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TITLE Boxing Blog

From inside the gym to around the world of combat sports, the TITLE Boxing Blog keeps you up-to-date with the latest MMA and Boxing news, training tips and fighting techniques. This is the kind of info you need to not only talk the talk, but walk the walk.

Author Archives: TITLE Boxing

  • Take the Lead: Putting the Heavy Bag to Work for You

    Take the Lead: Putting the Heavy Bag to Work for You

    By Douglas Ward, Marketing Director at TITLE Boxing

    Heavy Bag Workout Tips & Techniques

    For as long as the modern day sport of boxing has existed, the heavy bag has been at the core of nearly every prizefighter’s workout routine. In the beginning, they were constructed of everything from canvas bags to gunny sacks filled with sand or grain. Although construction methods have advanced, the purpose that the heavy bag serves has remained the same. It provides a substantial target for a fighter to practice the art of power punching, movement and crafting a full arsenal of punches. Everything in the book, from the jab to the body shot, can be perfected on the heavy bag. The key to this integral piece of equipment and getting the most out of it is to be sure that you work it and don’t let it work you. What that means is that you don’t let it become a force that you only react to.  Instead, control its’ movement, dictate the pace of the round, the direction of the bag and every aspect of what you do with it.

    Too many fighters stand in front of the bag, hit it a few times (or once) and allow the bag to swing back and forth while they wait to hit it again. There’s really much more you can get out of the heavy bag than that, by not allowing yourself to follow, but lead the charge. If it were a dance, you would want to be the man, not the woman.  Lead, don’t follow.

    One of your goals on the heavy bag is to keep it moving, don’t let it settle into place. When you strike the bag, either pursue it and throw an additional combination or step to the side and throw. It is best not to hit the bag when it is coming straight back at you. Instead, step off and counter the direction the bag is going to interrupt its natural movement or hit it so that it continues its motion. The idea is to control the bag, where it goes, how fast it moves and when you stop its motion. If you have just hit the bag and it is swinging back at you, step off to your right and let a right cross go or plant a solid right hand to the body. Or as it swings back, step off to your left and rip a left hook to the body or head. By stepping to the side in this manner, you are accomplishing three main objectives.

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    First you are training yourself to remain in perpetual motion and making each minute of each round on the bag a real workout. Time spent standing flat-footed, waiting for the bag to come back it pointless. That means you are conditioning yourself to wait for your opponent to lead and take control. That’s a bad habit to get into and a dangerous position to put yourself in.

    Secondly, as you step of to the side, you should be shifting your weight to the lead foot that you stepped with. When you do this it is re-establishing a firm foundation and is putting you in the proper position to throw another punch or combination.

    Although it may sound basic, by working around the bag or pursuing it, you are hitting a moving target, as opposed to an “opponent” that is just coming straight at you or running away from you all of the time. That is both unrealistic and too simple. When the bag moves and you move to counter it…that’s more like a real fight. It requires you to respond and place your shots more precisely.  When you’re attacking a moving target, it requires better timing, judging range and adjusting your distance. You have to think more and work the bag more deliberately.

    It is also good to sometimes follow the bag. This form of attack may play into your already aggressive fighting style or is just good to work on in case you ever find yourself in the type of situation where you need to apply pressure and force the attack. By keeping your head planted on the bag while you bury punches into it, pressing the action and firing off powerful combinations, this will get you accustomed to moving forward. Even if this is not your typical fighting style, it will get you in the type of shape that you will need to be able to constantly apply effective pressure and will make you a more adaptable fighter.

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    What you do on the heavy bag, the types of drills you incorporate and the various routines you work on are virtually endless. But, more important than what you do, is how you do it, because ultimately, the heavy bag will never make you work harder than you want to. It’s not going to push you or punch back or make the rounds any more difficult than you dictate. Let the seconds tick by while you watch the bag swing lazily on its chain or take charge and put it to work for you and you’ll quickly find that the heavy bag can be your greatest ally or your worst enemy.

    Get your heavy bags here and your bag gloves here.

  • Rock Your Workout with OTHERWISE & TITLE Boxing

    Rock Your Workout with OTHERWISE & TITLE Boxing

    By OTHERWISE & TITLE Boxing

    Balls To The Wall Workout Playlist

    Ditch that old, overplayed playlist you’ve been training to all year because Las Vegas-based hard rock band Otherwise curated the most “balls to the wall” workout playlist we’ve ever heard. Including warm ups like “Indian Summer” by Jai Wolf, Metallica’s sweat-inducing “Enter Sandman” and their very own adrenaline-pumping “Angry Heart”, this playlist is the only playlist you’ll need at the gym.

    Otherwise stopped by TITLE Boxing HQ before their headlining show in Kansas City last month. Vocalist Adrian Patrick and guitarist Ryan Patrick threw some punches and told us why these are their go-to jams:

    “Typical” by Mute Math: "This song reminds me of our higher calling. It keeps the fire inside burning brightly. When I listen to it, I remember why we do what we do… why we fight so hard to cut through the clamor and be heard... why we sacrifice so much in our attempt to transcend."

    “Touched” by VAST: "This tune just makes me feel like a superhero. They tapped into something timeless and otherworldly, something that resides deep down in my psyche somewhere, perhaps passed down by my ancestors across the ages from some ancient battlefield."

    “Bulls on Parade” by Rage Against the Machine: "I could simply listen to every Rage album on repeat when we train or lift because if any band speaks to the rebel-poet-warrior in me, it's THIS band. When I wrestled and played football in high school, we would hype ourselves up into a frenzy listening to Rage. We'd even blast it when we knew we were heading into some foolish brawl. To this day, I still feel that same youthful, unbridled fury when I listen to Rage."

    “Bury Me a G” by Thug Life: "I'd like to believe that Bruce Wayne would somehow appreciate the die-hard conviction of this jam… that somehow the darkness in his soul would connect with Tupac's savage prose, like mine does."

    “Steppin' Razor” by Peter Tosh: "If I were a professional fighter, I'd probably walk out to this one. It makes me think of our Dad, who is one of the fiercest fighters we know. We may not always fight the right battles or fight them in a way that's acceptable by society at large, but if there is one thing our father has taught us, it's to NEVER stop fighting the good fight, no matter what."

    “Rose of Sharyn” by Killswitch Engage: "This is an anthem that simultaneously fills me with anger and hope, for all the loved ones we've lost. It makes believe that there is light out there in the darkness. It keeps my fighting spirit alive in our pursuit to make all of our better angels proud of the path we've chosen."

    Follow and stream the full playlist here and be sure to grab a copy of Otherwise’s latest album, Sleeping Lions, for even more workout jams.

    To enter for your chance to win a gear package from TITLE Boxing + signed merchandise from OTHERWISE, click here.

  • A Need for Speed - Proper Footwork

    A Need for Speed - Proper Footwork

    By Douglas Ward, Marketing Director at TITLE Boxing

    How To Improve Footwork in Boxing

    An underutilized resource of many fighters is their footwork. Although they realize how important it is in relation to balance and movement, they fail to understand what a vital role it plays in both offense and defense. As a fighter, quick movements can carry you within your opponents range to connect and rapidly move you out of range before your opponent is able to counter.

    A small step on the inside can quickly put you in position where you can hit and not get hit. By constantly moving, this puts your opponent in a reactive mode where he is continually being forced to readjust to be in a position to mount an offensive attack. Using footwork to step to the side of your opponent, you also take away their forward momentum and can then use that against him.

    Continue reading

  • The Mastery of Muhammad Ali

    The Mastery of Muhammad Ali

    By Douglas Ward, Marketing Director at TITLE Boxing

    Traits That Make A Great Boxer

    Yes, he stakes claim to the title The Greatest of All Time. Many historians even consider him the best fighter, Pound-for-Pound, of any era. His power and presence extended far beyond the boxing ring; but what truly makes Muhammad Ali one of the best fighters to ever lace-up a pair of boxing gloves is a combination of traits that few athletes are able to wrap into one package.

    Let's break these down and look at each one, starting from the top:

    His jab. Jimmy Jacobs, who owned the world’s largest collection of fight films, once stated that, “On film tests with a synchronizer, Ali’s jab was faster than even Sugar Ray Robinson’s.” Jacobs contended that Ali was not only the fastest heavyweight, but also the fastest fighter he had ever seen on film. On top of the speed, Ali also used it accurately and often. He used it to dictate the pace of the fight and the range the bout was fought at. It is as simple as that.

    His footwork. He used it like military ground forces. His feet dictated when and where war would be waged. His quickness carried him in and out of trouble and was used to frustrate his opponents. Ali was always on his toes to maximize mobility and gain leverage on every punch.

    His reflexes. His speed and keen sense of the ring made him a difficult target to hit. He was able to make his opponents miss their punches by millimeters while always staying in position to counterpunch.

    His ring intelligence.  Muhammad Ali had a boxing IQ that vanquished more opponents than his athleticism did. From positioning to purpose, Ali was able to slow the action down, control it and simply react.

    His showmanship. To say he was the ultimate showman would be an understatement. He was a promoter, a publicist, and a performer all rolled up into one superior athlete.  This unique combination to "work a room" gave him the ability to name the round, give the reporters their story and the fans their money’s worth.

    His resilience. Although he shared the ring with some of the greatest punchers to ever climb through the ropes, Muhammad Ali only tasted the canvas four times, in 61 total fights. Henry Cooper dropped him into the ropes in the fifth round of their first encounter and Joe Frazier had him on the seat of his trunks in the 14th in the first of their legendary trilogy. Sonny Banks and Chuck Wepner even have bragging rights to have gotten Ali down, although Wepner’s was questionable. Beyond that, Muhammad Ali tasted and weathered the fire power of some of boxing history’s most enormous power punchers like Sonny Liston, Ernie Shavers and George Foreman. When his amazing defensive skills failed him, Muhammad Ali was still able to stand up against huge punches and a tremendous amount of punishment...maybe to his detriment.

    There are many nuances to Muhammad Ali's personality, in and out of the ring. His passion as a fighter, his compassion as a human being, and an insatiable appetite to shake up the world is a pursuit that no fighter can go wrong in trying to accomplish. Mimicking the best traits Ali had to offer may not make you the greatest, but…will allow you to make your mark.

    Shop Ali apparel and equipment here.

  • The Fight Continues

    The Fight Continues

    By Laura Newton

    Help Knock Out Breast Cancer!

    "Laura, um, um," said the voice reluctantly over the phone "I asked the pathologist to check the samples over and over again because I couldn't believe the results...the tumor is malignant; it's cancer. It's cancer. I'm sorry to be calling you so late on your cell phone but I will be away at a conference for a few days and I just have to tell you that it's a very aggressive cancer. I recommend you have it removed as quickly as possible."  I looked down at the clock, it was about 10:15pm. I sat there in my car staring at a brick wall. It seems almost symbolic now.

    I had been driving and pulled over to talk to the doctor and prepare myself for the results that I had been waiting on since this roller-coaster ride began a couple of weeks before. After I hung up the phone, I knew my life would never be the same again. I literally hit a brick wall and could not continue the way I was going. I cried. I now know they were tears of anger more than anything. How did I get here? Where do I go from here? Do I have it in me to even figure it out? Is this the end? No, it can't be. This can't be how my story ends! I made up my mind right then and there that I was going to do anything I had to do to get rid of this cancer and make sure it NEVER returns again. Whether or not I would survive was no longer a question in my mind!

    10.4.17 the fight continues sub 1 Laura Newton

    I didn't realize it at the time but anger fueled my desire to fight for my life. I was angry at myself for allowing this to happen to me and why now? I had just separated from my husband and our 12-year marriage had come to an end. In my marriage I had settled into a very comfortable sedentary lifestyle. I stopped exercising, indulged in the typical "American Fast Food Diet" and gained a lot of weight. At 5'2", I weighed over 160 lbs. I masked many health issues like depression, anxiety, and sleep disorders with medications. I had completely gotten away from all that I knew was good for me and sacrificed my health for the sake of convenience. No more cutting corners, a drastic change needed to happen in order for me to not only survive this but to thrive afterwards.

    I did just as the doctor recommended, I had the cancer cut out as quickly as I could and had three major surgeries in less than one year. While in treatment I had to be away from my children for long periods of time. I remember many times telling my daughter over the phone that cancer was like a war in a city. "After you win the war, you have to rebuild your city. I'm sorry I can't be there with you and your brother. Mommy is rebuilding her city." I tried my best to not let her hear the heartbreak in my voice. Being away from my children made my desire to survive and persevere even stronger and somewhere along the way the anger that was driving me was replaced by love. The love for my children, the love for my family, my Jesus, my body, my LIFE! I decided not to do any other treatment after the surgeries, my body had gone through enough. I was going to do things differently from that point forward. I had no idea how I was going to do it but I was going to figure it out. I knew the first step was to forgive myself for neglecting my health and then to direct the anger towards the cancer fight. It wasn't about blaming myself, it was more about taking responsibility for the state my life was in so that I could begin to make changes.

    I began by researching different ways to take care of my health and my research kept leading me back to my roots, natural medicine and chiropractic care. I started to evaluate every product I use or consume, eliminating many toxic products from my daily use including medications and alcohol. I started drinking a lot of water, eating a lot of vegetables and avoiding animal products, sugars and preservatives as much as possible. My weight came back down to 105 lbs. but the biggest transformation started to take place several years ago when I was introduced to Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. Jiu-jitsu is a form of submission grappling, similar to wrestling where you submit your opponent via choke or joint lock. Jiu-jitsu teaches techniques that allow a smaller person to defeat a much bigger opponent. As I learned these techniques, I began to feel so empowered; growing stronger physically, mentally and emotionally.

    10.4.17 the fight continues sub 2 Laura Newton

    In 2015, I married my boyfriend, a martial arts instructor who introduced me to Muay Thai and Jiu-jitsu. That same year I competed in my first jiu-jitsu tournament and won a gold medal. I am now a Blue Belt. I train regularly with my husband who is a Brown Belt and I assist him in coaching. One day I hope to coach women's jiu-jitsu, as I believe it to be the most effective form of self-defense for women. My son, who is now ten, is a Yellow Belt. Jiu-jitsu has brought him such confidence that he has also taken up rock climbing and is rapidly excelling. My daughter is now 16, and she wrestles in high school. Some of our best bonding time is spent out in our garage that's been converted into a gym. She teaches me wrestling techniques, I teach her jiu-jitsu, and we grapple. My step son is 19, he wrestled through high school and wrestling provided a scholarship for him. He is now a sophomore in college. In the last year, my husband and I have taken up rock climbing and bouldering (climbing without a rope). We fell in love with climbing as we did with jiu-jitsu, and we now climb regularly. At 40 years old I am in better shape than I have ever been. I don't take any medications since I don't have those symptoms anymore. Most importantly, I have remained cancer-free for seven years and I am thriving! I rebuilt my city and reinforced it with something so much more powerful than steel; Love. The love from my children, my husband, my Jesus. Love is the reason I was able to transform my life, my body, my mind. Love is the reason I will continue to fight like a girl! I have been asked, “What exactly does that mean?” Well, there's a reason you never hear anyone say, "I was in the woods when all of a sudden I came across a Papa Bear and his cubs and I was terrified."  No! It's Mama Bear you have to fear when her cubs are in danger! There is no force more powerful than a mother trying to protect her young. As women, we have tremendous power lying dormant inside.

    As I sat and stared at that brick wall that night, I thought of my children in danger of growing up without their mother. It was not fair to them for me to choose to do anything other than to fight with all the power in me; to fight like a girl! Cancer was like that unpleasant alarm that jolts you awake way before you're ready. I'm awake, I'm ready, and I'm NOT going back to sleep! The fight continues.

    *This article is a follow-up to a 2012 article also written by Laura Newton. To read her first article please click here.

    To shop the Breast Cancer Awareness and Young Survival Coalition-branded apparel and equipment click here. 10% of all proceeds from the sale of select pink products through the month of October go to YSC and its mission of providing resources for women diagnosed with breast cancer.

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