Improving you punch power is something all boxers work on in their training and is definitely a crucial element of a boxers ability to make your opponent cautious, put them on them back foot or even to get the knockout victory.
In this blog I have compiled 10 exercises you can use in the gym to really help improve you punch power when boxing training, sparring or even competing.
Now before you go onto read about the exercises, it’s important to make it clear that a lot people can develop more power by simple improving the technique of throwing a punch. These exercises are aimed to increase strength and explosiveness and you will start to see a difference in your punch power due to them, however make sure you are continually practicing your punching technique.
In these exercises below I will explain some of their benefits along with some set options for you try out. I have included some brilliant videos so you can see them in action and try out yourself.
So here we go!
1. Plymoetric Push ups
Plyometric (plyo) push-ups are an advanced exercise that work your chest, triceps, abs, and shoulders. This type of push up, is to add the element of explosiveness to your push up which makes it much more challenging than your traditional push up. There are various ways you can use this exercise which helps keep it things fresh so you can continue to progress with this.
This exercise will really help increase the strength of your upper body which in turn will help your power when punching.
I recommend you check out try some of these plymoetric push-ups by Yuri Elkaim below:
2. Jump Squats & Lunges
Jump squats & Lunges are great for any boxer looking to improve their overall strength as a lot of the power from your punches come off the explosiveness of your leg muscles.
These exercises are also a type of plymoetric exercise which helps to strengthen the quads, hamstrings, glutes and lower back. For jump squats there are various methods you can use with these and for the lunges you can do these going forward or backwards.
This makes them great for really pushing your leg muscles to the limit, but try to focus more on explosiveness of these exercises. Low reps, but higher intensity is required when doing these exercises.
Check out these two video below on how you can practice these in your next workout.
The deadlift is great exercise for improving the glutes, hamstrings, and core muscles. For boxers this is a brilliant exercise as it will help to build your overall strength and power!
In this article by FayzFitness, he goes into more detail around how deadlifts can improve your power:
“The Deadlift involves lifting the weight from the floor so producing power from your legs which then transfers to your hips and core…boxing is the same principle – which is required for delivering punches“
It will also help with your strengthen your posterior chain which helps you absorb punches better – another good reason to include this in your strength training plan.
Here is great video on how you should deadlift below by Boxing Science:
4. Medicine Ball Throws
Using medicine ball is a brilliant punch specific exercise as you are pushing off with your arms, a very similar action from when you throw a punch.
There is a bunch of various medicine ball exercises you can do, my recommendations are to put yourself in a boxing stance and use light to medium weighted medicine ball and push as hard as you can into a solid wall or a partner to catch. See Phil Daru‘s recommendation in the video just below:
The other options is to lie on your back and throw a heavy medicine ball straight up and catch it until you start to feel the burn.
5. Land mine press punch
The land mine press is another great punch specific exercise and really helps to improve your explosiveness. This is also a great workout for your upper body as it work on your triceps, shoulders, chest, back and core muscles.
The technique for this exercise is quite simple to and great for developing your power shot for straight punch or even with a lead hand.
Boxing Science gives a great tutorial below on the correct technique on how to do a land mine press:
6. Cable Machine/resistance bands rotations
First off the cable machine or resistance bands are awesome tools to use for your punch power as it can provide a good amount resistance for your arms due set weight or band strength.
Using this helps to keep your punch technique in check due to the rotational movements of your hips which is essential when throwing a power punch. Using these will also help to work on your chest, triceps, quad and core muscles.
Here are two great technique videos by functionalpatterns showing how to do use this with the lead hand jab or straight punch.
Lead hand technique
Straight hand technique
7. Dumbbell press
The dumbbell press is a great way to help improve the strength of your triceps and chest, but instead of using huge weights, try to use light to medium weights and focus on explosiveness – just like with your punches!
Looking for a decent pair or dumbbells? I recommend you check out the Bowflex Adjustable Dumbbells on Amazon, if you plan to do these exercises from home. You can also use dumbbells for whole other range important exercises such squats, lunges, shoulder press and bicep curls.
Check out this useful dumbbell floor press exercise by Phil Daru below:
8. Bench press
Will doing bench press improve your punch power? Well yes it will, due to it working on your triceps and chest, and just like the above dumbbell press, you want to focus on explosiveness in your technique when doing this.
Make sure you are combing the exercise with other recommend exercises and techniques in this blog.
Here is Phil Daru showing a floor bench press technique you can try out:
9. Working on the Heavy Bag
The hanging heavy bag is probably one of the first pieces of equipment you will consider using and is extremely important and effective for boxing when looking to improve your punch power. The heavy bag is also particularly good for developing strength, stamina and punch technique.
Practising on the heavy bag is probably the closest thing you will get simulating hitting an opponent which makes this one of the best ways to really practice the technique of your power shots correctly.
10. Shadow Boxing
Shadow boxing is primarily used to perfect your punching technique and combinations, while also using your own imagination to simulate using punches, movement and defense against an opponent.
The way shadow boxing improves your punch power is through practicing to perfect the technique of these punches. You can always add shadow boxing weights or 1-2lb dumbbells to help improve your speed and power.
Check out this awesome video by FightTips who gives some useful information on the benefits of shadow boxing, along with some exercises you can try out.
If you are looking to improve your overall strength and conditioning I highly recommend you check out Phil Daru’s heavy hitter boxing program for a full range or strength and conditioning exercises. Read my review here.
Another great option you can try out is Expert Boxing’s 30 Day intensive punching power program – click on the image below to find out more on their website.
Hope you enjoyed this boxing training article let me know in the comments below if you would like to try any of the above workouts at the gym or at home.
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