The right cross to the face is one of the most powerful attacks in boxing and kickboxing. It’s relatively non-telegraphic but still has the power to knock you out and leave you drooling on the floor.
So you absolutely need to know multiple effective counters to the right cross.
Boxing and kickboxing coach Ritchie Yip has a formula for defending punches that I would like to share with you…
It’s called the ‘Triple H Formula’, and it includes your three basic defensive options when someone is throwing a punch at your face.
Let’s go through this formula with lots of examples for each part of the formula and then a video summarising the whole concept…
The first H in this defensive formula stands for ‘Head’.
Head movement is often neglected by people new to boxing and kickboxing, but it’s incredibly important. This includes defensive head movements like bobbing, weaving, ducking and snapping back.
Not only does correct head movement keep you safe, but it frustrates your opponent when he throws his best punch and it doesn’t even make contact with anything.
Furthermore head movement usually means that you’re in range to land your counters with either hand.
Some examples of defensive head movement to avoid a right cross, followed by a counter-attack, include…
- Duck with jab to the body
- Duck with cross to the body
- Slip to outside with cross to body
- Slip to outside with split right to the head
- Slip to inside with jab to body
- Slip to inside with split corkscrew hook to head
- Slip to inside with upside-down cross to jaw
- Slip to outside with upside-down jab to jaw
- Snapback and jab to head
- Snapback and cross to head
The second H in this defensive formula stands for ‘Hands’.
You can use your hands to block, parry, stop or redirect punches too.
The trick is not to get into a block-block-block mentality, because even if you’re very good then eventually your opponent will get lucky and land one of his punches.
Instead you want to get good at parrying and hitting right away so that your opponent pays a toll for having taken a shot at you.
Some examples of using your hands to defend a right cross, followed by an immediate (or simultaneous) counterattack include…
- Sliding leverage jab over top of cross (Ritchie’s favourite)
- Parry with lead hand and split cross to head
- Parry with lead hand and overhand right to head (very powerful)
- Lead arm forearm parry vs cross to body and cross to head
- Lead arm forearm parry vs cross to body and jab to head
The final H in the Triple H Formula stands for ‘Heels’.
By heels we mean footwork.
Lots of people think they’re pretty good at footwork but as soon as the punches start flying in sparring they plant their feet, put their head down, and just start throwing bombs.
You need to train your footwork – your stepping, circling and shuffling – in training and in drills until it’s completely instinctive to move and punch, move and punch.
If someone is throwing a big right hand at your face then here are four ways to use your footwork (or ‘heels’) to stay safe and set up your counterattack…
- Step back, step in and right cross to face
- Step back, step in and jab, cross to face
- Step to outside of cross, step back in and left hook
- Step to inside of cross, step back in and right hook
A 6 Minute Video with Ritchie Yip Demonstrating the Triple H Formula in Action
Here’s a 6:06 minute video in which coach Ritchie Yip shows you the Triple H formula in action.
You’ll get head, hand and heel defences against the right cross, but similar concepts would apply against all other punches too.
And because the best defense is a good counterattack you’ll see all 19 counters that I mentioned in the sections above.
Check it out right here…
Where Does This Material Come From?
The concepts we covered today, and the 6 minute video above, are just a tiny part of the very extensive ‘Precision Kickboxing Masterclass’.
This is a brand new instructional that I’m working on with Coach Ritchie.
As of right now all the filming is done and we’re in the editing stages of this project. It’s looking amazing but will probably take another month or two to be ready for release.
If you want to get early notification of when The Precision Kickboxing Masterclass is available (and get a killer deal on it as well) please enter your email address in the box below.