If you are just beginning MMA training, you’ll know the importance of developing your speed, strength and agility. Shadowboxing is one of the best ways to develop many key skills that will help you be successful during your MMA training, drills, sparring and fights. The great thing about shadowboxing is that you don’t need any special equipment or gyms. You just need plenty of space and many people shadowbox outdoors. Here are five tips that will help you have the perfect shadowboxing practice to help with your MMA training.
Tip #1. Work On Visualization
Shadowboxing isn’t about throwing punches straight. It’s about visualizing an imaginary opponent. Shadowboxing is mental preparation for an actual fight. If you have yet to try an MMA match, shadowboxing is the ideal way to prepare for the fight. You need to imagine you are in the corner of the ring, imagine the bell sounds and think what your opponent might do and then practice all of your punches, blocks, moving skills and your stance. If you practice these things whilst shadow boxing, you’ll be more prepared for it in a real fight.
Tip #2. Format Your Training Correctly
Break down the timing of the fight you are preparing for. If you are training for an MMA fight, you need to practice for a five-minute bout. You must practice how you will defend against a take down with a sprawl. Practice your punches, elbows, knees and other techniques. Think about what your opponents might be doing to you. Shadowboxing can help you build your endurance so that you can last for a fight and be successful. If you format your training correctly, you will be better prepared for a real bout against a fighter. Take the appropriate rest periods and box as if you were in a real fight. This will help you to prepare for the rigors of recovering from a fight in a short rest period, as you would during a real fight.
Tip #3. Focus On Perfecting Your Stance
Shadowboxing is more than simply mental preparation. It gives you first-class practice for developing your stance. The proper MMA stance is to have your dominant-side leg back, stay on the balls of your feet and keep your legs shoulder width apart. You should practice holding this position as you visualize your opponent. Shadowboxing can help beginning MMA fighters to stay on their toes. Many beginners put their back heels down as soon as they move sideways. Keep your hands up so that your fists are near your cheekbones and keep your chin tucked in. Focus on perfecting your technique and being comfortable moving around in the right position.
Tip #4. Learn To Control Your Breathing
As you’ll likely know, you should always exhale as you throw a punch in MMA. As MMA bouts can last several minutes, you need to know how to control your breathing so that you always exhale when you throw a punch. This can become difficult when you have been shadowboxing for a few minutes and are starting to get out of breathe. Many fighters hold weights while they shadowbox to avoid getting sloppy with their technique. While kettlebells are too heavy, wrist weights weighing a few pounds can help straighten up your swings. Training with weights will make you breathless far sooner and can help you work on controlling your breathing.
Tip #5. Master Your Countermoves
Shadowboxing training is most effective if you visualize and prepare for an opponent attacking or counterattacking you. What will you do when your opponent blocks? How will you respond if they grapple you? You must imagine your opponent in front of you when practicing your footwork, boxing combos, Muay Thai knees, kicks, and other MMA techniques. Work on your defensive strategies that will enable you to win the fight. For MMA fighters, this can mean getting used to landing on the floor, on your back, and devising ways to get out of holds and breaking grapples.
Shadowboxing can be extremely useful for MMA fighters. You can practice your defenses, your stance, your breathing and your techniques. More than anything, shadowing boxing is about building the confidence you need to go into the ring with a real opponent. While shadowboxing is an effective home training method of preparing for an MMA match, it is more effective if you are using real moves and techniques from mixed martial arts training sessions in CT. Using real moves will make your shadowboxing sessions more effective and better prepare yourself for an actual fight. Where possible, ask your instructor or other students to watch you shadowbox and critique your moves. If you have used shadowboxing successfully to prepare for your MMA fights, let us know which tips you used to improve. Leave us a comment below and let us know how shadowboxing helped you to prepare for your MMA match!