Boxing How to Guide – Right Uppercut to the Body

by Fran on September 10, 2011

Boxing How to Guide – The Right Uppercut Body Shot

This video and article is another installment in our Boxing How To Guide on body punching. Knowing how to land a body punch in the perfect spot is real boxing. The right uppercut (assuming an orthodox boxer) is a really clever punch for 3 main reasons. Firstly, when landed properly the right uppercut strikes the centre of mass. At the centre of mass is the solar plexus, a group of nerves located behind the stomach. A shot to the solar plexus can lead to a range of complications, many of which may include more than a little
writhing around on the ground in shuddering agony.

The second reason that the right uppercut is such a clever boxing shot is that it may be thrown in ‘stealth’ mode, approaching the target at low level and being partially obscured by the opponent’s own guarding arms. The third reason why knowing how to throw the perfect right uppercut is ‘total boxing’ is that it is probably the most difficult single punch to defend. Conventional boxing blocks do not work very well unless the boxer has full sight of the incoming punch, so the main form of defense is footwork combined with body movements. Knowing how evade this punch at mid and short range requires quite an advanced set of boxing skills.

In short, this could be the most useful of our ‘boxing how to’ guide articles that you look at for body punching, I’m sure that the benefits on offer (mostly in the form of pain and discomfort for the opponent) will persuade you that this is a boxing shot that you should know how to use well.  Check out the video then go over the mechanics and the common faults.

Boxing How to Guide – The Mechanics

Let’s look now at how to break down the right uppercut to it’s basic parts.

  1. From the boxing stance, the first action is a drop of the knees; a duck. The duck is a very simple skill which you can find out how to do by checking out the article ducking in boxing.
  2. As the duck is taking place, there is an explosive thrust from the ball of the back foot. This thrust both initiates the shot and provides the power to rotate the hips and upper body. This action is what gives the shot it’s power.
  3. The thrust from the back foot generates massive counter-clockwise rotation of the hips and upper body. Keep your back straight and rotate around your central axis, as covered in other videos on the site, for instance for the mid-range right uppercut to the head.
  4. As the rotation of the upper body reaches it’s farthest point, the back hand (right hand for orthodox, left hand for southpaw) begins it’s journey to the target. The fist must accelerate toward the target and not travel at a consistent speed. Think of the ‘crack’ of a whip lash, this crack is caused by the acceleration of the whip. The same principle is in play when throwing any boxing shot, the right uppercut to the body included.
  5. Remember from the video of the right uppercut to the head, for your uppercut to the body to be a true uppercut, the punch must land with the forearm aligned with the opponent’s vertical, central axis i.e. it must be on the same vertical plane. If this is not the case, then the punch is a short right hook (still a good shot I hasten to add, just not technically an uppercut).
  6. Having landed the shot, return the arm to the guard position instantly (as with the boxing stance).

Boxing How to Guide – Common Faults

  1. Make sure that you do not allow the punching arm to travel too low only to come back up to the target. This method does not add power. Think in terms of the shorter the shot, the greater the impact. Take as direct a path as possible.
  2. Make sure the punch aligns with the central axis, otherwise it’s not an uppercut.
  3. Make sure that your guard stays intact, that is your lead hand remains in a strongly protective position.

The MyBoxingCoach Boxing How To Guide for the right uppercut to the body. A top punch that when thrown correctly can have absolutely devastating consequences for the opponent. Know how to throw this punch in a boxing situation and you’ll provide the kind of ‘stealth threat’ that can win fights.  If you are looking for ways to defend this shot, then the article on defensive inside fighting is as good a place as any to start (although as previously mentioned, it is not ideal).

As always, feel free to leave your comments or questions below.


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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Brian February 18, 2015 at 2:17 am

Excellent video, thank you. I do love this shot. I throw it on the punchbag after throwing a jab and moving in slightly. Only problem is after throwing it I do feel a bit exposed as I’m quite close in and for a time square on. Any suggestions on what to do afterwards? IS there any punch that naturally follows on from this? Or any good evasive movement to employ. Maybe a pivot to the left? Or step and roll to the right? Thanks for any suggestions.
P.S. Love the site.


Keith September 20, 2011 at 5:44 pm

Hi Fran
As usual a good detailed video. Since I incorporate quite a few ducks in my sparring I’ll have to try this one. I’ve recently been trying the right hook body following a slip to my right and this works nicely.


Fran September 20, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Excellent spotting of that option Keith, the slip outside followed by the fight hook low down. It’s quite a safe option as you don’t expose yourself to the straight back hand as can be a risk with the more popular slip inside with the left hook. Funny you mention it though, the right hook to the body video is coming out tomorrow, although you probably have it pretty much spot on by now I guess Keith. Probably worth a once over though.

Cheers mate


Ivan September 12, 2011 at 7:16 pm

Fascinating stuff as usual. I have a question regarding a slight modification of the mechanics – do you think that bringing the back foot slightly forward while you duck would enhance the power of the uppercut since it seems to increase the thrust. I know it changes the standard stance for a second but you keep the alignment, you just coil the spring – the back foot – some more and it feels more comfortable. You know this folklore about sitting on the punches, with this one you stand up actually, but the principle is the same, applying more weight. I am a purist as well so I am wondering whether this is a good move or bad form and overdoing of a good punch.


Fran September 12, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Hey Ivan. Thanks and glad that you like the demo. It sounds like you’re combining the move with a small push forward, that’s unless your front foot is staying still? If not, then you are narrowing the stance slightly. Small adjustments of the width of the stance are fine, especially if you feel that it adds something to the given skill. Just be cautious not to go too narrow because as your shot lands you may be vulnerable to a stumble if something comes back (as the stance has to provide your stability). Thanks again, that’s a well made point as usual.


John mastro September 11, 2011 at 2:28 pm

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John mastro September 11, 2011 at 5:50 am

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