11 Beginner Sparring Tips – MMA/Boxing/KickboxingBy
When I was reading one of the many mixed martial arts forums today I came across a question regarding striking sparring. The person asking was completely new to sparring and like many beginners found his first rounds versus a moving, striking opponent extremely challenging.
Off the top of my head I quickly came up with a few things that I thought might help him in his quest to get hit less while doing more hitting himself inside the ring.
I’ll share them, and a few more, to help you make your sparring experience more enjoyable and…less painful. Here we go!:
1. Throw your punches with speed, relaxation and technique, never try for power.
2. You don’t have to always see the opening for a specific punch. Just throw you combo sharply and quick and often the opening comes in the middle of your combo.
3. After your done punching, move away to either side. Your even better to stand your ground than backing straight up.
4. When you think you’re jabbing a lot, jab twice as much.
5. If you get into trouble, place both gloves on your temples, covering your face and jaw with the forearms and move, move, move.
6. When blocking strikes try not to tense your arms. Simply raise your arms up to protect yourself. This is easier said then done.
7. Keep you chin down at all times.
8. Mix up your attacks, try to be as unpredictable as you can with your combinations.
9. Pace yourself. Use your defensive and offensive techniques instead of just attacking the entire time.
10. Focus on keeping yourself in a good balanced stance before attacking, while attacking, and after your attack. This is very important!
11. Never give up. Taking a bit of a beating in the beginning is all part of the learning process. Stick with it and you will slowly become more like a hammer instead of the nail.
Forum poster Zedlepln on mma.tv reminded me of this important one that beginners often forget to do.
Never hold your breath during your sparring round. Breathe regularly through your nose –with your mouth closed- while making short but not overly strong exhalations through the mouth when you throw each punch. The more well conditioned you are, the better you will be able to control your breath.
These should be a good start.
Let me know how it goes…
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