you enough for posting this! Gonna work my timing and get this down for all my strikes. Patiently awaiting Secret #2!
Happy for you, Chris! 🙂 I know how it feels to go from one-legged to two-legged.
This article is spot on, the same concept applies for other sports as well. For example, when you swing a golf club or baseball bat or tennis racket. Your balance and true power is all in the rotation of the hips or the spine as Johnny says. Great article Johnny!
Hi Johnny, hi guys!
Recently I’ve been doing some “geeky” researsh about body mechanics in martial arts. And one of the most important moments about this in eastern martial arts is a concept of Tanden. It’s a some kind of “Point Of Gravity” of the body – just 2 inches below umbilicus and inside the low abdomen. In “our western worlds” – that’s where the “real” core is!
Since I’m mainly do boxing, I’m figured out that boxing movements use the same aspects – but we don’t use the same terminilogy. When we rotate the body, or dropping the weight like it’s said in this article – we use our muscles to “move” around the Tanden.
Actually, there is physical explanation of what goes on: http://www.aikidorepublic.com/aikiphysics/ki-power
Sorry for probably bad language, but I’m very fascinated about “integrating” the eastern concepts in western schools of fighting for now.
What do you visualize or think about during the 2-legs punching Techniques ?
You think and focus on your core to keep center or you visualize your spine as a line to stay center?? Please give me an idea of how to visualize it better…give me a part that I can focus on to increase how hard how to rotate….like legs first or think of core focus or hips, what part of your body you focus on in your mind, “during” that 2 leg rotation while still staying centered ?? Thanks
I stay in the center. I keep my spine in the center or slightly towards the front or slightly towards in the back leg (depending on the situation). It’s not only using my core but also my legs/feet. If you think about your legs and feet, there’s only one place your body can be and that is the center.
Thank You . I appreciate your time Johnny.
Do you actually grab the floor with your feet during rotation ??
or just rotate without grabbing the floor with feet like a cat claiming a tree … ??
it “feels” like grabbing the floor slows down rotation but increase power…
Anything I do is going to have to feel good and functional. With that said…if you feel like anything you do isn’t helpful, then you either shouldn’t do it or at least not do it that way.
If we don’t grab the floor with our feet then I don’t understand the concept of Boxing Shoes . Anyways thanks for your time . I’m just a perfectionist in what I do .
hai you are correct
Johnny, THANK YOU !!!!!!!!! you are 100% right . The BEST is to keep your body and Weight Centered, with 50-50 between each legs . Its actually better than putting our weight in the front leg or back leg .
unless,we are in some specific circumstances . but 50-50 on each legs has raise my Boxing skills, power, and balance . you may become the next Freddy Roach if opportunity present itself .
Golovkin DOES shift his Weight from a leg to the other . Meaning that all his Weight, shift from a leg to the other . I analysed him on the Pads . I’m starting to wonder if even so there is a basic Boxing Theory, fighters do their thing differently as for what work for them . Also skinning taller fighter seem to use a different techniques than shorter, more muscular fighters . It seems like athletism or body type affect the different techniques used . Even so there is a Tradtional Boxing technique . Lean fighter have no choice but to adjust with techniques because they not as strong as shorter more stocky fighters that sometimes seems more focus on brutal strength in their “Style” . Other words, depending on our body types, we do things differently (partially) . Best is to look at Champions and watch them on the pads or fights with slow motion at times …
Hey man, hopefully you don’t publish this because it adds nothing to the conversation or anything, but I was one of the guys up there in the comment section who was an arrogant, know it all, rude, asswipe, and most of all COMPLETELY WRONG. It probably doesn’t mean anything, but I really want to apologize to you. People grow up, and I read those comments and get sick to stomach of how much of an immature prick I was. All the best bro, and I’m learning a whole lot from you. I’m in london these days; really good gyms out here, and I try to practice these techniques in sparring. Easier on the bag, but I’m working on it. They really work man, Cheers.
Thanks for this, Johnny. I have a question, if you have the time and don’t mind, I’d really appreciate any help you could offer me. So, I think I have the movement down; it feels good, pretty much what I’d been starting to do subconsciously/what my coach has been trying to lead me in to, with small corrections here and there.
My concern is with the stiffness of my lower body. My arms, shoulders, spine and back are loose; but my calves feel a little tight and my quadriceps feel like bricks when I commit to this kind of punch. Is this tightness normal? I don’t know if it really affects my speed and I can feel more power; my concern is more with the energy expenditure. Should I try and loosen my upper body, or continue training with the heavy legged feeling and not worry about it? I feel so much more balanced like this, and my upper body feels like it’s working even less now; so I know this is the right direction, I just need to know if I’m getting it right. Thank you, Johnny.
~Your Reader, Brian
Try not bending your knees as much. A slight bend is all you need.
All right, I’ll start working on it in the gym tomorrow. I really appreciate it.
How am I engaging the Hamstring in the standing leg? through my hips ?
Hey Johnny, great article i loved it. But when are you gunna write part 3?
Hi Kurt, that isn’t on the priority list right now but I definitely do have more punching tips on their way.
Great tips bro.. bt after throwing punches my lower back is aching especially after a heavy bag workout. ..is it normal or am I using a bad technique
Great tips bro…bt after throwing some powerful punches or after a heavy bag workout my lower back is paining. …is it normal or am i boxing with a bad technique? ??
Does this require more stamina? Or just more coordination? It works great on the bag, but it seems like getting in on a moving opponent I seem to be forcing it a lot and using a lot more energy. Also is this actually being taught, or do experienced fighters just naturally pick it up on their own, like if you train long enough the body finds the best way on its own? I know cus da Mato taught to punch on two legs, but no other tutorials do guys don’t mention this. Is it possible that fighters do things without even being able to explain what is making them successful? Some obviously can explain. For example Nonito Donaire explained why a lot of fighters don’t have the power he has. He says they do the motions of putting their lower body into it, but they rotate lower body and then upper body not letting the momentum of lower and upper hit at same time.
If you do it right, it actually requires less stamina and less coordination. One-legged punching takes more energy and coordination because you have to work hard to make everything stay together and impact at the same time. As explained in the article, 2-legged punching is not taught to beginners because they need to learn how to shift weight with their entire body at the same time. And once they get past that point, they eventually learn how to minimize the weight shift making it more and more subtle until it becomes 2-legged punching since your weight stays more in the middle. And yes, very possible that many guys learn how to do these things instinctively without being taught.
Please finish part #3 and #4 and on and on these are great insights for the amateur like myself!
I love reading your articles , you obviously have deep insight in boxing.. once I’m done reading all your free articles I’m definetly going to buy the Secrets to power punching you got that let’s me have access to everything . I have learned more here than any of the books or trainers. I have had 5 total and three different gyms and four books
That’s such great news, Derrick! Will be great to have you in our program. Lots of experienced fighters in there, too.
I dont get the perfect stance when i do hooks and uppercuts as johnny sir gets when he does the same. Sir please help me and explain the reason.
What’s wrong with your stance?
This was very good advice.
Thanks for putting in a lot of time and effort explaining your principles, how to do them and why. There is so much cross-over in regard to the principle and practice of rotating the two side axes around the central axis between boxing and other martial arts, not always known or taught but definitely there and definitely known by practitioners who are good.
I’m presently training in Chiang Mai, Thailand so I make do with the best that I can find and though the expectation is that Muay Thai is their primary art and it undoubtedly is, MMA due to the UFC is becoming A LOT more popular. Grappling and BJJ were obvious arts that my trainers wanted to learn but what was a moderate and pleasant surprise is that they also brought in “American Boxing” as they call it here because very genuinely and objectively they just said “American Boxing” has better punches than Muay Thai because they specialize in it.
In grappling whether wrestling, judo, BJJ etc, we eventually learn to rotate around our central axis too so that we maximize our balance and power. Funnily enough we call it “falling” or “dropping” power but we call it that because it feels as if our weight is “falling” into the base of our central axis in coordination with balanced rotation. It also feels like our weight is falling into the soles of our feet. We’ve had some wingtsun and other “internal” art practitioners come through here too and the ones that know the principle and how to develop it can kick using the same principle of rotating around their central axis and you can test their stability by shoving their shoulder or chest as they kick. If they’re doing it right they don’t fall back the kick continues to cut through. Someone further up on the thread made the comment that the planted foot stops the rotation but if done this way the rotation isn’t around the side axis but the central and the power comes from looseness of the psoas of the kicking leg so that it can rotate freely around the central axis. Anyways just thought I’d add my 2 cents to this very interesting thread.
I very much appreciate your efforts friend!
He is shifting AKA one legged punching
I have something that might help. I read this twice and I still didn’t really see where you explain actually how to punch on 2 legs. Like you said have weight on both feet during punch’s ones pushing and the other pulling. Yea that’s what we need to do but how do we actually do that…? if you get what I’m saying. This is where my hep comes in you had said “it’s only possible if your weight is perfectly balanced.”
I tried this at home. to be on my toes while in a boxing stance I was required to put weight on both feet to stay on balance on the both feet. I did feel increases in power and speed. you can’t be on your toes without applying weight unless your able to hold your body weight on one of your foots toes for some time. In turn with forcing you to put weight. You punch with that weight when you generate power from rotations. Did that help? So pretty much be on our toes.
Hello i just read this article very interesting.. It took me 1 year to learn how to reach an opponent in 2012 while preparing for white collar and my trainer showed me also the 2 foot punch.. When i learned it barely touch the guy and blow him back 20yards.. Totally blew my mind..