How To Throw A Punch

Every woman should have the opportunity to throw a punch, just to see how it feels.

Lots of guys have done this already, either in the mosh pit at a Bad Brains concert, behind the high school where the bad kids smoked, or in a bar after three too many PBRs. Sorry people, Wii Boxing does NOT count.

So, ladies. They’ve done it, and now it’s your turn.

Get in position
If you don’t know anyone who has a heavy bag, get a friend (preferably male, just because you’ll enjoy it) to hold up a big fat couch seat cushion in front of their upper torso. If you are right-handed, stand with your left foot ahead of your right, with your left toe pointing toward your human punching bag, and your right foot pointing out to the right. Bend your knees just a touch, and keep the same amount of weight on each foot. You should feel solidly planted, not tippy. Your left shoulder should be in front of your body, so that you’re slightly sideways to your opponent. (Switch the whole deal if you’re southpaw.)

Make a fist
Curl your fingers into your palms, and DON’T put your thumb inside your fist. Curl it around your clenched fist, not over the top. Bring both fists up to your chin, and keep your elbows in. Keep your chin down. The second (middle) knuckle of your left index finger should be touching your chin or cheek.

Since you don’t have wraps or gloves on, you’re going to throw a few easy punches rather than all-outs. After you fall in love with boxing (in oh, about 10 minutes) you can run down to Dick’s Sporting Goods and purchase wraps and gloves and hope your friend is still game. But for now…

Throw a slow-mo left jab
Slowly push your left fist straight out from your chin toward your, um, friend. If he doesn’t have the cushion up high enough yet, he soon will. As your fist goes out to make contact, it should rotate so that the point of impact is between your first two knuckles (index finger and next finger). Your arm should be fully extended. If you are too close, now is the time to back up slightly so you can get full extension.

Stance check
Leave that jab out there and check your stance. Are you still balanced? Is your right fist still up at your chin? Is your chin still tucked in? Alrighty, then. Bring your left jab back home and prepare to throw it again, only faster this time.

Throw a real left jab
Give your partner an evil grin. Here comes the fun part. This time when you throw your left jab, let it start slow and finish fast, with a snap at the end. Mmm, this is gonna be yummy.  Technically your left jab should be aimed toward his nose, but since he’s being helpful, keep it aimed at the cushion on the center of his chest. (For now.) Throw that left jab a few times and enjoy feeling it thwock home. Lovely, isn’t it? Does he look slightly worried yet? He will.

Now throw the right
The left jab is your lead punch; it sets you up for the Real Deal, which is your power punch on the right. Where the left jab has pop and sting, the right should carry weight and pain. Throw the right with the power and motion of your body behind it: when this punch is fully extended, your right hip and shoulder will rotate forward and your right heel should leave the ground with a slight pivot. Throw this slow-mo, and make sure you aren’t putting yourself off-balance when you throw it. Do two or three for practice.

The old one-two
Now put the two punches together. Left jab, right power. Be sure to draw back each punch before you throw the next one. Keep your fists high and don’t square up to your opponent — stay in your stance.

Has your friend asked for a break yet? Feels powerful, doesn’t it? You like it, don’t you?

I thought you would.

Image credit: ajdagregorcic on Flickr

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2 Responses to How To Throw A Punch

  1. Sandy Martin July 25, 2009 at 10:15 pm #

    WOW! I’m honored, Lisa! And intrigued …

  2. Lisa Creech Bledsoe July 26, 2009 at 4:22 pm #

    Sandy, I can’t believe I never thought to write this post before now; thank you for inspiring it. I’ll be waiting to hear your report on how your personal punching session went : )

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