Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Best Floor to Ceiling Boxing Exercises

Training for boxing and other fight sports involves a variety of equipment. One of the more challenging, and harder to find outside of dedicated programs, is the floor-to-ceiling bag. Also called a "headache bag" or a "jitterbag," this piece of equipment helps a fighter build timing, speed and accuracy by providing a rapidly and randomly moving target.
The Bag
A floor-to-ceiling bag consists of an inflatable ball about the size of a basketball, covered with vinyl or leather. The bag will have two or four anchor loops on the surface. A two-loop bag will place them opposite one another, while a four-loop bag will have the loops on four "corners" of the ball. Installed, the bag is attached to the floor and ceiling via bungee cords that hook into the loops and anchor points on the building. This arrangement causes the bag to skitter around wildly whenever it is struck.
A session on a floor-to-ceiling bag helps a fighter train to target a rapidly moving target, much like the head of an opponent in the ring. The first punch causes the bag to move wildly and unpredictably, making subsequent punches much harder to land. Punching in combinations is especially challenging, as each punch needs to land in such a way that it influences where the bag will travel. The next punch in a combo also needs to land fast enough to take advantage of the precision of the first.
Most punching bags provide some kind of moving target. A heavy bag swings back and forth, and a speed bag rocks in a way that requires you to punch in a specific speed and rhythm. However, no other tool provides as good a simulation of the way a fighter bobs and weaves in the ring as a floor-to-ceiling bag. Working with this kind of bag builds speed, rhythm and timing while also helping a fighter develop his mind, learning instinctually how to predict and react to movement.
Frustration is one of the chief disadvantages of working with a floor-to-ceiling bag, a factor represented by its nickname of headache bag. Some fighters will avoid working with this tool because of the difficulty. Once you get past that issue, the other main disadvantage is the structure. The bungee cords will get in the way of some punching routines, and the harder anchor points can sting if you hit them accidentally. Wearing gloves and wraps mitigates, but doesn't eliminate, these concerns.

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