Start! 5 exercises that improve footwork in striking
The Rope Jump or Jump Rope
Jumping the rope is a key exercise and although it may seem like a very basic exercise used in boxing, muay thai, K1, etc., but it is actually especially if with time you learn to master this exercise that you can incredibly complicate in its advanced stages by inserting rope jumping modes that combine speed, coordination, etc.
Learning to jump the beginner’s rope is difficult for some and for others less, but once you know the rhythm and learn the feeling and awareness of feeling your body jumping the rope begins to become a way to warm up, to relax, a second nature for you.
The jump of the rope allows you to join the body and your mind to be in tune, because the way you move the whole lower part of the body in sync with the top, from the torso, to the hands, wrist, legs, calves and up to the toes.
It is the whole body in motion and in the most advanced stages you can make many movements with your feet in all directions but always in connection with the body in its totality.
The more time you jump the rope, the better you’ll do it, but above all jumping the rope has interesting advantages to your striking steps (boxing, muay thai, k1.ecc.).
By getting complete control of the lower body, your steps and your footwork are considerably better both in terms of motion economy, speed, balance, etc.
Get the ability to move wherever you want in the ring or in the cage and execute it effectively and flawlessly.
Start jumping the rope.
The agility scale is not a classic training tool used in boxing or muay thai, k1, etc. and has only been incorporated into striking workouts in recent years but more and more often you see pros and trainers using this amazing tool to use to improve footwork.
The agility scale can be used in many different ways and in countless variants of drills.
It has the ability to teach fighters how to use their feet in various different movements, both naturally and unnaturally, but above all it provides references to repeat movements hundreds of times greatly improving the rhythm and fluidity of gestures.
If you’re looking to improve your footwork, this modern training tool you need to have and can really help you teach how to get the most out of your movement.
The agility scale is found today in most gyms and is one of the most used exercises in training.
It’s very cheap, light to take it anywhere and alternatively you can do as kids did with colored chalks on the floor.
The jump on the box is a plyometric drill that increases the explosiveness of a fighter.
When a fighter is moving in the ring or octagon, dodging and moving with ease, rotating around his opponents, he needs explosiveness to instantly move between attack and defense, etc.
Box jump drills give fighters more spring in their explosive bounce.
There are a myriad of different boxing exercises you can do and the difficulty can be increased by raising the platform height to various levels or varying the pace and you can also perform drills at various speeds, both slow and fast.
It can also be helpful to measure yourself for example to understand your fitness level and see if it improves.
Among the different tutorials are: repeated box jumps, single-step jumps and double-foot jumps, etc. (I’ll do a specific post)
The trick is to perform each tutorial with the aim of increasing your explosiveness.
As with all drills, the more repetitions you perform, the better the result and will soon result in more explosiveness in your runs in the ring.
Boxing with your shadow is often perceived by those who are not experienced as a simple warm-up exercise but in reality this training has a very important role and that it plays in training goes far beyond just sweating.
In fact, shadow boxing is one of the most significant parts of training with its unique advantages.
Practicing your techniques, combinations, dodges, strategies, etc. alone in front of a mirror even if it doesn’t seem to help you improve your fighting skills because there is not a real opponent offers many advantages that are not immediately evident in shadow boxing but are instead present.
First of all, it’s a routine you can do anywhere and you don’t have to be in the gym to do it.
The best place is in front of a mirror to correct you but it does not have to be done always because otherwise you look in the mirror instead of concentrating, the ideal would be to film and look at the end of the workout.
When you look in the mirror or later on the video as you perform your techniques, you will be able to notice various flaws and nuances in your movements that, although subtle, can be difficult to correct.
This exercises clearly includes footwork, steps, movements, footwork.
Some shadow boxing routines focus exclusively on foot movement and movement, which will obviously greatly improve the way you use your feet in the ring or octagon.
You can do specific rounds where you focus primarily on footwork.
Use a boxing timer!
Shadow boxing is a great way to improve your footwork and you’ll move like a pro in no time.
I purposely inserted this image of a shadow boxing with the knife because in addition to the sport you know that the blog has a strong character related to self-defense, not surprisingly the motto of the blog is Street Fight Mentality & Fight Sport.
These 5 exercises apply to any discipline!
Observation and Specific Analysis
Finally, one of the most important footwork exercises does not even involve physical activity at an early stage.
All you have to do is:
- take time to watch as the other pro fighters move their feet.
- Analyze how you move and how you can effectively implement footwork in your sport and strategy
- how to make movements more efficient because there are often unnecessary movements or that you see too much
- et cetera.
Study and analysis are a significant part of a fighter’s career and clearly there is a passive part of analysis and an active part where you have to insert and study their footwork when you work out, bag, focus pads, sparring, etc.,
It’s about having a focus on this and paying attention to it!
Analyzing techniques simply by watching movies of how others perform and performing is essential for the development of any athlete and you have to do it yourself, like your coach, with your team or training buddies.
Choose your favorite fighters and watch them carefully, today there are many resources available and often free.
Observe and analyze how they move your feet within their attacks and defenses and when you work out and study the movements you’ve seen in your techniques.
Observing the great fighters and incorporating them into your game some of their strategies is essential for your development and if you do it by training because the active phase is crucial soon you will move like a professional.
Imitation is a fundamental phase of learning, even in music you study covers trying to imitate songs and solos by great musicians and also this has a reflection in your creativity because it can lead to new strategies, it can “enlighten” you in the way you fight and move.
Remember that all great fighters do specific footwork sessions with attack but also defense by repeating them hundreds of times.
Try footwork in the mirror, doing shadow boxing, pao, sparring, etc.