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Muay Thai, training methods

Punches in Bunches

An actual fog descended on the gym on Tuesday

So last night we did a high quality boxing session, or at least it was supposed to be high quality. It looked like this

2 rds shadow boxing with sprawl every 30 seconds

Actually for every round we did last night, there was a beep every 30 seconds and on it the boxer had to either sprawl or shoot to their padholder’s legs. I’ll explain why in a mo.

Three minute rounds:
rd 1- Focussing on technique, simple combos. Concentrating on extension from the toes through the hips with good quality 100% of the time.
rd 2- 1-4 pyramid combos. Focussing on speed in each combo rather than volume. So if your partner slows down or loses technique as he’s striking, you give him more of a break between combos. Each combination should as fast as possible but also as close to technically perfect as the first round as possible
rd 3- Standard round, mix up combinations but retain technique. This round was a rest round before the last one to try to keep the quality high.
rd 4- Pyramid 1-10 and back as many times as possible. Speed and power with the same technique as before. The idea being the same as rd 2, where the padholder controls the rest period between each combo to make sure that each combo is as fast and as powerful as possible.

I’ve done these sessions before for technique and I’ve always found that beginner’s combination punching improves almost immediately. I did something different last night with the 30 second beeps. The sprawls and shoots are in there to be a) and audio cue for a specific reaction. The beep goes and you sprawl immediately and explosively. And b) a rythm breaker so that nobody falls into the trap of just rythmically hammering on the pads, which is easy to do.

The feedback was as I’d hoped. People were more fatigued after this session than after normal boxing pad rounds. This was because of the sprawls and shoots for one, which were pretty alien to some of the stand-up only people in the gym, but also because they were forced to ‘fire’ from the hips explosively every time because of the focus on quality. Sometimes, through fatigue or a will to get things done harder and faster, hip motion deteriorates during pad rounds. The first round cues and hopefully my explanation of the goals of the rounds helped to keep the focus on that high quality, high power goal. So people who maybe arm punch a bit when things get going were forced to constantly think about their technique, and it was tiring to do so.

That being said there were still some people arm punching a bit towards the end in both groups but I’ll get them next time.


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