When we think of “boxing,” often our first thought is the “punch”. It’s not easy to develop punching power, and it takes careful technique and practice to be able to deliver a powerful blow to your opponent (and to the bag). Even experienced boxers have to spend time working on their punching skills and strengthening their punches and will ask questions such as:
How can I increase punching without a bag?
How can I increase punching power at home?
First, it’s key to understand why it’s important to increase punching power and the simple adjustments we can make in our boxing training (How To Increase Punching Power).
Next, we can incorporate specific boxing drills and exercises to increase our punching power. Here are three (3) power-training exercises that will develop your punching power and train key muscles used in your strikes--and bonus--you don’t need any special boxing equipment!
Exercise 1: Box of Rice
Seeing your progress can be difficult without a formal punching power measurement tool. Fortunately, there is an exercise that can both yield results and allow you to see your progress. Fighters often run into hand injuries because their fists aren’t prepared to strike an opponent, or even a bag, at the speed and power with which they do.
This exercise helps fix that and increase power.
Fill a standard bucket up about ¾ full of rice (sand can be used if you are more experienced)
Submerge both your hands in the bucket
Grab a handful of rice from within the bucket and twist your hands at the wrists
Release the handful and repeat
Your muscles and tendons within your hands will be worked by this exercise, so do as much as you can take. You may only be able to withstand five minutes on your first try, but in a few weeks, you may be able to go as long as 10 or 15 minutes.
The longer you are able to perform this exercise, the more your muscles will benefit. As with any exercise, stop immediately if you feel pain.
Exercise 2: Medicine Ball Throws and Squats
The perfect power punch uses almost every muscle in the body--from your legs to your shoulders. Take a medicine ball and perform the following movements:
For this first movement, hold the medicine ball steady in front of your face (for an added workout, extend your arms while holding the ball). Drop into a squat and make sure your knees don’t extend past your feet. Rise and repeat.
This second movement focuses on your upper body. First, lift the medicine ball over your head. Second, slam the medicine ball to the ground while releasing it from your hands. Repeat.
If you don’t have a medicine ball, you can improvise with a heavy duffel bag, book, or even a basketball.
Exercise 3: Shadowboxing
The final exercise to help increase your punching power is simple shadowboxing. It’s one thing to train your technique standing still, but shadowboxing can help you get used to executing the move quickly and while on the move.
Your goal when shadowboxing should be to make your punching technique second nature. Take your training slow and use this time to focus on your technique. As a bonus, try to shadowbox for three-minute rounds to train your endurance as well.
Use the following tips to amplify your shadowboxing training:
Constantly move around and only stay in a fixed location when you go to strike
Practice basic dodging and countering to train your balance
Focus on switching up your footwork
The point of shadowboxing is to fine-tune perfect your technique. In shadowboxing, you use your shadow or reflection to practice movements as if you have an opponent in front of you (Why You Should Start Shadowboxing).
They say practice makes perfect, but the real truth is that perfect practice makes perfect. Piece all of the above advice together and you will be noticing a difference in your punching power in no time!
Start slow and learn the proper form before moving onto shadowboxing. Focus on completing your exercises at least once a day and you’re bound to notice your muscles increasing in strength and endurance.
Put yourself first today and start working towards your fitness goals! Join FightCamp’s at-home boxing and kickboxing experience, and let us keep you motivated to help you become the best version of yourself!
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