How To Block A Punch

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Sometimes it’s impossible to dodge an opponent’s attack, so you have to resort to blocking it. When you block a punch, you can judge the force with which your adversary strikes and whether he lowers his guard.

Blocking is not always as simple as it first appears, particularly when there is a barrage of punches. To reduce the risks connected with punch blocking, learn how to do it correctly.


The Basics Of Blocking A Punch

The offense is the finest kind of defense. Period. Following best? Defense. No matter how well-trained you are or how successful you have been in the ring, there will be battles where you must be able to box while on the back foot, blocking your opponent’s blows and countering when the opportunity arises. Blocking, catching, or avoiding a punch are the three fundamental techniques to defend against one.


Here are some of the basics when blocking a punch:

  • Keep Your Guard Up: To avoid getting caught with your nose or chin protruding out, wear your glove such that half of the palm covers the side of your face and the other half protrudes forth.
  • Keep your guard up and keep your body in a compact position, but keep it flexible and not stiff. Only when a punch is coming your way should you strengthen your defense (like a turtle shell).
  • Keep Your Eyes Focused: Even if your guard is raised, if you keep your eye on your opponent’s center chest and chin region, you’ll be able to tell when they’re about to move. Especially when he throws hooks, you can see the movement of his shoulders.
  • Keep Your Chin Down Low Toward Your Chest and Tuck In Your Elbows: Keep your elbows tucked in, covering your kidney areas.
  • Maintain Your Stance: Keep your feet where they were originally placed in your stance. So that you don’t lose your balance, this gives you stability and keeps your weight in the middle. You move out of that vulnerable position when you are cornered or entrapped on the ropes because it becomes more difficult to maintain your stance.
  • Roll With the Punch: Even if you’re blocking the blow, you should always roll with it to lessen its force and position yourself for a counterpunch or to block the following one. This is essential while dealing with powerful punchers because, if you don’t roll with them, the force of their blows will compel your body to move.
  • Block and counterpunch: If you try to block everything your opponent throws at you without also counterpunching, they will lose respect for you and start throwing more punches at you. Come back with a quick cross or lead hook as soon as your glove senses their glove touching your glove (your main counterpunches when blocking).


Ways To Block Different Types Of Punches

Sometimes the energy required to avoid a punch is either not necessary or not present. You’ll need to know how to block a punch at that point. Allowing a blow to fall on your arms, elbows, gloves, shoulders, etc., and deflecting it away from your head and other susceptible areas of your body are referred to as “blocking” a punch (e.g. the liver).


1. Blocking Hooks

Starting with keeping your hands up and your guard always up, you can block hooks to the head. Even though your chin, which is the most exposed area of your body, is already well protected, the top of your head and your temples are still left unprotected.
Here’s how to avoid getting hooked in the head:

  • Blocking arm raised higher than normal guard (in order to protect the whole head)
  • Your elbow forms a 90-degree angle with your torso as you raise your arm, moving to the middle and in front of your chin and face.
  • Lean a little to the other side.


2. Blocking the Cross

Use the method we mentioned for preventing hooks to the head if you are unable to slip the cross. Making the cross move down your forearm, glove, and elbow is the objective. Be careful not to rotate too much (exposing the chin) or too little (the side of your face may be exposed). Here is how this appears for 2 fighters in the orthodox stance:

  • Boxer A launches a cross.
  • Boxer B uses their leading hand to block (like blocking a rear hook to the head)
    – By slightly bending the elbow of your blocking hand to the left, you can somewhat alter this.
    – Making a “slide” for the cross is intended to direct the force away rather than absorbing it with your body.


3. Blocking Uppercuts

Apply te same technique for blocking hooks to either the rear or lead uppercut. The uppercut will be deflected as you spin your hips and will only just skim past your arm.
Leaning forward and bending at the waist put you at risk of taking an uppercut in the face.


What Are Common Mistakes When Blocking Punches?

Reaching— it’s a mistake to reach out too far to deflect a punch. Out of anxiety, many newcomers try to grab punches. Occasionally, a punch-intercepting block is highly successful. However, the punch’s trajectory can frequently be altered in midair, leaving your head wide open. The hands must always be near the head when blocking.

Not keeping your eyes on the opposition—You should always aim to do this. Keep your eyes open and constantly look for a guard opening to watch through. It’s challenging to break the habit of closing your eyes. However, it’s one that seriously harms your entire game, not just blocking.

Trying to block with just their arms instead of keeping their gloves snug to their foreheads while blocking is another typical mistake made by beginning boxers. Since it is practically difficult to stop a forceful punch with just the arms, the defender usually ends up hitting himself in the head with his own gloves as a result of the force of the blow.



The first defense skill you should learn is how to deflect a punch. Effective blocking is the cornerstone of a strong defense in boxing because it saves energy and keeps you in place.

Having said that, blocking against punchers with strong punches will wear out your arms. If you simply rely on blocking, it will be difficult for you to get in range when facing long-range sharpshooters. You must master parrying, slipping, bobbing, and weaving and learn when to employ each one in order to be genuinely competent defensively.

Maxim Tzfenko

Maxim Tzfenko

"I live and breath Martial Arts"

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