This one is so notorious and well known that it doesn’t need a flashy introduction. We are sure that you have heard about the boxing hook and already know how it looks like.
The world of boxing is meaningless without it. It is a technique that you absolutely have to master. Of course, there are many other techniques you have to master in order to become as close to a professional as you can get, but this one is a MUST have.
Oh boy, how many fights have ended because of one clean left hook. Just “Bam!” and it’s already over. What we are trying to say, is that a hook is one of the most powerful punches that you can throw in boxing. Why not learn the fundamentals and then perfect it?
The fundamentals of throwing a hook
Pay close attention to this. Learning the fundamentals and perfecting them is the first and most important step in learning something new.
YOUR ARM SHOULD BE BENT AT A 90 DEGREE ANGLE
This is important because of the nature of the hook. You want your hook to be as powerful as it can. You want it to be a hard shot leading to a quick knockout. Bending you arm at a 90 degree angle, or close to it, will do just that. Don’t go over that number or under it, try and keep that perfect angle for maximum power.
ALWAYS ROTATE YOUR BODY
This one is also connected to the nature of the hook. Your body’s rotation with the hook will lead to that high powered shot you want. Besides from that, this way you will also be ready to defend yourself and roll under a punch since your head is moving with the body. That one comes in handy pretty darn well!
YOU SHOULD PIVOT YOUR LEAD FOOT
Your strength and punching power comes from your feet and goes through your body to your fists. You can think of it as of a highway. That power channels from the beginning of the road, your feet, and goes to the ending, your knuckles. It is important that you always rotate your leading foot while throwing a lead hook. If you are throwing a rear hand hook, then it’s the rear foot that should be pivoting.
MAKE SURE TO BEND YOUR KNEES
Don’t overdo it! Bend them slightly and keep that balance. If you lose balance while trying to throw a perfect hook, then you already lost. An experienced fighter will recognize your body’s mistake and capitalize on it. Bend your knees slightly to ensure that the power from your feet comes to your hands with the starting maximum strength and maintain perfect balance.
YOUR FIST CAN ROTATE BOTH WAYS
This one is entirely up to you. You can rotate your fists sideways, or you can rotate them upwards, your choice.
THROW A PUNCH THROUGH YOUR OPPONENT
Don’t just focus on hitting him and going back. Focus on going through him. You must be careful with this. If you always go recklessly at your opponent while trying to go through, you could get caught and countered. Bait your opponent and when you feel that opening throw a hook. If you focus on going through him then all of the previously mentioned power will come together and deliver heavy damage to your opponent. It’s just what you want.
WHILE DOING THIS, KEEP YOUR OTHER HAND UP!
This one is as important, if not even more, as all of the previous steps. While punching, you leave a small gap, a small area that your opponent can use to counter. If he avoids your punch and you aren’t protecting that area, it could be game over. That’s why you should always keep your elbow in and you rear hand up.
Typical mistakes that people make while throwing a hook
These things are also very important to know because they can make all the difference on who’s going to hit the floor first.
NEVER FULLY TRANSFER YOUR WEIGHT TO ONE OF YOUR FEET – This will only cause you to lose balance, instead, put your weight in your mid section.
NEVER PUNCH FROM TOO FAR – If you don’t read the situation and your positioning well, you won’t be able to throw a successful hook. Hooks should be used in close range combat. Throwing from a far distance will only give your opponent more opportunities to counter attack.
DON’T PULL YOUR ARM BACK WHILE PUNCHING – Many fighters think that by pulling their arms backwards they will gain enough momentum and power for a good punch. If you do everything that was already said correctly, your hook will be ultra effective. If you use this swing however, your opponent is going to see what’s coming.
That’s all that you should know when it comes to fundamentals of the hook. Now let’s see the variations of this technique. Each and every variation is effective in its own way.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF THE HOOK
This type is excellent for proving that defense leads to offense. Tilt your body forward, not too much though, and read your opponent. When your opponent rushes towards you, throw a lead hook and pull back a bit.
LEAD BODY HOOK
Your target should be the opponent’s kidney section. Set your lead hook up with a straight punch, get into the preferable position and throw the hook. Your body should be slightly tilted outside of your lead foot.
If your opponent is charging on you, you should pivot on your lead foot. After that you should move your foot to the outside of your body, and rotate.
BACK STEP HOOK
Again, another great technique used when your opponent is charging at you. Simply wait for the right moment and step back. While your opponent is still going at you, throw a hook and deliver a devastating punishment.
LEAPING LEAD HOOK
This is a dangerous one, for both you and your opponent. For this one, you should be slightly out of your opponent’s ideal hook range. When you decide it’s the right moment, leap into ideal hook’s range and while doing this, simultaneously throw a hook. It should be fast and powerful. If you miss it could get pretty bad for you.
WHEN SHOULD YOU THROW A HOOK
You already know that you should throw a hook only when you are in range and or see an opening. But how should you exactly throw it without the opponent knowing?
There are multiple ways to set a great hook. For an example, here is what you can do:
- You could throw lead hook to your opponent’s head. This shouldn’t be a full power punch, the right one will come slightly after. When you throw a lead hook to the head, your opponent will raise his guard up, giving you the chance to send the lead body hook, only this time it should be with full power.
- You could throw a straight punch at your opponent. It should be something between a jab and a full punch, a little bit more than a tap. As your opponent is going at you, he won’t be expecting your hook. Send it right away.
The key thing here is to be creative and play chess with your opponent. Set him up, make him believe one thing and then boom, throw a hook right at him. Make him wonder what you’re going to do next and then surprise him with some pounding.