Basic Types of Boxing Punches

Boxing being very popular all around the world is without question a great form of defense. There is a lot to learn in order to be proficient in boxing and it takes a number of years. You will need to be consistent with your training and your fitness levels will improve along with your knowledge and skills. We are going to look at punching, the basic types of boxing punches only in this post. The information here is for anyone with an interest in boxing such as a beginner or a martial artist from another fighting art.

The Boxing Jab

Before any punches you need to be in the correct fighting stance which is:

We will concentrate on orthodox only (if you are left-handed then just do everything on the opposite side),

1.Feet shoulder width apart

2. Stay light on your feet.

3. Step back with your right foot one step

4. Now with leading left foot and hand

5. Elbows down right fist by your right jaw protecting you.

6. Left fist in front of your face to the left just below eye level protecting your face.

7. Push fist out and ensure the left shoulder is now protecting your left chin at the same time of the jab slightly step forward to put body weight behind the jab.

8. Slight rotation of the hips and left shoulder moves forward.

9. Ensure the elbows are stay pointing down until your left arm is fully extended fist horizontal on impact.

10.make sure you retract with speed ready to jab again if required.

The above gives important key points, of the types of boxing punches the jab is the most important punch in my opinion and the best due to the following benefits:

  1. Small body movement
  2. The fastest punch due to the short distance
  3. Great for setting up bigger punches
  4. Can be used to control the pace of the fight
  5. does not use up loads of energy
  6. Great defensive technique
  7. Control the distance
  8. Can double jab or triple jab to catch your opponent off guard

Bear in mind these bad habits you must avoid

  1. Do not over extend or over reach this could damage your joints and leave you exposed.
  2. Do not lean into the punch, this will make you unbalanced. (use foot work to make up the distance)
  3. Lazing returning fist could leave you open to attack.
  4. Do not telegraph your movements

Boxing Right Cross

  1. Standing in the basic fighting stance with the left lead again (if you are left-handed just do everything opposite).
  2. Stay light on your feet.
  3. facing your opponent
  4. Punch from the back hand reaching the target point (the face) straight point A to point B.
  5. When the fist hits the target the palm will be facing down.
  6. This is a powerful punch with the weight of halt the body behind it.
  7. When punching the right shoulder comes forward and the left should draws back.
  8. Pivoting the back foot, the spine, and hips.
  9. Throwing the punch from the chin straight from point A to point B.
  10. Drop slightly for more power.
  11. Left chin protected by left fist (jab Hand) and right chin protected by right shoulder.
  12. Pull back to fighting stance on completion to prevent oncoming attacks.Bear in mind these bad habits you must avoid
  1. No moving up.
  2. No leaning forward or back this could make you unbalanced
  3. Pull back to prevent being tagged by such punches as hooks.
  4. Your feet must be in the right position not inline but, square in the fighting stance.
  5. Avoid getting jammed and tangling of the arms, this could happen if you are too close, this is a long distance attack and full extension is required.
  6. Avoid being too far away, make sure you are in range and ensure your back foot is not left behind if you move slightly forward.
  7. Be off the line of attack when throwing this punch as you are always vulnerable when attacking

This punch can be used as a single attack or part of a combination of an attacked, Mostly used after being set up by the jab, again ensure you are at the right distance and avoid tangling of arms by being at the right distance. Intended to be a hard punch damaging or possibly knockout punch.

Boxing Hook Punch

  1. Standing in the basic fighting stance with the left lead again if you are left-handed just do everything opposite.
  2. Stay light on your feet.
  3. facing your opponent
  4. As a beginner its best to do this punch off your leading hand,
  5. Stay in close lift the elbow of the leading hand to 90 degrees
  6. The fist, your thumb can be facing towards you or facing to down to the floor this is a personal choice just depends on how you prefer to hit your opponent with your fist.
  7. Now in a circular motion punching the face/ head, keeping the angle of the arm
  8. Pivot your front leg ball of the foot and hips/ body also pivot.
  9. Circulating the left shoulder to the right and drawing the left shoulder back in circular motion .
  10. This will deliver the punch with the weight of the body behind it from the pivoting, But do not over extend
  11. Ensure your defense hand is covering your chin on the opposite side.
  12. Return to the fighting position without delay ready to defend or attack.

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Bear in mind these bad habits you must avoid

  1. This punch is close range and if your apply it too far you will loose power and possibly hit with the wrong part of the fist or damage the wrist.
  2. Don not drop the defending hand leaving you exposed to attack during this punch.
  3. Ensure the fist is brought back to the fighting position as soon as possible.
  4. Do not draw back in preparation to attack this will be seen by your opponent and is telegraphing your intent. Punch forms the guard position.
  5. Do not over extend, ensure your control the movement.
  6. Do not over rotate you could find yourself off balance or falling down if you miss the target.

The hook punch is a very effective punch used for knockouts and serious damage, If done right the power behind the punch would have a fair bit of body weight behind it. Your will need to be in close to deliver this punch effectively and once mastered will be able to be done on any arm and to the other parts of the body with devastating effects to the opponent. Will be quick off the leading hand due to the short distance.

Boxing Uppercut Punch

  1. Get into the fighting stance as per above punches.
  2. Leading with the front hand the body mechanics is the same as the hook punch pivoting of leg, body, hips.and front shoulder circling forward and left should drawing back etc please refer above.
  3. The back hand has the same mechanics as cross punch pivot, draw back etc
  4. In both front and back uppercuts the hands punch from below in a small looping action out and back in.
  5. Shift your body weight to the side you are punching from milli seconds before throwing your uppercut this will give the punch power as you will now be under the uppercut.
  6. Slightly drop your weight before punching this will also generate more power.
  7. Palm facing you with your elbow down and your other hand guarding the other side of your head.
  8. When throwing the uppercut keep your head slightly back to give you room to throw the punch.

Bear in mind these bad habits you must avoid

  1. Do not take the fist too low, this will leave you exposed
  2. Do not punch beyond the target too far
  3. Elbows down and tight
  4. Only throw this punch when the opportunity comes and there is a realistic target.
  5. This punch is great for someone shorter than you or someone dips their head avoid trying to apply this punch to someone too tall. You may be able to use body attacks to bring them down to attack the head.
  6. The punch power comes from the ground up not the arm.
  7. Bring the hand back as with all your attacks to protect yourself at all times.


The above covers the basic types of boxing punches in their most basic form,

This is to give an insight to those who do not practice boxing or perhaps is looking to start.

I would recommend any martial arts learn the correct way of throwing punches for added knowledge for self defense if nothing else.

You will need to practice those punches to get them to a reasonable level, this can be done on a heavy bag or and someone holding focus pads for you.

Any boxer will tell you basic techniques need to be practiced to become sharp and proficient, (you need to put the time in)

If you are a boxer I would like to hear you comments and encouragement in the box below

Train hard, focus and practice

Wince 🙂

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2 thoughts on “Basic Types of Boxing Punches

  1. Thank you for dealing with the basics here on this post. I started a side course on boxing and I am having a lot of fun. For this week they assign us research about the basics. I have recently been learning about the four generally accepted boxing styles that are used to define fighters, the swarmer, out-boxer, slugger, and boxer-puncher.

    • Hi Paolo, Thanks for your commends and no problem its great to inspire beginners by going through the basics, Well done in starting the course and this post would be great for your research, Yes learning the different types of fighter is an eye opener as you will start to identify what style your favourite boxers are when watching their fights. 

      Good luck with the boxing,

      All the best,


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