T Nation

Left Hook Power

Okay, this is a question I feel a little silly asking my thai instructor, so maybe you guys can answer it for me.

How do traditional stance boxers such as Mike Tyson and David Tua generate so much power with these left hooks on their “weaker” side? I am aware that you need to throw or feign a right then twist your left foot and bring right foot down, then land the left hook punch as that right foot hits the floor. I really do try to transfer my bodyweight and momentum and musculature behind that punch, but it still pales in comparison my right cross or hook. Obviously practicing will improve this, but it just feels counterintuitive to me especially with these longer hooks.

Watch David Tua or Iron Mike throw a left hook. You’ll notice there’s a dip to the left (think of it as loading a spring) preceding the hook followed by that explosive twist (uncoiling the spring) right before their abs “catch” them at the end to keep them balanced.

The left hook is a natural counterweight to the right cross. Practice throwing the left hook after the right hand and repeat the process over and over. Also practice throwing a left hook following a slip or roll to the left.

Hopefully it’ll begin to feel more natural to you to you as you begin to work the hook into combinations.

I depends a lot on your body type and fighting style.
A great boxer can throw a left hook like you described, on the spot, while being attacked as a counter. Such a perfect left hook is practically invisible if you know what I mean.

A heavyweight and also offensive boxers use the left hook with great momentum. They explode, often with more then just step, it’s practically a small jump.

The secret lies in the stretch reflex. Don’t refrain from training the left seemingly “sloppy”, from time to time to experiment with power; eg dropping it a bit, letting your shoulder move first. Trainers are often too anal about it. You will get exposed a split second. It’s OK though.

It’s all in the hips I guess, and since your hips are open to that side it allows some people to generate a ton of power with that punch…my left hook tends to be a bit better power wise than my straight right.

It really has a lot to do with the weight shift. There is also proper mechanics, and of course timing.

Like any strike there is a kinetic chain of movements that must occur at the right time.

I’d suggest practicing some horizontal/lateral elbows. Once you get the feeling of how to generate maximum force with the elbow, try applying the same body mechanics to the hook.

use your body, not your “arm” as much, if that makes sense.

You already know the power comes from the body, not just the arm muscles.

How much time have you worked it on a heavy bag?

Drools…

That’s funny. Because I’m a southpaw I can’t hook worth a damn with my left. Its feels strange and off balance.

But my right hook is probably my most powerful shot, and I like throwing it following a jab. Oftentimes I’ll throw it as a 1-3, then dip back down and throw a body hook right after it. That’s what you get for idolizing Micky Ward.

As someone else said, that’s why the 1-2-3 is perfect- it’s counterbalance, and accomodates the shifting of weight. After the hook you can start adding on straight lefts and following with hooks because your body is already in the position to transfer the weight perfectly.

You also have to realize that many of the knockouts you see resulting from hooks are from guys winging them out there when they’ve got a guy hurt. Diego Corrales KO’ing Castillo is an example of this, or many of Tyson’s KO’s.

If you want to see the perfect hook, look at when BHop knocks out Trinidad, or when Mayweather knocks out Hatton. Perfect, sharp, inside hooks, arm never leaves 90 degrees, lands right on the button.

Game over.

Check out the left hooks of my buddy Ritt

Here’s Joe Lewis (one of the best striking coaches period IMO) showing some of the finer details of “in fighting”, specifically hooking. Scroll forward to 2:30 if you only want to see him talking about hooking.

Here is one of Joe’s students John Graden demonstrating the different types of hooks and how to throw them.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OwWwpYb4Ug4

[quote]Nikiforos wrote:
Okay, this is a question I feel a little silly asking my thai instructor, so maybe you guys can answer it for me.

How do traditional stance boxers such as Mike Tyson and David Tua generate so much power with these left hooks on their “weaker” side? I am aware that you need to throw or feign a right then twist your left foot and bring right foot down, then land the left hook punch as that right foot hits the floor.

I really do try to transfer my bodyweight and momentum and musculature behind that punch, but it still pales in comparison my right cross or hook. Obviously practicing will improve this, but it just feels counterintuitive to me especially with these longer hooks.[/quote]

Quickly twist in the opposite direction of the hook, like a coiling spring as others have suggested, then start twisting in the opposite direction while floating on the balls of both feet as the punch comes around (float like a butterfly, sting like a bee).

Keep the forearm parallel to the floor. The hip twist should lead the punch.

This guy does the best videos on the internet. He’s a great teacher, and is also a boxing commentator (so he doesn’t get camera shy like other guys do).

Here he is on the left hook…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m8H9YEz888

[quote]duffyj2 wrote:
This guy does the best videos on the internet. He’s a great teacher, and is also a boxing commentator (so he doesn’t get camera shy like other guys do).

Here he is on the left hook…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m8H9YEz888[/quote]

Glad you brought this up. I’ve seen it before, and in my opinion it’s the sloppiest hook I’ve ever seen. It’s what many boxing coaches say your hook SHOULDN’T look like.

He doesn’t show the footwork, and the “hook” is too extended.

I love this guy’s videos, but this one is just… weird.

[quote]Glad you brought this up. I’ve seen it before, and in my opinion it’s the sloppiest hook I’ve ever seen. It’s what many boxing coaches say your hook SHOULDN’T look like.

He doesn’t show the footwork, and the “hook” is too extended.

I love this guy’s videos, but this one is just… weird.[/quote]

You’re right. Despite the fact that the coach’s advice is good, the kid’s technique does leave a lot to be desired. I generally advise these videos for anyone looking into boxing and hadn’t watched them for a while. I shall have to find some alternative.

I disagree with the hook being too extended. It is an outside hook, not an inside one.

I’m liking John Graden’s videos…

[quote]duffyj2 wrote:
Glad you brought this up. I’ve seen it before, and in my opinion it’s the sloppiest hook I’ve ever seen. It’s what many boxing coaches say your hook SHOULDN’T look like.

He doesn’t show the footwork, and the “hook” is too extended.

I love this guy’s videos, but this one is just… weird.

You’re right. Despite the fact that the coach’s advice is good, the kid’s technique does leave a lot to be desired. I generally advise these videos for anyone looking into boxing and hadn’t watched them for a while. I shall have to find some alternative.

I disagree with the hook being too extended. It is an outside hook, not an inside one.

I’m liking John Graden’s videos…[/quote]

Not to mention he has that kid turn his hand over ALOT. Strange, because the reason you turn your hand is to get the snap in a jab and the torgue on a straight right. But on the hook? It will detract from your power and probably blow your shoulder out if you hit hard enough.

Like I said, I like this guys videos, so I guess maybe this one is an anamoly.

[quote]FightinIrish26 wrote:
duffyj2 wrote:
Glad you brought this up. I’ve seen it before, and in my opinion it’s the sloppiest hook I’ve ever seen. It’s what many boxing coaches say your hook SHOULDN’T look like.

He doesn’t show the footwork, and the “hook” is too extended.

I love this guy’s videos, but this one is just… weird.

You’re right. Despite the fact that the coach’s advice is good, the kid’s technique does leave a lot to be desired. I generally advise these videos for anyone looking into boxing and hadn’t watched them for a while. I shall have to find some alternative.

I disagree with the hook being too extended. It is an outside hook, not an inside one.

I’m liking John Graden’s videos…

Not to mention he has that kid turn his hand over ALOT. Strange, because the reason you turn your hand is to get the snap in a jab and the torgue on a straight right. But on the hook? It will detract from your power and probably blow your shoulder out if you hit hard enough.

Like I said, I like this guys videos, so I guess maybe this one is an anamoly.[/quote]

Can’t watch the video, says it’s a “malformed id”.

Gotta disagree with you though Irish about turning the fist over hurting your power or blowing your shoulder out in a hook. Rotating your palm down engages the deltoid and upper back muscles more and actually increases the power in a hook. The Eddie Futch style hook (which Graden demonstrates in the video I linked to above) is a very powerful hook, much more powerful than the Angelo Dundee style hook where the palm is more vertical.

Not to mention that a vertical hook will mean that you’re hitting with the last three knuckles rather than the first two. Fine with boxing gloves on, bad idea with bare fists.

Also, the primary reason you rotate your palm down on a jab or straight right is to cut your opponent. Once again, boxing gloves don’t illustrate this all that well, but with bare fists it’s pretty apparent. Yes, it also adds protection against punches coming over top of your elbow and rotational speed. But those aren’t the primary reasons that you pronate your fist.

[quote]Sentoguy wrote:
FightinIrish26 wrote:
duffyj2 wrote:
Glad you brought this up. I’ve seen it before, and in my opinion it’s the sloppiest hook I’ve ever seen. It’s what many boxing coaches say your hook SHOULDN’T look like.

He doesn’t show the footwork, and the “hook” is too extended.

I love this guy’s videos, but this one is just… weird.

You’re right. Despite the fact that the coach’s advice is good, the kid’s technique does leave a lot to be desired. I generally advise these videos for anyone looking into boxing and hadn’t watched them for a while. I shall have to find some alternative.

I disagree with the hook being too extended. It is an outside hook, not an inside one.

I’m liking John Graden’s videos…

Not to mention he has that kid turn his hand over ALOT. Strange, because the reason you turn your hand is to get the snap in a jab and the torgue on a straight right. But on the hook? It will detract from your power and probably blow your shoulder out if you hit hard enough.

Like I said, I like this guys videos, so I guess maybe this one is an anamoly.

Can’t watch the video, says it’s a “malformed id”.

Gotta disagree with you though Irish about turning the fist over hurting your power or blowing your shoulder out in a hook. Rotating your palm down engages the deltoid and upper back muscles more and actually increases the power in a hook. The Eddie Futch style hook (which Graden demonstrates in the video I linked to above) is a very powerful hook, much more powerful than the Angelo Dundee style hook where the palm is more vertical.

Not to mention that a vertical hook will mean that you’re hitting with the last three knuckles rather than the first two. Fine with boxing gloves on, bad idea with bare fists.

Also, the primary reason you rotate your palm down on a jab or straight right is to cut your opponent. Once again, boxing gloves don’t illustrate this all that well, but with bare fists it’s pretty apparent. Yes, it also adds protection against punches coming over top of your elbow and rotational speed. But those aren’t the primary reasons that you pronate your fist.[/quote]

It is a pity the video dosen’t work for you. The hook that graden demonstrates ends with the palm facing towards the floor. The kid in the video I posted makes contact with his fist vertical and then turns it so much his palm is almost facing his opponent.

[quote]duffyj2 wrote:
Sentoguy wrote:
FightinIrish26 wrote:
duffyj2 wrote:
Glad you brought this up. I’ve seen it before, and in my opinion it’s the sloppiest hook I’ve ever seen. It’s what many boxing coaches say your hook SHOULDN’T look like.

He doesn’t show the footwork, and the “hook” is too extended.

I love this guy’s videos, but this one is just… weird.

You’re right. Despite the fact that the coach’s advice is good, the kid’s technique does leave a lot to be desired. I generally advise these videos for anyone looking into boxing and hadn’t watched them for a while. I shall have to find some alternative.

I disagree with the hook being too extended. It is an outside hook, not an inside one.

I’m liking John Graden’s videos…

Not to mention he has that kid turn his hand over ALOT. Strange, because the reason you turn your hand is to get the snap in a jab and the torgue on a straight right. But on the hook? It will detract from your power and probably blow your shoulder out if you hit hard enough.

Like I said, I like this guys videos, so I guess maybe this one is an anamoly.

Can’t watch the video, says it’s a “malformed id”.

Gotta disagree with you though Irish about turning the fist over hurting your power or blowing your shoulder out in a hook. Rotating your palm down engages the deltoid and upper back muscles more and actually increases the power in a hook. The Eddie Futch style hook (which Graden demonstrates in the video I linked to above) is a very powerful hook, much more powerful than the Angelo Dundee style hook where the palm is more vertical.

Not to mention that a vertical hook will mean that you’re hitting with the last three knuckles rather than the first two. Fine with boxing gloves on, bad idea with bare fists.

Also, the primary reason you rotate your palm down on a jab or straight right is to cut your opponent. Once again, boxing gloves don’t illustrate this all that well, but with bare fists it’s pretty apparent. Yes, it also adds protection against punches coming over top of your elbow and rotational speed. But those aren’t the primary reasons that you pronate your fist.

It is a pity the video dosen’t work for you. The hook that graden demonstrates ends with the palm facing towards the floor. The kid in the video I posted makes contact with his fist vertical and then turns it so much his palm is almost facing his opponent.
[/quote]

Got the link to work. Yeah, now that I see the video I understand what you guys are saying. He does over-rotate his fist and it is much too extended. My mistake for disagreeing with you Irish. I see what you were talking about now.