How to Throw a Hook

The hook typically one of a fighter’s most powerful punches.

In orthodox stance (left foot forward), the left hook is most commonly used within boxing combinations.

The right hook, being the rear hand, is typically out-of-range, but can be used with some improvisation and good timing.

The Left Hook from Orthodox Stance

The left foot must be on ‘the toes’, to allow rotation around the toes with the heel in the air.

Twist the heel clockwise to load the left hip

Rotate the left (and right) hip clockwise

‘Open’ up the chest to build up ‘elastic’ energy around the chest

Drive the shoulder clockwise, and finally bring the arm and fist around.

Typically, you would punch with the thumb pointing upwards, but this can vary.

When fighting in close (sometimes referred to as ‘in the pocket’), for example against the ropes, the arm will be bent at 90 degrees at the elbow.  When throwing hooks from further distance from your opponent, you may need to bend your elbow less and keep the arm straighter to land the hook from range.
See the Russian Hook below for adding extra reach to a hook.

You can throw ‘Chuck Lidell’ style hooks from further out by extending the arm, then whipping it through, fully/nearly full extended. Almost like a huge bitch-slap! (but with a fist)

Some fighters, for example an ‘early’ Robbie Lawler (fighting Chris Lytle for example) would throw hooks with the fist starting down at the waist.  This adds more power thanks to the further distance-travelled and rotational force acquired, but is very risky!

Russian Hook / Casting Punch
Throw the hook with a straight arm, then turn the thumb down and your elbow up towards the ceiling at the end of the punch.
This is a common punch in MMA, it gives extra range and arguably more power. It is a punch that Fedor would use, standing and within opponent’s guards for ground and pound.

This is a great punch to add to your arsenal. It was originally developed by the Russian amateur boxing coaches to ensure that the ‘scoring’ part of the glove landed with the hook.