Joe Louis – Boxing’s best puncher?!
Hello my fistic family and welcome to the Marksman Boxing Range. As most of you know I could talk boxing forever. What some of you may not know though is I could also write about boxing forever and actually derive great pleasure from doing so. For those of you who I teach, from now on I will try to create content on some of the subjects that I am trying to teach you during class. As we know some people learn through different means and visually seeing the videos while reading my breakdowns may help to give a clearer understanding, thus making it easier to try and implement.
The first subject I have decided to write about is the balance and weight distribution/transfer of one of the greatest punchers boxing has ever seen, The Brown Bomber – Joe Louis! Joe Louis was without doubt on of THE best punchers to ever grace the squared circle.
At 6’2 and weighing only 213lbs in his prime, no one could accuse Louis of being a behemoth or a physical specimen in the mould of some of the champions that came after him (Foreman, Lewis, Klitschko etc.), he was never lightning fast ala Tyson or Holyfield but Louis amassed a record of 52 ko’s from 66 wins, an astonishing 75% ko record & some of the most brutal finishes captured on film.
How did Louis accomplish this? What made him such a fearsome puncher? Simple really…FUNDAMENTALS! Joe Louis had exceptional positioning and balance. He maintained both at all times which enabled him to punch hard at any moment, with any hand and most importantly in combination. Most hard punchers tend to trade balance for power when throwing hard punches. This is easily done, to punch hard we need to get our weight travelling in the direction of the punch. Launching your body weight forward behind an overhand right will certainly get some force behind it. What happens though should you miss that right hand? Are you in position to return with the left? Can you slip, roll or step the side? The answer, of course not.
Observe on the video attached Louis is always in range to land his punches, you will seldom see him lunging or leaning forward. He does this 3 ways 1) he takes small steps that mean he is able to maintain his boxing stance 2) the use of the jab (this is a whole other topic for another post) 3) he punches as his opponent comes towards him, this in essence doubles the impact of the punch. You also will observe that Louis keeps both feet firmly planted on the floor with his head mainly over his back leg, this means that should Louis land or miss, he is able to come back with the opposite hand time after time! This is the old adage “if the first don’t get ya then the next one will”.
As you can see from this video there are no secret or special combinations. There is no blistering hand speed and explosive footwork in and out of range. All there is are pure fundamentals, hardwired and drilled over countless hours.
As I always stress…THE BEST FIGHTERS IN THE WORLD ARE THE BEST, BECAUSE THEY DO THE BASICS THE BEST!
Enjoy my pugilistic brothers.