Friday, August 13, 2010

When Does a Circular Technique Trump a Straight?

Check this out:

In this case a counter overhand worked because the lead-off fighter did not connect with his jab. It could also be argued that he overcommitted and walked into the counter overhand right. A more conservative approach, hindsight being 20/20, would be to pump the jab while circling away from James Thunder’s power hand (his right), and not commit until the opponent made a mistake. Thunder (the counter fighter) slipped the jab well, and threw the right over the committed jab.

In my experience in fighting and sparring, the easiest thing to handle is a committed lead technique. In striking, “committed” can be defined as a technique thrown with the distance and penetration to not only connect, but to drive through the target. You usually see this behavior from those with little training, or much. In other words, am untrained, aggressive fighter, or a highly trained fighter who is confident he has little to fear.

In most cases, I’d hazard that that type of commitment is a mistake, which can cost you dearly, as in the example of the KO above, but it can also lead to a quick knockout delivered by the committed lead-off fighter, as we’ve all seen many times.

My advice is to not be lulled into the idea that you can take anyone out with your first technique. A scientific fighter, one who uses high-percentage techniques, tactics, and strategies, will usually employ a true lead to:

  1. Gauge the reaction time and habits of one’s opponent,
  2. Close safely, cover the distance with a barrage of fire while moving close enough to make contact – that prevents a committed counter and puts the opponent back on his heels and unable to transfer his weight to attack or counter (rendering his nearly powerless) and
  3. Set up techniques based on the above.

A good example is the 1-2-3 tactic. It’s a lead jab (1), usually eliciting a step back or a parry by the counterfighter, then a straight right (2), which if the opponent moves straight back will set up the range perfectly, and, whether the opponent covers up or rolls the rear hand straight, his inside line will be occupied, and the outside open for the hook (3).

Have any other good examples? They are there is all styles, from boxing to Taekwondo, grappling,  to fencing, to the battlefield.

For more information:

TDA Tip: Always Use Combinations
Creating Combinations
High-Low combination: Jab-Side Kick
Taekwondo Fighting Strategy - Broken Rhythm
Nut Kicking and Ball Busting Girls?
Why Do We Get Hit?


John W. Zimmer said...

Hi Nathan,

A good argument could be made that it would have been wise to feel the other fight out before trying to slug it out but here is my take.

He did commit himself with poor form in my book. Had he thrown a good jab with some shoulder cover and over committed - the looping right would not have taken him out.

This is all a mute point to me because when I was boxing (training for full contact in the 80's), I did not have the confidence to fight inside so I fought from the outside - only committing when I had an advantage.

I agree with your three points... but would add proper boxing form would mitigate some of the risk... still not my cup of tea.

Nathan Teodoro said...

John: Great point. I'd actually go a step further - early in a fight, I'd advise both fighters to not commit. Both the fighters did so, in this case.A counter before really learning what an opponent can do is dangerous, too. The poor form crossed my mind as I was formulating the post, but I'd forgotten about it by the time I posted. As you said, shoulder cover, but a good rear-hand guard could help, too. Still if this guy had the sense to do either, he probably wouldn't have done what he did in to get KO'd. LOL. His loss is our gain in a lesson, right? Thanks for the comment.