ART OF THE HEAVY BAG!
Excerpts from Mr. Davis' Official IKF Kickboxing Training Manual.
The Heavy Bag is a great tool for increasing power, endurance and stamina. This has always been one of my more favorite routines. It is important to establish right away that the bag is more than an object to punch and kick. Instead, you must always have the mental picture that the bag is an opponent. Therefore you must constantly react to the bag as though it is an opponent.
My strategy was to never let the bag touch my body. If it did, it was like a clean hit from the opponent. Additionally, as the bag came towards me, I would side step it and throw combinations to possible openings. Sometimes this could be very difficult, however, the more practice, the more balance and technique you will acquire. I would always keep my eyes on the movement of the bag - for eye conditioning -remembering the old adage of never take your eyes off your opponent. It was also important for me to constantly jab the bag to give it continual movement, increase timing and temporarily blind my opponent. The Jab also allowed me to set up other techniques.
Normally for the first couple of rounds, I would work on proper techniques and form. Such as making sure that my wrist was straight on punches and not make the common mistake of telegraphing with my elbows or dropping my guard etc. (Remember the bag is your opponent, a low guard could mean a KO in the ring) As I start to fatigued in the later rounds, I would make sure not to lean on the bag, instead I would continue to work angles while throwing techniques. (Leaning on the bag is equivalent to leaning on your opponent in the ring...it impedes your punching and kicking ability.)
One of my favorite routines for kicking power on the Heavy Bag was to swing the bag as high as I could and step into it in mid flight stopping it with a kick. (Timing and good form is essential for this type of power training. If you miss, you could over extend your knee. So, be sure to keep your eyes on the bag!)
Like the Heavy Bag, I can recall stopping many aggressors in the same manner.... sometimes even breaking a rib..... no pun intended.
Again, it is important to use good form when working the Heavy Bag for power. After all, speed and proper technique will automatically increase your power.
You should also remember to break your bag work down into rounds. For ex. 1 round of kicks, 1 of boxing and 1 of kick boxing...keeping all of the aforementioned tips for each tech. in mind. You could also work on a specific punch, kick or combo. For each round....
Whatever your strategy may be for increasing your power, stamina and endurance, the Heavy Bag should definitely be a part of your workout routine.
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Copyright by Johnny Davis, 1995
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