The heavy bag is a very useful tool for a fighter because it allows you to do many types of training even on your own (training only) and is therefore a tool that can not be missing in your home gym or in a gym.
The heavy bag can be from boxing or muay thai what I will talk about are concepts on how to use this tool as the pros and feel comfortable in front of this tool.
Important! Always put the bands on your hands and use the sack gloves!
Pulling heavy bag especially when you use your body well is something that is very wear and tear for your hands that you have to preserve because they are part of your weapons.
So it’s important that you learn to wrap your hands well when you train.
Tell us some tips on how to hit and use the heavy bag:
Tip.1 – Why you’re using the bag
The sack you can use to implement and study an appearance or several aspects at a time mixing them with these elements that I’m going to list you and that’s why a fundamental aspect is the intention, the reason why you’re using the sack, what do you want to train? So your intention is important.
- power (e.g. low kicks or hooks, or tip or elbows)
- speed (of a combination or other)
- technique (to study a shot or technique)
- fakes (to study movements or combinations such as fakes)
- defenses (to study defensive movements or combinations of attack and defense, etc.)
- footwork (to study entrances and exits with and without a hit, etc.)
So the reason or intention you’re working on is critical, it may be one or the combination of more than one but you need to know why you’re training well.
The more you become good and experienced, the more you can only do free training, the so-called free sack but this is a phase when you have more awareness of yourself and what you want to coach.
Tip 2 – Hit and run away
Don’t stand still in front of the sack but move, footwork is also essential in front of the sack.
So hit and move because if it’s true that the sack doesn’t return when you sparring or want to do matches, the opponent after you hit will try a counterattack and that’s why you have to get used to it after you hit to get out.
Same thing to get close to the sack.
So it’s critical in front of the sack that you hit and you always move by stepping, by step I intend to move both feet.
Example with a combination par excellence, the Jab Cross,for example you pull a Jab Cross and make a:
- step to the left (left foot and then right foot)
- semi shifting with left foot and pivot
- step backwards (move first the foot that is behind and then the advanced foot)
- one step to the right (right foot and then left foot)
- semi shifting with the right foot and pivot
- et cetera.
These are some examples and you can do the same thing on combinations like Jab – Low Kick, etc. my advice at the beginning is to make simple combinations and work on individual trips for a number of series and then slowly mix them on each combination.
Tip 3 – Strike and Defend
As I told you before the sack does not return but you absolutely have to be careful to keep your posture, guard, chin down, narrow elbows, look, speed of hit recovery, etc. always present because if you do sparring or want to make matches the shots returned and then you also have to train the defensive skills and as before we have seen the movements that are also an evasion system taking you out of the attack distance of your opponent also the defense after a defense. attack is key.
So after you hit the bag you have to simulate:
- Parry (a punch, a kick, etc. depends on your discipline)
- Check in (Thai style)
- Catch (how to grab a kick, etc.) and then hit
- Dodge (torso side to side, lowering, back, etc.) and then come back with a shot
Tip 4 – Hit the eye level
I think you’ve happened to see the boxers do the focus pads where his trainer keeps them very high, the reasons are different maybe for the opponent he has to face, to make more effort but also for what I’m going to tell you that is not to take bad habits like pull “low” with the consequence that you discover a lot of chin and other targets exposing you to potential ko.
So it’s like you’re hurtling your shots a little higher than usual as if your imaginary opponent is taller.
Same thing for body shots you have to bend your legs not pull down!
Tip 5 – Change attack lines to height
It is important to change the lines of attack which means that if you target your head, body, legs, you have to pull combinations at different heights using both your hands and your legs.
To give you an example Jab Cross Low Kick or Cross Middle Kick Left, etc.
This way of fighting is very effective because it makes it much more complicated for your opponent to defend.
Tip 6 – Discontinuous rhythm
Often you have a tendency to pull the combination at full speed which also makes sense, but there is also the discontinuous rhythm.
A combination in speed usually requires a continuous change of side of the left fist shots, dopi right fist, left kick, right fist this to take advantage of the natural loading of the human body in its rotation while performing the blows.
So always left, right, left, right, left, right shots whether punch or kick and indifferent
What I mean, suppose a combination jab cross hook cross low kick sx and cross dx in this way is pulled with a continuous pace while for discontinuous pace and that makes for your opponent more complicated to parry working in this way for example:
Cross, elbow Dx, Low Kick Dx, knee Dx example and as you see means to work on one side then 3 or 4 different shots on the right side at different heights and 3 or 4 different shots left at different heights.
You often see Pro fighters do this!
Tip 7 – You need to be creative
Look for your combinations, your strategies, do not limit yourself to the classic combinations that over time become predictable.
Then experiment with combinations, techniques inserted in the midst of classic movements or combinations that break the combination and make your attack unpredictable.
Like Jab Cross Spinning Hammer Fist Sx, the Jump Tip, or Tip with an immediate middle kick, etc.
What I mean, get out of the classic combinations experimenting!
It’s easy to see this in creative athletes of Muay Thai (Saenchai) or MMA (Tony Ferguson, Antony Pettis, Anderson Silva)
Tip 8 – It’s not a lot, imagine your opponent
Even in front of the sack you have to do as if it were a shadow boxing void and then imagine an opponent hitting, para, etc. and then you have to stay active in front of the sack and not throw shots as if in front you don’t have an opponent.
Imagine there’s an opponent!
So even where you hit it’s important not to randomly pull on the sack!
Tip 9 – The counterattack after your defense
In this case compared to before the focus is on the counterattack after the defense so for example you dodged a shot and answer, block a shot and immediately pull your combination.
The point is to build an answer after dodging, evading, parrying, etc. your opponent’s shot.
So you simulate parrying, dodging, etc. a shot as if you were empty and counterattack the sack with a single shot or a combination and then footwork.
Tip 10 – Body fakes and fake shots
He works with fakes.
Fakes can be short movements of the head, shoulders, anes, feet, etc. so body movements or shots pulled without intention to create a defensive movement to your opponent and enter with another blow.
- Movement fake (head/shoulder/even or feet) and combination of strokes
- or Jab’s Fake and then after you throw Jab Cross Hook
- you make a Hook Fake with a movement and then you really pull the Hook where it’s free – Low Kick
- pull a Fake of Tip Dx and pull a Dx elbow (this is very used in Muay Thai)
- et cetera.
So you fake it and then you pull the combination and eventually make a move or put on a defense.
The ending must always be active even if there is no opponent!
Tip 11 – Use functional shots to your real shot
Whether bag-packed as in sparring or matches there are shots that are pulled for:
- Measuring distance
- Move the opponent either as a guard to create openings or position to move it wherever you want
- Defend the opponent and find the openings
- et cetera.
For example Jab Cross to raise your guard and pull a powerful direct knee or two Jab Cross to raise your guard and pull two powerful Body Hooks to the body, etc.
The purpose of these blows is precisely functional to open the guard or make him make movements that allow you to let in your strong shots.
So you have to use the speed a few times, other times the fakes, to create these openings.
Tip 12 – Go empty on the bag
This condition simulates that you’ve pulled a shot and gone empty and you need to be ready to use this balance loss to retrieve it or use it to rotate and hit.
- Miss with a cross or hook and come back with a spinning elbow
- Or miss with a low kick and pull a spinning back fist
- et cetera.
Study it on the different shots.
Tip 13 – Move around the bag
The bag must be mobile so it must not rest on the ground or be leaning against the wall but must have the ability to swing.
This is useful because you can push it and use it to simulate an advancing opponent and then:
- Hit in advance
- Move and hit
- Rotate around it as you hit and move
- et cetera.
That’s why it’s important to have a bag mounted with supports that allow at least to rotate around it for 180 degrees and even a little more.
It allows you to hit while the sack is moving and you have to move around and this is very useful for footwork because moving the sack and swinging forces you to move and correct your position and distance to hit in addition to the fact that you rotate around.
Also changing tilt you have to pull the shots with the right inclination to have a perpendicular impact to the contact plane forcing you to pull the shots based on the position of the sack.
So the bag must be hung and not leaning on the ground and with a distance from the wall that allows you to turn around, even better if hanging in the middle of a room.
Tip 14 – Listen to your property
It’s important that you feel your muscles as they work as you perform heavy sack techniques and combinations, such as impacts on the sack, how you feel your body while performing the sack shots,
If you don’t feel balanced, some shots are drained, etc. it means that something is wrong and you have to immediately look with your trainer for a solution to the technical defect.
Tip 15 – Schedule the packed training session
As I told you at the beginning you can do a lot of jobs in only packed training and then you have to structure them to do a good job and not always do the same exercise.
So you have to split the packed rounds to work on specific aspects to do a quality workout during your heavy sack sessions.
So divide the rounds to do specific workouts or do more than one to work on aspects that are important to you in your combat strategy or because you’re lacking and the trainer told you you have to work on it.
The sack is a good training partner because it is always there and never gets tired and you can do it whenever you want there are no schedules!
Help yourself with a boxing timer to measure training times.
Tip 16 – Measure your workouts and shots
Today there are also Smart technology tools that you can use to measure your workout and if as I told you you structure it to repeat it always the same you can also measure if your performance as strokes, power, etc. go to improve and therefore the workouts you are doing are working.
I hope these tips on how to use heavy bag will help you if you’re starting to use this gorgeous training tool that even the fitness world uses to get people in shape.
Heavy calorie expenditure is very good so it’s also a good way to get back in shape but while you’re doing it try to learn something and not just make movement.
Heavy bag is crucial in your home gym so, as in defense gyms and combat sports.
Those who practice MMA can also release it and use it on the ground or to perform some types of projection but this I will do a separate post.
I hope you’ll need this set of tips even if you’re already a heavy bag veteran.
Street Fight Mentality & Fight Sport