You are new to the world of boxing, and the punching skill is one of the prerequisite skill sets you have to learn. It is the movement that, even if quite simple, you have to master it because punching and kicking are all about boxing.
However, sometimes you find it hard to estimate whether your punch is powerful enough. Don’t worry; a lot of entry-level boxers share the same feeling with you.
Understanding your problem, we have noted some signs you are a hard puncher, based on our experience, to help you self-evaluate your performance. No need to waste more time; let’s dive deep in!
How To Estimate Your Punching Power?
Before going in-depth into rigid punch signs, we want to help you estimate how strong your punch is.
In fact, not many people know the proper way of evaluating their hands’ control and power, making their practice curriculum ineffective enough. Luckily, we have a chance to learn the right way to practice as well as estimate the punching power, so let us guide you.
We want to tell you that: stop punching or hitting those “punching power machines”, because they, in fact, cannot measure the strength. They work well on taking into account the speed of the punch; that’s it! So, we don’t recommend you use the punching machines to estimate your strength.
If you cannot use those machines, what should you do to know your power then? We advise you to ask for feedback from your instructor after every padding practice. In every paddling session, there will be a person, usually your instructor, to hold the pad for you to hit, right? These people receive your hit directly, so they can provide in-depth feedback on how strong, how weak your punching is. You can also observe their reactions. If they look struggling, then your punching is hard.
The third point to mention is that: your practice partner is another resourceful performance commentator, too. When you are in a sparring session with a “rival,” that person can feel your strengths, weaknesses, as well as your hitting power. They can also provide you some advice on your problems from the perspective of a fellow boxer.
Every fighter will usually change their partner after each round, so they have experienced the hit of a lot of boxers in the gym, and they can help you compare how hard you punch to other people.
Besides, the heavy bag can be another “estimator.” Whenever you hit it, please observe how much it moves. Is it circling much? Does it stand still? Then, compare your performance to others’ at the gym, and you can have an idea of your punching power.
However, sometimes, people can misunderstand “punch” and “push,” making their practicing curriculum go in the wrong way. Let me clarify: “Punch” means stay still in the upright position, use your arms, muscles, and fist to hit powerfully to the heavy bag. The hands must be in the “fist” position, and the body cannot move.
Meanwhile, when pushing the heavy bag, you can move the body and stretch your hands to add pressure to let the heavy bag sway. And in boxing, what you should do is to “punch,” not “push.”
12 Signs You Are A Hard Puncher
You may wonder how jumping and punching can relate, right? Then, let me help you clarify: Being able to jump high with consistency proves the strength to lower body muscles and the limbs’ explosive power. With the robust upper body and limbs, one can have better balance, better positioning, and the firm muscle structure to make formidable forces.
Besides, jumping high equals explosiveness and speediness, which is necessary to boxing punch, especially in competition. The higher you can jump, the more explosive your body is. The more explosiveness, the harder the hit. That’s the fact many UFC fighters have proved that. If you observe their combat, they always start with some high, powerful backflips.
So, how could you measure how high you can jump? Box jumping is an excellent method to check. Just try to jump at your best on the box jumping device, then compare your result with people from the same age and body status as you to evaluate. If your result is higher than theirs, then you may provide a harder punch than your peers.
In contrast, if it turns out that you can jump lower than others, don’t be worried. There are training methods that help you better your performance, and what you need is just one thing” hard work. We suggest you try rope-jumping as it is a great warm-up practice, as well as a workout and explosiveness training way.
As mentioned above, speediness is another critical factor to contribute to your boxing performance. Punching is not about the power in your hit but also about how you distribute your energy in a short period to provide a remarkable hit. Hence, running fast is also essential for hard punching.
Given that fact, the faster you move, the more fast-twitch punch you can make. And, the ability to switch and hit quickly and accurately is helpful in competition. So, how fast are you? Compared to your practice peers, or other people at the gym, are you faster than them? If not, then you should spend more time working on your speed, because speediness is a considerable advantage in a competitive sport like boxing.
The most popular practice method for speed is to run a 100-meter sprint in less than 15 seconds. Try practicing it every day to warm up the muscles and to control your shape.
Additionally, we advise you to work on your muscle reaction. In specific, people with higher explosive muscle can make faster twitch in punching than people with low explosive ones. And, with speedier twitch, you can perform harder, stronger punches.
Typically, the purpose of practicing sports for everybody is to lose weight. However, if you want to go professionally in boxing, you have to do the opposite: gain weight. Unlike other sports, in boxing, the heavier you are, the more powerful you can punch.
There is an unwritten but commonly known rule that boxing is all about power. With that, I mean, even if you cannot conduct a technically correct punch, you can still knock out your rivals by hitting really, extremely hard. And how can you provide such strong, firm punches? By your weight. Just take the heavyweight MMA people as examples; you will understand what I mean.
In addition, heavyweight means your body has more remaining power to distribute in your punches. With more forces, you can provide harder punches. Your brain also controls your mind to make you feel more confident in your “giant” size, making you more competitive. Who else doesn’t feel intimidated when seeing a huge rival, right?
As a result, you should consider gaining weight if you want to improve your punching forces. Based on our experience, a workout and suitable diet will help you gain weight and build muscles. It’s easy to find a PT at any gym and order them to instruct you through a bodybuilding process. To add-in, they can guide you to use some additional medicines to irritate the body to build up muscles and gain weight.
If you want to punch harder, then having big hands is essential, too. To be specific, the big hands don’t directly help you make stronger punches, but they can generate the forces to the target effectively. In general, the hands’ circumstances that are bigger than 8.5″ are considered significant.
In more details, the more giant hands have more muscles than the smaller ones. The more muscles you have, the more powerful forces your body can generate. So, with big hands, you can transfer more pressure to the punch.
Imagine a farmer who has weathered, and tough hands can easily carry their giant, bulky farming tools because their hands generate more forces. Besides, their grip is far more firm than others.
Unlike other factors on the list, big hands are born characteristic, so there is no way to improve your hands’ size. If you have big hands, then congratulations, you are already more advanced than others. However, if you aren’t naturally born with big, muscular hands, you can improve on other factors mentioned on this list.
Remember, practice makes perfect. People who work hard will always have better achievements than people with born talent but no dedication.
Some people consider boxing as a means of releasing their anger and internal conflict. By doing so, they try to punch their rivals as their enemies. Please don’t have that kind of toxic mindset since sportsmanship and fair play are the core rule in this sport. We practice and play boxing because we love the art behind it, not because we love fighting and hitting each other to release the stress.
So, what we want you to remember is that no matter if you are a champion, an entry-level player, or just an amateur who tries new hobbies, never throw too much power at your rival. There is no meaning to show off because what you gain back will be the community’s rejection if you cannot control your strength in competition.
In boxing, those having long arms or short arms both have their advantages. For fast components, it is considered as being useful in punching. Just take a reference to famous boxers like Mike Tyson or Rocky Marchiano, you can realize that their arms are short, their reach isn’t significant, but they can move their body and rotate their arms more flexibly. Their spreads are short, so the forces will focus on the wrists, not the whole components, making their punches more vivacious.
In addition, short arms are incredibly useful in throwing sharp hooks or uppercuts, which are advantageous in competing. That is the reason why most top-tier boxers are short-sized men.
However, please don’t misunderstand that being short is the all-kill advantage. Having short arms, being short are great for practicing boxing, but you must have a muscular body.
What plays the decisive role in success in boxing is the muscles and how you distribute the power from the muscle to the right position at the right time. So, if you are a short guy but have no properly-built muscles, there is a high chance that you cannot even throw punches appropriately.
On the contrary, if you are born with long arms, you can still have an advantage in boxing in some aspects. As mentioned above, shorter arms work well in providing sharp hooks and uppercuts. Meanwhile, the long arms are so helpful in making straighter punches. In other words, short boxers can do twisted punches, while the tall fighters can produce sniper-cut, upright hits.
However, there is the fact that there are more short boxers than tall ones in the boxing world, and by that, we can understand that being short is a bit more helpful than being tall. It’s still possible to build a career in the boxing world, but tall and long-arm boxers, they have to figure out their own “killing point” technique that overshadows the advantage of having short arms that their rivals have.
We have mentioned the term “technique” many times in this article, and by that, you can see how important it is to learn proper boxing technique if you want to master this sport. Like any other sports, musical instruments, or school subjects, playing boxing requires a specific skill set and technique.
As discussed above, in some cases, you don’t need much technique to knock out your rivals if you have adorable strength in your punch. You can just hit them naturally, like in fighting, and your competitors can still lose over. However, that is the case for entry-level or amateur players. If you want to master, you have to combine both factors: strength and technique.
Here is the process to conduct a right punch: first, rotating the heel, then the pelvis and the upper body, step-by-step. Then, release the blow to build momentum. Next, turn your fist over to the target. When hitting, it would be helpful to imagine you will hit throughout it.
What we want you to remember is to relax as much as possible. Never flex the muscle or overwork them because, by such methods, your muscles will be quickly burned out and decrease your power. Try keeping your mind calm and relaxed, then applying the proper technique with the most force from the muscle. That’s it!
In the previous part, we have mentioned that it’s better to be weighty and muscular. Now, let’s move to another appearance that shows signs of a hard puncher: a V-shaped body. Scientists have proven that V-shaped bodies have better punching power than other body frames.
To be specific, the large shoulder and small, tight pelvis provide a base to generate more power from the hips up to the shoulder and release through the arms and fist. As a result, people with a V-shaped body, or “wide” shoulder, large chest, and small pelvis body frame can have more extensive reach to the rival, which is advantageous in competition.
Besides, the wide shoulder means that a person has more muscles in the shoulder area than others, which leads to the higher ability to produce more vital forces to the arms and the fists. Also, people with a V-shaped body frame can rotate their arms faster than others.
Not every person is born with this body frame, but if you want to own the charisma of a V-shaped body, then practice makes your wish come true. You can hire a PT to help you build a step-by-step procedure to build up a larger chest and more prominent shoulder. If you could achieve these body goals, your frame will look like it is in the V-shaped.
As mentioned in the technique section, legs and limbs also involve the process of punching. So, besides the arms, the shoulder, the back, you should even care about building leg muscles properly.
The top essential leg muscles are the hips and the butt. You can take legendary boxers like Mike Tyson as an example as he has short legs with thick muscular limbs. Such firm lower body muscles help you provide a more stable base and better explosiveness in punching.
That being said, how could you build up the legs muscles? Then, our advice is to do squats (with or without wright is acceptable). These exercises are simple but yet effective in providing you thick, muscular limbs. However, please don’t overwork your muscles, or else it will turn out to be exaggerated, and the result is reversed.
The muscles are crucial in sports that demand power, like boxing. The strong muscular upper back scientifically generates more strength, and these back muscles connect to the shoulder, arms, and upper body parts. Hence, firm back muscles lead to better coordination between arms, back, shoulder, making the process of generating strength from the muscles, release through the shoulder, and the fist went smoothly.
So, suppose you want to be a hard puncher; it’s necessary to build up the back muscles properly. Simple exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, or heavy weightlifting may help.
Balance is vital for any sport, especially for competitive sports like boxing. Not that every punch will come from upright or straight down, sometimes there will be sudden punches from odd angles that require you to react immediately and the excellent balance to avoid falling.
To add-in, if you have good balance, you can quickly react to odd-angle punches and throwback the twisted hits to your rival. Such a sudden counterattack is a great tool to defend.
Therefore, it is a must to practice balance. Here is our tip on keeping balance: planting your feet and staying in a wider stance than usual. That’s it. Just remember to widen the gap between your legs, lower the back, and you can throw more powerful punches.
Bones And Joints’ Structure
Finally, we want to mention the importance of bones and joints structure. There is a relationship between big bones and the ability to punch hard. Scientists prove that people with dense bones can carry more weight and pressure, and their muscles can endure more weight in punches.
Going along with the bone is the joint structure. As discussed, you need to run fast, react flexibly and endure high pressure. With these requirements, a robust, versatile joint system is in need. The big bones, joining with a tight, robust joint structure, will provide flexible rotation.
Tips On How To Punch Harder
Now that we have acknowledged how to measure the punch and signs that you are a hard puncher, let’s move to another part: tips on making a harder hit.
- Don’t misunderstand “punching” and “pushing”: As mentioned above, many entry-level boxers seem to mismatch these two terms. Consequently, they practice the wrong technique, making them perform poorly. Please always be aware that: punching requires the boxer to stand still, upright, clenching their fist firmly, and move the fist to hit. Avoid pushing too much, and most importantly: use the fist, not the whole hand.
- Imagine punching through the target: When hitting a target, it would be helpful to visualize that you will punch through it, not just hit the target at the end of the reach. You can make stronger punches with such imagination because now you don’t have any limit to restrain your arm.
- Use heavy bags: In boxing, a heavy bag is a vital tool in practicing. The heavy bag is not only a tool to measure the power of your punch but also an excellent means to practice your punch. Spending about 15 to 30 minutes doing punching work on the bag can help you familiarize yourself with the hurt and improve your endurance. Our extra tip is to “update” a heavier bag each week to advance the practice level, as well as your endurance.
- Shadowboxing: This training method is always recommended to all levels of boxers for its simplicity and versatility. It’s easy to do shadowboxing: move around a room and throw punches in the air mimicking sparring. This training technique helps to warm up muscles, revising punching techniques, and improving the contending skills.
- Use an energy shout: Have you ever watched some Chinese martial arts movies? If yes, then you will definitely know what I am mentioning. In some martial arts, there is a practice of shouting before fighting, called “Kiai.” It is proven that while shouting, you can release out your stress and negative energy, and the body can inhale more fresh oxygen to make you stronger. So, you may want to apply this “energy shout” method to your training.
Wrapping It Up
We have gone through 12 signs you are a hard puncher. How many signs do you have? Does it suit your expectations? Below are just the top 12 most common signs for boxing punching, so even if you cannot find your characteristic here, please don’t be disappointed. You can practice harder until you can reach a real powerful punch, estimated as mentioned.
However, remember that there are many other essential skills that you need to master in boxing, not only punching.
Hope this article provides you with useful insights into practicing your boxing skills! Enjoy your boxing time, and stay tuned for more resourceful articles!