Sunday, October 5, 2008

Boxing Fundamentals: On Proper Boxing Defense

While boxing is almost all about aggression and offense, playing the aggressor is not always what it seems to be. Defense is also a key element among other boxing fundamentals and basics. That said, I need to explain to you the difference between offense, defense, and any mixtures of the two.

Way back in the previous articles, I explained to you how to throw a few boxing punches - jab, straight right, combinations. If you think in terms of combat or war - these are your weapons and they are used
in your offensive game.

You cannot win if you do not have an offense. It is impossible. You have to hit the other person if you want to win in boxing. Even in terms of fitness for those of you who want to learn how to box with no intention of fighting, without an offense, your workouts are going to be useless. You will burn very few calories. Of all the aspects of boxing, your offense is the most important.

So if offense is so important, why do I have to learn defense?

In a minute I'll get to that, but first you have to understand two concepts:

1. Momentum. In a literal sense, momentum is movement. Something has momentum if it is moving. A car has momentum if it is driving. A running person has momentum. It is simply movement.

In boxing, to have momentum is to be doing something and that something is generally working in your favor.

2. Initiative. Initiative is what controls the fight. If you have the initiative you are not reacting to what your opponent is doing, you are dictating to your opponent how the fight is going to go.

At all times you want to have both the initiative and momentum. This concept ties into additional lessons you will encounter as you learn how to box.
Now, on to why you need a defense.

The ultimate goal in boxing as I've said before is to hit without getting hit. If you've lost the initiative or momentum, then you are forced to adopt a defensive posture.

Here's the important thing to learn about boxing defense - it has to be a temporary state. You adopt a defensive posture in order to find an opportunity to regain the initiative. The longer you stay in a defensive mode, the more chance you have of losing the fight.

While in a defensive mode, you should be taking every opportunity to find an opening to launch a counterattack or preempt an attack. Only when you understand that you use defense to open opportunities for offense will you be successful.

Learning how to box is not purely based on offense, it is about opening and looking for opportunities where you can strike back and regain momentum and initiative.


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