You had better start working on that footwork if you want any kind of success in a ring cage or mat. Like I’ve said in older post about NEO Footwork and just plain good footwork it necessary to have it as ingrained as possible, simply so you can just do without having to think about reacting or whatever if you already know how to react and it’s second nature then that’s one less step and one more thing you target has to think of when you’re doing it.
So what’s this thing about footwork, I’ve been adamant about my love for the neo stuff but it’s all based in innovative boxing footwork that is come place in that sport but at one time wasn’t so common place. So what do you do to begin learning it. Well first get in shape if you’re cardio isn’t up for it you won’t be able to do it properly and you’ll gas out like a heavyweight in Denver. So once you’re in shape start looking at your mobility what can you do simply and with a little effort can you stutter step well can you toe drag can you pivot can you dance around what is your thing. Figuring this out is fairly easy watch a couple of fights with footwork heavy guys Saenchai, Lerdsila,B-Hop, Ali, Mayweather, Pernell, Prince Naseem, Roy, Sugar Ray Leonard, Willie Pep,Archie Moore, Tyson, Manny, Hearns, Hagler, Camacho, and Guillermo Rigondeaux. The rule of thumb is for the best footwork look at the smaller fighters.
Then do what the Kronk Legend Emanuel Steward did to get Cotto’s feet out of the cement start dancing watch dancers like James Brown, Prince, MJ, and Breakdancers but why, because there limb control is so good and a lot of their movements are in martial arts (cough cough you know the art part of that whole thing Ali and Roy were dancing in the ring folks) It plays on a stereotype a lot of black fighters have great footwork because our entire existence has been surrounded by music and dancing which can be said the same for Latin fighters and Asian fighters (cough cough Donaire is a freaking Jabbawockee) because of the music and dance influence these cultures share. Now I’m not saying spend all your time dancing but use it as a warm up and a cool down or when ever your doing nothing hit a jig.
Then what’s next after you get comfortable the next step is to do it under stress that stress should be a jump rope become a savant like Mayweather with that rope. If you can’t do every stutter toe drag pivot shuffle dash forward backwards and side to side,or dart you need to practice more at step one. Simply put “the rope don’t care” like my dad says and he’s right if you mess up at high speed it will show if you can’t maintain after 10 minutes of jumping rope what makes you think you will be okay after 5 rounds in a cage or 12 rounds in the ring.
What now, so you think you can move pretty well Rocky alright now we move to the double end bag or speed bag. The key to doing this step correctly is to not stand rooted while striking this the bag.I could give a damn about your power it’s about being there to strike and not here when the counter is coming. So let’s go to work, you start off by working the footwork cut in and start landing and at the end of the combination or strike get out of there with the footwork. This will prove if your footworks a pipe dream or efficient if you can’t initiate cleanly and exit efficiently then we need to revamp thing so that you take the slope out the movement and only have the lean raw applicable.
Now we start the real test to see what’s what sparring time, you need someone that could give a damn about what you’re working towards its got to be the closest thing to a fight without ending with a KO basically live fire, BUT. YEAH I know I’m a staunch believer in the play sparring since you already know you can fight what’s the point in live sparring well for this it’s important to figure out if it works or not so live fire is the only way to do that. After sparring a has been done and you figured out the loose bolts and tightened them up it’s back to play sparring where you can check the looks you want and see how your feints will draw a reaction it’s all scientific form here on out. Then go back and repeat everything from dancing jumping rope double end work and lite sparring to stay sharp and even evolve what you’ve created. Create and good playlist of some high tempo funky music and get some comfortable shoes my friends lol.
-Happy experimenting Folks and Family