View Full Version : Southpaw Woes -- The Right Cross


fraidycat
02-01-2008, 12:23 AM
I need to learn how to make my left cross as dangerous as the other guy's right cross. Mine's good, but it's more of a stinger and not the freight train that the right cross is. I really need to put some serious time in on the bag just learning to make that cross like the hand of God himself. The guy on the other end of my gloves should be as wary of my cross as I am of his.

The guy I sparred today had a cross like a ****ing lightning bolt. Wicked fast and heavy as hell. It was like getting hit by a car. He caught me right on the nose and I didn't even see it coming.

To my credit, I didn't let it phase me; I just returned fire and finished the round with my nose dripping down my chin. But that didn't make it suck any less.

Right now my shovelhook is my big punch, thrown from just inside jab/cross range. I need to make my left cross become the punch that everyone is afraid of so that I've got a heavy weapon at range. This is my next immediate goal. I'm open to suggestions.

\/oid161
02-01-2008, 12:32 AM
what sucks is, for a southpaw, you stand opposite an orthodox stance (obviously) and that sets their right hand up for a devastating sweeping attack, not only that but your headgear narrows the paripheral(sp?) vision so it makes it eve harder to see coming, my only suggestion would be to duck and back out every time you see his right side twitch...and make sure you are pivoting your front foot when you are throwing your left, srry if that doesnt help, i dont know much about southpaw fighters =p :boxing:

West24
02-01-2008, 12:54 AM
im also a south paw, yet im naturally right haded. so my lead hand is strong, so i usually use it a lot more then my left. either way when i want to throw the left hook or cross i usually duck somewhat while doing it. like an overhand punch. from long range i usually will throw my left and twist my hand so that im pretty much punching with the complete back of my hand by the time it hits the opponent. many times the opponent will keep his glove attached to his chin. either because of a lack of experience with south paws and not wanting to get hit with the left, or just because of a lack of boxing experience all together. that is a really good time to throw the looping hook because it is almost just as good to hit the glove when in contact with the face then just hitting the face. just some south paw tips lol.

aussieboxer2320
02-01-2008, 04:00 AM
just work on your form when throwing it, remember 2 drop your knee slightly and drive as if hitting through your target, bring your arm back as fast as you can, twist your bodyweight behind it but dont overcommit, you should be balanced the whole time and clench your fist tightly on impact, expelling air from your mouth on impact seems to give it a bit more bang, alot of pros grunt or blow as they land the punch, some even yell, ive heard it gives the blow more sting and it also puts your opponent off a bit, sometimes un nerving them, also keep your right hand on guard the whole time (depending on what stance you adopt, regular, philly shell etc... hope that helps it was how i was taught to throw my cross which everyone says is a great punch for me good luck

Salty
02-01-2008, 07:03 AM
Try having your back foot facing the same direction with your heel off the floor, i know it sounds stupid and fundamental but you see a lot of people who for some reason plant their back heel when they throw it out of bad habit. Make sure it's up in the air and you will notice a lot more power behind it. Also one handed medicine ball throws against a wall helps a lot.

moin126
02-01-2008, 08:03 AM
I think both my hands are powerful, Since im a natural, southpaw, but when i was younger i trained my right hand, because i loved to arm wrestle against guys and they all right handed lol.
So i think i have 2 power hands.

But in a southpaw stance, no one has a advantage, by that i mean its a mirror image.
its your left cross vs his right cross, by smart movement to the right, you open your left and avoid his right, thats the fundamental southpaw strategy.
I like to throw a lead left hand, non telegraphed so the fist moves first with the whole body falling in. Kinda like the mayweather right hand, its a very good punch.

to practise it, i would have a mirror, and constantly practise the mechanics of the punch, and putting emphasis on the pivot of the rear foot, First perfect the technique, minimize telegraphing, keeping guard up chin down, explore follow ups. Then train the **** out of it.

patrionus
02-01-2008, 04:03 PM
You have to understand that the powerful effect of the cross comes from timing. You have to be very patient with the cross and also fast as hell to step in when you see an opening. That's why the cross is best used as a counter punch. It can also be used as an offensive attact against smaller opponents, but against taller ones it works best as a counter punch.

Sinisterevo
02-01-2008, 05:54 PM
Southpaw's are very susceptible to the right cross. To beat a southpaw you have to use your right hand effectively. Since you are a southpaw I would suggest to make the other figher beat you with their left....just really focus your defense against their right hand, and punish them with your left.

Benn_Foust
02-01-2008, 07:18 PM
Don't let him set his feet so that his left leg is outside of your right leg. To improve your left hook I suggest using the speed bag to improve your speed with your left hand which will put more snap into your punches. Most people can't punch evenly with both hands so it's no biggie, just try and work on your handspeed instead of power and you can get a new style and way of fighting.

fraidycat
02-02-2008, 12:13 AM
Don't let him set his feet so that his left leg is outside of your right leg. To improve your left hook I suggest using the speed bag to improve your speed with your left hand which will put more snap into your punches. Most people can't punch evenly with both hands so it's no biggie, just try and work on your handspeed instead of power and you can get a new style and way of fighting.

My left hook is wicked, especially to the body or when thrown at a 45 as a shovel hook. I've always worked the left cross as a quick snapping punch (so as not to have it followed by a right cross over the top when returning), not as a bomb the way many orthodox guys throw the right. That's what I'm missing in my arsenal -- that massive, freight-train cross. I forgot to watch his left foot, too; that's why that fast right hand seemed to appear out of nowhere. :puppy_dog

patrionus
02-02-2008, 06:29 AM
Tell me, do you throw your cross in such that manner that your arm sticks straight out and your elbow is locked? If it's the case, that's where the problem lies in. You want to throw your cross in such a manner that your arm doesn't become fully extented and your elbow remains a little bent, actually the more the better.

xSOUTHPAWx
02-02-2008, 06:54 AM
Tell me, do you throw your cross in such that manner that your arm sticks straight out and your elbow is locked? If it's the case, that's where the problem lies in. You want to throw your cross in such a manner that your arm doesn't become fully extented and your elbow remains a little bent, actually the more the better.

doesnt make since to me...

bend the knee twist the hips.. smash the ****roach with ur foot.. follow through.. my left is considerably stronger than my right.. however my right(jab) can have the power of some peoples crosses.. i just have a big tell when i throw a hard jab..i dip my shoulders to the the right.then twist left and hit the jab... only use that when im slippin..

p.s. **** a shovel hook.. work on the 1-2...

if you throw a shovel hook in as ur main punch.. you're dumb.. shovel hooks are good for duckers.. and flurrys .. chill 1-2.. circle right 1 1 .. bob weave switch to orthodox get em with a left hook.. works every time.

fraidycat
02-02-2008, 07:59 PM
p.s. **** a shovel hook.. work on the 1-2...

if you throw a shovel hook in as ur main punch.. you're dumb.. shovel hooks are good for duckers.. and flurrys .. chill 1-2.. circle right 1 1 .. bob weave switch to orthodox get em with a left hook.. works every time.

I'm only 5'9" and a middleweight (until recently I was a light heavy), so I fight real close. I jab or weave my way in, then stay on him with short hooks. People say that sparring me is like a fistfight in a phone booth -- I try to stay inside where straight punches aren't nearly as deadly.

From range, I agree, the shovelhook is unwise. But when you're inside, it comes in at a weird angle that, when coupled with a sidestep or a weave (or both), slips through a tight guard, which is what a lot of guys do when in close. I have actually hit someone on his right eye with my right hand, while his hands are up, just by stepping around and throwing the shovel hook through the hole. If he turns his head to follow instead of pivoting, and especially if he barn-doors his right hand to track me, he's :owned:

aspect
02-04-2008, 10:08 AM
learn how to do some cuting, side step and slip.
stay away from his right remember the rule of the thumb when you are facing an orthodox as a southpaw.
your right foot should be outside of his left foot this way you are standing square to him.
your left fist is closer to his face and his right fist is farther.you should be able to see alot of blows coming from his right this way than standing from his inside.

as of now Im doing mma alot.when I choose to stand inside I am looking to slip from his right cross and counter.
and my shoot are easier this way coz he is standing square to me which is a favor for me.asking me to take him down.

and I can reach his right thigh easily for my thigh kicks.and I can use full force of my left head kick this way as the right arm is cleared most of the time at this angle.

potatoes
02-04-2008, 12:11 PM
I need to learn how to make my left cross as dangerous as the other guy's right cross. Mine's good, but it's more of a stinger and not the freight train that the right cross is. I really need to put some serious time in on the bag just learning to make that cross like the hand of God himself. The guy on the other end of my gloves should be as wary of my cross as I am of his.

The guy I sparred today had a cross like a ****ing lightning bolt. Wicked fast and heavy as hell. It was like getting hit by a car. He caught me right on the nose and I didn't even see it coming.

To my credit, I didn't let it phase me; I just returned fire and finished the round with my nose dripping down my chin. But that didn't make it suck any less.

Right now my shovelhook is my big punch, thrown from just inside jab/cross range. I need to make my left cross become the punch that everyone is afraid of so that I've got a heavy weapon at range. This is my next immediate goal. I'm open to suggestions.



"...and I didn't even see it coming." That is the most problematic clause in your post. Please explain why you didn't see it coming.

fraidycat
02-04-2008, 12:30 PM
"...and I didn't even see it coming." That is the most problematic clause in your post. Please explain why you didn't see it coming.

:ugh: Because I'm ****in' stupid?

Frankly, I don't remember. I think I wasn't watching his left foot, though; that's usually the tell that a big right cross is coming. When I see that foot move to the outside of my right foot, that's my cue to duck and cover. I'm usually in another ZIP code by the time that cross comes. It's possible that he threw it with his foot inside, it was so FAST. He didn't load it up, either. I'll be sparring him again later this week and I'll try to pay closer attention to the way he throws that right.

potatoes
02-04-2008, 01:01 PM
:ugh: Because I'm ****in' stupid?

Frankly, I don't remember. I think I wasn't watching his left foot, though; that's usually the tell that a big right cross is coming. When I see that foot move to the outside of my right foot, that's my cue to duck and cover. I'm usually in another ZIP code by the time that cross comes. It's possible that he threw it with his foot inside, it was so FAST. He didn't load it up, either. I'll be sparring him again later this week and I'll try to pay closer attention to the way he throws that right.



Sometimes problems can be interrelated. A lack of focus can often mean that you are getting hit by punches that you should have avoided. It can also mean that you are not achieving the maximum speed or power which you are capable of. You have to identify the underlying problem before you can find the solution. Is it poor technique or poor concentration? Is your style clearly defined or confused?

These questions are not easily answered because it is difficult to analyze yourself. Sometimes it is easier to pick apart somebody else's problems, then eventually you might be able to relate it to yourself. If you want to see a confused style just take a good look at Alexander Povetkin. He tries to be both a slugger and a boxer. He tries to fight small and fight tall, but isn't doing anything very well. It was bloody awful what Eddie Chambers was letting him get away with. Obviously Povetkin isn't getting the right training. How about you?

fraidycat
02-04-2008, 04:04 PM
Obviously Povetkin isn't getting the right training. How about you?

I'm quite happy with my trainers and my training. My main concern is that my left isn't as strong of a punch as I'm finding other people's rights to be. It's my own fault, as for the last two years I've trained my left to be a quick, stinging, snappy punch, not a freight train. I rely on close, torquing hooks to the body to do the damage and IMO I'm missing a weapon that other guys have. I have a disadvantage at range because of this, most definitely. OTOH, I have a cross that's much faster than most guys' rights.

I don't think it's a sign of poor training to be caught with a lucky punch now and again; hell, I've caught many superior boxers with a good punch when their attention was elsewhere -- my favorite punch is still a feint. :banana: For that matter, the heavier weight classes seem to revolve on lucky punches.

BrooklynBomber
02-04-2008, 08:06 PM
Fraidy, one advice or even a pointer(I am an orthodox, but I dealth with great many southpaws). The key to a good left cross is not letting your opponent see it(duh, I know, it goes for every punch but especially for your left cross) and the key to it is a bit different body mechanics.


You need to hold your glove in such a way(usualy under an angle with most of the palm facing your opponent) that it covers your shoulder.

Moreover, you know how you always start your cross from the ground(with your feet). Try to start it with your fist and actually use your feet to propel it after the fist went flying a couple of inches.

It is much harder to explain it then to actually show it(and if I did I would have to do it from an orthodox stance) but the whole idea is that when a fighter is looking for his opponent's punches he is looking at the shoulders and then feet, and you have to fool him.

Hope it helps.

potatoes
02-05-2008, 11:37 AM
I'm quite happy with my trainers and my training. My main concern is that my left isn't as strong of a punch as I'm finding other people's rights to be. It's my own fault, as for the last two years I've trained my left to be a quick, stinging, snappy punch, not a freight train. I rely on close, torquing hooks to the body to do the damage and IMO I'm missing a weapon that other guys have. I have a disadvantage at range because of this, most definitely. OTOH, I have a cross that's much faster than most guys' rights.

I don't think it's a sign of poor training to be caught with a lucky punch now and again; hell, I've caught many superior boxers with a good punch when their attention was elsewhere -- my favorite punch is still a feint. :banana: For that matter, the heavier weight classes seem to revolve on lucky punches.


A lucky punch is any punch which landed which could not have been avoided. This is boxing and so you can expect to hit get occasionally, but you should not be getting hit frequently. In his prime Muhammad Ali was hard to hit, so was Mike Tyson. Just because some heavyweights are easy targets doesn't make it right.

There is a lot to be said for a fast straight right because it sets up the lefthook to the body. (In your case righthook.) If a man's style is to fight on the inside, which is a small man's style, then he should NOT expect to hit his opponents with a lot of full extension punches. In fact most of the full extension punches tend to be more of a distraction used primarily to set up the short hooks used on the inside. In that case the speed of the right cross (or left) is more important than power.

Quite frankly I don't see what the problem is. Maybe you are just imagining problems because you are too easy to hit?

fraidycat
02-05-2008, 07:50 PM
If a man's style is to fight on the inside, which is a small man's style, then he should NOT expect to hit his opponents with a lot of full extension punches. In fact most of the full extension punches tend to be more of a distraction used primarily to set up the short hooks used on the inside. In that case the speed of the right cross (or left) is more important than power.

This is exactly my style.


Quite frankly I don't see what the problem is. Maybe you are just imagining problems because you are too easy to hit?

My only problem is, not having that weapon at range. My primary tactic at this point is to get in close enough that he can smell the garlic on my breath and then unleash a barrage of heavy short hooks and proceed to make his world a scary ****ing place. But once he gets range or I back off to catch my breath, I'm outgunned. I throw my cross exactly as you write, above: fast and snappy so he can't counter over the top, and often as a distraction or a "shot across the bow" to keep him away while I get ready for another close-range flurry. It's an infighter's tactic but it's not enough. As I learned the other night.

I want to learn to throw it so hard that it keeps a taller opponent's right hand glued to his shoulder, wary of the counterpunch. IMO the cross, at range, should be a fight-ender.

BrooklynBomber's idea of throwing the hand first and then the push with the foot, drives the punch harder; it's almost a pushed punch but not quite. It's a good start, definitely. I want to have a cross so heavy that the guy who catches it in the head ****s out his own spine. I'm open to tips.

potatoes
02-06-2008, 02:01 PM
This is exactly my style.



My only problem is, not having that weapon at range. My primary tactic at this point is to get in close enough that he can smell the garlic on my breath and then unleash a barrage of heavy short hooks and proceed to make his world a scary ****ing place. But once he gets range or I back off to catch my breath, I'm outgunned. I throw my cross exactly as you write, above: fast and snappy so he can't counter over the top, and often as a distraction or a "shot across the bow" to keep him away while I get ready for another close-range flurry. It's an infighter's tactic but it's not enough. As I learned the other night.

I want to learn to throw it so hard that it keeps a taller opponent's right hand glued to his shoulder, wary of the counterpunch. IMO the cross, at range, should be a fight-ender.

BrooklynBomber's idea of throwing the hand first and then the push with the foot, drives the punch harder; it's almost a pushed punch but not quite. It's a good start, definitely. I want to have a cross so heavy that the guy who catches it in the head ****s out his own spine. I'm open to tips.



Rocky Marciano knocked out a lot of men with Suzie-Q. I guess we would all like to be able to do that, but its got more to do with genes than technique. The fact remains that Marciano's reliance on Suzie-Q was one of the many flaws in his style. If a man is going to fight small he should do it correctly. From your description it would appear that you are doing it better than Marciano.

If you aren't reaching your punching potential, in other words there are some flaws in your punching technique, this should have been noticed by your boxing coach. Do your training fees include observation and correcting of your mistakes?

fraidycat
02-06-2008, 06:57 PM
Rocky Marciano knocked out a lot of men with Suzie-Q. I guess we would all like to be able to do that, but its got more to do with genes than technique. The fact remains that Marciano's reliance on Suzie-Q was one of the many flaws in his style. If a man is going to fight small he should do it correctly. From your description it would appear that you are doing it better than Marciano.


I don't know this Susie-Q you refer to. I can tell you that I am exceptionally strong, although I highly doubt I do anything better than Marciano. The ONLY thing I have in common with Marciano is that like him before he went pro, I work for a living; he was a bricklayer, I'm a boatbuilder -- very strong hands, very strong back, exceptional functional strength. I know that I hit a lot harder in close than most guys can. I use twisting shovelhooks, short hooks, and uppercuts, and usually when I'm in there, the other guy just kind of pounds on my back or hits me with half-assed short punches that don't hurt very much. My last fight we were standing toe to toe trading and the guy just quit. He stepped back and waved his gloves, no mas, then threw off his headgear and went to his corner. RTD.

Also, our gym tends to teach boxing as opposed to swarming/punching, which also gives me an advantage when sparring. I have no doubt that someone who knew what to do against a swarmer would destroy me.

BennyST
02-07-2008, 02:12 AM
Don't let him set his feet so that his left leg is outside of your right leg. To improve your left hook I suggest using the speed bag to improve your speed with your left hand which will put more snap into your punches. Most people can't punch evenly with both hands so it's no biggie, just try and work on your handspeed instead of power and you can get a new style and way of fighting.

I was also going to suggest this. You always want to make sure you're keeping your left foot outside his right foot. It is an obvious thing but it is also an obvious thing for the righty to be trying (opposite) so you have to have this constantly in your mind. This way you will not only get more power and leverage in your left but you'll be taking away his power. This in itself could be hampering your power within the ring...of course training it outside is another matter...

I would suggest making sure you are getting full follow through and extension on it. Try to make sure you are using your hips with the follow through so you're not just chopping with it. Try to sink up your entire body coordination into the punch. Feet, hips, shoulders, elbow, hand.

Also as Mr Foust suggested, don't think of power too much. This will generally tighten you up if you're trying to put too much into it. Go for sharp, accurate and fast punches. Think 'speed' because if you can hit someone without them seeing it, it will always hurt or stun them more than a punch they can see coming. Good luck mate! Get that cross rippin' into your opponent!

BennyST
02-07-2008, 02:20 AM
It's possible that he threw it with his foot inside, it was so FAST. He didn't load it up, either.

Remember that. You don't need to load up on punches too much to make them hurt someone. If you can catch them unawares with it, it will always hurt or stun them more than a full blown whopper will that they see coming. Set it up with and throw it behind the jab. Fighting in close do you square up a lot? If you do, it could be that every time you're throwing it, it is easy to see coming.

potatoes
02-07-2008, 01:45 PM
I don't know this Susie-Q you refer to. I can tell you that I am exceptionally strong, although I highly doubt I do anything better than Marciano. The ONLY thing I have in common with Marciano is that like him before he went pro, I work for a living; he was a bricklayer, I'm a boatbuilder -- very strong hands, very strong back, exceptional functional strength. I know that I hit a lot harder in close than most guys can. I use twisting shovelhooks, short hooks, and uppercuts, and usually when I'm in there, the other guy just kind of pounds on my back or hits me with half-assed short punches that don't hurt very much. My last fight we were standing toe to toe trading and the guy just quit. He stepped back and waved his gloves, no mas, then threw off his headgear and went to his corner. RTD.

Also, our gym tends to teach boxing as opposed to swarming/punching, which also gives me an advantage when sparring. I have no doubt that someone who knew what to do against a swarmer would destroy me.


Suzie-Q was the name that Marciano gave to his right cross. Usually it only took one solid hit and the fight was over. If you watch the videos you will see that Marciano always had a problem getting that solid hit. His skills were so poor that he never really learned how to set up knockouts. To make up for this deficiency he made himself fit enough to windmill knockout punches until one landed. At the time the boxing pundits referred to him as a "neanderthal" and it is not hard to understand why.

If you don't have a Suzie-Q to rely on don't worry about it. If you can work the buggers on the inside, just do it. Sooner or later you will figure out how to land those uppercuts and then you will find out how easy it is to get knockouts. Remember don't imitate Povetkin's mistake of pulling straight back. Against Fast Eddie he was doing actually it with his hands down, and that is really stupid! Amazingly Fast Eddie let him get away with it. You next opponent may not be so cooperative.