England Boxing shadow boxing drills – week five

April 20, 2020 | by Matt Halfpenny


England Boxing Performance Coach Mick Driscoll and guests are putting together weekly shadow boxing drills that can be used to help keep fit at home during the Coronavirus pandemic – and here are week five’s drills.

With clubs and gyms across the country having been now instructed to close their doors until further notice, these regular sessions will help maintain sharpness while regular training is on hold.

“A lot of boxers of all ages have been training hard over the winter and we don’t want to let their efforts go to waste during this unfortunate and enforced period of club inactivity,” said Driscoll.

“These exercises are designed to help boxers stay strong and practise outside of their comfort zone. Be Adaptable, be Independent, be Robust, be Resilient; be AIRR with England Boxing.”

This week’s drills come courtesy of five of England Boxing’s DiSE hubs – University College, Birmingham (day one), Greater Brighton Metropolitan College (day two), Spotlight, London (day three), Joe Gallagher Academy Manchester (day four) and Gateshead College (day five).

By using these drills, boxers are doing this at their own risk and must ensure they have adequate and non-slip floor space in which to participate. They must also have no health concerns.

Recommended exercise durations

3x3mins for Youth and Elite boxers.

3x2mins for Juniors boxers.

3×1.5mins Schools boxers.

Day 1 (University College, Birmingham)

Animal themed shadow drills.

R1. Fox. Undertake boxing against a boxer, who has the same characteristics as a FOX. How does a Fox survive? What strategies would a fox use to attack? How physically fit is a Fox? What would your ringcraft look like?

R2: Undertake boxing against a boxer, who has the same characteristics as a Cobra. How lethal is a Cobra? What type of tempo would you use? What combinations would you use?

R3: Rhino. Undertake boxing against a boxer, who has the same characteristic a Rhino. Do you stand a fight? If not, why? What lines of attack and defence will you box off? What type of tempo would you look to work at? Where would you look to position yourself in the ring.

Day 2 (Greater Brighton Metropolitan College) 

 Morse code shadow drills – dots are punches, dashes are defences.

R1: Dot dash dot (in out phases of attack. Boxer chooses. Can’t repeat pattern before.

R2: Dash dot dash (counter attacking. Boxer chooses but must have variation. Can’t repeat pattern before)

R3: Dash dash dot dash. (Defending a lead. Variation of defences and punch. Can’t repeat previous pattern.)

Day 3 (Spotlight, London)

R1: Static position, just make sure you are on the balls of feet and not flat. Jab to the head  –  single shot with a trunk defence – alternate the defence i.e throw the jab then duck the visualised jab return. Throw the jab then slip inside the return shot, jab and then slip outside the return shot, jab and lay back from the return shot.

R2 – Static position, just make sure you are on the balls of feet and not flat. Throw straight jab to the head and add hand defences. Alternate hand and trunk defences i.e jab – duck the return. Jab – block the return. Jab outside slip the return and so on….

R3 – Static position, just make sure you are on the balls of feet and not flat. Single jab to the head and alternate with a single upward jab screw shot. Again make sure you defend after each shot. Alternate hand and trunk defences as in R2.

Day 4 (Joe Gallagher Academy, Manchester)

R1: You are boxing a tall orthodox boxer who is a persistent jabber who intends to keep you at long range, using feet and trunk defences you have to break the range down to mid/short range, creating angles from which to counter with a single power shot.

R2: You are boxing a southpaw who favours the backfoot, countering with a straight backhand. Use your lead hand jab as you close the range down then switch the attack to the body using a backhand as your opponent counters with his backhand to your head.

R3: You are boxing a strong come forward orthodox fighter/brawler. Maintain lateral movement keeping him occupied with your lead hand attacking and feinting to create a opportunity to use a surprise attack with a well placed PowerShot from either hand.

Day 5 (Gateshead College)

Remember to fully complete your punches and visualise the challenge and overcome your opponent’s advantages.

R1: You are boxing a taller rangy boxer. What will be your main attacking approach, your footwork to get into range, and what defences you will need to use?

R2: You are boxing a stronger counter-punching southpaw. What will be your tactics? Will you feint, to draw his attack, throw lots of punches, or choose single shots? How will you move your feet – in and out of range, or laterally left and right?

R3: Your very strong opponent forces you to box on the back foot. What tactics will you use? Think about making space for yourself, changing direction, maintaining shape and staying off the ropes.
What punches will you throw?

Questions/things to ask yourself

  • How do you apply your style to each situation?
  • What are your strengths?
  • Think about ring craft, position, shape, tempo, range, balance
  • Set up and share your own themes

A new schedule of shadow boxing drills will be posted next week.