Not everyone can be Sugar Ray Leonard, but you can be on your way by learning how to power punch. The right power punch can be boxing's most devastating maneuver, but it is also the most dangerous to rely on. Like a baseball team forced to rely on the homerun to win a game, relying on the power punch to win a match can be hit or miss, literally. Still, knowing how to correctly land one can also be the difference between a tense judges decision and you leaping in the air celebrating your victory.
- Momentum. The first thing most people will teach a boxers is that your arm strength, no matter how impressive, is usually not enough to knock someone out. Throwing a powerful punch with just your arm may cause some damage, but it may also wear you out quicker. In order to throw an effective power punch, it is your body that needs to do the work. You need to learn how to put every shred of your body's momentum behind a power punch.
- The stance. The way to make sure your power punches are powerful is to focus on your stance. The correct stance for throwing a punch is to have one foot slightly behind the other. This is so that, when you do throw the punch, you can swing your body through to give it more momentum. You want all of your weight behind it. Before you throw that punch though, you want to aim it. Depending on the situation, this may be anywhere from the temple to the stomach, but as long as you swivel through your punch it will have good power behind it.
- Timing is everything. Timing your punch may be even more important than the power behind it. A powerful swing will leave you vulnerable to a counter, so you want to move fast. Not too fast that you miss time your punch, though. You want to hit your opponent during the most powerful moment of your swing and with as little extra to your follow through as possible. If you are aiming for the body or with a straight jab, you may not worry about this so much, but a hook with an extended and unnecessary arching follow through can leave you very vulnerable for a power punch combo of your opponents. More importantly, putting more energy than you have to behind your punches will lead to you being tired in later rounds. You want to practice your power punching and find the perfect balance between speed, power, and stamina that works best for your style. Good luck! Keep those hands up.