Boxing at Leicester MMA Academy with JD Hylton – Session 1: Shape and Basic Movement

Leicester Shootfighters – Boxing Session by JD Hylton 14th Sept 2011-09-14

Session 1 Shape and Basic Movement

We’ve all heard the well known phrases ‘You’ve got to learn to walk before you run’ and ‘it’s not about the outcome but it’s the journey’.  Although these phrases are used day in day out, they do refer to the importance of foundation and process.  Normally the first thing people think about when they hear boxing is punching.  If our focus and attention is on purely punching with our hands/arms, we forget about why we are punching in the first place and thereby enter the paradox of trying to do something as opposed to understanding and mastering something with purpose and building a skill.

Today’s session was all about the shape and movement we need in order to move with optimum balance, speed and giving us the ability to act and react from a stable base.  We have many different postures and these normally relate to what function we intend or do perform i.e. sitting to read a book, sitting to drive a car, sitting watching t.v. = all sitting but the function determines the postural set (The muscles being used to hold that position).  In order to optimise our posture we need to first workout the best (not necessarily comfortable at first) posture.  This is where learning and coaching comes in.  Our shape will ultimately affect the way we move, after all there’s a reason why when we want to run we change the position of our limbs and body and the same goes if we are to lift something heavy or prepare to jump.  Although this sounds simple, its something that is often neglected when attempting to attain a goal (Punching, especially trying to punch hard).


We must learn to move, relax and perform the functions we need in that optimum shape and for this we need feedback from coaches, peers, ourselves (Using a mirror) but most of all we have to stop thinking about what we expect to feel like and learn to settle in a new posture to achieve the optimum which we will eventually see through our performance.

Today’s Session Brief Overview

Stance Work – Basic Stance

  • Right handed = Left foot forward
  • Left Handed = Right foot forwards
  • Knees bent, slightly side on, relaxed, hands up covering faces


  • Moving forwards = Push off back leg and step front foot forwards
  • Moving backwards = Push off front leg step back leg backwards
  • Moving Sideways to (R) = Push off left foot and step right foot out
  • Moving Sideways to (L) = Push off right foot and step left foot out.
  • When moving keep the same level/height and take small controlled steps.

Basic Punches

The Jab – Comes from the front hand and goes straight out until the arm is extended and your fist should twist so your palm faces down.  Your chin remains tucked behind your shoulder and after the fist has landed the hand comes back up to protect the head to the guard position.

The Straight – Comes from the rear hand, again travels in a straight line and extends out fully whilst turning the body and hips.  Again the fist rotated and the pal should be face down on full extension of the arm.

Points to Remember

  • Think about your shape and relax but keep your chin down
  • Use full extension on your punches
  • Rotate your feet and hips but remain balanced
  • Try not to push your punches but let them come out in a more of a whipping action

Well done to everyone tonight, it was a good first session and there was a great turn out.  We will continue to build on the foundations but it was very encouraging looking around tonight at the group to see people listening and making good progress!

Keep at it!  Train hard but train smart!

Peace and respect

JD ‘The Catch’ Hylton – Leicester Shootfighters

Twitter : @The_Catch_EOA

About leicestermma

Boxing | Jiu Jitsu | MMA Book your FREE TRIAL on 07926 110 726 or email Leicester Mixed Martial Arts Academy is the home of the Leicester Shootfighters (LSF) team. We are Leicestershire's oldest and most accomplished MMA and BJJ club. Our experienced team of instructors coach all levels from complete beginner to professional fighter and we pride ourselves on our internationally renowned technical teaching and great club atmosphere. All levels welcome.
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