BOXING MISTAKE NO. 11
‘Turning your head away from incoming punches’
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Watch out for this one guys. This is a common and very painful mistake to make, but I see it time and time again. This is when the pressure is really on in sparring or in a fight and panic sets in, rather than doing the right thing (I will talk about this below) the defender tries to turn his head away from the punches. Unfortunately, all this does is make you more vulnerable for the knock-out. There is nothing worse than having your neck twisted to the limit (to avoid the punch) and then having a huge punch land, because there is nowhere for your neck left to turn – meaning more neck strain and brain rattling for you.
Normally, if you survive this onslaught, because you neck is at its limit, your body then starts to turn to catch up with your head and try and shelter away from the attacker. This is an awful position, you need to know where the shots are coming from so you can prepare your body and head for impact, now you’re turned, you’re fighting blind and backwards. Obviously the ref or coach will generally step in at this point, but that’s not always before the attacker has managed to get few more punches in.
What should you do?
I know it’s easy to say, but don’t panic, pull your gloves up into a high guard and sit down in your stance (get into a low stance) and pull your chin in. Leave a peep hole through your gloves so you can watch your opponent and move your body to compensates for his hits. There should normally be break in your opponents flurry of punches and this is the time to move and get out of there. Re-set yourself and carry on with the fight.
former BBBofC British Super-Middleweight & WBF World Middleweight Champion