Life Lessons in Boxing: The simplest combinations are the most effective

lesson 1

The only time throwing whatever punches and super cool combos really work to a KO is in Tekken where one would button bash the life out of a plastic remote. Otherwise in real life, where just throwing for the sake of punching can lead to open chins, liver shots and possibly hurting a wrist from a punch landing at the wrong angle.

I am not saying don’t be bold because wow it’s amazing when you try something different and it works. It’s a little triumph when your sparring partner even says “whoa that was good”. But what I’ve seen and heard a lot is …

“The simplest combinations are the most effective.”

Working with pads is probably my favourite out of it all. It’s just that “Find a partner” is still one of the most uncomfortable things I hear in the gym, by that I mean, pairing up is not to be taken lightly. Once I was paired up with a large Muay Thai fighter whose punches were as firey as his ginger beard. I will admit I liked that he didn’t hold back because I was a girl but holding a medicine ball and taking body shots from this guy sort of scarred me.

Now a days I have the coolest lady who I partner up with about 80% of the time. (She felt insulted I hadn’t mentioned her in these posts yet so here it is missy). Having a partner that you fall in sync with makes the combo practice easier and because she is a girl pants like me, it makes it fun too. In all honesty we do put on our serious faces and try the combos we are taught, we don’t play around. However when we make a mistake, we laugh it off. When we hit each other in the face, we stop and apologise. When we get the combo right, we do a little ‘oh yeah’ dance.

So back to the simplest combos lesson. As I was saying…

Working with pads is probably my favourite out of it all.

In the beginning it’s slow and if my brain is in Monday mode it’ll take a couple tries before I get the combo right. After that add speed and power that it becomes this amazing rhythm and the words “left, right, left hook, right” all fads away and it just happens. I always get a little more nervous when Mike comes around, he tends to spot us when we laughing our mistakes off so it feels really good when he sees us get the combo right and the cherry on top is when he tell us too. ( I say us and we because holding pads takes a certain skill and energy as well)

Simple combinations are like 1-2 (jab-right cross) to more diverse shots like 1-2-3-2 (Jab-Cross-Hook-Cross) which is ultimately just left-right-left-right, these are moves we do naturally like clockwork. The trick is to learn these basics so well it flows from one combo to the next and it keeps your opponent guessing (and hopefully not on their toes for very long ;)

See if it’s complicated and you have to really think about as you’re doing it, you’ll possibly miss, tire yourself out and feel silly.

So this lesson applies to cooking food, styling an outfit to (further away from the girly path) boxing. Having good core ingredients will more likely lead to the success you want.


About Lucy Goretti

Designer, Iger, Illustrator, South African

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