The Tag Boxing Sparring Drill

by Fran on January 22, 2018


I have a game (actually a boxing drill) that you can play that will bring you many of the benefits of sparring without the actual process of sparring.

Sounds weird I know, but this really works.

Tag boxing is something that I use all of the time. I know that it’s something that gets used in boxing gyms around the World as well.

We actually provide a ‘safe’ learning environment to enable you as the boxer to develop range appreciation, reactions and appropriate responses to the opponent’s actions.

I explain all in the video.

Some key points:

  • Don’t push out too far. You always want to be in a position to launch your counter strike.
  • Introduce doubt and hesitancy into your opponent by using lots of feints…lots and lots of feints.

Some key things NOT to do:

  • Don’t pull your lead leg back out of the way of the strike. Push out and then push back in, maintaining the integrity of your boxing stance.
  • Don’t strike ‘down’ to the target. Bend the knees and look to strike at shoulder level.
  • No hand blocks – this is about footwork.

Away you go. Do this in rounds during your boxing training just as you would with a spar, shadow boxing or heavy bag work.

Comments below.



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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris Playfair January 23, 2018 at 8:50 pm

Great video.
Thanks Fran.


Fran January 26, 2018 at 8:42 pm

No worries

Thanks Chris


Pug January 23, 2018 at 4:25 pm

I agree Fran. Anyone who dismisses this is missing the boat. It’s an excellent substitute for sparring if you don’t have an equitable sparring partner available. Weights and sizes can be mismatched with safety. The purpose is all about developing footwork, range, timing, and quickness. It’s also a great, fun way to break kids into the sport and I use it all the time.


Fran January 23, 2018 at 8:22 pm

Funny. I said to Tony when the camera stopped rolling “I hope people get it.” Goes without saying that I knew that guys of your background would use this or something very similar. Excellent additional observations Pug – Thanks


Frank Mitchell January 23, 2018 at 1:11 pm

At my Northwich club we often do this, targeting shoulders. Tagging legs is a new idea for me.


Fran January 23, 2018 at 8:21 pm

Excellent – the leg target was always the original way we did it Frank, it’s really challenging but very beneficial


Brian Capeling January 23, 2018 at 8:09 am

Great speed and distance awareness exercise and great fun. Thighs and glutes on fire, a really great way to work your legs.


Fran January 23, 2018 at 8:20 pm

Amen to that Brian 🙂


Allison Young January 23, 2018 at 1:33 am

Fabulous idea! Legs will be burning! Now I just have to find a partner. Thanks Fran:)


Fran January 23, 2018 at 8:19 pm

Good stuff Allison – get searching 🙂


Jaime January 22, 2018 at 10:28 pm

Great. This drill is pure gold. Thank you.


Fran January 23, 2018 at 8:19 pm

Thanks Jaime and you are very welcome


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