Bruce Lee’s 5 Ways of Attack

Really interesting concept,

We’ve all been guilty as a beginner, of sparring with someone much taller or faster than us,  and just running out of ideas and doing our best ‘damage-limitation’ techniques – usually of throwing punches out of range and holding on for dear life.

The 5 ways of attack, could be used to potentially have a number of go-to back up techniques and, well ways of attacking if our preferred method doesn’t work

1. Single Attack – straight line attack, like a jab to the opponent’s head.  If you are fighting someone taller than you, practice taking your head off centre-line to do this.

2. Attack by Combination – What it says on the tin. A jab, cross, left hook, right roundhouse combination would be a good example.

A ‘sneaky’ example used by Bernard Hopkins is to throw a jab and momentarily keep it right in front of the opponent’s eyes ‘blinding’ him for a second, then follow up with a power punch from the back-hand.

Manny Pacquiao jabs to set up a hook. The jab makes the opponent close his gloves to cover the front of his face – Pacquiao then throws a hook around his narrow guard.

Carl Froch famously did the opposite to this in his fight at Wembley, in front of 80,000 people (yawn)…throwing a looping left hook to draw the guard open and make room to land a straight right.

With small MMA gloves, hooks to the body often allow room for attacks to the head – Bas Rutten’s “body, body, head”

3. Attack by Drawing – Here’s where things get a bit more crafty. Draw your opponent in.  For example, if the opponent is taller than you, and constantly chasing him down to close the distance isn’t working, try drawing him in, by standing just out of his range, exposing an area, or even by pretending to be tired. Prince Naseem Hamed is probably the best boxing example of drawing somebody in – try being an annoying bellend like him.

You can also throw a strike, to invite a counter-strike. Rhonda Rousey does this beautifully (well, she used to), against Meisha Tate for example, as soon as Rousey threw a double jab, Tate would plant her feet and throw back – making it easy for Rousey to slip inside to grappling range.

4. Progressive Indirect Attack – basically study how your opponent reacts to certain punches or techniques, and then feint said technique and attack an exposed area. For example, if a jab to the head makes the opponent lift his hands up, then feint the jab, and throw a cross to the body

5. Hand Immobilisation Techniques – Basically removing your opponent’s guard by pushing, slapping or holding one of his arms down:

Floyd Mayweather uses hand trapping a lot.

In fact he uses many ‘unofficial’ boxing techniques, including maintaining space by framing on the opponents face with his forearm, pushing down on the opponent’s head and off-balancing opponent’s by pushing their head to the side.
He also loves to step in with a high elbow:

Here’s a video about the 5 ways of attack (this video still plays, even if the preview image is missing):

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About Drew

MMA, Fitness & Marketing enthusiast from North Wales, UK. A Stoic Hippy with no hair. Not to boast but - 1st Class Degree in Sports Science from Loughborough, MSc in Nutrition from the University of Liverpool. 20 years experience of weight & fitness training.
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