Offence- The 6 Punches
A direct offensive move is simply to initiate engagement with your opponent. This is called ‘leading’.
You’ll often hear coaches screaming to their fighters ‘be first’ during competition when their is a lull in action!
The jab is considered to be the best and safest lead for a direct offense since is requires the least amount of distance to reach your opponent and requires the least amount of movement of all punches.
However, a lead cross or hook can also be very effective if set up properly. Keep in mind that a telegraphing jab can be a boxer’s worst enemy!
Pillars of Defense
Footwork. Blocks. Head Movement. Clinch.
In boxing it can be said that there are 2 kinds of defense.
Aggressive defense is to evade your opponent’s punches in order to land your punch(es) immediately afterwards. This is counter-punching. Boxing jargon: Make him miss, make him pay!
Passive defense is to avoid your opponents punch (es) in order to escape and disengage from combat completely although momentarily.
The 4 Dimensions of Fighting
In developing your boxing skills there are no shortcuts! You must commit to perfecting your technique through excessive repetition under the guidance of an expert coach. In the beginning your movements will be stiff and excessive and this is normal.
The goal of constant repetition is to establish the correct neural pathways into your central nervous system such that you can perform the action without conscious effort. This is exactly how you learned how to walk, ride a bike, type on your laptop etc. In boxing we call this ‘muscle memory’.
Here is a nice analogy of how we create neural pathways.
There are two kinds of martial artists: genuine and pseudo. I have many genuine martial artist friends and some of them have become my students in boxing while continuing to practice their respected martial arts. Genuine martial artists are humble and respectful and learn their craft well in order to benefit themselves and others.
A pseudo martial artist is one who promotes himself or his ideas for fame or profit in a misleading or false way. Some of these individuals may actually sincerely believe in what they are promoting, however just because they may be sincere, that doesn’t mean that what they are saying and doing is correct or true.
Boxing vs. Traditional Martial Arts
People often confuse boxing with martial arts and vice-versa. Boxing has various applications but is generally classified as a combat sport and not a martial art yet it does provide many of the same things that a martial artist seeks to gain both physically and mentally.
To help further clarify this popular topic lets begin defining each separately as knowledge begins with definition.
I have used Wikipedia’s simple matter of fact definitions so as to avoid the philosophical differences of the various martial arts and boxing. .