Anyone in the self-defense/fighting/tactical community with even the slightest sense of critical thinking will know that you have to practice. Regardless of how simple or efficient a fighting movement is, you cannot learn it, perform a few repetitions, and assume you have the ability to functionally apply it against a resisting opponent while in an initiative deficit. That just makes no sense (of course, that does not prevent unscrupulous instructors from selling their material as exactly that – “5 easy moves to defeat any attacker” type garbage. But I will save that rant for another post).
There is a vast amount of equipment and methods out there to help us practice. For now, I will focus on those things that are applicable to H2H, since are a metric-ton of places to get advice on how to shoot better.
I like and have used almost all the pieces of typical equipment that is out there: heavy bags, double-end bags, focus mitts, grappling dummies, speed bags, Thai pads, etc. They are all valid and at times incredibly useful. However, the single best thing you can do is also free – Shadowboxing.
Not only is shadowboxing fee, it does not require a partner, or much of anything except perhaps a bit of space. That is it! So what can we do with it, and how can it help us?
What we can do with it is literally almost anything. The only real limitation is your own imagination, and how much effort you put into it. How it can help us is in whatever way we choose to work through any possible physical situation that can arise – from a sudden ambush, to multiple opponents, to opponents with weapons, etc.
In the next article, I will go into more detail and advice on how to use this great tool. In the meantime, watch the video carefully of Tyson at this peak shadowboxing, and see if there are any lessons that jump out at you in how he performs.