We get it, as a boxer you like the adrenaline rushing through your veins, every time you throw a punch at your opponent or your special combo move. It's the wish of every boxer to initiate the attack on the opponent.
The secret of becoming a great boxer doesn’t lay in merely trying to knock out your opponent, but defending yourself and developing exceptional defending skills are equally important
Most of the world-famous Boxers are forced to be more defensive by their coaches, they will always yell at them for keeping their hands in front of their face, and not get carried away by the emotions of anger but fight intelligently.
Let’s have a look at how you can improve your boxing defense techniques.
1. Keeping Your Eye on the Opponent
Developing the technique of where to look during a fight can make a big difference in your fighting abilities.
Beginners have a habit of looking at the shoulders of the opponent, as it gives an idea when they are about to throw a punch. Some fighters look at their feet and try to interpret their next move.
The best answer to all these problems is that you should always be looking at the opponent but don’t pay attention to any specific body part. In other words, we can say that they never try to find what will be their next move.
This could also be explained with the help of a simple example: when you cross a road you look for the cars on the other side but you never really focus on them. That’s how you should be looking at your opponent.
Don’t cover your eyes when covering your face during an attack, keep the hands in front of your face but your eyes should be on the opponent.
It also shows your confidence that you are committed to punching, and you can throw a punch anytime. This helps you in easily seeing a hole in your opponent’s defense for throwing a counter punch.
2. Blocking Punches
There are different techniques for blocking the different types of punches such as hook, uppercut, and crosses.
Using the Fist
You can use your fist to block punches like jabs, uppercuts, and straight punches. This is the most common and simple tactic to stop a punch.
As you see that your opponent is going to strike you, lean your fist in the direction of punch using force, also use your feet to add more force to your motion.
This technique helps in preventing the force of your opponent's punch from driving you back and lessens the impact of the punch.
Using the Shoulder
Shoulders can be used to prevent hooks, getting a hook on your shoulder is somehow less harmful than receiving it on your headgear.
If your opponent is throwing a right hook, lift your left arm in a vertical position, the upper body should be facing the opponent. This way you can stop a hook from landing on your head.
Using the Elbow
Elbows can be an effective blocker for side punches, hits on the body, and strikes on the head.
To block side punches, keep your hands close to your chin and elbows tucked in with the core, in this way you can prevent punches to hit your core and ribs.
If the opponent is trying to strike punches on your head, place your hands over the ears, covering your head with the elbows.
The crosses to your head can be blocked by moving your body, bend down a little and get back from the opponent, you can also throw a counter cross on the ribs of the opponent.
To block crosses coming to your body, you can tuck in your elbows by keeping the fists near your ears; the crosses will hit your elbows and forearms without impacting the ribs and core.
For blocking uppercuts, you can use two techniques that are either by moving your body and rotating hips so that the uppercut deflect and pass just by slightly hitting your arm
The second one is to block it by using your elbows the same way as you use it for blocking a throw on your head.
3. Maintaining a Good Form
Having a proper boxing stance is the basic principle in becoming a great boxer over time, and can also improve your boxing defense techniques.
A good stance brings a boxer balance, stability, and readiness. Having a good boxing stance demands time and regular training. A good stance ensures confidence puts pressure on your opponent.
If you don’t have good form while boxing, your opponent will take advantage of this, and you won’t be able to block their punches. It’s important to stand in a position where you can move in any direction easily.
Your feet should be apart and at a comfortable width, it is recommended to keep your feet a little farther than the shoulder width and keep the heel of your back feet up.
Keep the knees slightly bent so that the joints are not locked as it can result in injury, but not crouched too far down. Your height is a plus point for you, you can stretch out while throwing punches.
Always keep your core tight by flexing the abdominal muscles, it helps in maintaining strength in the whole upper body. This generates more force and firmness in muscles.
4. Boxing Drills
Boxing drills help you in developing reflex actions for defense. Repetitive attacks on a particular body region will automatically develop a reflex of stopping the attack.
It’s the same as when we touch a hot cup of tea and suddenly pull back the hand. Boxing drills help you in developing impulsive actions to defend yourself.
The best and oldest boxing drill for improving your defense is the rope slip drill. It is a great way to improve head movement, good head movement is crucial in boxing because the opponent will always try to hit your head.
This drill is performed inside the ring, the rope should be at the height of your shoulder so you can practice bobbing and weaving effectively.
Stand in front of the rope, it should be touching your shoulder slightly, then bob and weave your head under the rope towards the other side. Don’t forget to maintain a constant movement as you perform this drill.
5. Protecting Your Head
When you get a hit on your head your energy is automatically zapped. The first point that you should always keep in mind is that no matter what you should always protect your head.
After the first 2-3 rounds of boxing, you might feel tired and it becomes difficult for you to keep your hand up to defend yourself.
Other than protecting your head with your hands, you can also train the movement of your head. In a professional boxer’s opinion, it is better to slip your head and miss punches instead of blocking them with your hands.
6. Using Weights for Training
The weight will help you in building endurance over time. and when you go in the ring for boxing you will automatically feel lighter and faster as you will be adapted to training with weight.
After some rounds of boxing, you might feel tired and it becomes difficult for you to keep your hand up, a good tip for this is to put some weight on your arms while you train.
Through this, you will develop the endurance to keep your hands up for defending yourself.
7. Counter Offense
Using the attack of the component against them is the best form of defense. To develop the techniques of counter offense a lot of experience and skills are required.
It builds aggression in front of your opponent which is very useful in putting pressure on the opponent during sparring,
Counter attacks cause more damage to the opponent, it is also more energy-efficient as you are incorporating defense and attack in the same movement.
It’s difficult for the opponent to block counter offense because at that time they are only focusing on attacking, so it’s difficult to maintain a good defense at the moment.
Defense holds an integral part in knocking out your opponent and becoming a good boxer over time. Without proper boxing defense techniques, you can’t ever become a successful boxer because the opponent might take your weak defense as an advantage.
As a boxer, you should learn to fight using strategies and not be carried away by emotions, because fighting with emotions leads to anger which in turn leads to weakness in defense.
Developing compulsive actions in boxing is also very important because it’s difficult for your mind to process what tactic to use to block a particular attack, at that moment only your reflexes can save you.