Can you tell me anything about the logic behind chambering punches?

amateur

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My background is more westernized. I have tried practicing punches in the eastern style (hands in chamber position) and I really couldn't see what's so special about it. Many guys that practice MMA agree that it's useless. Nevertheless, I did some research and absorbed some info about the science behind chamber practice. I'd like to hear your opinion too. If you think it's worth including some eastern punches in my workout, what are your arguments?
 

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My background is more westernized. I have tried practicing punches in the eastern style (hands in chamber position) and I really couldn't see what's so special about it. Many guys that practice MMA agree that it's useless. Nevertheless, I did some research and absorbed some info about the science behind chamber practice. I'd like to hear your opinion too. If you think it's worth including some eastern punches in my workout, what are your arguments?
I do think there is value in the practice. It is simply the mechanics behind making power using as much of the body as possible. I know the arguments but if you watch any of the classic knockouts on film nearly all of them are more than a segmented arm or arm/shoulder punch. I think most of the rub comes down to styles of practice and "not wanting to do things the old ways". A word of caution; you need someone to properly teach you how to perform the "eastern" punch. There is a lot more to it than you may think. IMHO
Welcome to the forum. Let us know more about what you are doing. There is a lot of great knowledge here.
 

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My background is more westernized. I have tried practicing punches in the eastern style (hands in chamber position) and I really couldn't see what's so special about it. Many guys that practice MMA agree that it's useless. Nevertheless, I did some research and absorbed some info about the science behind chamber practice. I'd like to hear your opinion too. If you think it's worth including some eastern punches in my workout, what are your arguments?

Yes chambering is just loading up your punch to generate more power. Helps maximize power by creating good weight distribution and acceleration in the punch.
 

Hanzou

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It's an archiac punching method that is eclipsed by modern methods. There's next to zero value in performing it outside of "tradition" or to win kata competitions.
 

Hanzou

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What modern methods doesn't involve chambering? Most power punches come from a chambered position.

I'm talking about this;

RUBJb.jpg


Modern methods don't do that.
 

Bill Mattocks

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My background is more westernized. I have tried practicing punches in the eastern style (hands in chamber position) and I really couldn't see what's so special about it. Many guys that practice MMA agree that it's useless. Nevertheless, I did some research and absorbed some info about the science behind chamber practice. I'd like to hear your opinion too. If you think it's worth including some eastern punches in my workout, what are your arguments?

The chambered punch is not a technique but a training method. It teaches a number of things, including power generation with the hips. You would not find it useful if you're looking for utility outside of the context in which it is taught.

You were correct to note that you do not see the utility. That you do not see it doesn't mean no one does.
 

Bill Mattocks

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What modern methods doesn't involve chambering? Most power punches come from a chambered position.

Correct. People fail to grasp the mechanics when absorbing the lessons taught from hands on hips to hands held up. Power generation is the same, if taught correctly.
 

Martial D

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What modern methods doesn't involve chambering? Most power punches come from a chambered position.
Naw, that's not really true. A good punch comes from where it is. The power comes from the springy back leg, hips, and shoulder. Pulling the fist back to the hip or high chamber position only helps if the power is coming from throwing the arm...aka arm punching.
 

Bill Mattocks

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Naw, that's not really true. A good punch comes from where it is. The power comes from the springy back leg, hips, and shoulder. Pulling the fist back to the hip or high chamber position only helps if the power is coming from throwing the arm...aka arm punching.

You have no idea what you just said.
 

Martial D

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You have no idea what you just said.
Uhh..that's a weird comment but ok. I'm pretty sure I know EXACTLY what I just said, based on years and years of both boxing and TMA.

Chambering to the shoulder or hip adds nothing but a very pronounced telegraph, and to break body mechanics. There's a reason no successful fighter does it.
 

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Uhh..that's a weird comment but ok. I'm pretty sure I know EXACTLY what I just said, based on years and years of both boxing and TMA.

Chambering to the shoulder or hip adds nothing but a very pronounced telegraph, and to break body mechanics. There's a reason no successful fighter does it.

You described the effects of training using chambering and then said you don't do it. LOL. "The power comes from the springy back leg, hips, and shoulder." Yes, no fooling. Guess where that comes from?
 

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That is just a drill. Modern methods still utilize punching from a chambered position even if they do not use this particular drill.

Correct. What does a hip-chambered punch teach? Certainly not to fight that way! But one learns where the power comes from when one cannot arm-punch. One learns body movement (tai sabaki), trapping, center of gravity, and power generation. Once those lessons are natural to the body, it no longer matters where the arms are. I can stand in an upright position, guard my head, and throw a leading jab that generates power from my shoulder, hip, knees, and body rotation, and where might I have learned that?

People take a random aspect of training in an art they do not train in, fail to grasp the point of it, and pronounce it useless. It certainly is useless - for them.
 

Martial D

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You described the effects of training using chambering and then said you don't do it. LOL. "The power comes from the springy back leg, hips, and shoulder." Yes, no fooling. Guess where that comes from?
Yes, those are the factors involved in power generation. Pulling the fist back to the body (chambering) adds nothing(arguably lessens) unless the power is purely from the arm. (As many TMA punches are)
 

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It was always taught to me as a 3 dimensional tool. Bringing the hand back to the hip also represents a rear elbow to someone standing behind you
 

Bill Mattocks

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Yes, those are the factors involved in power generation. Pulling the fist back to the body (chambering) adds nothing(arguably lessens) unless the power is purely from the arm. (As many TMA punches are)

You may be mistaking pulling the fist back to the body with the lessons it teaches. And in any case, a chambered punch is the exact opposite of an 'arm punch' in terms of power generation, unless you're seriously doing it wrong.
 

Martial D

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You may be mistaking pulling the fist back to the body with the lessons it teaches. And in any case, a chambered punch is the exact opposite of an 'arm punch' in terms of power generation, unless you're seriously doing it wrong.
What? Unless you are trying to redefine what the term means, the ''chamber" is under the shoulder or at the hip. You already know this so I'm not even sure why you are arguing.

Are you really trying to tell me a tkd or karate reverse punch isn't an arm punch? (Especially when compared to how the same rear hand straight is thrown by a boxer)
 

Martial D

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It was always taught to me as a 3 dimensional tool. Bringing the hand back to the hip also represents a rear elbow to someone standing behind you
Ya, my old wc sifu liked to use that as reasoning for pulling the shot back to chamber too.

Unfortunately that sort of straight back elbow is completely useless in an actual altercation.
 

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My background is more westernized. I have tried practicing punches in the eastern style (hands in chamber position) and I really couldn't see what's so special about it. Many guys that practice MMA agree that it's useless. Nevertheless, I did some research and absorbed some info about the science behind chamber practice. I'd like to hear your opinion too. If you think it's worth including some eastern punches in my workout, what are your arguments?
It's a different approach to learning. In much of traditional Asian training, movements are exaggerated in the early foundations. I have theories about why this was done (partly, I think it allows an instructor to review a larger group of students), but the short of it is that it also exaggerates some principles. Here's one principle that's common across all striking arts I've seen: don't leave the hand out there after a strike. So, when practicing punches, most Eastern arts practice bringing the other hand "home". The chamber position - for this principle - serves the same purpose as the guard position in boxing. It's a place for the hand to call "home" when it's not striking. Most Japanese arts use more hip motion in their power generation than you'll see in most Western methods, and the chambering of that hand actually makes this easier to get right, for the beginner.

Personally, I think it's a beginner's position, and there's not a lot of functional reason to keep practicing it (outside of forms, or as a meditative fitness exercise) once you've gotten the principles right.
 

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