How to Throw a Left Hook (Literally and Metaphorically)
Contrary to popular opinion, cinematic fisticuffs, and fighters with poor fundamentals, the hook is not a wide, looping punch that originates somewhere in left field and leaves the puncher exposed. They call it a "hook" precisely because your arm position should resemble a hook: a 90-degree angle at the elbow with your palm facing down at the point of impact.
Some Basics Direct From My Latest Book:
- Tuck your chin down into your left shoulder.
- Pivot your hips, waist, and front left foot in the direction of the punch: torque your whole left side. This will generate power without expending too much energy or movement.
- The hook can be thrown as part of a combination (e.g. jab-cross-hook or jab-hook) or as a single punch to catch an opponent who's on the attack.
- Mix up your targets: Hook to the head, the body, or double up.
"When using a left hand leading stance," says Michael Margulies, owner of East Side MMA in New York City, "your left hook is essentially thrown outside of your opponent's vision." Using a right hook in such a stance can leave you wide-open for a counter. The hook is an economical blow that, when executed properly, has the full force of your body weight behind it and is awfully tough to see coming. Margulies concludes: "It is a knockout blow that can stop a charging opponent in his or her tracks and change the momentum of any battle."
Hmm...is that metaphor I smell brewing?
How to Throw
a Green Left Hook
As you read the above, I'd imagine you sensed some big picture musings in phrases like "catch an opponent who's on the attack" and "change the momentum of any battle." Make no mistake about it, the battle lines have been drawn and the corporate and military bad guys are winning. That's why we must:
- Practice self-defense to slow down the onslaught
- Link up with friends and comrades to cultivate strength in numbers