Have you ever wondered why when you watch a really good boxer work on the heavy bag or mitts, their punches sound like whip cracks even when they’re not punching very hard? You’ll often hear boxing coaches and fighters talk about the importance of making your punches “snap,” but what exactly does this mean, and how does one throw a snapping punch? Well, I’m here to explain what a snapping punch is and give you some tips to help you throw snapping punches during your boxing workouts.
What Is a Snapping Punch?
A snapping punch is a punch that delivers all of its kinetic impact at once, creating a snapping sound, rather than over a longer time, which instead creates a “thudding” sound. Put more simply, a snapping punch is a punch that uses momentum rather than raw force. But how can you throw one? How can you accomplish that sweet snap? Here are some tips.
How To Make Your Punches SNAP!
Tip 1: Always Engage Your Entire Body
One of the first things you should be doing in order to throw a snapping punch is to make sure you are putting your legs, hips, and back behind your punch. This will allow your arm to stay relaxed longer and act as a whip or lever, which will create far more momentum than punching only using the muscles of your arm.
Tip 2: Maintain Proper Distance
Each punch should only be connecting with the target at the end of its motion. If you find your jab connecting with the bag before your arm is fully extended, or your hooks connecting before they’re at a right angle with your body, that means you're too close to your target and you’re losing built-up momentum. Take a half step back to measure your distance and try again.
Tip 3: Shift Your Bodyweight
This is the concept I struggled the most with starting out, but it is vital to proper punching form. When you throw a punch, it will sometimes feel unnatural to shift your weight, but it's important to do so anyway. You don’t always have to do a dramatic shift from one side to the other, but you do need to let your body shift with your punches in order to get the whipping effect that you need to create a snapping punch. If you find yourself losing your balance, it means you need to adjust your boxing stance to accommodate your body’s natural motion.
Just like anything in the sweet science of boxing, snapping punches takes time to figure out and master. But with practice, you’ll soon be snapping punches and hearing that sweet sound.
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