Striking skills in MMA have reached a very high level. To me, the greatest indicator of those skills is proficiency with the lead hand. Jack Dempsey wrote that when two boxers face off, if neither is a “knockout specialist, the one who is more effective with the left jab and left hook probably will win”. I think an argument can be made that on a purely technical level, the lead jab and hook are the most important hand tools for any fighter.
I’ve put together a video showcasing lead hand punching in MMA by some of the top fighters in the sport. It’s well known how much success guys like Georges St-Pierre have had with the jab in MMA, but perhaps less known is just how dominant the lead hand has become in Mixed Martial Arts competition.
When we talk about the ‘jab’ there are a few variations to look for.
- Flicker Jab: Uses only the arm with ‘snap’ from the elbow. Light and fast.
- Speed Jab: Adds power from the shoulder along with the arm and snap from the elbow.
- Power Jab: Uses the hip, shoulder, and arm.
There are generally two types of hook punches with the lead hand, a long hook and a short hook. Both types can be seen used in this video with devastating effect.
Filed in: MMA