Left Hook at Long Range – It’s Just a Great Shot!

by Fran on July 2, 2010

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

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. The fist returns along a straight line, returning to the ‘home’ position as per the boxing stance.
  5. 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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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!
  3. 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!

Cheers

Fran

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

banjobilly April 5, 2016 at 7:37 pm

Fran, outstanding, simple, detailed descriptions and instructions. Thou rockest … rockenzie on, mein herr!

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Fran April 9, 2016 at 3:51 pm

I will indeed Banjo 🙂 You are most cool and I genuinely appreciate the positive comment, thank you.

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Dan Roche October 23, 2014 at 11:51 am

I’ve seen a fighter in my gym combine the long-range left hook with a simultaneous outside slip as a counter to an opponent’s jab. When it does comes off it really is a cracker!

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Fran October 24, 2014 at 8:33 pm

Yeah Dan. That’s a very smart counter.

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Andrew July 3, 2014 at 8:33 pm

I know this video was posted awhile back but I have a question regarding where or how this punch lands in relation to the knuckles.

If I try to land with the middle & index knuckle it turns the punch into more of a mid range left hook or I have to bend my wrist a fair bit & “curl” my fist in if I leave the punch long in order to land with the correct knuckle alignment.

I hope this makes sense.

Thanks

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Fran July 7, 2014 at 6:31 pm

Hey Andrew

Sensible question. Remember that the mid-range hook simply defines the closest point that a target can be before you change the shot into a short range hook (in order to not lose power). In other words, there is no fixed point at which a mid-range hook becomes a long range hook, it’s a gradual transition.

Hope this makes sense?

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JERRY August 26, 2013 at 2:58 am

Hi great web site ..just found it today Im glad I did. As far as the long left hook would you say It could be described as kind of a jab across ones own face ?I hear Roy Jones describe a jab across his own face

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Fran August 30, 2013 at 9:14 pm

Thanks Jerry. Yep, that sounds like a neat way of describing it 🙂

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Sam December 8, 2012 at 5:30 pm

I LOVE this technique thanks for bringing it to my attention!

Can you tell me how to throw this stepping forward?

You push off the lead foot to rotate the hips to throw this shot, but that means you cant step forwards with it!?

Q1) How do you throw it stepping forwards?

Q2) Why not make this a power shot? It dosnt have alot of bone structure behind it like when the arms bent at 90 degrees but you can get alot of whip on it, why do you advise against it being a power shot?

Kind regards!

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DAVE I January 8, 2011 at 12:21 pm

Interesting video Fran.Ive never been taught to use a long range left hook like that so Its definitely taught me something new.
The only time I have been taught a long range left hook was in the following combo.-jab move in jab right cross -step out -then long range left hook -The left hook used to catch an opponent stepping forward.
cheers for the vid+article Fran.

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