The Right Hook at Mid-Range – Power Guaranteed!

by Fran on March 1, 2010

About the Mid-Range Right Hook

The mid-range right hook has the potential, if thrown correctly, to be a tremendously explosive punch.  From a static stance, the shot can be delivered with devastating power, unlike for instance the Mid-Range Left Hook which requires other skill elements to be deployed before the shot in order to provide the leverage opportunity, such as following an inside slip or right cross.  The reason for the ability to generate such crunching power comes not from the fact that the right arm is the favoured arm for the individual, but because of the massive drive and rotation potential coupled with the ‘whiplash’ action of the shot as it lands.  It is truly a debilitating shot, and paves the way for follow-up hits, in particular the Mid-Range Left Hook.

I’ve always considered Evander Holyfield to be a brilliant exponent of the mid-range right hook (as well as the short range right hook…OK, so sue me, I like Holyfield!)  He used the shot to very good effect against a whole host of bigger and stronger opponents during his career.  The technical moulding of Holyfield’s style took place during his amateur years, and this solid grounding is very evident in his mid-range right hook.  Holyfield’s success rate in landing the shot and it’s obvious impact when it landed speaks for itself.  Get the mechanics of this shot, and don’t forget to include a good measure of raw aggression when throwing the shot.  Have ‘bad intentions’….now where have I heard that before?

The Mechanics of the Mid-Range Right Hook

The mechanics of the right hook at mid range can be explained as follows:

  1. From the boxing stance, the first action is a push from the back foot which in turn drives a major rotation of the the hips and therefore the upper body.
  2. As the rotation is taking place (around the central, vertical axis) the right arm accelerates towards the target.  The arm is in a very distinctive ‘L’ shape and the rotation of the body allows the acceleration and ‘whiplash’ of the shot to take place.
  3. As the fist approaches the target, the forearm rotates in an anti-clockwise direction and the palm is facing down towards the floor.  At the last moment, the fist clenches and ‘snaps’ on to the target.
  4. After the shot lands, the arm returns to the ‘home’ position as quickly as possible, as per the boxing stance.

Common Faults with the Mid-Range Right Hook

The common faults that can occur when throwing a mid-range right hook are:

  1. When throwing the shot, the boxer is by definition within range of counter punches, and powerful counter punches at that!  Don’t allow the the body weight to transfer over the front leg.  If you’ve read any of the other ‘punching’ articles on this site then you’ll know why transferring your body weight over the front leg is a bad thing so I’ll save myself the explanation!
  2. The left hand can drop as the shot lands.  This is a common fault with inexperienced boxers as their focus is on the right hand and not the left hand in the guard position.
  3. The boxer allows the punch to become an upper-body movement.  Ensure that the rotation of the upper-body is generated by the push from the back leg.
  4. The shot is deployed when the boxer is too close to the opponent, resulting in the punch sailing harmlessly behind the head and often resulting in an unintentional clash of heads!  When up close, use the short range right hook instead (another Evander Holyfield special by the way!)

Be sure to get the arm back to for the boxing stance as soon as possible.  I leave it out there in the video to ensure that you can effectively see the body position as the shot lands.  In real life, I’d end up on my backside if I left the fist on the opponent’s chin in such a fashion.

Leaving any comments or questions below and I’ll post a reply.



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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Wojtek June 12, 2013 at 12:50 pm


First of all thanks for your videos!
But I have 1 technical question.
Why quality of videos changed so drastically? Ok, maybe 720 to 480 is not drastic change but still quality is much worse than in first of your videos.


Fran June 18, 2013 at 8:05 pm

Hey Wojtek

You’re very welcome for the videos. As for the quality, this video was one of the first I filmed. Back then I had on old Sony Handycam! ALl the videos since then have been in HD. Maybe I should refilm the old ones in HD… 🙂


Marco October 13, 2012 at 12:03 pm

Hey Fran,

Upon watching your video on the mid-range right hook i noticed as you throw the hook you drop your hand down slightly then it comes back up to connect with the target, i was taught not to drop your hand before you throw a punch however i feel that i cant generate enough snap in my hooks unless i slightly drop, am i meant to keep it in line with my elbow or is a slight drop in the beginning ok???

Any information will help thanks and your videos are inspirational!


Fran October 13, 2012 at 8:18 pm

Quite an eye for detail there Marco. I don’t know really, maybe that slight drop of the hand is a fault as I’m not sure it would add any power. Does it constitute a serious flaw? On a straight shot definitely, on a hook maybe less so. Good spot, I’ll need to think on that one.

For more power, why not think about the right hook at short range.

Thanks Marco, sorry I can’t be more definitive in my answer.


Soojae January 22, 2012 at 2:05 am

Hi Fran,

Been going over your videos again and looking around the internet at boxing sites. There are a couple things that I have heard/read mentioned, but am not sure what they mean. Any insight would be appreciated.

1) Sitting down on your punches. What exactly does this mean? Does it mean to drop ones weight down on impact? And is it something you do only for power punches?

2) Snapping your punches. Is this just a type of punch? Should all punches be snappy or should some strike “through” the opponent? And is snapping a punch, throwing the punch out as fast as possible and then retracting it as fast as possible, minimizing contact time?

Again, any insight would be helpful. As usual, this site if well constructed and very helpful. Thank you for putting it all together.



Fran January 23, 2012 at 8:59 pm

Hey Matt

My interpretation of ‘sitting down on your punches’ is basically making sure the body weight doesn’t lurch forward, so, by keeping the weight on you back leg as you punch you ‘sit down.’ Whether other coaches on the site has a view we may find out.

‘Snapping punches’ is something we all should do. Shots accelerate onto the target, with particular focus on the last 6 inches, like the ‘crack of a whip.’

Hope this helps mate, and thanks very much for the kind comment.


m.g November 7, 2011 at 4:01 am

Hey Fran great site and articles. i got a question. id say i have a decent right hand but i have trouble landing it im 5’7 and most of the people i box are a bit taller than me. it seems as if when i throw a combo people just move backward and i hit air. how can i move forward close enough without shifting my weight to my front foot and still land the right hand? any info would help and great dedicated site again


Fran November 9, 2011 at 10:06 pm

Thanks MG

You have to nullify that reach advantage. The feint is a great way to do this. So, it would be feint then move in then jab and back hand. The feint draws the lead, and once you have done this you can cut the ground down – all reach advantage for the opponent has gone. Don’t feint then wait for the shot, build the whole thing into one fast movement.

Hope this helps


kegan April 19, 2011 at 1:46 am

Hey fran wats up, first of all great demonstration, even tho I look ridiculous in my room punching at no one haha, but I really think it would be even more helpful if I could see some of these combo’s or what not with two people such as: right straight to mid ranged left hook or inside slip to mid ranged right hook or what ever else… I’m not saying bring a guy in there and beat the living crap out of him but slowly throw the punches and go threw different scenarios u know?? (If possible ) anyways thanx again for the GREAT demonstrations (;


Fran April 20, 2011 at 8:25 pm


Thanks for the comment, very valuable. I’m sure that as the site develops I will involve boxers that I work with in order to cover some of the more advanced stuff like blocking defences, counter-punching, infighting and so on. It’s always worth knowing what visitors to the site would like to see, so thanks very much for taking the time to comment!



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