Everyone dreams of throwing that one-hit knockout punch to win the match. Everyone knows that always doesn’t happen though. If you really want to win, you have to consider utilizing various boxing combinations.
Combos can quickly wear down your opponent and allow you to score some pretty good hits.
Once you have a good idea of the standard punches (jab, cross, hook, and uppercut), you should be able to put them together to create devastating sequences.
There are plenty to learn, but we’ve come up with 10 boxing combinations that are sure to lead you down the path to victory.
When you are just starting to put together boxing combinations, the 1-2 is probably the first one you learn as it’s the most popular and well-known one.
It is popular for a reason though, and that is because it works.
Generally, a jab is used to test your opponent’s distance, distract them, and set up a heavier hit.
In this combo, that heavier hit comes in the form of the cross.
Use a quick jab to the head to throw your opponent off-guard, and then bring in the heavy cross with your dominant hand to finish the job.
If you feel as though the attack may be anticipated, consider throwing a 1-1-2 instead to further throw off your opponent while still setting up that strong right cross.
This 1-2-3 is another basic, yet powerful, sequence that can work as a completion of the first combination in our list.
It is mainly about setting up a strong hook your opponent doesn’t suspect is coming.
Just like with the 1-2, the jab works to set everything up. Afterward, bring in the cross, but don’t throw it with all your power like you would in the 1-2. You want to save that energy for the hook.
After you cross, regardless of if you landed it successfully, your opponent may be planning for a counter or has dropped their guard completely.
You have your opening to attack with the hook, so keep within range even if they may go for a counter strike.
Aim for the head or the body with the hook, whichever you feel you can connect with.
It does work rather well against the body though as your opponent may be too busy protecting their head after that distraction with the earlier cross.
Much like the first combination in our list, the 1-2 is a quick combination to throw off your opponent and have you score a quick, big hit.
What you first want to do is fire off a quick jab down to the body.
Select a spot that’s open, one that will have your opponent looking down. You won’t use much power here as the jab is pure distraction.
As you well know, your opponent won’t look down for long, so you have to utilize your speed and follow up with a strong cross to their head.
They won’t be looking for it, and it can easily see you taking home the match.
The 1-2-3-2 can be seen as a basic sequence, but still, one that can lead you to win.
As per usual, the quick jab opens up your opponents guard. Connect to the face so that they are distracted, and then come in strong with your cross at the face again.
While your opponent is still recovering, deliver a strong hook to the body.
As you are within striking range for your opponent, it leaves you in a vulnerable position, so complete this sequence with speed and accuracy if you want it to succeed.
To finish it off, nail your opponent with another powerful cross either to the body or to the head.
Again, the sequence is basic, but it is effective if you can land all of the hits.
This can be similar to the previous combination, but it can be more surprising to your opponent, and thus, more powerful.
The 1-2-5-2 is done best when you effectively utilize force and speed.
Come in swiftly with the jab and the first cross. After, you should be in the right position to hit your opponent with a lead uppercut, a strike that should be abrupt and forceful.
This uppercut should surprise your opponent since they won’t be looking for it thanks to the previous jab and cross.
This works well with an opponent who has a high guard. Once the uppercut is thrown, their head is exposed, and you can finish the combo with a strong cross.
The jab here sets up a robust hook that, if landed on the right spot on the head, can send your opponent to the mat.
You will want to use the 1-3 when your opponent has a rather high guard that still leaves part of their face vulnerable.
Set it all up with the jab.
When you throw in the rear hook, make sure you aim it right.
If your aiming is off, then the combo may very well fail.
Both accuracy and speed play a role in this along with strength. You want to land this on the right spot, in most cases the ear.
When you’re up against an aggressive opponent, sometimes, there’s no need to set up a combo with the jab.
Use the basic 2-3-2, but put more force into each strike. This combination is about combining accuracy, speed, and power.
You want to land all three hits to the head, and you want to do it fast, packing force into each hit to overwhelm your opponent.
Start with the straight punch, and follow it up quickly with the hook. Again, follow that with another cross.
If you land it right, you should keep your opponent off their guard.
When thrown with enough strength, this combo could lead to a knockout.
This 2-3 is short and quick, but since it’s done in mid-range, it does leave you open to a counter.
You have to take care to land it right.
Step in quickly to throw your cross to the body, taking care not to miss or move in too close to set yourself up for a counter.
When landed properly, this cross pulls your opponent’s attention down, which may help drop their guard.
Once their eyes follow your cross, end the combo with a strong hook to their head.
With enough power, the hook can shake your opponent enough to knock them off their feet.
The 3-3 performed to the body and then to the head can be a devastating combo at close range.
They are only effective, however, if you back both of them with power.
What you need to do is step in to throw a rear hook to the body.
Next to strength, accuracy is critical here. Try to aim for the liver area.
In a lot of cases, that one hit can send your opponent to the ground and you won’t have to bother with the combo.
Your opponent knows this, and they will typically drop their arm to block that hit.
When they drop their guard, and if they don’t go down with the liver shot, that’s when you bring in the powerful hook to the head.
Your opponent should never see it coming.
If you want, try reversing this combo so that you throw the first hook to the head as a distraction, and finish it off with a strong body shot.
The first hit to the head causes your opponent to bring up their guard, leaving their body exposed to the perfect liver shot.
This 6-3 combo is about exposing your opponent’s head.
You have to get in close range, so you need to be quick with your movements, and your accuracy has to be dead-on in order for it to work.
Any misstep may be costly for you.
Throw your rear uppercut when your opponent’s head is low.
Aim for their head so that you can knock them off their guard.
Once this is done, their head should be exposed enough for you to come in with a lead hook.
This hook should be thrown just as quickly as the uppercut with the same amount of power behind it.
You want your opponent to feel each blow to knock them off their game.
It should be obvious that throwing the same combinations to the same parts on the body is a mistake.
Your opponent is bound to figure you out, and you’re going to get blocked or countered sooner rather than later.
You want to mix your combinations up as well as mix up the areas of the body you decide to hit.
Go for the head when one part of the combo, and land on the body when you finish. Change things further from there too.
Go for the nose, the eyes, and the ears. On the body, try for the ribs or the solar plexus. This way, you keep your opponent off their guard.
The only way to get good at boxing combinations is to actually practice them. Having a partner is one of the best ways to do this.
Spar with someone in the ring to get a feel of how a real opponent will react to your combinations.
If you have someone to do mitt work with you, then try out some boxing combinations that way as well.
When you’re training alone, consider shadow boxing as a way to try out some of these combos.
You won’t connect with anything, but it will help you get used to the movements and the specific combinations.
You can also make good use of a heavy bag when performing boxing combinations. Just remember to focus on a variety of sequences, not just one.
This may seem like an odd tip at first, but hear us out.
Practicing boxing combinations is a great way to learn them, but watching them being put to good use by a professional can’t hurt.
Check out some matches by your favorite professional boxers and see just how well these infamous combinations have served them.
This can work as good motivation for you to learn these combos.
Jason Maine is the founder of FullContactWay, a blog dedicated to provide best martial arts advice and information. Jason helps his readers with martial arts training by sharing personal tips and thorough research.
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