Boxing: The Art of Loading

by Ben Cormack |   Date Released : 17 Apr 2009
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Ben Cormack

About the author: Ben Cormack

Ben Cormack is a fellow of applied functional science having studied at the Gray institute under Gary Gray and David Tiberio.

He is located in London, UK, and has been involved with training and conditioning of numerous athletes, including title-winning professional boxers, triathletes and ultra endurance runners.

Ben has helped many people in chronic pain and also through the rehabilitation process from sports injury back to competition level.

Ben is a regular PTontheNet author. He has also recently started running a seminar series in the UK based on his training techniques, experiences and the science behind them.

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Comments (4)

Cormack, Ben | 05 May 2009, 20:30 PM

Hi Shawn. As with all movements it depends on the driver if the biomechanics are real or relative. Within the function of boxing the arms are a distal point. They are also the drivers for punching direction. As we take the movement from the distal point when working out real or relative movement, thoracic spinal movement is going to be closely dictated to by the arms as they are distal from the proximal area of the pelvis. In boxing the thoracic spine will be translating (real movement) to the side opposite (to arm punching) in the transverse plane and same side as target in the frontal plane. This creates the spinal coupling. Each spinal segment would be traveling slower in the transverse plane to the opposite side during punching below the arms. This means that they would be relatively traveling to the right with a right arm punch rotating to the left. Because they are proximal(to the pelvis) however we take our motion from the distal point above. I hope this helps!!!

Cormack, Ben | 05 May 2009, 06:54 AM

Hi Stephen, thanks for your question. The foot drives in the saggital plane into plantar flexion, while from above the arm is target driven (conciously or we would not hit the target) in the transverse plane plane to the left. In the transverse plane this means that the driver would be the arm above causing external rotation below. Because of the external rotation of the leg, the mid tarsal has to relatively internally rotate because it is grounded. The foot provides the initiation of the movement in the saggital plane, but as explained in the article if the external rotation did not occur at the hip then this would provide a less stable platform to provide power from. Differing drivers act on the body in different planes of movement in this case. We could suggest that direction and power may come from varying drivers within the function of boxing. With any rotational movement we will get lengthening AND shortening of the abdominals. For example the Ipsilateral external oblique on the right leg in this case will be shortening and the contralateral oblique lengthening, the same will happen in reverse for the internal obliques. Thank you for allowing me to clear this up and asking a question which shows your great understanding of functional biomechanics.

True, Shawn | 04 May 2009, 10:38 AM


lewis, stephen | 01 May 2009, 15:37 PM

Great great article. Thanks for sharing your great understanding of Chain Reaction Biomechanics. Its great to see the industry is being driven in this direction of true biomechanics of specific function.

I have a couple of questions if thats ok. You mentioned

" This external rotation is due to the pelvis being driven from above to the left faster than the femur by the right arm. This then means the grounded mid tarsal has to be able to relatively internally rotate effectively"

I am not an expert by any stretch of the imagination on punching however the right cross is driven off the back foot as you said and so the reaction i would expect would be the same as a throwing action ie the foot would drive the hip which would drive the pelvis to the left faster than the thoracic spine which would tri plane lentghen the abdominals and then the arm would be the final part of the sling.

This would still create external rotation of the right hip on the explode however driven from the ground up and not the top down by the arm.

I would be very greatful if you could respond to me as i am still very new to this world of chain reaction biomechanics.

Many thanks once again for this great article,

Stephen Lewis

The way i see it is although the arm is the driving force, we do in fact subconciously drive from the ground up to create the power in the arm.

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