About the Long Range Left Hook
Boxers will cause problems for themselves if they aim to make every shot that they throw a power punch. These problems can include excessive tiring at an early stage of the contest (often referred to as punching themselves out), loading up with single shots rather than delivering a dynamic range of shots in quickfire combinations or even worse becoming predictable to the opponent.
The left hook at long range, like the left uppercut at long range, is not intended to be a power punch. It is in fact a boxing technique that is an intelligent substitute for a jab, which, when it lands can have the effect of knocking the opponent slightly to their left thereby making them very vulnerable to shots like the right hook at long range or the right uppercut at mid-range (if the distance has closed.) This is a shot for the purist; it's subtle, unconventional and an ideal platform upon which to build dazzling combinations of punches. OK, watch the video, read the mechanics and avoid the faults...as always, leave a comment!
Mechanics of the Long Range Left Hook
- From the boxing stance, the first action is a push from the front foot. The push or 'thrust' should be ’sharp’ and explosive, providing the force necessary to rotate the body in a clockwise direction around the central axis.
- The shot needs to travel along a gentle arc (straight, then left to right) in order to ‘flank’ the opponent’s back hand (right hand for an orthodox boxer.) The shot actually leaves the home position very slightly earlier than when throwing the jab; this is something you will have to ‘feel’ for in order to accurately release the shot at the right time.
- As the fist approaches the target (having covered about 75% of the distance), it rotates inwards so that the palm is facing down towards the floor. At the last moment, the fist clenches and ’snaps’ on to the target, having swung from left to right around the opponent’s back hand.
- The fist returns along a straight line, returning to the ‘home’ position as per the boxing stance.
- On completion, the arm is returned to the starting position as quickly as possible, providing effective defence against counter attack.
Common Faults with the Long Range Left Hook
The following problems can occur when throwing the long range left hook:
- The shot should not take too wide an arc on the way to the target, this will result a major vulnerability to taking incoming right hands from the opponent! Remember that this shot has only has a subtle difference to the jab.
- This is not a power shot, so the boxer should not 'load up'. By loading up, looking for power, it's likely that the shot will signal it's arrival. The boxer should have patience and understand that this shot opens doors!
- As with all left arm work, be careful not to allow the right hand to drop from the guard position!
There you have it. The left hook at long range, in every way a boxing technique for the purists!