Basic to advance: A complete guide of boxing combinations

If you’ve perfected the basic punches of boxing such as the jab, cross, hook and uppercut, the next natural step is to combine these punches into boxing combinations. To master the art of boxing, one must master boxing combinations.

What is a boxing combination or combo?

In boxing, a combination of punches consists of a series of consecutive blows executed smoothly and effectively.

Here’s some benefits and tips for those sweet combos:

  • Combinations confuse the opponent, leading to greater chances of knockouts and victories
  • Punches to the body can set up knockout headshots
  • Keep in mind that movements should be natural and synced when performing punching sequences. Maintain a good posture while trying to maximize the hinge principle.
  • A lead arm punch is an excellent way to finish a combo. This makes you more aware of your opponent's strikes and prevents them from retaliating.
  • Strike with a combination of straights and hooks. Employing angles will confuse the opponent. Your opponent's guard narrows as you punch straight, allowing you to hook them. Hooks spread the opponents guard, opening up room for a straight.
  • Combinations get you the knockouts. Remember a punch you don’t see coming, hits the hardest.

Top 9 boxing combinations from basic, intermediate to advanced

Basic - 2 punch combinations

These are beginner boxing combinations that are simple to master, being easy doesn’t mean they won't work in a proper fight. Let's take a look at them:

Jab + Cross (1-2)

In essence, a jab-cross is a combination of the jab's surprise impact and the cross's force. Its goal is to knock out the opponent. Bodyweight boxing manoeuvres like jab crosses require appropriate breathing skills and allow for improvement as you increase speed and power.

You can create diverse combinations by landing both jab and cross on the body (1b-2b).

Cross + lead hook (2-3)

Your opponent will be able to attack you dead on if you cross without a hook. When you finish on the hook, you're in a linear posture, giving yourself a challenging target.

The cross-lead hook to the body is a great option (2-3b). Body shots weaken and gas the opponent out.

Right uppercut + left hook (6-3)

Uppercuts are used by boxers to lift opponents' heads or break through the guards of opposing blocks. When dealing with a skilled opponent, this punch must not be overlooked. One can finish the attack beautifully with a strong left hook.

Intermediate - 3 punch combinations

Proper technique, focus and endurance is required for these intermediate combinations:

Jab + Jab + Cross (1-1-2)

This one will fool your opponent. As your opponent may expect you to dish out a 1-2, the 1-1-2 is useful in this situation. Your opponent could be taken aback. If that's the case, the second jab would most likely reopen the way to your powerful right hand. A powerful strike might also end a boxing contest.

Jab + Cross + Left hook (1-2-3)

Your weight shifts when you throw your right hand, which naturally sets up your left hook. After your right cross, you may use the left hook to inflict serious damage on your opponent.

Jab + Cross + (Slip) Cross (1-2-2)

A frequent boxing strategy is to strike, dodge, and counter. It’s all about your timing and slipping technique. For instance, deliver a jab to the opponent followed by a quick slip and strong counter lead cross.

Advanced - 4 punch combinations

The goal behind this combo is to deliver four consecutive strong strikes in quick succession. No matter how good your opponent's guard, standing up to four punches is no easy task.

Jab + Cross + Left Hook + Cross (1-2-3-2)

Your jab sets up your cross, then your left hook naturally follows, and you finish with a hard cross. The latter two punches should be packed with power, whilst the initial two punches should be lightning quick.

Jab + Right uppercut + Left hook + Cross (1-6-3-2)

It might become tedious to consistently begin with the 1-2. Furthermore, your opponent may dodge the cross. Their guard is probably up because they expect the cross. In that case a right uppercut will do a lot of damage and lift their head, allowing you to finish with a left hook + cross.

Cross + Left hook + Cross + Left hook body (2-3-2-3b)

To target the opponent's head and body, the cross and left hooks work well.

You might be taken aback by all the numbering in the combinations above and memorizing them might seem one heck of a task. Although initially confusing, each number represents a type of punch.

Jab - 1

Cross - 2

Lead Hook - 3

Rear Hook - 4

Lead Uppercut - 5

Rear Uppercut - 6

Once you’ve got the numbers down, it’s good practice and an excellent way to memorize the combinations (eg. 1-6-1-2) by writing them down on a piece of paper or even sticking it onto the boxing bag. Oh and remember, if you’re a southpaw your lead hand is your left.

How can one improve their boxing combinations?

First thing to consider is not to be too repetitive with your combinations. Yes, mastering a combination is beneficial, but being a competent boxer necessitates the use of additional methods. Another thing to remember is to concentrate on your footwork, boxing stance, and head movement. You should practise both your attacking and defensive abilities during your boxing training.

What is the best boxing combo?

There is no ideal combination in boxing. As all combinations may be partially countered, the key to success is to figure out which ones work best against which opponents and under what circumstances.

Get practicing on your combinations to unleash the beast within! For the best boxing training equipment, from premium boxing gloves, headguards, heavy bags and more. Click here.