Friday, January 13, 2012

Skills Developed in Boxing Speedballs

Also called the speed bag, the speed ball is an effective boxing training tool that is used to build punching speed, quickness, accuracy and endurance. By hitting the speed ball every day while training, a fighter can develop the kind of confidence that will allow him to hit his target on nearly every punch he throws.
The speed ball is a boxing tool that has been used throughout the sport's history. The greatest champions in boxing--including Sugar Ray Robinson, Joe Louis, Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard, Thomas Hearns and Manny Pacquiao--all used the speed bag to hone their reflexes and build their skills in the ring. Robinson was so good on the speed bag that he was said to "make it sing" when he hit it. "I love to hit the speed bags," Robinson said in a 1976 interview in LA Sports Magazine. "They don't hit back."
The speed ball will allow a fighter to develop punching accuracy. This is perhaps the most important factor in fighting consistently. Throwing punches takes energy. When you throw a series of punches and they are off target, it will take energy away from you that you will never get back. "People don't realize how much energy it takes to throw a punch, miss it and then throw another punch," said former heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis on an HBO fight practice. "You have to be accurate with most of your punches or it will drain you."
Effect on Quickness
The speed ball will help make a fighter much quicker in the ring. The action of the bag bounding from its spot on the bottom of a swivel hook and hitting a supporting ring sends it back into punching range almost immediately after hitting it. This helps build the speed and quickness that a fighter must take into the ring every single day. Great fighters, such as Sugar Ray Robinson and Muhammad Ali, hit the speed ball with such ease and speed that they were said to make the bag "sing" when they hit it with a series of punches.
Effect on Concentration
Hitting a speed ball will help develop a fighter's confidence and concentration. In order to hit the bag consistently, your mind must be focused on the task at hand. Once the rhythm of hitting the bag becomes established, the fighter develops a pattern of delivering the punch, bringing his hand back and hitting it again. The pattern becomes ingrained in the fighter's mind, and it becomes a staple of training.
One of the best drills with the speed ball is the left jab drill. In this exercise, you will have to hit the speed bag with rhythmic jabs. First you hit it once, then two straight times, then three times and finally four straight times. Then start the pattern again and do this at least 10 times. You cannot miss the center of the bag. If you do, start the drill over again.
Then do the three-round drill You will hit the speed bag for the equivalent of three rounds. While you will concentrate on throwing the left jab, you must mix in your short right, your right cross and your left hook. Throw punches for the equivalent of a round and then take a one-minute break. Do this for for the equivalent of three rounds.

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